September 30, 2009

Happy New Year....Seriously!

Welcome to 2010!

I know, I calendar hasn't officially turned yet either but I highly recommend that your mind starts pretending that 2009 is already gone.

I am a firm believer that your success for each year is determined by what you do in the previous year's 4th quarter. That begins today!

Break Your Year Down By Quarters...But Begin October 1st

October 1 begins the "Planning Quarter" when you get all of your goals, schedules, marketing plans and systems in place for the next year. Take a moment to review the current year and ask yourself this question - "If I had it all to do over again, what would I do differently?" Now, put those answers into writing and begin to act on them.
  • What direct mail campaigns will you put into action in 2010? What day of each month will you deliver the mailing to the post office? What vendor will you use? Just think - ordering now insures you get 2009 prices for 2010 business.
  • How many open houses can you plan to hold? Do you know your vacation schedule already? Get those Sundays blocked out now and it won't seem as overwhelming as now when you decide to do Open Houses three days in advance.
  • Sit with your manager or coach and "do the numbers." How many closings are you aiming for in 2010? How much total income? What will your marketing and educational expenses be?
Now when you see Dick Clark and Ryan Seacrest welcoming the actual new year, you'll be entering the second quarter of your year - The "Action Quarter."

Imagine hitting the ground running less than 36 hours into a new year? Most people don't even think of starting until the spring thaw. If you've been in the real estate business for more than 3 years, I'm willing to bet that your best year ever also included your best 1st quarter ever.

April 1 kicks off the "Momentum Quarter" and that's no fooling. Because you were all planned out and had your systems in place, you didn't waste the first few months waiting for business to come to you. You went after it. Opens, FSBO's, Expired Listings and a focused effort on your sphere of influence. The people who waited for the real ball to drop will be just getting out from behind the ball that wrecked their business when then turned their back on it as the days got shorter and the excuses got longer.

July 1st will kick off your "New Records Quarter." Then, with just 3 months left until your 2011 planning mindset, you're firing on all cylinders. You won't have to wait for the summer market to hit, you'll create it. Power-priced listings, buyers who are motivated to buy and referrals from those FSBO's and Expireds you have been helping relocate means that your gross commission income will already be surpassing 2009 and you still have almost half of the 2010 calendar year to go!

Other tips for your "New Year"

* Learn a valuable lesson from Auld Lang Syne on what not to do - "Should old acquaintance be forgot and never brought to mind." I hope that's not your strategy for success in 2010. Those "old acquaintances" could keep you enjoying the champagne all year long. Develop a plan to identify and follow up with your best past clients, family and friends that compose your sphere of influence. Personal notes, phone calls, email and in-person visits will lead to more appointments. Just like you can't plan what you'll wear to the ball until you have been invited, you need to have appointments before you make any sales.

* Resolutions are always easier to follow the first few months. Goal planning and schedule planning that is completed in October can become habitual by the time January rolls around. Don't delay - Make things happen immediately and that will prove to be the best "wait loss"plan you'll encounter.

So raise your glass to the possibilities of a record breaking 2010. Why not make it your best year ever!

Too bad there are no bowl games on tomorrow!

Until next time, keep building relationships...solving problems...and having fun!