By Wayne Morgan • The Real Estate Business School
Previously I wrote about precession —the effect of bodies in motion on other bodies in motion. The bee enters the flower blossom in search of nectar to make honey. Inadvertently, this causes the bee’s legs to become dusted with pollen so that when it enters other flowers, it pollinates. The bee’s goal is to make honey, but its true purpose is to pollinate. The bee doesn’t know its true purpose is to pollinate. The bee just does what it is supposed to do — make honey. Humans are similar to bees in this way. We know our goals, but we may never know our true purpose. As my mentor, Bucky Fuller would say, “You may assume you are fulfilling your role if you convert your experience to the highest advantage of others.” If the bee did not have a goal and did not focus on that goal, what might occur? The food chain could be in danger of collapse. This is actually happening right now; maybe you’ve seen the news reports.
Now, take a business. What’s the purpose of it? One purpose of a business is to add value. Money is simply a byproduct of how well we add value; how well we assist others; how well we serve. Money is the method used to measure how well we add value. No value added, no money in the bank. “How do I add value?” you’ll ask.
I’ll tell you! I add value by using your experience to help others. And this is the beauty of our business; we get paid for helping others; the more value we add, the more money we make.
This is February. By now you have your goals for the year, have committed them to writing, told the people closest to you (now you have to do it) and put pictures of what you will have when you reach these goals on the wall above the desk where you work to remind you to keep going when it gets hard, and you want to quit. Good.
There are many reasons for having goals, and you have probably heard them all. This is one of my goals: when I have a clearly defined, written goal that I have committed to, I get clear on the tasks necessary to accomplish that goal. This clarity of focus keeps me from getting distracted. It helps me discern the difference between an opportunity and a distraction.
Multi-tasking is overrated. One key to success is to focus. Multi-tasking disperses energy whereas focus concentrates energy. A person without goals is like a ship without a rudder. There is no guidance system. A person without a daily schedule has their schedule filled by others. A person without goals cannot tell the difference between an opportunity and a distraction, so they usually end up chasing distractions and missing opportunities.
Let’s say you specialize in a high-turnover subdivision in the northwest part of town. You are focused, you dominate this area, you are busy, and business is good. Your goal for the year is to increase your listings by 20 percent over last year, which means you must list 100 properties to achieve your goal. You have your team and systems in place, your assembly line built and are on track. You get a referral for a listing deep in south Austin. Is this new listing an opportunity or distraction?
One of your clients owns her own business and needs help finding commercial space to lease. She is impressed with you and asks you for help. Would you call this an opportunity or a distraction?
An investor calls and wants to buy an apartment with 6 percent or better cap rate near the University of Texas. Is this an opportunity or distraction?
The power of the written goal one is committed to gives us the focus of energy which provides the clarity of thought allowing us to make better decisions faster today than yesterday. It helps answer this question we are constantly faced with: “Is this opportunity in front of me aligned with my goals, values and purpose? Or is this one big regrettable distraction?” It helps me say “thank you, but this is not my area of specialty. I know an excellent broker who does specialize in this who can assist you and am happy to give you a personal referral.”
What’s the moral of the story? The moral is to keep your eye on the prize! RL