Agents who beat the odds and crushed it in their first two years
Interview 3: Anna Peters0n, Frederick, MD, Keller Williams, 042216
NAR statistics for first-year REALTOR® success are abysmal. According to the National Association of Realtors, the likelihood of a newly licensed Realtor still being in the business one or two years later is around 10%. Simple math tells us that one out of every ten newly licensed agents will actually make it.
This interview series is about the 1% who crushed it their first couple years.
I reached out to my coaching network around the country asking for names of agents who nailed it in their first year or two, agents who were either Rookie of the Year candidates and finalists. This is the third interview blog post in that series.
In her previous career, Anna was a clinical social worker. She left that career at the top of the food chain and started fresh in real estate. She rocked real estate in her first year.
Q. Tell me about your first couple of years in real estate and how you made that work.
A. I started January 1, 2015. It took me about three months to wrap up my previous career and then went full time starting April 2015. They told me I couldn’t cap the first year, so that was the first thing I did. I enjoyed the challenge of it. Mainly, I just kept going and going and going and I just never stopped. The average agent in my area does seven transactions … I tripled that my first year.
The number one key to my success was I just kept doing the next right thing and I focused on the things I needed to do … lead gen, set appointments, hang out with people who had the businesses that I wanted to have and be willing to do what they did to get there … and it worked. I was totally committed 100%.
Q. Why did you get in to real estate?
A. One day I came home from work, and I was talking to my husband about, I don’t know, the house down the street for sale and they had the price wrong and they would never get that blah blah blah. He looked at me and said, “You know, you probably would be pretty good at selling real estate.” And I was like “What? You’re crazy. I was born to be a counselor. I’ve been doing this for years.” I mean I was an award winning counselor. I’m not saying that to brag or to gloat but just like, I like it. It was a good fit for me.
He said that and he planted a seed. I fell on it. The next day, I got up and I said “You know what honey, I think you might be right. I’m going to look into it.” That was October 2014. I finished my class, passed my exam and affiliated with Kelly Williams on New Year’s eve of that year. And so 2015 was my first year. I’ve never looked back and I loved it.
I still help people. I just do it in a different way now.
Q. What works for you and why do you think you succeeded at such a high level when so many agents kind of fall short?
A. Well, mindset is a part of it but I don’t know which one needs to come first, mindset or behavior. I know people think they always seem to straighten up their thinking and then they can behave right but actually, I think if you just take the behavior, the thinking will follow. The mindset changes to do what you are supposed to do.
One thing that helps me is the ability to discern. I can discern what advice is probably good advice to follow and what advice is probably advice to think about a little more before I act on it. So when I started, there were 50 different people telling me what to do and all giving me different and conflicting advice. I had to be able to discern what was going to help me get where I am trying to go. In my opinion, discernment plays a huge part in success.
Q. And the main source of your business?
A. Well, first thing I do every morning is call expireds and withdrawns and then I call my database. I’m at the office by 7 or 8 every day and I get to work.
Q. What is one thing you think you did really well your first year?
A. I go to work every day and I follow the model. It definitely works for me. And I participated in all the available coaching. First with the PC program and then MAPS. My coaches helped me focus on the basics and stay strong and just keep going.
I also followed one of the top agents in my office and I would go do the same thing he was doing and it would work. I just started copying the actions he was taking, say what he was saying. I would hear him on the phone with his clients. I would hear when he would smile. I would hear the questions he asked and when he would slow down the conversation. I picked up how he would move the conversation toward an appointment.
I just kept doing it and doing it. I wasn’t afraid. And I got really good results.
Q. What is your main focus this year in your business?
A. I’m one of the people that believes that if you don’t have crazy ridiculous goals, then your goals aren’t big enough. My goal for this year, my net goal is $691,000 … that’s 92 transactions.
And I need a really strong talented EA. I’m interviewing now. I have about six people on the bench. I’m going to get ten on the bench and then pick the best one and use her to rock my business forward.
Q. What is your advice for new agents just getting started?
A. Don’t stop. Number one, don’t stop ever. Keep going and going and going and going and count every single no and every single failure as a step towards success because there’s lots of no’s to get that one yes and you got to keep going and focus on the positive. That is number one. Never ever ever ever ever ever stop.
Number two, remember what your job is. The real estate agent has five things that we do that earn us money and that’s it. Stop focusing on the other stuff because it doesn’t earn money. Those five things are number one, script and role play. Number two, set appointments. Number three, lead gen. Number four, lead follow-up. Number five, negotiate contracts. And if agents just focus on that, they are going to be successful.
Q. One of my theories of first year agent success, a pattern with the most successful, is that they lead with solid confidence … you must have the confidence to follow through and I believe that’s exactly what you’re doing. Your confidence is a breath of fresh air.
A. Thank you. You’re a sweetheart. That’s right. That is what I do.