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Originally published in REM’s May 2020 issue.

In these trying times, concentrate on what you can do to optimize your business and life to stay focused on the things you can control.

You need to be proactive in keeping your business going and still provide a high level of service to buyers and sellers. Here’s how to keep your business thriving while optimizing the time you’ve been gifted by COVID-19.

Mentality:

A leadership mentality is what we all need right now. We need to be strategic, proactive and responsive. Everybody’s in a different place. Some have a positive outlook about getting through this trying time, while others are stuck with a negative outlook that is burdening them. No matter what you are feeling right now, if you develop a responsive mindset, you’ll be stronger, more positive and able to help others.

It is absolutely vital for leaders to be responsive to what’s going on around us. When people are experiencing fear, or stress, you must adjust to an optimal mindset as soon as possible.

The formula for an optimal mindset is E+R = O. That stands for an Event that occurs, your Response to it and the Outcome you want to come from it.

The power of this equation is that the outcome is what we focus on. If we’re responsive, we’re focusing on the outcome we want. If you’re not in an optimal mindset, you’re not responsive, you’re reactive. This means your decisions will be based on fear, stress and negativity rather than the ease and calmness you’ll find when your decisions are based on being responsive.

If you lose your power to impact an outcome in your life, you lose all power you have in the situation.

Adaptability:

Realize that youcan’t change everything, but you can change some things.

Spending this time, whether it’s two weeks or 12 months waiting around for the market to get back to normal, for our lives to get back to normal, is not ideal.

You can’t fight what is. The world has changed, our circumstances have changed. The sooner you accept that, the sooner you can adjust.

People are pivoting fast, using their adaptability skills. If you sit around and wait for change, you’re losing the momentum you can build now, and you won’t be prepared for the potential market change once this is all over.

You make do with what you have, to create more. Your goal is to make sure you’re coming from positive energy. If the highest energy wins, you want it to be because you’re ready.

You have educated yourself and you are a consultant and want to serve. Sometimes when something is causing anxiety, you have to think how you’re going to be feeling after this is over and how it will be a memory in your past. Right now it feels like it’s never going to end but it will, and it’s important to focus on the small things you can do to put your future self in the best position.

We all have the ability to change and develop right now. After this storm has blown through, we can have a better quality of life, we can have better client services, we can absorb this tension to persevere. But only if we choose to.

Communication:

There are concerns when it comes to communicating with clients right now. There are a lot of different ideas and guidance surrounding this issue. The danger is that all of these are getting put into the same pot.

You want to send communication that shows empathy, You can’t under-communicate with your client, you want to make sure they’re hearing your perspective and you are proactive with their immediate concerns. You want to bring care and concern for the market, to bring goodwill.

Teams and businesses are still getting leads and it is still necessary to respond to these leads. If you’re calling a follow-up from before the outbreak, build a stronger rapport. Have a softer call, ask how they’re doing, if they need anything. Only then should you feel out talking about real estate. It would be very insensitive and tone deaf to call and only talk about real estate as if nothing in our world has happened or changed.

Don’t forget to stay organized and write detailed notes in your CRM. Active buyers and sellers need to hear from you. They need to hear your new reformatted protocol for how you’re supporting buyers and sellers safely, and what requests you’re making for outside agents showing the property.

Sending out emails is a wonderful way to keep your clients connected, talking about the updates on tax deadlines, mortgage rates and emergency government programs, keeping them in the loop.

With so much happening, it’s important to keep your circle informed and proactive.

It’s nice to want to wait until we have all the information, but things are changing daily, sometimes hourly. It’s okay to realize that your strategy from yesterday doesn’t work today, and you need to update it.

Using these three categories will allow you to become more proactive and productive with your business, brokerage or team. Remember, there are no hard stops with fast starts. We are creating our future outcomes now.

Set your routine, focus on top priorities first and spend this time or “pause” creating the life and business you want in the future.

Only you can decide if this time will be an investment in your business or a cost. What if you woke up 12 to 18 months from now grateful for this wake-up call? What if you looked back and saw these moments as integral to a better quality of life and improved business? Keep your hands on the wheel, look where you want to go and stay focused in that direction.

Stay safe and stay strategic.

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