Ever wonder what the difference is between a floundering newbie and an up and coming superstar?  In this trial-by-fire business, it can be tough. Competition appears fierce.  But look closer and you’ll see that the new agents who are making it are taking some deliberate, key steps on their new path to success.

Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither is a real estate business.  But what happens when nearly a year (or more!) has gone by and your ‘business’ looks more like a pile of bricks than a strong foundation to make some money on?

Let’s break it down to the five things that they’re doing (and you’re not) and learn how to set yourself up for a breakthrough year!…

  1. They have a plan and they have help!

An up and coming superstar doesn’t ‘wing it.’  They not only have goals, but they have a specific and measurable plan on how to get to them.  The biggest mistake most newbies make is using the independent contractor tax status as a mindset and lifestyle, throwing out all sense of structure and accountability to their day.  So, how do you set yourself up for success? Just like every other massively successful business person, athlete or performer…you get a coach, a mentor, a leader.  Someone who’s been in the trenches and can guide you down roads worthwhile and save you from pits of despair!

2. They listen more than they speak. 

Communication is everything in this business.  Most new agents think that ‘selling is telling’ and talk ad nauseam to prospects – inadvertently driving them away, but that’s not true. The best agents are the ones who can shut their mouths long enough to truly hear a persons needs, adjust to their clients communication style and in doing that, build trust that leads to more referrals!

3. They are always closing.

One of the mistakes new agents make, after talking too much, is not knowing when to close. Rapport building is fine, but it can’t go on forever. At some point, the prospect has to make a decision and they need your professional advice and direction to do so. When the thought of going in for the close makes your palms sweat, remember that you’d be doing them a disservice not to!  The reality is that most motivated people are secretly begging to be lead to a decision – you just have to help them get there with your close!

4. They dress for the job they want, not the job they have.

Along with having no schedule, a dress code seems to also be one of the things that escapes the independent contractors mind.  Just because you don’t have an employee manual telling you what not to wear, doesn’t meant anything goes!  In fact, you DO have a manual (of sorts) – your prospects!  Always dress one notch nicer than the person you are presenting to.  Not only will you be confident in looking sharp, but your professional look will give the prospect the message that you’re serious about earning their business!

5. They’re not ‘Secret Agents.’

It’s ironic how agents get into the business of sales and then are afraid to tell people what they do, for fear of how they will look!  You work on commission now.  If you don’t tell people what you do on a daily basis, someone else is telling them and that agent will get the listing instead of you.  So, how do you tell people you’re in the business?  Wear your agent pin!  Put a magnetic sign rider on your car. Host a neighborhood event for the kids and use it as an opportunity to talk to people about your business.  And of course, call them and let them know that you have a goal to help ‘x’ families buy or sell a home this year and see who they can refer to you!

So, before you hang up your lockbox and walk away discouraged, ask yourself how many of these things have you really attempted at a high level?  If you’ve only made half-hearted efforts, or just didn’t know what to do, start the new year fresh and implement these five things immediately.  You could be the next Superstar in your market!