Did any of you have “Pandemic” in your business plan for 2020? I’m guessing not. No one could have expected this. Now, the new buzz word is “pivot;” how will you or how did you pivot in your life and business? This month, I’m going to tackle the top 3 ways to adapt to change in the 2020 real estate market.
This may sound counterproductive, but things are changing too rapidly for us to have the clarity we need to make long-term plans. Instead, make short-term plans: monthly, weekly and daily. This takes discipline and commitment, but it pays off! Those of you who know me have heard me emphasize the importance of clarity – i.e. getting clarity on what you want and having the discipline to carry it out. Consider this daily.
The market is changing quickly, so you need to make changes with the same frequency. Instead of doing an annual business retreat and following that plan until the end of Q4, you need to be tweaking your business plan on a monthly basis. Hold weekly evaluations and make daily adjustments as necessary.
Most of the teams that I’m currently coaching are having fantastic sales years – incomes are up and expenses are down, which means profits are up! They’ve developed a clear plan of what their teams need to be doing – both daily and weekly. Not only that, but team leaders are clearly communicating this plan, making it easier for everyone to adapt and adjust in tandem.
Flexibility is key. As a leader, you need to be proactive with your team. Do they have childcare to deal with? Are they burning out? Are they scared? Help them relieve their anxieties and improve their environment so they can still reach their goals. You and your team need to be “Trusted Advisors” in your community, and that often falls on the shoulders of the team leader. Stay up to date on market trends and activities. Knowledge is power in the real estate industry.
When you have long-term clarity, it will be time to go back to a long-term business plan. But for now? Simply react to today.
Most realtors have built excellent businesses from the people they meet on a daily basis. In other words, they are social, and therefore attract enough contacts to satisfy their business needs. Social actions are currently happening at a slower rate – if at all – and at a greater distance. Therefore, the realtors or real estate teams that have built a brand or image in their marketplace are tending to attract more business. Why? Well, put simply, they have a bigger brand awareness.
Now is the time to reach out in a caring fashion to past buyers or sellers. Check in with them. You’ll be surprised how happy they’ll be to hear from you! This may not come as a surprise, but the strongest real estate businesses have done this for years! Why does this matter? Well, each client you’ve sold a home to should be able to generate at least five transactions.
Do pop-bys with potted plants or leave a personal note. Whether you’re making phone calls or writing handwritten cards, focus on keeping the relationship going. Agents often tell me they mail a newsletter monthly or quarterly. Let’s get one thing straight: that is not a relationship. A relationship requires two-way communication on a regular basis. It’s great to send a newsletter, but if you never interact by phone, email exchange or text, then you aren’t communicating. You’re simply talking out loud, and hoping someone is listening.
So, what are you going to do to develop relationships moving forward? If you haven’t spoken with past clients for a long time, it’s always good to start with an apology. “Hey Bob, it’s Bill Renaud calling – your long-lost realtor! I’ve been meaning to reach out, but you know how life is. You’ve been in my thoughts. How’s the family?” Try to use FORD – Family, Occupation, Recreation, Dreams – these factors are usually why people move. (I’ll dive deeper into this in another blog.)
Meet with your team members often and discuss what they want to accomplish. Set realistic deadlines. Then, look at how the goals of your team members fit into the overall goals of the team. After that, work backwards: how much income is desired? How many transactions would that require? What daily activities are necessary to complete those transactions?
Next, head back to strategy #1 (above) and tackle that daily and weekly planning. Keep a close eye on your mindset and the mindset of the team and find ways to bolster team culture. Most importantly, stay positive and find new ways to celebrate success – especially if you’re social distancing! Don’t simply set monetary goals. Be creative and find new ways to surprise and delight your team. This will help them be excited to be part of something, and will give them the energy they need to work towards their goals and the common goals of the team.
Today, it takes leadership to keep us on track. Reach out to resources, your brokerage, your coach, your teammates – whatever it takes to get clarity on what you want to accomplish. Then develop a plan and have the discipline to carry out the activities as needed. Finish 2020 strong, 2021 is around the corner!
Still not sure how to adapt to change in the 2020 real estate market? Feel free to reach out. I’m always here to help.