Where Will Your Business Be in Six Months?

By
Education & Training with The Lones Group, Inc.

The Lones Group, Inc.

Where Will Your Business Be in Six Months?

When is the last time you gave yourself space to think about your goals? As many of us are caught up in the day-to-day of running our lives and our businesses, we need to take some time to reflect on a few things:

  • What are we doing all of this for?
  • Are we on track?

Without the vision, the action plan, and then making sure we follow the action plan, we aren't likely to make the forward momentum that we should.

If you have 15 minutes right now, grab some paper and a pen - you can make a digital file later if you like, but for now, let's go analog.

Make five big boxes on your paper and label these:

  1. 90-Day
  2. 6-Month
  3. 1-Year
  4. 5-Year
  5. 10-Year

In a minute, we are going to start making a list!

But Don't Make This Mistake!

But before we dive in, I want to address one challenge that I am faced with a lot when helping my agent clients - the tendency to want to include a commission goal or a transaction count goal. The challenge with this is that you ultimately have no control over this. Instead, I encourage agents to focus on the actions that they are going to take to provide the highest probability of reaching that goal.

For example, an agent told me yesterday her goal was to earn in excess of $300,000 GCI. Instead of including that in her 1-Year Goal, we instead made the goal of starting a farm mailing campaign in her 90-Day Goal category with the goal of providing the additional income needed to get her closer to her GCI goal.

Let's Dive into Your Goals!

90-Day Goals

These would be items on your to-do list over the next 3-months, but don't weigh this list down with all the stuff you are normally going to get done - the purpose of this list is to focus on 2-3 goals max and then to break these down into the steps needed to get there.

For example, let's say you had a goal of cleaning your office. You have a vision right now in your head of what the after of your office should look like when you are done, right? Now jot down a few of the major steps to tackle along the way unless you have the wherewithal to clean the whole thing in one day. Do you have filing and shredding that you need to do? Do you have dead electronics and empty toner cartridges that need to be recycled? Is there a closet in your office that needs attention?

Breaking this up into chunks of about 3-5 hours each allows you to then take this from a 90-Day plan to weekly tasks that you do over the course of several weeks. For example, you could load up the dead electronics and empty toner cartridges into your car today and take them to be recycled tomorrow now that that task is on your radar.

But Denise! Where do I put these weekly goals so I remember to do them?

Great question! If you use a system such as Google Calendar or Outlook Calendar, you can add these as events and block out time so you have the highest likelihood of getting them done. For example, if your Wednesday mornings are generally quiet, why not block off a 3-hour appointment for yourself to get a task done and defend that time! Don't schedule anything else during that time - that is YOUR precious time to get this very important task done.

Without the personal self-discipline to defend your time and get focused, you simply won't achieve your goals. Hoping is not the same thing as taking action.

Got it? Let's move onto 6-Month Goals.

6-Month Goals

These goals are the next set of 90-Day Goals. At the end of the first 90-Days, apply the same treatment to the 6-Month Goals, breaking those up into smaller steps which can then be assigned to different weeks as above.

It is a good idea to also use your quarterly goal check-in to look at some of those more-further-out goals as well. Which of those former 1-Year goals need to get moved up to the 6-Month Goals now that you are 3 months into your 1-Year timeline?

1-Year Goals

People have a tendency to go crazy with their 1-Year Goals and make a huge list. But instead of piling on, what I suggest you do is take a minute and really think about no more than five items that would take your business and client relationships from good to great.

For example, have you always thought about doing a client event, but you just never got around to it? That would be a great 1-Year Goal so next fall, you are well into your client event preparation! Maybe your brokerage isn't working for you anymore and within a year, you would like to be somewhere that is a better fit (but the timing has to be right and you should do ample research before you make a move). What about upgrading your website or developing a listing presentation system?

Really focus on just a few items that will make your business more profitable, efficient, and more you!

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5 and 10-Year Goals

These goals will depend on where you are in your career timeline. For example, some of my client agents are starting to think about retirement or at least having enough passive income to step away from their business when they like. Therefore, these goals often involve having some sort of a team or at least strong real estate professionals that they can collaborate with. They are thinking of ways to increase referral dollars and building a “referralment,” not retirement!

Additionally, many of my agent clients are thinking about how they can replace their real estate income without working full-time. Making a plan now to purchase real estate investments for cash flow, appreciation, or both, can be lucrative, but smart investment decisions don't usually happen by accident.

Set a Date

At this point, you may have figured out that what you really need is to set a date with yourself once per quarter to reassess your goals. This is the first week of October now - the last quarter of the year! By starting this now, you are set up to make your next 90-Day plan the first week of January - such a great time of year for reflection and goal-setting!

It is also important to remember that at this time next year, your 5-Year and 10-Year goals are now 4 and 9 years away. Without staying on top of your goals and making incremental progress, 2028 and 2033 will be here before you know it. I mean, don't 2018 and 2013 feel like yesterday?

One of the greatest things about having clear goals is that it allows people to make decisions easier. Whether you are deciding to watch an extra hour of TV or to go to bed to be refreshed the next day, to accept a reduced commission listing, or to learn something new that opens a new set of clients - every choice makes a difference and will affect your goals. Make sure your actions today are aligned with your goals tomorrow.


 

By Denise Lones CSP, M.I.R.M., CDEI - The founding partner of The Lones Group, Denise Lones, brings nearly three decades of experience in the real estate industry. With agent/broker coaching, expertise in branding, lead generation, strategic marketing, business analysis, new home project planning, product development, Denise is nationally recognized as the source for all things real estate. With a passion for improvement, Denise has helped thousands of real estate agents, brokers, and managers build their business to unprecedented levels of success, while helping them maintain balance and quality of life.

The Lones Group, Inc.

Comments (9)

Will Hamm
Hamm Homes - Aurora, CO
"Where There's a Will, There's a Way!"

Hello Denise and thank you for the great suggestion in your blog to share with us.  I have monthly goals all the time and a yearly marketing plan.

 

Oct 09, 2023 12:14 PM
Denise Lones

Will Hamm so many agents would be in a better position if they regularly tracked their goals and action towards them like this. Great to hear from you. - Denise

Oct 09, 2023 02:44 PM
Dorie Dillard Austin TX
Coldwell Banker Realty ~ 512.750.6899 - Austin, TX
NW Austin ~ Canyon Creek and Spicewood/Balcones

Good evening Denise,

I so agree with your advice! If you can regularly track your goals you can see if your year is on course to meet your expectations. I always look at where I am at the end of each month. I also always compare my quarterly results with the last 2-3 years to see if I'm on track. If I'm not where I want to be I can do something about it by ramping up harder!

Oct 09, 2023 04:40 PM
Denise Lones

Dorie Dillard Austin TX You make a fantastic point here, which is that tracking your business and goals regularly means you stay informed and gives you the warning you need to be able to do something about it before it's too far off track. Thanks Dorie! - Denise

Oct 09, 2023 10:47 PM
Michael J. Perry
KW Elite - Lancaster, PA
Lancaster, PA Relo Specialist

It is crucial for Agents to have a Business Plan with Specific Activities to achieve their goals . It would be advised to also have an accountability partner 

Oct 09, 2023 06:18 PM
Denise Lones

Accountability partners are great - not just for change in your business - but for keeping goal commitments. At least, if your partner and you really are doing the job of keeping accountable. Better still, have a coach whose job is to keep you accountable and help point the way. - Denise

Oct 09, 2023 10:49 PM
Carla Freund
Keller Williams Preferred Realty - Raleigh, NC
NC Real Estate Transition & Relocation 919-602-848

Denise, This is an excellent and very well timed blog. It's that time of year to plan next years goals. I always have goals and look at them weekly, monthly and quarterly so I can adjust if necessary.

One thing I'm planning to do this fall that I haven't done in a while is a vision board. I'm a very visual person and vision boards work well for me. It occurred to me recently that I had achieved everything on my last vision board. I've already begun thinking about my next one. 

Have a wonderful week!

Oct 10, 2023 06:16 AM
Denise Lones

Carla Freund That is fantastic. Vision boards have long been a part of my Encore real estate coaching group that I lead. What I love about vision boards is that it forces an agent to think about the future - not just work either, but the things they love and want out of life too. Writing an action plan down is good, but a vision board is a physical process too, so it makes a a stronger impact as you do it than writing a business plan down. Do both! And then, it is a visual reminder that reminds you of what to do and why you want to do it. All win-win. Thank you Carla! - Denise

Oct 10, 2023 09:12 AM
Leanne Smith
Dirt Road Real Estate - Golden Valley, AZ
The Grit and Gratitude Agent

Yes, you are so correct goals are part of the strategic thinking plan. From my experience, until external assessments and internal appraisals are undertaken the determining goals down the road may incur a double effort.

Having a 20 year executive leadership and sales coaching practice, I do encourage my clients to have goals that are measurable.  If you can't measure it, you can manage it.

When looking to the past, pulling out the outliers if any (unsual sales), those number can be boiled down to average sales and transactions per month. I have done this in my executive coaching practice as well as in my real estate practice.  So far after six years, I have achieved all production goals.

Goals are the last step in the strategic planning process. Where many small businesses fail is to skip the first steps which again from my experience creates potential failure.

Oct 10, 2023 06:54 AM
Denise Lones

Leanne Smith A very good point is made here. It is much harder to chart a course for your business or life if you don't already have a clear  understanding of where you are in the present. In my own coaching practice there are certainly agents who feel like they have fallen behind, but who have not taken stock of their numbers. They haven't looked at their transaction history, they have no idea what their potential clients represent in terms of business, and they have big goals, but need help breaking out into steps. What does 30 transactions a year actually take to make happen, what does a real estate business grossing 200k really require, where in the market should the agent position their business? Exploring these and other questions can make any planning activity more likely to succeed. This week though, my goal is for agents to start thinking of thinking ahead. Thank you Leanne, love this comment from you. - Denise

Oct 10, 2023 09:25 AM
Leanne Smith

Baby steps do help. And thinking ahead I believe should begin with foundational statements.  In the short term, just putting down some executable goals may help spur the mental gears.

Oct 10, 2023 09:30 AM
Kimo Jarrett
Cyber Properties - Huntington Beach, CA
Pro Lifestyle Solutions

I agree. A comprehensive business plan is essential to achieve success not only in real estate but any business.

Oct 10, 2023 11:38 PM
Denise Lones

Kimo Jarrett - Good to see you, it's been a while. Hope you are well. - Denise

Oct 11, 2023 11:44 AM
Dr. Paula McDonald
Beam & Branch Realty - Granbury, TX
Granbury, TX 936-203-0279

And, we all know that as life changes, so do our goals. Keeping them current is sound advice.

Oct 11, 2023 09:03 AM
Denise Lones

Paula - Thank you! I hope business is treating you well there in Granbury TX. - Denise

Oct 11, 2023 11:45 AM
Diana Dahlberg
1 Month Realty - Pleasant Prairie, WI
Real Estate in Kenosha, WI since 1994 262-308-3563

Without a plan -- whether monthly, 90 day, 6 month or 1 to 5 to 10 years -- no one succeeds.  Your post was well thought out and worthy of doing.  Thank you Dr. Paula McDonald for sharing this with us here in the Rain.  Step 1.  Write it down!

Oct 13, 2023 06:22 PM
Denise Lones

Diana Dahlberg Good to see you again!
And step 2, put it somewhere you will see it. But don't just admire it sitting there on your desktop or hanging from the wall. Take that first action item on. Each step makes the next easier to take and brings you closer to success. - Denise

Oct 17, 2023 01:00 PM
Denise Lones

Diana Dahlberg You can get away with that with me since I get alerts and regularly review my posts here at ActiveRain, but the mentions do make it easier. Nothing to worry about here. - Denise

Oct 17, 2023 02:53 PM
Diana Dahlberg

Denise Lones Agree!  Just realized I did not address you directly with my answer. Sorry if that brought some confusion.  But I'm sure you understood I was replying to you and then including Dr. Paula's question and answer together.  Have a great week!

Oct 17, 2023 02:48 PM
Diana Dahlberg

Denise Lones Thank you!  Glad you understood.  I, like you, also get the auto alerts and regularly review my posts so I can respond in a timely fashion.  

Oct 17, 2023 03:00 PM