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Creating a Plan for Success

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It’s that time of year when we begin completing our business plans for the next year.  Unfortunately, many agents leave their plan to the last minute to complete and then rush through it. So basically, it’s not really a plan at all. I’ve even seen agents brush it off because they have a successful business and don’t think they need to take the time to do it. Many agents set unrealistic goals and then are disappointed when they don’t achieve them.

So how can you create a realistic “doable” plan to keep you on point to increase your productivity and profitability and achieve your goals? And, if you already have a successful business, especially in a high-end market, how can you improve your plan to get you to the next level?

To begin with, it’s a good idea to review your current plan and look at what you did and did not achieve.

One of the fastest ways to grow your business is to dig deeper into the areas you are already doing well in and capitalize on your strengths. And one of the first things you should do is answer the following questions:

  1. What are your key sources of business?
  2. How many transactions come from each of these sources?
  3. How can you extract more business from these existing sources?

Once you answer these questions, then you can begin analyzing your sources to determine how to extract more business from them. The easiest way to do this is to identify your sources of business and list them in order of priority, best to least, in accordance with the steps below:

  1. The number of deals from each source
  2. The money you spent on each source
  3. The potential for amount of transactions to be expected in the upcoming year from each source
  4. Changes  you need to make in how you work them
  5. Additional funds you will need to spend on them in the new year

As you begin to unfold your strengths and capitalize on them, you may find ways to expand your business and discover new opportunities available to you.

There are many ways to expand your business and your range, reach and influence. For instance, you can expand your geographic market, your prospecting contacts, your sources of business or move up to a higher price point.

Take a moment to ask yourself, “What actions make the most sense for me to perform to grow my business and profits for the New Year?” And as you determine these actions, take into consideration your personal life and responsibilities and ensure the actions are realistic and doable.

As I mentioned previously, agents often set unrealistic goals and then are disappointed when they don’t achieve them. When setting your goal, you should ask yourself the following questions:

  • What caused me to choose this number?
  • Why do I need it?
  • What will I do with the profit I earn?
  • What price am I willing to pay to achieve it
  • What changes do I need to make to my schedule to support it?
  • What budget will I need to set aside?
  • What skills do I need to improve or find solutions to achieve my goal?
  • Should I invest in a technology system, app or personal assistant to offset my lack of skill or improve my weakness in an area?
  • Should I invest in a coach to help me create a realistic and doable plan and hold me accountable to it, so I achieve my goal?

One of the most important items on this list is if you need to make changes to your schedule to support your goal. If it doesn’t support it, you will never achieve it. A good, and fun, exercise to do is to create your perfect day.

Now, we all know, perfect days are rare – especially in real estate – but, we must begin somewhere. So, create your perfect day, and then follow the steps listed below:

  • Keep a time log for 2 weeks to identify time wasters.
  • Eliminate any unnecessary spinning plates from your life.
  • Before committing to new activities in your personal life, think it over for 24 hours.
  • Share your schedule with family, staff and your coach who will hold you accountable to it.
  • Share your new year’s goals with those who support you.
  • Perfect your morning! Tackle the hardest tasks, the ones you don’t want to do, first thing in the morning when your fresh and before you get too busy you don’t complete them.
  • Time block (block out time on your calendar) for all your key activities.
  • Your goal: 80% of the day should be spent on income-producing activities.

Finally, as you work your business, make sure you track your money and profits because you need to determine exactly what it costs you to run your business and your personal life. Even if you are a top producing agent, it’s important to stay on top of this.

I recommend you first determine exactly what it costs you to run your business and your personal life. Then do an honest assessment of your current financial situation. Once these two steps are completed, you can create a budget for your year to include a list of exactly what you will do with the money you will earn.

You need to visit your money each week and review your profit and loss monthly. Block out time on your calendar to support these activities and keep them in front of you.

Some additional advice is:

  • Track the effectiveness of any campaign or expense.
  • Look for ways to trim the fat but don’t cut corners on items that are important, such as investing in yourself and your own growth.
  • You make a living selling real estate and get rich owning real estate so buy some!
  • Make sure you have a good financial planner and CPA.
  • And, remember, health insurance is a must

If you want more guidance on how to grow your luxury real estate practice, you can learn more about the Institute’s training options here

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