I’m not sure where I originally heard “trophy assets”, but I have been thinking a great deal about them lately. Here is how I have defined a trophy assets for my own purposes:
A few examples of trophy assets might be:
Union Pacific Stock
These businesses are “trophy assets” and owning shares of these companies is a way of acquiring your own trophy asset(s). These are businesses you would want to own for life. You wouldn’t want to sell these shares because of the incredible compounding power they have over time. You would want to pass these shares on to your children.
Another trophy asset might be a great rental property in great area. Remember, one of the rules for a trophy asset is that you must want to own it for life. This property should appreciate and generate more rental income for you as time passes. You can live off of the income and pass the property on to your children.
Finally, your business could and should be a trophy asset. Does your business meet the 7 criteria listed in this article? If so, it IS a “trophy asset.” If not, it is your job to transform it into one.
Not all assets are “trophy assets” and it is important to filter assets accordingly. The reason why is because the more trophy assets you own, the more wealth your family will ultimately enjoy. Filtering assets through these “trophy asset” rules also helps direct your focus going forward. Are you using your time to build or acquire trophy assets? If not, you’re probably not using your time effectively.
Take some time to list all of your assets. Would they be classified as a trophy asset? If not, can the asset be transformed into a trophy asset? Two “no” answers to these two questions is an indication, you might want to sell the asset. If the asset will never be a trophy asset, it might be a distraction. It would be better to own ONE trophy asset than FIVE non-trophy assets.
Trophy assets make our lives better. Non-trophy assets don’t.
“If we did all the things we are capable of doing, we would literally astound ourselves.”
Take some time to really think about this. What are you really capable of doing? Who loses because you’re not doing what you’re capable of doing?
Our families lose.
Our team members and employees lose.
Our customers and clients lose.
Everyone loses because we didn’t do what we’re capable of doing.
I’m sure you’ve heard of “The Wolf of Wall Street” movie.
I haven’t seen the movie, but I just finished reading the two books written by the real wolf, Jordan Belfort. The first book is “The Wolf of Wall Street” and the second book is “Catching the Wolf of Wall Street.” You can find them on Amazon, or at your local library.
Before going further, let me first say that they are extremely graphic books and may offend some. Please don’t get these books and be upset because they are extremely graphic. I also don’t condone money laundering, stock manipulation, and other illegal actions detailed throughout both books.
If you can get past the drugs, sex, and illegal activities, the books are great reads for real estate agents and other sales professionals. On high-level, what Jordan Belfort did to build his business and amass hundreds of millions of dollars, was based upon a “targeted” marketing campaign. There are dozens of business lessons that can and should be applied to your business legally! I’ll share four of these lessons in this article.
1. Jordan Belfort “niched” his brokerage business. His focus was on selling securities to wealthy individuals. The main reason was because wealthy individuals would buy more stock providing more commission income for his company and his stockbrokers. This wasn’t the case in the beginning. In the beginning, he started selling to lower net worth individuals, but changed his approach as his marketing campaign began to convert into sales. His income changed dramatically with this change in target market.
2. Focused on promoting stocks that provided the largest commission income. When he started selling stocks as a broker, he quickly realized that he could make more commissions selling certain stocks. He focused his time and marketing on these stocks. The same effort led to higher revenue and profits. In most cases, it takes the same amount of time to sell at $100,000 home as it does to sell a $500,000 home. Engineer your marketing program towards higher priced homes and you’ll make more money for the same amount of work. Or focus on attracting clients that buy multiple properties.
3. The basis of his wealth came from a very powerful lead conversion phone script. In “Catching the Wold of Wall Street”, he shares how he built his brokerage business as he relays the details to the FBI as part of his plea deal. This process started out by testing different phone sales scripts until he had one that converted at high rates with his “target” market. The challenge he faced was that his brokerage company was small and they didn’t have national brand name like Merrill Lynch. He had to overcome this objection in his sales process in order to sell stock to wealthy individuals nationally. The sales script he developed…“allowed a twenty year-old kid, with a high school diploma and an IQ just above the level of Forest Gum to sound like a Wall Street Wizard.” He details the entire sales funnel including actual phone scripts in the Chapter titled, “Leaps of Logic.” I would suggest studying the process and re-writing it for your business. Please understand that I’m not suggesting anything illegal. I am simply suggesting you experiment with a similar process marketing process to sell homes – legally!
4. He built a business that ran without his day-to-day involvement by building a large sales force. This was accomplished by hiring average sales people and giving them a powerful lead conversion process. As soon as his lead conversion process started working with his target market, he leveraged it very quickly by hiring more stockbrokers. If you have a powerful lead conversion system, you can double or triple your income by generating more leads. Lead conversion systems include sales letters, sales phone scripts, sales videos, sales presentations, and more.
Jordan’s books are incredibly entertaining and a fantastic read. More importantly, if you’re able to get passed all of the craziness, you’ll find the “inside” story on how to build a multimillion dollar business. The sad part is that he could have used the same strategies to build his brokerage legally. Sure, it would have taken a little longer, but the systems were incredibly powerful. Your opportunity is to engineer your business using similar strategies while playing by the rules.
I started my real estate brokerage way back in 2000 because I realized I wanted to build a business that could be ultimately sold. At some point in the years before starting this new company, I realized selling homes as a one-man real estate agent didn’t provide any future equity. Selling homes as a one-man business could provide an attractive income, but not much else. By not building a real business, I was leaving a great deal of money on the table.
Why not sell homes and build an amazing business with equity at the same time?
So I got my broker’s license and started my own company. I really had no idea how I was going to build this company. I didn’t have any new agent training plans like the larger brokerages in my area did. My original plan was to recruit existing agents away from other companies. I figured this approach would eliminate the need for a training program assuming these agents were already trained. Well, this assumption wasn’t correct and recruiting existing agents was a lot more challenging than I thought it would be.
After trying this for a year or so, I finally realized the best approach was to focus on brand new agents. When I would see someone I thought would be a good agent, I would approach them and encourage them to get their real estate license. I would pay for their licensing and would train them from the ground up. This presented a problem because I didn’t have a training program for brand new agents. So I decided to have them shadow me with all of my appointments. This way, I could leverage my time dramatically and build the business at the same time. Having new agents shadow you is a GREAT strategy because they get to see how you handle various situations (presentations, showings, negotiations, objections, etc.)
However, I soon began to realize that these new agents needed more training, so I spent a weekend creating a “New Team Member Training Checklist.” I’ve included my original training program for you below. Please understand this training checklist is from the early 2000s and may be a little outdated! This program evolved over the years; however, this was the basis for the entire program.
(Click on the image to enlarge!)
This training program was tweaked and improved regularly. The end result was that my full time agents were averaging 6 to 8 home sales each month when I sold my business. Yes, I was very good at generating and converting leads for them, but they still had to turn these clients into $$$ and they did an awesome job. The training program and great direct response marketing led to an amazing team selling close to 300 homes a year.
Here are a few key things you may want to take away for your business:
1. You do not have to be the one who handles every aspect of the training. At first, I had a limiting belief that made me think I had to handle everything in their training. This was a problem because I didn’t have a lot of extra time. I was incredibly busy writing advertisements, salesletters, newsletters, and working with my own clients. This thinking that I had to personally train new agents was NOT correct and actually held me back for many months. If you review each item in my checklist, you’ll see I finally starting leveraging things that helped me increase my personal home sales. What books, videos, training courses, audio recordings helped you to become a better salesperson? Have all new agents on your team use these as part of your training program. Leverage what helped you and you’ll compound your sales increase through every new agent on your team.
2. Your training should include homework assignments. This is important because you want to weed out new agents who are lazy and who don’t follow through. This is a way to “test” them before investing too much time into their training. If a new agent isn’t doing their homework, they won’t follow-up with leads. They also won’t do what they say they’re going to do. Let them go and focus your time on new agents who WILL do the training homework assignments.
3. Have other team members help train new team members. On my original checklist, notice the three columns next to each item. These columns are “Date Provided”, “Date Completed”, and “Date Approved.” The columns were used by other people on my team to ensure the new person followed through on each training step. My administrative assistant could lead the new person through many steps in the process. In addition, I had other agents on my team help train new agents. You’ll see this in steps asking the new person to work with their “coach.” This coach was another agent on my team. New agents compounded as they began training other agents.
4. Make sure your training helps new agents overcome limiting beliefs. Over the years, I realized we all have various limiting beliefs. I have them. You have them. New agents on your team will have them, too. You should definitely have steps in your training designed to help your new agents let go of their limiting beliefs. Otherwise, they’ll struggle because their limiting beliefs will hold them back. You should notice several steps in my training included simply to get new people to “see” things differently.
5. Constantly improve your training program. Step thirteen asks the new person who just completed the training program how to improve the training for future team members. Their comments and feedback were used to improve the training going forward. This process continued each and every month.
I’m sharing all of this with you for a few reasons.
The first reason is I’m hoping you “see” you can build an amazing team with great agents simply by leveraging the things that helped you become a great agent. On a high-level, your training program should clone you. This is only accomplished by having new agents do what you did as part of your journey. Another lesson I’m hoping you extract is you can have other team members help you build your team. As they help train others, they’ll become better agents in the process. Sometimes we learn more by teaching than by doing.
Obviously, some of the items in my original training checklist are outdated. Don’t let this distract you. Think through what has helped you and use everything in your new agent training program!