By Dave Robison
How many times have you heard it? You are your very own business owner in real estate. You are an independent contractor, you incur and write off expenses, you spend your own marketing dollars and you work your own hours. You own a business.
It definitely sounds like a business.
Years ago, I was convinced I had a business, but what I realized was my business was really a job — it was unprofitable and I couldn’t sell it. It was unprofitable because I was paying myself all the money it made. I couldn’t sell it because if someone bought it they would have to hope my friends and family would use them as a REALTOR®. Also, who was going to buy my business when what they’d really be buying is a job. Who wants to buy a job?
Why is it not a business? Because it was missing 3 things.
Here’s the difference between a job and a business: A job is when you have to do the work yourself to get paid. A business pays the employees market wages while giving owners a 10-15 percent profit off of gross revenues. A business allows the business owners to be able to go on vacation and not have to answer sales calls. A business should be able to be bought or sold. It would be nice to sell your company and retire, right? Or maybe you want to stay involved after retirement but pay someone else to run your business operations. How many agents do you know who truly have a business or can sell their business? I would say it is extremely rare in our market.
So, you want to own a business? Here are the three things that will transform your career/job into a saleable business.
1. In order to sell a business you have to pay yourself a market wage and make a profit. Continue reading »
By Anand Patel
Regardless of your preference in music it’s hard to turn on the radio today and not hear a song featuring the musician known as Pitbull. The Miami-born 31 year old artist is also a successful businessman who endorses (and in some cases holds equity ownership) Kodak, Bud Light, Voli Vodka, Sheets energy strips, Dr. Pepper and Zumba Fitness. It’s probably safe to assume today that Pitbull is on the top of his game. But how did he get there?
Listening to any of Pitbull’s songs, one underlying theme you will notice quickly are his many references to himself as “Mr. 305” and “Mr. Worldwide”. The interesting thing to note is that he has always referenced himself this way, even before becoming an international hit. Pitbull visualized himself becoming what he is today and now he is living it out. The lyrics of some of his early music spell out his intentions to “take it to the world.” Yes, it took a lot of hard work mixed with luck, but a key ingredient for his success, in my opinion, was knowing (and believing) early on what it is he was setting out to achieve. As one of the world’s foremost leadership authorities, Stephen Covey (who sadly just passed away the other day) stated in his book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, “Begin With the End in Mind.”
As half of 2012 is almost behind us, we all find ourselves reassessing our goals to date and formulating our plans for the next six months. But how do we see ourselves three, five and 10 years down the road? Sometimes we get caught up in our monthly goals that we forget the big picture—or we don’t have a big picture in mind at all. I’m personally in the midst of launching a new independent brokerage in Tampa, Fla., and am finding myself having to adapt this mindset to the plans for the new company as well:
What kind of market share am I looking to attain long term?
How many and what type of agents do I want to bring into the company?
Where do I see the company to be in five to ten years?
What are our long-term core values? Continue reading »
By Dave Robison
All the top producers have something in common. Yes, they all have something other agents want, such as higher sales, more disposable income, and more free time. But how do they achieve this? It’s not by buying an iPad or iPhone. Can you guess what it is they have in common?
NAR reports 87 percent of agents don’t have assistants.
An agent recently asked how I came to the decision to hired an assistant. This agent is excited to grow their business and take the next step into creating a sales team. After thinking about it, I realized how my business expanded due to having assistants, and how my lifestyle is more enjoyable. Here is my advice for agents who are considering hiring an assistant:
When do you hire an assistant? There are two main, simple steps. Whenever I hire a new assistant, I do it after analyzing what I’m doing with my time. My first step is figuring out how much time I’m spending in each area of my business. My second step is deciding if there is a certain area I could focus more time, and whether that time would produce a large enough return for my bottom line while paying a new assistant.
For example, recently I realized I’m spending a ton of time on e-mails, answering simple questions from my clients and other agents. I have a transaction coordinator who I keep busy with 20 to 30 deals under contract at one time. She is already very busy, so I couldn’t add more to her plate. I figured if I can have a licensed assistant take care of all the routine e-mail and simple calls all day for me, then I could spend more time getting more listings. Now it’s time to do it. I hired my second assistant so I could focus on increasing sales.
How do you hire your assistant? Continue reading »
By Veronica Barragan
Some REALTORS® conceived 2012 as “The Year of Volume Transactions” because lower home prices created the need to increase transactions to keep up with personal career goals while maintaining life styles and income. In actuality, 2012 has quickly become “The Year of the Professional.”
We’re in an environment where REALTORS® celebrate authentic, professional standards, and embrace all markets as a visionaries. They can stand back and understand the big picture, while in turn, offering excellent client service with integrity.
For example, in states such as Arizona where I currently practice, many REALTORS® have shifted their business dramatically and quickly from the dwindling REO niche back to buyers and sellers. REALTORS® are going back to basics, which should have never been ignored if they planned on making real estate a long term career. “The basics” encompass key fundamental characteristics that never ever disappear and easily transcend time. The basics include the utmost professional attention to each and every client’s needs, appreciating every phone call as the gateway to referrals because of the agent’s attention to detail, and, more importantly, having the ability to be fully present and aware of the intentions, desires, and needs of every individual who comes to you, as an agent, for your real estate expertise.
Today’s market is diverse and includes first-time home buyers, the tech-savvy newest generation, the growing and underserved Hispanic community, investors, second home buyers, and sellers in a hardship situation. To be able to serve this new and diverse clientele effectively as a professional, you must be able to adapt the basics into your business plan and into your soul.
There is no more sitting back and waiting for the bank to assign you that distressed property, because you will not survive — Continue reading »
By Dave Robison
The crowd cheers, “Half-full, half-full!” Buzzer rings…nope, the answer is neither.
Why are so many people saying the glass is half-full? There are people saying half-empty as well. Those Debbie Downers (the half-empty glass people) might say something like this: “Ohhhh, the market, it’s awful. It’s killed our business.” Those saying their glass is half-full might say something like this: “At least I can feed my family and I’m still in the business.”
But the answer is still neither.
In the glass there are two components…the water that everyone readily sees and is anxious to claim as blessings in life. And there’s a second part, which is the unseen part in that glass — oxygen.
We need both oxygen and water to live. Everyone readily looks at the water as being blessings in their life. The oxygen represents the trials. We need blessings and trials in order to grow personally. The person who will come out on top in today’s market is the person that yells out, “MY GLASS IS FULL.” This person understands that today’s market brings them opportunity. They also understand that, although painful at times, if they focus and work hard, they will grow stronger. These people will welcome the challenge and focus on accomplishing something great.
The real estate community is changing in our local markets. Top producers of yesterday are gone. There is a breeding ground, ripe, waiting to harvest new leaders. Before you realize what happened, those who yell, “MY GLASS IS FULL,” are going to be the leaders of tomorrow.
What is your glass?
Dave Robison, known as “Utah Dave,” is a broker of Robison & Company Real Estate.