August 31, 2011

What the "Eff" Are You Doing?

I spent the day today at a really cool event called Agent ReBoot. It was a pleasant mix between harnessing technology to better adapt to today's changing landscape in real estate and how to better utilize all the tools, systems and people that are out there that can provide some help, guidance or assistance.

The event was brought to Columbus by Inman News and featured some of the best speakers in real estate today including Chris Smith (Chief Evangelist for Inman News), Darin Persinger (Productivity Junkies), Steve Pacinelli (Tech Savvy Agent and Move Inc.), Sherry Chris (Better Homes & Gardens Real Estate) and Tracy Weir (Chief Marketing Officer of Inman News).

I was honored to have been invited to join a panel discussion - Social Media Insights - Making the Smartest Investment of Your Time along with fellow Central Ohio Realtor Toby Boyce where we shared our thoughts on how, when, where and why real estate agents may want to utilize social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and blogs to build better relationships and possibly increase their success and their income.

If You're Going to "Eff Up" Your Business, Choose Wisely

While all of today's guests shared tips, tricks and tools to help today's agents become better at what they do, I think everyone who attended today (or any other event like this at their local branch, board or association) needs to move forward with one main question in mind.

The question is, "are you aiming to become more efficient or more effective?"

They are definitely not the same.

Efficiency sounds great because most people think if we become more efficient, we can get more done and if we can get more done, we'll close more deals and if we close more deals, we'll make more money. Sure, that might be true, but I could be really fast at entering data incorrectly or I might only take ten minutes to deliver a poor listing presentation to potential clients but have I necessarily gained anything from inaccurate data or business I didn't get?

Efficient, yes. Effective, no.

Effectiveness also sounds wonderful. Effective seems to be when the activity we are doing delivers the end result we were hoping for. We all love to find tools and systems that are effective but if these tools and systems take us an extraordinarily long time to get from start to finish, how did that help us build our business in the long run? Could we capture more (or better) leads in the time it might take us to effectively meet a customer using passive forms or business development? Would you feel successful if you helped 100% of the clients you worked with get to the closing table if you only got to the "promised land" 4-5 times this year? How much time would be spent doing redundant tasks just to insure no fall through occurred?

Effective, perhaps? Efficient...probably not.

I don't have any specific answers and my guess is you don't either, but I do think it is sometimes good to slow down and re-evaluate what we are doing before we just keep going down the road because "that's how we got there last time."

Perhaps as you begin to analyze what you've done this year and start to draft out some 2012 plans in your head, you should start to look at where you can improve efficiencies and where you can deliver more results.

What would you say if you could develop a system that allowed you to build relationships, solve problems and have fun quicker and better than you ever have?

My guess is you'd smile and say "Eff yeah! Sign me up!"