What’s the difference between top performers and the rest of the pack?

You might think that they have something special-some unique talent or instinct that separates them from everyone else. Plus, maybe, an inordinate amount of luck.

Perhaps those variables can be used to explain away the difference between high achievers and the average professional.  But what you’re likely to hear from high achievers themselves is that it’s adherence to the little things which, over time, translates to consistent success. High-performing agents tend to stick to certain habits and practices-day in and day out. They follow certain principles and are not likely to compromise on standards they deem important to their success.

In this post, we’ll take a look at eight of these principles and standards.

  1. Focus on short-term action: Of course, you’re going to set long-term goals for your business, such as how many transactions you want to achieve for the coming year. What we’re talking about here is the nitty gritty of each day-how you focus the minutes of your day. Most people block off large blocks of time for tasks…half hour, hour, etc. High achievers tend to focus on minutes: what can I accomplish in the next 15 minutes. They learn that it’s easier to focus their undivided energy and attention on shorter blocks of time, instead of trying to fill large blocks of time.
  2. Stay clear of multi-tasking: Focus on what specific tasks are most critical to achieving your goals. Many people in our hyper-wired-age claim multi-tasking as a badge of honor. You’ve heard this before, but it bears repeating: your brain is not wired for multi-tasking. So, pick one thing and one thing only-and do it right the first time.
  3. Manage your email review process: There is, perhaps, no greater time and productivity-suck than habitual and reflexive email review and response. Block off short periods of time throughout your day to check and, if urgent, respond to an email. We’ve become programmed to repeatedly check our emails, because the more emails we get, the more in-demand we think we are. If someone has something urgent to tell you, they will call or text, so email can wait.
  4. Minimize (or eliminate) meetings: Top real estate performers know that there are only a handful of reasons to schedule a meeting, two of the biggest being: to sign a listing contract or attend a closing. Of course, if you manage a team, you’ll need to have daily meet-ups to check everyone’s status. But even those meetings can be short and to-the-point. Beyond that, do you best to stay clear of “non-revenue-producing” meetings.
  5. Just say NO: Most of us want to be accommodating, helpful and available for friends, family, co-workers, etc. But the highest achievers learn how to say no to demands for their time. While there are exceptions and emergencies, the ability to set boundaries by saying no helps to ensure that you will have more, focused productivity time during your day.
  6. Own the mornings: We’ve written extensively on this topic over the years, but will reiterate it once more: the most successful real estate professionals typically see the morning as the gateway to a day of maximum productivity. Whether it’s a morning workout or meditation session or repeating affirmations or role playing, starting your day early with a positive routine is a great way to create positive energy to get you through the day.
  7. Learn how to delegate: How often do you say: “How can I get this done?” What if you reframed the question as “How will this get done?” We can be overwhelmed by tasks that drain our energy and productivity. If you’re starting to build a team, start delegating tasks to help free up your time for what you do best: generating revenue.
  8. Make time for family: We’re using “family” in the broadest sense because everyone defines family differently. But the point is simple: high achievers make time for those closest to them. Something as basic as ensuring that you are home for dinner at the same time is a great way to disengage from the stresses of the workplace, and renew your spirit.

You may have other suggestions to add to this list, which is great. Whatever your personal strategy, the key to success in real estate, or any endeavor, is to have a consistent approach to living that provides both focus and better balance in your life.