Our industry is polarized by fear: fear of competitors, fear of disruptors, fear of the unknown. Real estate has always been cyclical and there has always been competition.
Since the dawn of organized real estate, new companies have come along to disrupt the status quo and every agent has always been up against other agents for a share of the market. Competition isn’t something to fear, it’s a reason to get out of bed.
What if instead of focusing on that, you focus instead on leading and adding value to people? If you do, you’ll never have to worry about losing them.
Start by asking yourself effective questions like, “In what way can I add value to this person? In what way can I help them see their own potential and get to the next level?” I believe strongly that leaders must help build other leaders and the best way to do that is to empower them.
One of the ways to empower others is through effective conflict resolution. One of my rules is that if we have a problem in our company, we address it right away because in the first six hours after a problem arises, people are in fight or flight mode. If I can’t meet with the parties in person, we arrange a call with everyone on the line. I establish the ground rules in advance: No personal attacks. We’re coming together in a spirit of collaboration. We’re going to brainstorm. I schedule the call for the next day so everyone can sleep on it because I want and expect them to come to the table with solutions; it’s not personal, it’s business. Often, they find a solution before our call.
During those times when we do meet and someone comes up with a great idea to resolve the issue, I make a point of reminding them of their success the next time they face a challenge. Sometimes people have to be reminded, like Glinda told Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz, “You had the power all along, my dear,” and they grow from the experience.
Founder and Chairman, Steve Morris, built EXIT Realty by focusing on people first, knowing that by doing so, profits would follow. When we’re talking about my dreams and goals, he’ll often ask, “It’s December 31st, 2021 and you’ve accomplished such-and-such, how do you feel?” Holding onto that feeling – the passion – helps me to stick with it until that day comes. I had the power all along.
So rather than focusing on the noise, look for ways to empower people and add value to their lives. Your business will grow and profits will follow, not by taking down the competition, but by building up people instead.