My colleague Brian Copeland (REALTOR with Village Real Estate Services in Nashville and Techno-crazy, Rabid Convention goer) was featured in this month’s edition of REALTOR Magazine. The name of the article is “Tech it up . . . Nine strategies for doing more with the technology and Web sites you already use.”
You might expect that article to to be packed with techno-speak and only useful for the tech-heads in the audience.
Brian’s portion begins with “Less is more!” . . . and he says: “It’s my opinion that you should use very little technology, but use it very well,”
Hmmm . . . novel concept, eh?
REALTORS (and likely many professionals) are easy pickings for sales people peddling the newest, fastest, shiniest, most technologically advanced gadgets . . . all the sales person has to do is convince the REALTOR that THIS gadget will CHANGE YOUR LIFE . . . with ease of operation and all the bells and whistles . . . and you’ll pay for it if it results in “Just a single additional sale each year”.
Yet, how many REALTORS buy the stuff and never get around to using it to its potential?
or . . . How many folks buy it (iphone, ipad) and actually DECREASE productivity because it becomes an obsession – a play-toy – a distraction from doing what needs to be done (what matters)?
When I coach agents, I always lead with some questions about their database . . .
Do you have one (database)?
What CRM program do you use?
Are you optimizing that program?
Is it making you more (or less) productive?
More often than not, that agent does have (has purchased) a high power CRM program (Top Producer, Wise Agent etc), and confesses quickly that they do not use it effectively . . . that it’s a distraction.
Most of us REALTORS aren’t “wired” to do this kind of stuff. We don’t have the patience to learn it . . . We literally suck at following directions . . . and can’t possibly see the benefit of “updating the database” because of the opportunity cost associated with sitting at a computer for hours VS talking and being with people.
I always say that the best CRM for you to buy is the one that you will actually USE . . . Even if it’s a rolodex on your desk or a legal pad.
Brian speaks great wisdom . . . Less IS more!
I say . . . don’t buy that new and complicated stuff unless:
– Your current tools are not earning their keep by easing your life tension and making you more efficient
– You have a level of commitment to spend the time and energy necessary to optimize the usefulness of the tool once you’ve bought it . . . This might require hiring a coach or watching tutorials
– Be certain that what you buy is “scalable” . . . that it can be a long term solution for you . . . Changing Technology tools mid-stream is nightmarish to say the least.
– Don’t buy more clutter – Get the thing that meets more of your needs instead of piecing together a patchwork of stuff . . . even if the single thing costs more.
– Make certain that the CRM you buy can interact with your other technology tools. On-line access to your database is critical for mobility . . . and up-dating your database doesn’t require any long sit–downs in front of a computer if your portable tools synch to your database . . . You just up-date them “on the fly”
Brian is quickly becoming known as the most tech savvy agent in the country . . . He also happens to sell a LOT of houses here in Nashville even as he travels around the country to every convention imaginable . . . and he only carries 3 things “iPhone, MacBook Pro, and MiFi compact wireless router”
The difference between Brian and the rest of us?
He has carefully selected 3 tools that play very well with each other, and he has very intentionally developed a strong, personal relationship with ONLY these 3 devices . . . He is doing MORE with less.
PS . . . the tools know Brian is loyal and they love him back by providing him the freedom to move about the market (and country) untethered from a physical office.
BTW . . . I, too, use only 3 tools (Although I’m FAR less famous than Brian 🙂 . . . A Motorola phone with full keyboard (not a touch) . . . a $300 Netbook . . . and a $35/mth broadband wireless modem.
Pareto Realty (I have to brag on my new firm) is offering full-tilt virtual office to all members INCLUDING CRM . . . all internet based and compatible with the tools of the day . . .
Our reason for spending this money on our associates?
We want the associates to be more productive and mobile . . . and we want them to come to the office (the well) for camaraderie, training, rejuvenation . . . not just to push paper.
Less is more!
I’m just sayin’