Do you want my advice?

Real Estate Broker/Owner with Mike Farmer Realty

Advice! There is no shortage of it. Advice is given for different reasons, among them are: to help, to show off, to make money. Not all advice is equal, though. I always look at advice carefully in order to determine what it means. says advice is: Opinion about what could or should be done about a situation or problem; counsel.

I usually take advice with an open mind and a grain of salt. Many times someone who's trying to help will offer advice that makes very good sense. Other times I hear advice, either given directly or indirectly, that makes little sense at all. One thing is for sure, people love to give it.

Recently, I read a blog where the advice, regarding how to be successful in RE, was to buckle down and work harder. I think it was related to calling prospects and actually talking to them. Now this is not bad advice. However, in and of itself, it is insufficient. I mean, so much goes into a strategy of calling prospects that one would have to back up and start with questions like - What is the purpose of the call? How do I present my message? Do I have the phone skills necessary to use a calling strategy? Should I call everyone or do some people respond better to different forms of communication? Etc.

What I like is for prospects to call me. I've been working on this for four years and it is paying off. Prospects that call you seem to have made it past the sales barrier. I would never advise anyone to use this strategy, because I don't give advice (well, I have given advice, but only when pushed or feeling extra smart, or when I'm paid for it) - I'll never be in the free advice business.

I tell people what I've done and leave it at that.

But what I've found is that most people giving advice are not really trying to help; they are showing off. I'm up to my ears with this kind of advice.

The best advice I get is the advice I seek out and pay for. A proven expert in any given field has a lot of good advice, and I don't mind paying for it. I don't know everything, but I know how to get information - knowing how to get information is a wonderful thing to know. Much information is free, and when I have gathered enough to know what I don't know and need good advice to fill in the blanks, I go to someone with expert information and I buy it.

So, while I appreciate the message of working harder, I always go back to the working smarter cliché - after all, smart people seem to do better than people who work hard. Although I also like combinations of things to make sure it is a well rounded approach. Well rounded approaches call for more explanation and usually don't fit in sound bites.

If I was to give advice, it would be something like this: work hard at being smart and finding a comprehensive approach that starts with gaining the skill sets necessary to know when to call prospects with a clear, thought-out effective message, and know how to develop an online marketing plan that gets prospects to call you . Please be advised that this advice is free and worth every penny of it.


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Frank Schulte-Ladbeck
Frank Schulte-Ladbeck Professional Real Estate Inspections - Houston, TX
Some good tips. Maybe the advice of working harder is also geared towards clients to show them that they are going to be working hard for them?
Jan 28, 2008 11:31 PM #1
Karel Rogers
Real Estate Staging Unlimited - Reno, NV
Hopefully your clients won't feel the same when you give them advice to sell their home...
Jan 28, 2008 11:37 PM #2
mike farmer

Well, if they are clients paying for advice, hopefully the WILL feel the same.


Thanks, Frank

Jan 28, 2008 11:54 PM #3
Jessica Curtis
Sutton Group Right Way - Woodstock, ON

Some good points, I do find some people at my office give some good advice you just have to learn who to listen to and who not to waste your time asking

Jan 28, 2008 11:59 PM #4
Julie Escobar
Tampa, FL
Syndicated Columnist, Writer, Marketing Dir.

Mike -- you sound like someone who has been around this block a time or two!  I liked your message and your FREE advice.  Working smarter - and seeking out professionals (and professionalism) is a terrific approach to business (and life) in any market.  Thanks!


Jan 29, 2008 12:09 AM #5
Mike Farmer
Mike Farmer Realty - Savannah, GA

Thanks, jessica and Julie.


yes, Julie, a time or two, or three.

Jan 29, 2008 12:13 AM #6
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