Important Vs. Urgent

Matt Hudson, CEO Business Development

Human beings have an attention span of approximately 8 seconds or less than that of the notoriously ill-focused goldfish (9 seconds).  

As a result, what we define as urgent (most of the time) is an excuse to allow our guppy-like capacity to be in charge and take us away from the most important thing we could be doing that could affect positive long term change in any chosen aspect of life.

What’s worse, we look for these distractions because we’ve learned they are “easy”:

  • Something to respond to.
  • A fire to fight.
  • A client to save.
  • A problem to solve.

In the process of honoring that “urgent” distraction, we neglect what is truly important and rarely make real progress toward our goals and dreams.

As you think about your business: the consistency you want, the goals you have, it is critical that “the important” does not get lost inside what feels urgent.

There are only a handful of critical measurements that will indicate whether you are on the right path and at the right speed toward your goals. 

The good news is, those measures can all be controlled or affected by us.

Measures to Delivering a World Class Experience and Growing Your Business

Client Satisfaction:

The truth is: many people would rather not know what their clients really think of the experience they delivered in a real estate transaction.  

However, if you are serious about your business and the experience you facilitate for people, it’s time for you to have some measurement tool that indicates if you are doing the right things, at the right times and in the right ways for your clients. 

Feedback … true, honest feedback, allows us to grow, to learn, to do more of what we do really well and to eliminate those areas that don’t serve us well. 

Remind yourself that the best long term business development plan in real estate is phenomenal execution for your clients.  Go above and beyond every time for your clients. They will be thrilled to help you grow your business.

The current number of “active,” “prospective” and “under contract” buyers and sellers should equal one half of your annual desired income. 

There is a subtle, but extremely important aspect of calculating the value of a real estate pipeline relative to your financial goal and that is to make sure you apply a probability factor to each client in your pipeline.  

For example, if you have $3mm worth of clients in your pipeline at a 3% commission each, that pipeline represents $90,000 in income for you.  But, if there is only a 10% chance of you working with each of those clients, your actual income forecast should only be 10% of the $90,000, or $9,000.  

This is a BIG difference and a reason why people so badly miss their targeted income each year.  

Apply your probabilities and build your pipeline up to one half your annual income and you will begin to feel like you are running a business, not just selling real estate.  

How do you build a pipeline like that?

Stay in touch with your prospective clients at a minimum, weekly. 

Have you ever lost a client because you were not diligent about following up? Did you forget to deliver something promised? They said they were 6 months out from selling or buying and you follow up 6 months later and they are under contract or moved into a new home?  

So much of what is taught in “Sales Training” in our industry is to always be prospecting, but no one ever talks about a critical aspect of consistently and deliberately staying in touch with your prospect pipeline.

You do three things when you stay in touch with your pipeline:

  1. You deliver a better experience to your prospective clients through your consistency and diligence and create a much greater likelihood of receiving referrals from a client before the transaction closes due to the experience you provided.
  2. You increase your income because you don’t lose client opportunities.
  3. You reduce the amount of time you need to spend prospecting for new clients because your business begins to truly grow by referral.

Know your plan of action.  

Less than 5% of real estate agents nationwide have a business plan.

Let’s get clear about something: having a financial and transaction goal is not a business plan.  

A business plan must include an action plan and a method of review.   

If you feel anxious each October or November, or are lost as of the beginning of January each year because you don’t know how to recreate what you did the year before or don’t know how to improve on the previous year, develop an action plan.  This plan should allow you to state clearly if I engage in these activities, I will create “X” number of opportunities that will yield “Y” amount of income.   


Review and honor accountability. Every month you must assess whether or not you:

  • Delivered on your promises to your clients and prospective clients and delivered a world-class experience at every turn.
  • Engaged in proactive prospecting activities and achieved the desired results.
  • Moved clients through the engagement process.  Prospective clients became active clients, active clients to under contract and under contract clients sold or moved into their new home. The financial numbers this represents should be approximately 1/12th your annual income with some seasonal adjustment.

Develop the discipline to not get distracted by what seems urgent in the moment and remember that your working memory of what is important and how to achieve it will make all the difference to your clients’ experience and ultimately your business success.

If this makes sense to you, but you do not quite know where to start, email me and I’ll send you our detailed process.