If you stop and take some time to observe people, you’ll learn some very interesting lessons. Many people fall into patterns and act without thinking. It happens all of the time – everywhere. This is why we usually do the same things over and over again and then get frustrated when we don’t get a different result.
For example, if you sat down and listed your sales goals for 2008, you probably listed many of the same activities you attempted in 2007. More than likely, you simply increased the frequency of those activities hoping that "more" attempts would bring "more" results/sales. An example might be setting a goal to go on "more" listing presentations. The reasoning is that the "more" presentations I go on, the "more" listings I’ll eventually get. On the surface this makes a great deal of sense. However, this plan leads you to work harder for less money.
How about asking yourself the following two questions:
- Could you go on the same number of listing presentations and get more listings?
- Could you go on fewer listing presentations and get more listings?
Interesting questions, huh…
The BIGGEST mistake most agents make is – no self-correction.
What is self-correction? Self-correction is analyzing everything you do and asking yourself, how can I do this better? Let’s go back to the listing presentation again. After every single listing presentation, do you take notes on what went well? Do you take notes on what didn’t go well? Do you make adjustments in your next listing presentation from your notes? Do you do more of what went well and less of what didn’t go well?
If you are self correcting, your results should ALWAYS be improving. This would mean that your conversion % from listing presentation to actual listings should increase over time. You might start out converting 50% of your listing presentations and gradually increase this to say 75%. This is how you can get more listings from the same number of listing appointments. In fact, as you self correct, you should be able to get more listings from fewer appointments. Less work, more money!
Self correction should really be viewed as "testing." Every single listing presentation becomes a little test. What worked? What didn’t? Next listing presentation – new test. It’s like being stuck in a room without any lights. You keep feeling around the walls until you find the open door. It might take you 10, 15 or 20 attempts, but sooner or later, you’ll find the opening. Each time you self-correct and try a new spot.
My example highlighted listing presentations. Self-correction should really be applied to every aspect of your business. Do you self-correct with buyer presentations? How about open houses? Every Sunday, I see agents putting up their open house signs. They do the same thing week after week and, in most cases, do not sell any homes. Wouldn’t a little self correction improve this process? Start asking yourself, how can I get more buyers to my open houses? What can I do differently this week?
The key to success in business and sales is constant and never ending "self correction."