Happy New Year and Hit the Ground Running!

OK, so it’s the day after the New Year!  You celebrated like no tomorrow or maybe you went to bed early…either way, now’s the time to start your year the right way. Take your cue from the improving market and think about the ways in which you can improve your business, customer relationships and yourself in 2012.

Think business. Think plan.  Think goals. What are they and why should you be thinking about them anyway?  Your business plan should have been in place already, if not, you still have time.  Plan your business out for the year.  Go online – there are multiple business plans to chose from – click on the Link of the Week to your right and get some great ideas to get you started.

Set your goals and put them in writing. What do you want to accomplish for the year? Dollar-wise?  Sales-wise? Unit-wise?  Whichever way you want to define what you want to achieve, write them down and carry them with you.  Be realistic.  It does you no good to set your goals so high that it is almost impossible to reach.  However, if you have reached your goal every year, raise the bar higher, push yourself.

Be sure to set some personal goals: fitness, health, family, education.  Set aside and take some personal time, put away your cell phone and computer.  If you incorporate all of these aspects in your business and personal plan and set reasonable goals….2012 should be a superlative year!

Need a little help getting jump-started?  Here are a few ideas that I have adapted from a lot of lists online to get you started:

1. Be More Proactive
While you may not have been able to pinpoint the exact date in which the market would turn, you might have been more prepared had you devoted more time and energy to researching, reviewing and analyzing market data, forecasts and trend reports.
In 2012, make a promise to yourself and to your clients that you will come to all meetings and showings armed with as much information and insight as possible.
2. Get Plugged In to the Latest Technologies
Technology can be a Florida REALTOR’s best friend. Unfortunately, there are many out there who don’t utilize it because they see the industry as a face-to-face business. This is true, but wouldn’t it be nice to pull up other listings or browse through a list of potential buyers while you’re engaging in some face time with a seller?  No one wants to tell today’s savvy buyer “I’ll have to get back to you on that” – and no buyer wants to hear that, either. So do yourself a favor and invest in a few key technologies.
3. Become a Creative Marketer
As newer generations have entered the real estate industry, as both customers and agents, more and more business activity is done online.  Your creative marketing efforts should start with social media. There are three sites in particular where you should maintain a significant online presence: Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. These sites should not only showcase you and your experience, but they should be a sounding board for your listings as well.
4. Network More
No matter how often you think you do it, you can always engage in more networking. This resolution doesn’t have to involve just Association or REALTOR events. Connections are made and lost hundreds of times a day. Think about all the opportunities you had to interact with people in the past 24 hours that you didn’t take. Now make it a part of your business plan to do something about it.
5. Open Yourself to More Possibilities
Thanks to the recession, the old rules don’t apply anymore. Many agents who thought they would strictly work on $million-plus properties for the rest of their careers had a sad awakening over the past few years…Short Sales and Foreclosures forced the entire industry to step outside of itself.

Let’s make 2012 an amazing year.  Be good to yourself and each other.

Until Next Monday…

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