As we look back on the last 12 months, it is easy to see the many changes that have happened in the commercial real estate industry in any town or city. Many of those changes have an impact on the levels and types of business for brokers and agents.
Some towns and cities are quite unique and have their own cycles of enquiry, supply and demand. Consider these questions:
- What property segments have been the most active in the last 12 months?
- Did you get your share of the fresh property activity?
- How many new agents entered the industry in your location that could shift the listing balance?
- What has the enquiry rate been like during the year?
- What have buyers and tenants been looking for in choosing a new property to buy or rent?
- What will your property market be doing over the coming 12 months?
- Where are the next property developments coming?
- How can you stand out as the agent of choice to help property owners, tenants, and business owners?
Questions like these lead you into some serious ideas and discussions. At least once a quarter it pays to review these simple issues and formulate new property directions.
Nothing remains the same in commercial real estate. Some things you can plan for; other things you cannot see or expect. The only way the get some control of your market is to set some specific property goals given your local market conditions. From those goals you can implement plans of change.
Change is an interesting word for real estate people; without some form of change, next year will be something like last year for many agents. In commercial real estate that means numbers achieved in commissions, listings, and clients. If you were happy with your ‘numbers’ last year then I guess that is good; most agents however could do with some improvement in some way or form.
Change With Goals and Action
Are you up to the challenge of ‘change’? Would you like next year to be better than the last 12 months? If you have answered in the positive, then take a look at the checklist below to get yourself started on a process of growth and change. Set goals in each of the following categories:
- Personal Skills – Seriously assess your personal skills as they apply to commercial property. You will have strengths to build upon and you will have weaknesses to resolve. Training, practice and knowledge will help you move through personal weaknesses, so get those things out of the way quickly. We cannot be good at everything. When you work it out, the main core skills needed by any agent are all sales and communication related. They can all be practiced.
- Marketing Processes – Start the next 12 months with a specific marketing plan at a personal level. How will you spread the news in your property market of your relevance and skills as an agent?
- Database – Your database is just so important if you want to build your property market and commission potential. Get your database going and fill it with people on a daily basis. Make it a part of your diary to talk to new people every day.
- Prospecting Model – The prospecting process can and should be quite specific. Some agents are suited to cold calling; others are suited to door knocking businesses. Either way you have to reach out to a lot of new people (property owners and business leaders) quickly and effectively. It is a skill that you learn and it doesn’t come easily to most people, so take on the challenge, take action, and get things underway.
- Results – The results that you achieve in commercial real estate can be tracked. Those numbers to track will be database growth, client numbers, commissions, exclusive listings and marketing dollars, enquiry rates, presentations, meetings, and time on market. When you know the numbers you will know how to shift and change your priorities. Intelligent adjustments help most astute agents stay on track.
- Directions – Recently I was talking to a business friend who said ‘he was a bit lost’ for direction and getting results at the moment. The reality of things is that he stopped prospecting about 4 months ago when he was busy with sales and leasing. Today he is suffering the financial consequences; he has little activity to work on. Things will get better for him although he has an uphill ‘prospecting battle’ for about 4 months. Understand how the property market works, and don’t make the same mistake.
Setting goals in commercial real estate brokerage is as simple as selecting the right criteria, understanding what is going on currently in your market, and then benchmarking yourself. Goals should create action in a permanent way; if they don’t then you are in the wrong industry. Take on the challenge of commercial real estate brokerage and improve incrementally in all ways possible.