Every summer, I take my family to Lake Powell, a huge reservoir in Southeast Utah. We love navigating our boat through the maze of Red Rock Canyons and swimming in the water. Our Powell trips typically go smoothly, but if you’ve ever spent time on the water, you know that things can change in the blink of an eye.
One night, while trying to get back to our mooring area, a storm rolled in out of nowhere. It was windy, rainy and pitch-black. We couldn’t see anything around us, and with the choppy water and unpredictable winds, there was a very real risk of crashing into the canyon walls that surrounded us or even running aground. We had to get back to our mooring area where we could safely weather the storm, but without any way to see where we were, I wasn’t sure how we would make it.
It was then that I remembered that I’d recently installed a GPS unit on the boat, which had created a breadcrumb trail of our journey that day. I could see our location relative to that trail, which meant that I had a map to follow. Even though I couldn’t see anything around me, I knew that if I followed the breadcrumbs on the GPS, we would arrive safely at our destination. And, sure enough, as I kept our boat on course, we arrived safe and sound.
In real estate, we often find ourselves in choppy, uncertain waters. The market, or myriad other forces beyond our control, can produce a feeling of chaos that makes productivity impossible. But this story illustrates what I firmly believe: If you have three essential things, your business can make it through any storm. Those things are:
- A clear goal. Having a crystal-clear idea of where you want to be provides a fixed point of focus as chaos builds around you.
- An accurate map. Having an actionable plan to follow gives you specific tasks to execute in pursuit of your goals, keeping you from getting distracted by uncertainties or unpredictable forces.
- A measuring stick. Having the ability to track your progress is the only way to know whether you’ve “arrived” at your goal or whether you need to make course corrections.
If you feel like you have no ability to direct your business through the storms and wiles of the market, I recommend taking a step back and figuring out if you truly have clear goals, accurate maps and defined metrics, or whether you’re sailing by sight alone. Only then will you be able to create the calm your business needs to truly flourish.
Verl Workman is the founder and CEO of Workman Success Systems, a real estate consulting company that specializes in performance coaching and building highly effective teams. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information and free downloadable resources.