REB Top 100 Agent on how to have balance – and still write $1m

Success in real estate requires long hours and dedication, but are too many agents neglecting their family and friends while pursuing money? Power agent Kate Strickland provides insights into how to be an agent who successfully juggles work/life balance. 

Director of Marshall White Bayside in Melbourne, Ms Strickland says if you are told you do not have long to live, it’s unlikely you will wish you’d worked more and sold more property.

However, she also pointed out that she is not criticising those who work hard. 

“I inspire and motivate people to have exceptional careers in real estate, but I’m really all about making sure there is that balance," Ms Strickland told Tom Panos on his Real Estate Gym series.

“If you were given that short notice period to live, you are going to look back and say, I should have done things differently. I should have gone and watched my son play a couple more footy games or taken my daughter to ballet, or had that scone and tea with my grandmother before she passed away. But I was always too busy putting my clients first.” 

Ms Strickland says it is important to step back and have some perspective. And a good way to do this is to imagine who will show up for your funeral.

“I don’t think it’s going to be someone who I got $700,000 over reserve for, to be honest.”

Ms Strickland acknowledged that the industry is competitive and the large commissions keep agents striving for more, even if the relentless pursuit of money can be destructive.

“It’s sort of like an addiction,” she said. “Sales people are all cut from the same cloth. We all have that competitive edge to win and sometimes it’s the win that far surpasses the financial benefit of it.”

However, Ms Strickland said it is this addiction that makes agents successful. 

“I feel very empowered when I help someone move on to the next chapter, move on to a better life. I love being the one that brings that to them.

“It’s great and I’m not saying [to] dampen that drive. I’m just saying focus it to specific times of the year.”

Ms Strickland said allocating private time for yourself and your family and friends is important, and agents should always strive for work-life balance. 

“Because your clients will be thrilled [if you work all the time] but your family will think you can’t stand them because you are never around and they will walk out.”

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