Those in the challenging profession of selling real estate know that the job leaves them with little time to sleep and in a constant state of stress. Not many of them know that there are virtual teams that can carry the extra load for them so they can concentrate on what they do best – sell real estate.
A virtual team can:
Set up and maintain your systems and database.
This helps you with your CRM (contact management software), the basis for all of your client information. If you want repeat business, it’s a must that you keep it up to date. Keeping your contacts organized, booking appointments and scheduling follow ups can all be done by a virtual assistant.
Build your website and blog.
If you want to be known as an agent that is the best and offers the highest quality listings at the best price, you will need a website and a current blog with photos of recent listings, open houses/showings and other info for potential clients. Video works well for this as your customers prefer to search online before requesting to view a home.
Make sure your blog and website are also associated with social media accounts. This is where you can put out up to the minute information on new listings and answer questions or concerns. It’s all about customer service.
Handle your Paperwork.
Creating flyers and forms, completing contracts, conditions and documents – these are all time consuming items that have to be done and hiring those that are the best at this will free up your time to sell more.
Make your calls.
An inordinate amount of time is spent on those dreaded cold calls. Obtaining new contacts and meeting with listing agents can be handled quickly and efficiently. Discussing the most common issues with your clients, such as mortgage amounts, agent fees and information on listings can be done virtually by either telephone, fax or email. As well, your assistant can book appointments, arrange for showings and search the MLS database for homes that meet the needs of your clients.
Buyers prefer to purchase through real estate agents that are efficient, organized and have effective procedures in place. Having virtual help available at all times will separate you from the competition and put you a step ahead!
© Copyright 2012 All rights reserved.
image courtesy of Flickr
For those of us who wish we could simplify our lives just a little – and which of us doesn’t wish that – maintaining a productive schedule doesn’t always come easy.
What are the most important things you would like to accomplish today? Which things do you really want to do?
This is where maintaining balance and boosting your productivity cross paths. It’s also where lists, whether you love them or hate them, are important. Some people are expert list makers. They have lists for everything and if you can manage that and it doesn’t take away time from actually getting things done, then you’re already a step ahead of most of us.
The great thing about lists is that as long as you pay attention to them, they will keep you organized. A master list is a great thing to have; one that encompasses both your work and your home life. For the professional list maker, this keeps everything running on an even keel.
For the rest of us, the to do list should become a priority. This is the list that you make at the end of each day with a running tab of everything that you want to get done within the next several days. These are the things which when not written down, will keep you awake at night, worrying that you have forgotten something important. These are the things that you want to focus on and accomplish as quickly as possible and then get out of the way so you have time to enjoy your life.
It’s always a good idea to put a set amount of time beside any item(s) on your list and have a variety of tasks, some which can be finished quickly and others that may take a bit longer. This way, when you have those periods throughout the day when your energy is lagging, you can look at your list and complete one of the smaller tasks. This is usually all you need to get your focus back.
Getting right to your tasks early in the day will help you accomplish more and if you do hit a period where your energy level drops, it will be easier to get back to your list later in the day if you feel you have already completed the majority of the items.
Remember to take short breaks. Getting up and moving around will increase your energy and also give your eyes a rest, especially if most of your tasks are computer related. Rushing through to finish everything as quickly as you can usually means you aren’t putting your best effort forward. Know when to stop for the day. Not completing everything isn’t the end of the world. Add any remaining items on your list to tomorrow’s to dos. Right at the top so you get to them first.
Another example of a useful list, taken from the master list gurus, is one that you will re-use, such as a grocery list, a travel list or a 4 season list. This last one is a list of the things that have to be done around your home throughout the year. Once the list is made, things can be added or subtracted from it as needed but it will save you time once the original list is there for you.
One final note; remember to keep your list up to date. Remove all completed items and those that are no longer of interest or needed. You’ll notice your productivity increase quickly and at the same time you will get much more from life!
© Copyright 2012 All rights reserved.
image courtesy of Flickr
Two recent articles – two sides of the same coin. Can anyone be an entrepreneur?
They can, but can they become a good one – a great one? The other side saying there is no way everyone can be an entrepreneur. The job is too demanding and much too time consuming.
These are valid points but the fact is, not everyone wants to be an entrepreneur. To many, the thought is terrifying. The lack of what they see as security, routine and “normality” would have them running in the opposite direction as fast as they could.
But for those who have a mindset that is just a little bit different, who are just slightly more independent, that thought is there, in the background. The sense of satisfaction and empowerment they would feel if working on their own, fuels their dreams and while they may never take that “big” step and start their own business, they still will be found working just a little bit differently than the average person.
What traits and qualities will help you to succeed as an entrepreneur? Look around at those who have built a thriving business for themselves and you’ll often find most if not all of the qualities below.
People skills. The ability to connect not so much with large groups or as a speaker but one on one in a professional, well spoken way.People appreciate your putting your full attention on them and interacting in such a way that they know you have been listening.
Originality. But not to the point that you turn people off – this can come across as flaky. You want your small business to work well with other businesses of various sizes and there are times when the ability to fit in is very important.
Confidence. Being confident in yourself and your abilities can bring you a long way. Confidence means you can stand your ground in a diplomatic way. You’re not afraid to have to disagree sometimes but you are also able to concede a point. Be able to agree to disagree.
Having control of your emotions and behaviour. Always. Losing your temper or being impatient shows a lack of ability to cope. Always remember that there could be someone watching or listening that could help you build your business. If you’re having one of those days where the wrong word could send you over the edge, keep your socializing or contact with others to a minimum. Sometimes silence really is golden.
Be comfortable with yourself. The best business people know their shortcomings and also what they excel at. They’ve learned to relax into their personality, their habits, their creativity and their lifestyle. One thing that is noticeable is that they are always well dressed. Not business suit attire but pulled together. After all, you never know when you may come across a potential contact!
Many of us think we could become great entrepreneurs! But there are those of us who are best with routine and reliability. When working outside of this, we feel that we aren’t in control of our lives and live with the nagging feeling that there are things that could go wrong at anytime. The steady nine to five position works best for some. It makes them happy and we need people like this.
The long hours and self induced solitude that can come with entrepreneurship won’t work for everyone. We all have our own very interesting abilities and some of us are just meant to take that different road which leads to running our own business, that road less travelled. To us, it isn’t work at all!
© Copyright 2012 All rights reserved.
image courtesy of the_tahoe_guy
Though Groundhog Day has come and gone, this yearly celebration offers a lot of insight into human nature. The parallels are interesting.
A guest column by Colleen McMorrow suggests that Canada is not doing as well as it once was in the entrepreneurial sector.
Though we have all the opportunities we need in this country to encourage small business growth, the start-ups are not turning into long term ventures.
Various reasons are given for this but what it boils down to is the general public is not, for the most part, supporting small local businesses as much as they say they are. While the slogans are to “shop local” and the politically correct are making sure their neighbours are aware of everything organic, when your back is turned, they are much more likely to be making the most of their purchasing dollars at Walmart or Dollerama!
Late Wednesday night, the motivator of a legend passed away in his apartment at the age of 90. Angelo Dundee coached hundreds of men over the years, among them Muhammad Ali and Sugar Ray Leonard. He was always in his corner helping and pushing them to go just that extra inch, foot or yard that it would take to win. He urged on Ali in his first fight against Sonny Liston and was an all around nice guy. He was known to say “It doesn’t cost anything more to be nice.”
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