By Anand Patel
“Why do you do this for free?”
“What do you get out of it?”
“When do you have time to make money?”
“Why do you waste your time with that?”
“What’s the point?”
If you volunteer some of your time and talents to National Association of REALTORS® (or any other organization) at the local, state, or national level, you have heard all of the comments above before. Obviously there needs to be a balance between giving of your time and working your business, but you and I both know the incidental benefits, rewards and satisfaction that come with giving back to our industry.
Do you have a spouse, a business partner, a friend or family member who takes on some of the burden while you are volunteering? I am not nearly as involved as many of my colleagues in the industry around the country and abroad, but with two young children at home I know my wife takes on a lot of burden while I am away at conferences, leadership academy sessions and other meetings. And I admit, many times I take it for granted. I am writing this post not only to serve as a reminder to each of you who also give of your time, but also really for me to never forget that we need to take the time and thank those who support what we do in helping improve our industry. They may not always understand why we do it as there are usually no visible short-term benefits, but they still support us. We travel for a few days, we attend events in the evening, we are working on the weekends on matters that do not seem to directly correlate to our businesses, but our friends, family, and spouses still pick up the slack for us.
Take a moment and say thank you to your business partner who stays back while you hit the annual conference, your family or spouse who helps with the kids while you are away, and anyone else who makes it easier for you to keep giving back. To my wife, today, I say thank you! Thank you for always supporting me. You truly are “Super Mom!” Oh….and by the way, I’ll be gone to San Francisco for a week in November for a conference…gotta run!
Anand Patel is broker and president of Pangea Realty Group based in Tampa, Fla. You can connect with Anand on Twitter: @anand_tampa, Facebook: www.facebook.com/prgtampa, or LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/anandpatel1.
By Melissa Krchnak
‘Tis the Season…
To…Prep for Next Year. While I love to evaluate what I’ve done, I’m also ambitiously looking at 2013! I started planning for next year months ago and am putting the finishing touches on it these last few days of the year. I feel waiting until January to do business planning is missing the boat a bit. Am I the only one?
To…Be Grateful. I live in gratitude. It’s funny how often I simply say “thank you” and it seems to make someone do a double-take. When you express thankfulness and appreciation, you’ll see it continue to find you.
To…Take the Extra Step. I always love asking someone with a great idea what it looks like three steps in. I’m not suggesting that as much as I’m saying that most people don’t think one step in. What if you took one extra step? Tipped $1 more? Hugged one more person?
To…Deck the Halls. Celebrate your successes because 2012 has been an amazing year! We’ve seen family and friends get married, have babies, survive health scares, and we’re still here to welcome 2013. Relish the high points of your amazing year and welcome 2013 with open arms!
Happy Hanukkah, Happy Kwanzaa, Merry Christmas, and Happy Holidays! However your family celebrates, may this find you healthy and happy!
Melissa Krchnak is the assistant team leader for Keller Williams Realty in Rancho Cucamonga, Calif. Connect with her at kwrancho.com.
By Jared James
I am going to keep this brief. I’m writing this article sitting in the West Virginia airport on my way home after speaking at the West Virginia Association of REALTORS®. I am right in the middle of what I call “convention season,” which consists of the months of September and October. During this time I will keynote more than 20 events for state associations and companies, requiring me to hit the road pretty hard.
In the last month I have spent a collective one week at home, which can be difficult with two adorable boys at home, ages 5 and 3. In fact, a couple of weeks ago I had just finished up speaking at the Texas Association of REALTORS® Convention and Xplode Conference and had to speak in Wyoming the next day. It seems like an easy flight from Texas to Wyoming, but instead I decided to fly back across the country, land in New York, drive home and spend 2 ½ hours with my kids and put them to bed, just to go back to the airport and fly back across the country to Wyoming to do my event. For the parents out there, you know that this was a small price to pay to be able to tuck my kids in at night instead of the usual Skype call before they went to bed.
While these two months are not the usual for me and my family, they are still a reality. While my job requires a lot of travel, it is also true that most events are not held on weekends so I am almost always home and able to coach my kids’ teams on Saturdays and Sundays – with exception of this last weekend when I had to miss my 5-year-old’s soccer game because I had to catch a flight.
I don’t write this so you will feel sorry for me. I have a great life and I’m able to inspire and have an affect on a lot of people, which is an amazing feeling and a great calling. I am more so writing this because my life is not normal, I admit, but I have the honor of working with a lot of REALTORS® and salespeople and the one thing I always hear them tell me is that their family comes first. While, for some, this may be true, actions speak louder than words. Continue reading »
By Stefanie Hahn
In a recent post here at the YPN Lounge, Jessica Hickok encouraged us to avoid becoming the “Real Turd” who can’t separate his or her work life from anything else. She offered some great tips for managing our daily lives so that we don’t stand out as “that guy” or “that girl” with the annoying Bluetooth thingy and the loud phone screaming all the time.
What I came away wondering, however, was whether there wasn’t another angle to be considered here…the online component of being a REALTOR® in a world where the consumer isn’t willing to wait anymore to be served. According to the most recent survey conducted by the California Association of REALTORS®, 96 percent of Internet home buyers expected contact from an agent within 4 hours of their initial request, while 31 percent of them expected an IMMEDIATE response if they were going to have a relationship going forward.
So how can we offer immediate response AND be the ideal spouse/friend/restaurant patron? Here are some tips I think will help, along with a few things I am pretty sure will just get in your way.
1) Give more information, not less: I know our industry thrived for generations on making sure we were the “keepers of the keys” but now it is time to make sure those consumers who come to us are not just coming because they can’t find our info online.
2) Maximize the power of text messaging: You have a form where people can ask you a question, why not ask them for their cell phone number? Then when you get the info transmitted to you, even if it is in the middle of dinner, you can reply with the classic 140 character retort. My opinion here, but if you text the person back and tell them you are sharing an important family event but that you will either 1) forward their request or 2) get back to them as soon as you are finished they will stay with you…so long as you live up to your word. Continue reading »
By Crystal Webster
At my former corporate job, “work/life balance” seemed to be the catch phrase of the month. I worked in a very demanding job (90+ hours a week most weeks demanding), but as long as the façade of work/life balance was there, it was all good.
Fast forward a few years to now; and I’m working for myself. Yes, the THOUGHT of work/life balance, and the illusion of work life balance is there. Theoretically, I could take off a day to, say, go to the beach – but honestly, how many of us actually take off a Tuesday because we want to spend the day in the park?
Several weeks ago I suffered some life changing and devastating news. Over the course of five days there were two strokes in the family, three close family deaths, and some personal health issues. Probably needless to say, at first, I was in a tailspin and really didn’t know which way was up. Now, I’ve been able to get my head above water and have been working…kind of. I’ve been doing what HAS to be done. I’ll ask myself “What MUST be done today?”– then I’ll do that, and really only that.
I don’t bring up my personal life so that you can feel sorry for me – please don’t, I am very blessed in so many ways. I brought this up to ask for your help: How do you handle yourself when you fall into “personal crisis mode?” What gets you moving again when all you want to do is sleep through the day? How do you pick yourself up off the floor and kick yourself in the butt again?