Wednesday, November 9, 2011

More Lessons from Whoville

Yes, more lessons from Whoville.........It could have been a lot worse. Think Penn State.

Lessons from Whoville

Remember the Whos from the Grinch Who Stole Christmas? The Grinch took everything from them. He took the presents, the trees, the decorations....He even took the Roast Beast! and yet, when Christmas morning arrived, all the Whos came out of their houses, joined hands around the village green and proceeded to sing "Welcome Christmas, Welcome, Welcome. Well, we are the Whos. The Grinch has taken everything. But now, it is even more important for us to join in the singing of "Fight the Team Across the Field. "

Friday, July 15, 2011

The Four Stages

There are always four stages to attaining any new skill or knowledge:The unconscious incompetent ( you don't know what you don't know);The conscious incompetent ( you know what you don't know);The conscious competent ( you know what you know); and last and certainly best, The unconscious competent ( you are so good you don't even know what you know. It just happens naturally. I am proud to say that I am moving from the unconscious incompetent level to the conscious incompetent level when it comes to social networking (Facebook, Twitter, Active Rain, etc.). I really know what I don't know and it is a ton. It can also be very scary. But as Steve Friedman says, it is no longer optional. We should all feel that way about what we don't know.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Fooling Yourself

Fooling myself is really, really hard. Quite frankly, it doesn't work. I really cannot do it and yet so many people do a bang up job of fooling themselves, being in denial when they KNOW something is wrong. Imagine if they took all that energy that they use to fool themselves and put it into actually solving the problem?

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Who knew? Golf does matter- with Thanks to Sean O'Hair and the Golf Digest of July '09 and his article about the 10 Rules he had learned on tour.

Like pro golf, real estate is a performance career. How you perform in front of buyers, sellers, potential clients and other agents and staff will totally determine how well you do in your version of the "Pro Tour." Here are the rules adapted for real estate.

1. Be comfortable in your own skin: focus on what you are good at and work on the areas you need development in but be who you are and feel good about it. "Self esteem isn't everything, but without it, there is nothing else." Gloria Steinheim

2. Learn to recognize confidence: This can be taken two ways. Recognize your own confidence and recognize confidence in other people ( clients, agents) that you deal with. What seems like confidence is sometimes bluster, over compensating for lack of confidence.

3. Play money matches: Whether it is your best friend or your mother, treat every appointment or client seriously and professionally. Take nothing for granted. Treat every appointment like a "money match".

4. Travel well, play well: Real estate requires mobility, not only physically but mentally as well. Be flexible and be prepared for whatever the day demands.

5. Go slow on equipment changes: Take the time to really learn and get trained in new technology. Embrace it but don't throw it into your performance until you are ready to do so.

6. Listen to the sand/thump vs. splat: Really listen to what the client is saying. One of the biggest complaints about agents is that they don't listen or pay attention. They are too concerned about talking and not asking the right questions and listening to the answers. If you listen, you will know how to handle the situation.

7. Don't depend too much on video: You can obsess about what you did or you can use your experience to learn to do better going forward.

8. Trust your caddie: Don't ever think you know all the answers. Run things by another experienced person, your manager, another agent or the ever popular training director. All can give you good insight.

9. Soak up your favorite player's rhythm: There is always someone in your office that you may admire. Maybe it is how they conduct themselves and their business. It is not always the "top producer" but someone who is successful and does truly good work. Get a sense of their attitudes and philosophies.

10. Life cannot revolve around golf: Life cannot revolve around real estate either. It is waaaay too short. And real estate is fickle, at best. Learn to put the highs and lows into perspective and then go home and enjoy the people and things you love. Tomorrow is another day. (Thanks also to Scarlett O'Hara for that one. )

Friday, June 25, 2010

The Summer of Our Discontent

It was supposed to solve all our problems. It was the "bridge over troubled waters". It was the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.
The tax credit. The tax credit which was supposed to totally re-vitalize the housing market.
Now along with the oil leak destroying tourism and property values in the Southern coastal states, we hear of 1400 prison inmates receiving almost 9 million dollars in tax credit money (???) and with the thrust of the tax credit stampede dying back ( and at this moment, no extension on the final closing date requirement of June 30th) we have to quickly face reality again.
Okay, we were able to bury our heads back in the historic sands for a while but the sand is being blown away.
If ever there was a time to evaluate how we do business and what skills have we learned, it is now.
If you thought the stimulus was going to rescue you from actually being dragged into the 21st century, you were wrong.
If you thought we were going back to the "good old days", you were wrong.
If you thought you didn't have to be sharp, skilled or educated ( I hate the word "trained"- it makes us sound like monkeys), you were wrong,wrong, wrong.
How it frustrates me as a manager who recruits and talks to new and experienced agents to see how little value is placed on what they need and must learn and maintain as a learning level. (See my blog "No Diplomatic Immunity Here) I guess I cannot blame them. Few other companies out there put any value on it either. Split is everything, education, nothing.
If this attitude is as prevalent in other industries as it is in real estate, I guess we shouldn't be surprised that oil "professionals" cannot figure out how to stop the gusher.
How depressing.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

ESPN and Real Estate Career Paths

Twice now, in the last two weeks, the sports world has been rocked by women athletes behaving like.....ummmm, well, athletes. The first incident was the Canadian Women's Hockey Team celebrating their gold medal victory in their locker room with beer and cigars???? The IOC was appalled. " Not the image they wanted to promote..." Not being good role models, etc, etc.
The second was last weekend when, during a women's basketball game, one player landed a punch into the face of another. Players and tempers flared and there was a little bit of a brawl.
The sports world ( and supposedly the rest of us) are supposed to be aghast.
I loved the sports commentators on ESPN Sunday morning when the one suggested a certain amount of female superiority because at least the player was actually able to land her punch.
The point here is- why are we surprised or why do we expect women athletes to behave differently from the other gender? It has been a long, long road for women's athletics to gain even grudging acceptance. Now it is almost there. I do not remember another year in which women's basketball is getting the attention that it is now. Why then are we surprised that they celebrate, get mad, get physical, you know, just like the boys?Apparently we are still expected to be "ladies" whether on the court, the ice, or in the locker room.
Alas, another double standard has now reared it's ugly head. Let's just be grateful we haven't resorted to dog fighting or having multiple "mistresses". (?) ( I don't know what the male equivalent of "mistress" is......paramour, lover??? What?)
What has all of this to do with real estate, you might and should ask?
Well, historically, real estate was not a welcoming career path for women. For example, here in Columbus, women were not allowed to join the Columbus Board of Realtors until 1964. 1964!!!! But then there have been few welcoming career paths for women except maybe the scrubbing floors ones , emptying bed pans ones or the ones we don't talk about in polite society. ( You know, there is a pasta sauce named for them.) And yet, women are wonderful at real estate.
Women understand the concept of "home" and "where the heart is". They get the nesting thing and the importance of having a respite from the world. They don't have a problem with holding a client's hand through the process, listening to the emotions that go along with moving to a strange city, closing and selling a parent's house, moving on with life after divorce and relocating children. They understand the joy and excitement of the new baby, the wedding, the job promotion.
More and more, women have found real estate to be an extremely satisfying career both personally and financially. There are actually more women in the sales force than men.
Things change drastically when you go to the next level It is still deja vu all over again. Some things never change. You really didn't think this was going to have a happy ending, did you?