Ten Steps to Real Estate Success (Step 8)

Have you ever had so much business that you couldn’t even keep up? So much that when you eventually got through that wave of business, you took a deep breath, and realized you didn’t have anything else going on?  You suddenly realized that you had to start from scratch again filling that pipeline of business.  I don’t know about you, but it’s definitely happened to me.  It’s what I call “the slinky effect”.

Stopping the Slinky Effect

Remember the cool little toy spring that stretched and contracted, flipping end over end to walk down stairs or inclines?  That’s the slinky.  The “slinky effect” is the sales phenomenon that describes the continual stretching and contracting of an agent’s business because of a lack of consistency in the sales process.  What begins to happen is that waves of activity begin to take over one’s life and our businesses begin to run us, as opposed to us running our businesses.

If you’ve ever driven in rush hour traffic in a large metropolitan area, you understand the slinky effect on the road.  One driver slows slightly to look at something.  The car behind him slightly taps his brake.  The one behind that hits his brake a little harder, because he’s caught off guard.  Pretty soon everyone is slamming on their brakes, and saying (or at least thinking) less than pleasant thoughts about that first driver.

The further back in the line you are, the more pronounced the slinky effect.  When they begin to go again, the reverse happens.  So how does the slinky effect work?  What causes it, and more importantly, what can you do to keep it from happening to your business?  Let’s think about it for a few minutes.

The person in the front of the line has less of the effect than the one in the rear?  Why is that?  It’s because the longer it takes you to realize the change in momentum, the more severe the changes in momentum are.  The same phenomenon works in both directions.  First, you find yourself with so much business that you can’t even do a good job.

Then when all the business is finally closed (generally not with the care and attention you’d like) you have to over emphasize all of your marketing efforts to fill the pipeline again.  Then your over-marketing causes you to have too much business, and the process starts over again.  You are like the driver at the end of the long line of cars.  You have no control of your own situation.

So how do you stop that from happening?  Can you?  Yes, you can!  Remember that first driver in the line from the earlier analogy?  What if he’d had on his cruise control?  He would never have slowed down when he turned to look.  And you can put your business on cruise control.  Really!  And when you do, you will notice that the slinky effect is gone.  You’ll also notice you burn less gas (emotionally speaking).  You’ll actually be at peace in your business, because you’ve set up a machine — a money making machine.

OK, Matt.  I’ll bite!  How do I put my business on cruise control?  It’s easier than you think.  Remember the previous steps?  They all work together to form an incredibly well-oiled machine.  First (Step 1) we put you in a place to actually get business, by finding your USP (unique selling proposition) and becoming that best agent at whatever your specialty is.

Then we discussed planning your work (Step 2) so you could determine exactly what your goals are and then precisely how to accomplish those goals with no extra effort.  You learned how to determine how many customer leads you needed to generate, and what specific tasks you needed to accomplish on a daily or weekly basis to accomplish those financial objectives.

Next we talked about assembling the few tools you need (Step 3) to make all of this a reality.  If you recall, they were very simple.  After having assembled the tools, we discussed advertising (Step 4) in this new age of real estate.  Together with the proper tools, your advertising is now able to be scaled to exactly produce the number of customers you need to meet your goals.

But having the customers is not enough.  Understanding how today’s real estate customer behaves, and how to have the best results when working them (Step 5) is a crucial part of real estate success.  So then (Step 6) we discussed at length how to approach and interact with today’s home shopper so as to make the greatest impact with the least effort.

Then we discussed organization (Step 7) and how any agent can get himself organized without changing his personality.  Staying on your plan, in high volume, depends entirely on your ability to stay organized.  All of that together, brings us to this segment — Stopping the Slinky Effect.

Now I know that most agents want quick results, but they want to pick and choose their own ingredients: “A little of this and a lot of that.  More of this, and I’ll just skip that because it’s not my favorite.”  That strategy may work well in a cafeteria line, but it is certain frustration in the real estate business.  If you are going to do any of what I am sharing with you, and expect any real and lasting success, you need to do it all.  Sorry.

Let’s assume that you did find your USP and that you have become the very best agent at it.  You still need your plan so that you can monitor your progress along the way.  That’s how a cruise control works.  It has a small computer that monitors road speed and makes tiny adjustments to the throttle the very split-second the road speed is not where it should be.

The right tools plus advertising, together, are like air and fuel in an engine.  When mixed together properly, under the right pressure and at the right time, they provide the engine with exactly what it needs to produce power.  In your business, advertising will bring customers to you and your tools will help you to capture and organize them, allowing you the chance to do business with them.

But like the analogy of your car, having air and fuel (tools and advertising) without having them under the proper pressure and at the right time (approach and followup), will not produce any power.  Your organization system becomes like the car’s onboard computer that keeps everything performing when and how it should by reading even the smallest changes, comparing them to your plan, and continually making tiny adjustments to produce exactly the right outcome.

That’s the key to stopping the slinky effect. Listen, I don’t directly benefit from your success, so I probably shouldn’t care whether you use part of my approach or all of it.  But I do care, and that’s because if you don’t use it all, you may as well not use any of it.  The key to making it work — to creating your own real estate money machine — is by creating a “machine”.

machine (noun). A assembly of fixed and moving parts that takes energy and converts it into a more useful form.

Do you see it?  I’m trying to get you to create a machine!  I want you to take the fixed part (your work) and the moving parts (10 Steps) of real estate practice and assemble them into a machine so that you take the overall energy and convert it into a much more useful form, resulting in more money and less effort!

So what do you say?  Have you taken the previous seven steps?  If not, come on… you can do it! Give it a shot.  You’ll see how easy it is to be successful, even in a down market.  Feel free to contact me if you have any questions.  I’m happy to help.

OK, in the next installment, we’ll discuss taking the success (your engine and cruise control) you’ve already created and adding a transmission!  The power of leverage.  If your goal is to get the maximum amount of power to the ground, with the least amount of effort, you won’t want to miss it.

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