I began my real estate career when I got out of college in 1995. The internet was just being born and just like most agents, I had no idea what to do when I got out of real estate school. It may as well have been a license to go fishing, or get married.
I was clueless.
My company started all new agents in a special training center. It was located in a crappy strip shopping center in a not so desirable part of town. This was not my ideal work environment. Picture a non-descript tax-preparing business next door, a barbershop with a cracked sign and some other random small businesses that were pretty, how can I put this delicately, “uninspiring”.
Pulling into my temporary digs was not the vision I had for my new career, but in hindsight, it being held back may have been the best thing that could have possibly happened at my starting point.
So here were the ground rules:
I had to obtain two listings and two buyer controlled sales before I could graduate to my main office.
My main office was like a mirage.
A brand new building with beautiful landscaping, right next to a pond, close to the beach, well lit, nicely furnished and brimming with professional agents that were driving fancy cars and selling homes on a regular basis.
Back to the strip center.
The chinese restaurant across the street started out as good enough, but the smell of fried rice and wonton soup still brings back memories of desperately wanting to sell my first house, so I could really start selling real estate.
Needless to say, it was very much a sink or swim situation and with no internet, and just a flip phone, I was able to escape real estate jail in two and a half months.
It felt good getting out of the box of brand new agents, and into the world of real estate where, surprisingly, it was still… sink or swim.
If you are like me, you have experienced the same thing. And to some degree, most of us still do on some level. Sink or swim is an inherent part of real estate for most of us.
We have to go find people to help each day, we need to build trust, and we need to get people to recommend us. Hard to do, especially when just starting in real estate.
So what if we took this sink or swim concept to the extreme?
What if getting real estate referrals was a life or death situation?
What if our very existence depended upon building relationships?
What if consulting our clients to make the right decisions and then getting them to refer us business was truly our only means of survival?
What if life as we know it depended on it?
Of course that is not the case, and the risk is not as threatening as I am writing, but just for a moment, pretend with me..
If it meant life or death, would we approach the process more diligently?
Would we be more proactive? Would we we try to bullet proof our livelihood with a system? (many of us already do, but some of us need some help in this area - I sure do)
This very question is a big part of what I have been focused on since March of 2014. It started with a story that a real estate trainer, Hoss Pratt, shared with me at a Texas seminar about burning the boats to achieve success.
You may be familiar with this “Burning the Boat”, treasure hunting story that happened a few decades ago (in 1590).
If not, take a look at this post I wrote on the BellaRuby site about it.
While you are there you can see a little bit more about how the BellaRuby System is designed specifically to help real estate professionals stay in the lives of past clients by providing a tool to help homeowners maintain their home.