I have just attended the opening session at AREC. The first speaker, Chip Eichelberger, was inspirational in his message about how to ‘get switched on’ and that a winning streak starts with ‘one change’ done repeatedly.
What resonated was the power of early detection and measurement of where you are and where you want to be. He asks, “When last did you look where you were going?” and “Do you own where you are now?”.
How do you measure where you are now? Do you measure your market share? Do you measure your conversion of prospects to leads and then to listings and then to sales? Do you go even further and measure how much of your sales to investors are converted into properties your agency manages? Do you also measure how you are perceived in the media and what your competitors are doing to advance their branding?
Chip suggests putting a one page laminated sheet up in the shower so you see it every morning. On it should be the decision you have made to make a radical change. The decision that, done every day, is going to give you success. This should be something measurable, such as the number of phone calls you will make or the time you will take to get a great prelisting pack out to every prospect. If you measure yourself every day you can’t escape into a vague decision like ‘I will be more active at prospecting’, you have to stay honest with ‘I will phone 10 prospects before 10am every day’. There is nowhere to hide with a decision that you can clearly measure – you have either done it or you haven’t.
I love the idea, although I am not sure my wife will appreciate a laminated sheet in the shower reminding her of my passion for work!
And as a real estate agent it is a lot easier to measure your success than most other industries. Good data is available, useable, and relatively quick to extract. It is easy to see how many prospects you have contacted, how many listings you have, and what sales you are making. Comparing these to what the market is doing is also simple, market listings and sales are easy to extract so you can see if you are making the difference you are planning. Have your sales over the last year tracked up with the market? Or are you doing better or worse? In general, the market is up across Australia, so you should at least be doing better than last year. Ideally you should be getting more than your fair share.
Also, don’t forget to grow the size of your property management division. They are the division that will keep you going when the market softens. Recurring revenue from your book helps when sales slow and also improves the value of your agency when you want to sell it.
Keeping with the theme of Chip’s opening remarks, RP Data has just released a new Agency Market Share Report for Agencies that informs them where they are now, and what the market around them is doing. It shows the size of the sales commission pool and how much is made in property management. In addition the report highlights which agencies dominate the media buy and which agents are top.
The RP Data Agency Market Share Report can be used as a great ‘no BS’ measurement to critically analyse where you are today. Alternatively, you can do the research yourself using data tools and spending time looking at the local paper and real estate portals.
Attendance at AREC is huge this year, I don’t think I have seen it this big before. Over 3,000 motivated agents got out of bed on a Sunday morning to learn how to improve themselves. It makes me feel very confident about the future of our industry. There will be a lot of pumped up agents executing radical decisions to change how they do business, and measuring those decisions. It is going to be an exciting year helping them measure and grow.