The First Step in Growing Your Business
The same way there are stages in the real estate market, there are stages in your business trajectory. Some people fall into the trap of thinking that you must learn everything in order to take the first step. Don’t be one of those people. Think of it this way, doing is more important than knowing. Of course, you must know basic information, but even defining what is basic is subjective. You can see how this abstract exercise prevents action. Also, getting bogged down with the minutiae of every rule, regulation and method, you will never produce anything. You can know everything there is to know without ever doing a deal. To determine where you are in your career, answer these questions: Are you trying to do your first deal, are you going from your first deal to 10 deals, from 10 deals to 25 deals, from 25 to 75 deals or 75+ deals? It is important to note that if you are working on your first deal, that must be your priority. In the first 2 weeks, take note of what works and what doesn’t.
Replicate What You Do Well
Don’t stop doing what you are doing. Instead of trying to be what others think you should be, know what you do well. When making changes in your business, decide on a course of action, stick with it for a specifically determined time, say 3 months (one quarter), before making major changes. You may need to make subtle adjustments during that period. It is okay to mimic the successful parts of businesses you admire but employ a healthy skepticism before jumping into the next best thing. Also, when trying new strategies, add to what you are doing already rather that replacing it. Document and test this process as that is the only way to know what needs correcting. Do not make large changes in your business without justifiable effort behind that decision. You must have 3 differentiators that make you great at what you do. No differentiator on its own is particularly special, but combined, they are what make you great. What are your 3 differentiators?
Look for Patterns
Start to identify the repetitive tasks that you can document, systematize and outsource. If this seems like a daunting task, try this tip, go to Upwork.com, get a VA to do the easiest task possible. You will see that it is much easier than you think. What do you mean document everything? For example, the day after closing, go somewhere that is not your office, write down as many steps as you can think of that got you to the closing table. Every step from “went to a meetup, talked to an investor, started looking online for deals, etc.” Why should you do this? Because in stage 2, you need to review all those reflection documents, look for trends in the deal process that are repetitive and could be systematized. For example, if you see a pattern that you ran comps on every lead, could that be outsourced? Adopt the mindset NOW that everything you do currently will need to be delegated. The Pareto principle (80/20 rule, law of the vital few, or principle of factor sparsity) states that approximately 80% of the effects come from 20% of the causes. Applying that, you can document and systematize the 20% of actions that take up 80% of your time.
Be a Student of Business
Focus on marketing, business ownership and entrepreneurship content. You are a business owner, not a real estate investor. You must always be learning, but the amount of time you spend on learning must shift to running the business as the business grows. Don’t overvalue something that you are not good at when focusing on your talent will be the thing that accelerates you. Now that you have freed up 80% of your time, use it learning how to run a business like a business. Do not use it trying to find the best real estate investment strategy. Some excellent business resources are: “Traction” by Gino Wickman (http://amzn.to/2kavg32), Rocket Fuel by Gino Wickman – (https://amzn.to/2uRn7TA) and Multipliers by Liz Wiseman (https://amzn.to/2Lpb6M3)
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