Whether you have too much on your plate and want to lighten your load, or you want to scale your business without going crazy the principles behind doing both are surprisingly similar. While still in the process of growing my Real Estate Photography business these are the principles I follow to ensure that I stay sane and AVOID burnout.
Before you start on any path, it is best to know which way you want to go, because although the journey of 1000 miles began with a single step, if that step was taken in the wrong direction it would leave you in a place 2000 miles from where you wanted to be!
Do yourself a favour and take some time to just be by yourself and do some thinking about the future and how you would like it to look. To get you started here are a few things to think about:
- Where do you want to be in 1 year, 5 years even 25 years? Dig deep and truly allow yourself to dream big.
- What do you want to accomplish? What income level would you like? How many homes do you want to sell each year? Do you want to run a team?
- How do you want to do it? This is where thinking about a process to follow comes in. What would that look like?
- Who will help you get there? Will you need an assistant? Will you need a professional photographer? How about another agent on your team?
In my time working as a barrista at Starbucks I learned a very key lesson in how to operate a large scale operation with consistent quality and that was the value of systems
Not only do systems help to keep you accountable and make sure you don’t miss a step, Systems allow you to get new hires up to speed and operating within your system with the littlest barrier to entry. This means that if you have a great system you can train up somebody with 0 experience and have them operating a highly specialized part of your business to a high level. So how do you systematize your business? Here are 3 simple steps.
- Map out your workflow from start to finish. From the time you start advertising or lead generating to what you do after you sell a home or help somebody buy a home. Mapping out every step will allow you to see the big picture of what you are currently doing and allows you to add or take away steps as necessary.
- Create detailed instructions for your new hire. This can be in the form of a word document with pictures added in, or it can be in the form of a screen recording on your computer. The key to a scalable system is that you record the training once so that you can just let the trainee watch the videos and learn on their own freeing you up to focus on your priorities.
- Continue to improve the training. If something within the operations is not working, or maybe a step was missed or overlooked when you were writing the training go back and change it so that it works better and minimizes the questions you need to answer from your new hire.
As Gary Keller explains in his book “The One Thing” the surprisingly simple truth to extraordinary results is that success comes when we narrow our focus and learn to order things according to their priority. While this doesn’t come naturally to most, it is a learned skill that can be developed over time.
The key is trying to pick One Thing that will allow you to make the most impact with your time so that you can achieve what you want to achieve with as little bit of resistance as possible.
Then you delegate the rest
As a recovered do-it-aller I know how hard it is to give up a little bit of control of your business to somebody else. I believe that this feeling and resistance naturally comes from our fear that something will have to be re-done and that we will have to do it all over again. While that may be the case some of the time, if you create the right system around what you are delegating, and continue to work to improve it you may find that somebody else may be more qualified and effective at it than you are.
When delegating, it is extremely important that you find somebody that you can trust to run with the task you have given to them. This trust will help to relieve this fear that something will go wrong and you will spend more time correcting it.
I know from experience you can often find somebody better than you at doing what you require.
When I was just starting out, I did all my photo editing, and it made for some pretty long exhausting days and evenings jam packed with work hours. So I started my search for a photo editor.
The first person I hired was what I would say is a 7/10 on the quality of editing but what they allowed me to do was spend more time with my family so I was happy to pay them for their work. Eventually as time went on they started to get lazy with their editing and it dropped to a 5/10 so in wanting to give my clients what they deserve – Truly Amazing Media – I decided to start looking for their replacement.
It didn’t take long for me to find a specialized real estate photo editor that could do what I wanted, and they even did a few things that even I could not do, which amazed me. This person is still on our team as our full time photo editor and I cannot imagine where we would be without them.
So if you are thinking that somebody may not be able to do something as well as you, you may be right… but it is your job to find the person that can!
When my photo editor dropped their editing quality, that is when I realized I had to make a change. While the change involved some upfront time on my end, it freed up so much time for me on the backend because I was no longer worrying about if deadlines would be made or if the quality was going to be to my standards.
If something in your system is not working or you don’t like the direction you are heading feel free to change it. After all this is your business.
Let us take a load off your plate
High quality media is likely one of the most crucial parts to any real estate business. If you see yourself being a top producer in your market, it is time you started to work like one. One thing I have noticed about top producers is that almost all of them delegate the photography and videography to trained professionals that they can trust so that they can FOCUS on their priorities.
At Gravidia we make it super easy for you to integrate us into your system by giving you the ability to check our website for available times while you are sitting with your clients so it appears to them that we are part of your team, and so that you know when you can promise to have the home listed.
Our consistent system will have your photos to you by 10am the day after the shoot and the video the 2 business days after allowing you to list extremely quick.
To learn more about how easy it is to work with us click the button belowWorking with Gravidia