Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Mike Andrews Real Estate Technology Tips

I was at a breakfast seesion this morning where Mike Andrews was presenting. His presentation was one of the best I have seen in regards to how we should be tackling the on-line stratgies within our businesses.

However I was suprised that more agents did not attend this session and how many were unaware or unaccepting of social networks such as Facebook, Twitter, Linked In etc.

I look forward to Mike becoming part of a conference line up so he can share his wealth of knowledge and tips on this emerging space.

The Global Financial Crisis & Real Estate

Just about everything is now being blamed on the GFC! (And no for those of you who are Victorians, it isn't the Geelong Football Club - however I wonder if they could blame the GFC for their grand final loss to Hawthorn)

Every time I ask a real estate agent the question "how is the market" the response I consistently get is....It's tough out there! No one is buying or selling!; I hope it doesn't get worse because it is pretty tough at the moment!.

Potentially this is exactly the response they are giving to clients and investors.

Why would I choose to list my property with an agent who is unclear, unsure and perhaps even depressed. I am more likely to go to someone who can give me clear confident responses on exactly what the market is doing, why I should sell or buy now and what they bring to the table that others don't.

Misery loves company people! Principals/Business owners start working with your sales and property management teams to improve their scripts.

Yes the market has changed however what are you doing to imporve your skill sets to work this market. The market is what it is!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Learning from "young heads"

When the real estate industry, both in Australia and New Zealand, started to feel the shift in the market most agents didn't really understand what was about to happen.

A large number had never worked in a challenging market; they were coming off several years of great real estate where anyone could list and sell.

The industry started to turn to the "old heads" asking for direction, looking at ways to maintain sales, growth, income and reduce their stress levels. At the time this was the right place to "look" for direction... they had been there before and survived.

However almost 2 years down the track in NZ and about 12 months in Aust should we not be looking at "young heads" in the industry who have managed to keep their business afloat?

They understand that they need to know their numbers, manage their teams to these numbers, create great cultures and working environments, develop careers, constantly recruit, meet with their accountants, understand a balance sheet and P&L, not drive fancy cars or overspend, watch the overdraft, know every month what it will take to simply keep the doors open and constantly look at new strategies. At the same time invest in training and marketing.

I have a friend "across the ditch" (as they say) he is a young 35 year old, who opened two offices 2 years ago. He has a team of about 30 and he gets the above.

Now I am not able to predict whether his business will survive the current market but what I do know is that he would have given it his best shot.

He is currently at a conference bored....I wonder why is that we don't put a couple of young agents who have been in business in the last 2 years on a panel and simply ask them:

How have you managed to survive?
What have you learnt?
What are you doing that is different?
How do you see yourself surviving this market for the next 12 months?
What are you investing in and why?
How are you creating engaging work environments?
What are doing to recruit talent?
How do they think this downturn will change the industry?

We might be surprised at what we learn from them.