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January 19th, 2012 2:49 PM by David W. Welch
I don't read a lot of management books - at least not since I finished my MBA 22 years ago. One that I have read is Steven Covey's "Seven Habits of Highly Successful People." I was in a goal setting meeting at our office yesterday, and I started thinking about the seven habits and how well they correlate to our industry. Covey groups the habits into three different areas, so today I am going to focus on the grouping he titled "Private Victory". The three habits that fall into this category are "Be Proactive", "Begin with the End in Mind", and "Put First Things First."
The typical agent in our market only sells three or four houses a year, and I think a lot of that is directly related to them not having any kind of plan. Sitting and waiting for the phone to ring is not a plan. You have to be proactive, and that can mean a lot of things. Some people read that and immediately think it means cold calling. That is not necessarily the case. It just means that you have to reach out to the market, and let people know that you are in the real estate business. When making plans, you need to begin with the end in mind. How many people do you want to help this year? Assuming you are in business to make a profit, how much money do you need to make and how much do you make on your average transaction? Divide the former by the latter, and you will have the number of people you need to help. It is not rocket science.
Finally, you have to implement your plan, and that means putting first things first. We are always juggling three aspects of our business. I call them the three C's: contacts, contracts and closings. Before you can go to a closing, you have to have a contract. Before you can have a contract, you have to make contact with buyers and sellers. So, if you are really putting first things first, you are meeting potential customers. I have heard the average person knows about 300 people, and that sounds like a pretty good sized datebase of potential customers and referrals. Think of these three habits when you are working on your business plan, and read Covey's book for a whole lot more detail than I have written about here.