Archive for the ‘Misc.’ Category

Strange but True!

Everyone needs a little encouragement from time to time, and with today’s tough economic climate we never know who might need a small token of appreciation or a simple smile. Two days ago I was having a good old fashioned “pity party” for myself. Have you ever had one of those events where you simply soak in the “poor ole’ me” syndrome for an hour or two? Well, needless to say I was having one of those moments where John was feeling sorry for himself. After driving for over two hours to take my Mother to see a doctor we received some bad news about her back, my Webinar that I tried to host (from my sister’s doctors office) failed miserably because of a bad internet connection, and should I go on? While my Mother and I drove back home and she fell asleep in the car, I began to fire up the ole pity party and think about a zillion reasons why my life was similar to George Bailey’s from it’s a Wonderful Life. A little later when I checked my e-mail, I had this lovely note from an attendee who had joined the Webinar explaining how much she enjoyed the session and all of the good information I had provided. She went on to compliment me in several ways and asked for more help with technology at their office. Several other e-mails had arrived where people had offered kind advice, understanding my situation and actually commending me for trying to still do a Webinar in the midst of my Mother’s needed attention. (By the way, my Mother insisted I do the Webinar, and her appointment was at my sister’s place of employment, so in most situations I would have cancelled this Webinar).

Here’s the strange twist. Yesterday, I spoke to a group of REALTORS® approximately 100 miles away from my home. While I delivered my talk on “Do You Have the Right G.A.S. in Your Tank,” stressing the importance of certain attributes to survive in today’s economic climate, I had noticed a hand go up near the front of the room. The young lady indicated with a smile that she was on my Webinar yesterday and that she really enjoyed it and gained a lot of information. Before I could finish telling the group about my kind and considerate e-mail I received after my pity party, she smiled and said, “I was the one who sent you the e-mail.” Wow, what a wild and strange twist of faith! People from all over the country on this Webinar that I thought I had messed up, and here was the person who reached their hand out through the World Wide Web and helped me get up off the ground. That was my closing for the group, (who by the way had a few tears of joy and happiness) in that yes, we need to set goals, be positive, and put the right stuff in our heads with regards to news, motivational tapes etc., but, we will all have bad days, be discouraged, and have a good old fashioned pity parties from time to time. That’s why it is so important to always try and help someone else out. Smile, encourage, and offer assistance to a co-worker or friend. Cards, notes, a phone call can all mean so much to people, and you never know when you’re going to brighten someone else’s’ day, and reach out to help pick them up off the ground. It was such a joy and honor to meet the person who encouraged me this week, and strange as it might seem, it is true!


I Made the Move!

After using TypePad for several months to post and host my current blog, I kept noticing a large number of posts coming from WordPress. What’s the deal? I questioned. Finally, I thought it was silly to be paying $14.50 a month for a place to host my blog when there was a place I could do the same thing for “free.” Yesterday I finally made the switch, and I must admit the new format I am using for WordPress is “GREAT!” I was able to export all of my posts from TypePad, then import into WordPress seamlessly, change my banner, add some widgets and in no time I was up and running. I need to give a big “thanks” out to my friend Mike Blaney in Canada, a.k.a. for his assistance. Mike was gracious enough to show me a few short-cuts and tips to get me going in the right direction. Thanks Mike! Please don’t get me wrong, TypePad is a “wonderful” product, and it served me well for the short time I used it. However, in today’s economic environment every penny counts, and thanks to WordPress I can now continue to blog, (and show others without the added expense.

Value – The Key to Long-Term Survival

I believe as our economy continues to struggle, and as more people feel the financial burdens placed upon them, value will be a key piece of the puzzle in whether businesses fail or succeed. Last week while attending our quarterly membership meetings for the Missouri Association of REALTORS®, I commented to one of our staff that our association needed to step up ways to create value for our membership. Trust me, our association in Missouri does a lot for our members, however, people will analyze and magnifying everything our association does in trying to determine whether their membership dues are worth (or outweigh) the cost. After all, most people who belong to an organization ask the question at some point; (especially at dues renewal time) what am I getting for this membership? Real estate brokers need to be reminded that your agents will ask this question, especially when sales are down and times become tough. Remember, it’s your fault that their sales numbers are lower than the previous year, not the economy.

Last night my wife and I took our youngest daughter out for dinner and the food, service and everything else that accompanied our evening was just “okay.” As we stared at the receipt, we both commented that the expense we were getting ready to pay for did not equate to its value. Trust me, two years ago we would not have thought twice about the cost, but today, right now when economic times require more scrutinizing on every financial decision, value becomes key. All three of us commented, “We won’t be coming back here again!”

Here’s my thought process or point for this blog, begin thinking about the value you provide to your customers and clients. Do your services outweigh the cost a consumer is spending with you? If you’re a real estate broker, are you helping your team in different ways today than you did last year? If you’re an association, are you reminding your group of the benefits they have by belonging to your organization? I believe that we need to remind ourselves everyday of how important value is in relation to our products and services we provide. As the economy continues to wavier at low points, people will be more conscience about how and where they spend their money, and everything will be measured back to value. If you feel your products, services or benefits do not measure up or exceed the cost, then changes need to be made. Value must always outweigh expenses, especially now.

The ultimate question you will be judged on; “did the customer, client, agent or member receive more value than the expense they incurred?” I believe those who can figure this out, will also figure out the way to survival through these challenging times.

One Million Blogs in One Day?

Okay, it’s early in the morning, I go to my favorite internet news site, and there it is again, the housing market is still in the tank! It seems like everywhere you turn, the media is blasting something or someone, and yet we (consumers) never seem to do our part to help stimulate our economy. Let’s face it, now is a “GREAT” time to buy real estate. Prices are down, interest rates are low, and some seller’s will do almost anything to get you to buy their property, yet, the media is scaring millions of good qualified buyers out of the marketplace. As real estate professionals, what can we do about it? My challenge, one million blogs in one day! That’s right, let’s form a movement to have all real estate agents (specifically members of the National Association of REALTORS®) write a “positive” blog about why now is a “GREAT” time to buy real estate! The date for this project, “One Million Blogs in One Day,” Monday, January 5th, the first official work day of 2009. Let’s begin 2009 by making a statement to the news media and the World Wide Web that now is a great time to buy real estate! Will you help be a part of “One Million Blogs in One Day?” If so, please forward to other agents you know and your local and state associations, so we can begin a viral marketing campaign to accomplish this task of writing “One Million Blogs in One Day,” on why now is a “GREAT” time to buy real estate!

Shame on you Judy!

The following is from a new book I am working on tentatively entitled "Your Daily Business Coach."  I would be interested to know how many people would like a book with daily business devotions like this to help encourage, remind and in many situations motivate the reader.


Recently on a business trip I had a tired, weary eyed businessman sit next to me in the airport as we waited for our airplanes to arrive.  I had sat in a nearby gate area across from my boarding vicinity since there were more chairs available in this section.  As we waited I could not help from overhearing a phone conversation this gentleman was having with his boss next to me on his cell phone.  I heard him call his superior Judy, and proceed to explain how tired and exhausted he was from his traveling.  Immediately the man asked if he could fax some papers to her in the morning and if they could discuss this situation from his office.  He went on to explain to Judy that when she had all of the documentation in front of her and he could explain his side of the story it would make more sense.  Evidently this wasn’t good enough for Judy, as she continued to discipline her worker to no avail.  Surprisingly, this conversation must have continued on for 15 to 20 minutes (or longer).  In fact, my boarding call was announced and as I stood in line to leave the airport I glanced back to see the gentleman still on the phone with a sad defeated look on his face. 

There were two things that made an impression on me about this businessman that day.  First, he never lost his temper with Judy.  He always spoke with respect in responding to her demands and threats, and remained professional during the entire conversation.  Second, he tried several times to explain to Judy that this was not the right time or place for him to discuss this problem, and asked if she could wait until tomorrow.  Finally, he admitted responsibility for the problem, and said he would take whatever consequence was due him.

I never met Judy that day, but I can tell you this, if I was their supervisor, I would take the man in the airport over Judy, as my continued worker despite whatever problem he had created for my company.  Why?  Because he admitted and accepted the blame, and he wanted to keep the client happy by offering the incentives he did.  I also appreciated his calm and professional personality he displayed to Judy during this phone conversation.  I wondered how many other people would have been so calm and collective to a supervisor who talked to them as Judy did that day.

The lesson from today’s writing is two-fold:

  • First, if you are in a management authority position, never reprimand a worker in public, and especially from a cell phone conversation.
  • Second, if you become wrapped up in a confrontational issue with a colleague or boss take the advice from this unknown business traveler and remain calm, patient and professional at all times.

Greg Anderson, former NBA forward/center for the San Antonio Spurs and Atlanta Hawks said, “although our inattention can contribute to our lack of total well-being, we also have the power to choose positive behaviors and responses.  In that choice we change our every experience of life!”

REALTOR® Associations and Brokerage Offices Need to Go Green!

“Go Green” seems to be the new buzz words in almost every industry. Green homes, green office environments, green living and more! Yet, many REALTOR® associations and real estate companies are still handing out mounds of information to new and existing real estate agents the old fashion way. There are alternatives and effective ways to provide information to your team and posting your valuable content to the World Wide Web in new and effective formats that your members will read!

I have created a brand new Webinar entitled “Helping Your Team Go Green,” that I would love to offer to you at no cost. Click Here to enroll for this “FREE” and informative Webinar!