When we listen to professional athletes they often talk about "the zone." The zone is the place where they can't miss the basket or all the putts just fall. I was reminded of this performance zone watching David Duvall shoot a 59 in the last round to win the Bob Hope tournament. He truly was in the zone. His longest putt that day was about 10 feet. His mind and body were working together in a masterful performance.
Since there is a zone in basketball and golf, why not in real estate? What are the steps to enable us to enter the zone? We have all been in it at one time or another, such as the day you have a few appointments booked and they all sign the contract smoothly at your price and terms with little effort or the day you are prospecting and every call seems to end in a AAA lead or an appointment. We have all had days like this. The question is how do we get more of them?
The first step is to develop a pre-activity routine. If you watch professional golfers hit a shot or make a putt, they will do the same things in sequence through the completion of their shot or putt. If something breaks their concentration during the pre-shot routine, they start all over again. Basketball players at the free throw line do the same thing. They bounce the ball so many times or flex their knees the same way every time they shoot a free throw.
If you developed a pre-activity routine before you went on a listing appointment our results would increase. You could create a checklist to make sure you are following it. Here is an example of pre-activity routine for a listing appointment.
- Review the CMA for 30 minutes before you leave office.
- Determine the price you want the listing at (exact price).
- Practice the objections you expect to come up from the responses they gave to you after you qualified and confirmed the appointment earlier today.
- Give your presentation before you leave the office.
- Select music to listen to in the car that relaxes and focuses you on your task or review the presentation again.
- Take control before you knock on the door.
If you develop a solid pre-activity routine you will find you will enter "the zone" more frequently and with more intensity. You could develop a pre-activity routine before prospecting, lead follow up, negotiating of contracts, etc.
To enter the zone you must be relaxed. We are all at peak-performance in our relaxed state. Often people think that if we are under pressure, we perform best. Many studies have shown that not to be the case. When you are relaxed, you body works in unison with your mind. You will be able to evaluate situations more clearly and make better decisions. Haven't we all left late for an appointment, had the death grip on the wheel the whole way, and then not performed well on the appointment. We need to relax to get in "the zone". You might try counting backwards from 100 or taking a few deep breaths to slow down your breathing. Find what works for you and use it.
Develop the skill to be an effective self-coach. That does not mean you should be the Lone Ranger. We all need mentors, coaches and supporters. To be an effective self-coach you must believe in yourself that no matter how the appointment, negotiation or prospecting session goes or regardless of what happens, you accept that you did your best at that moment and move on. You are moving on to do the best you can next time. You are the only one in charge of how you feel at the end of the day.
To be a true champion you have to be willing to take the risks and be able to recover from the setbacks. True champions are not always right. True champions accept that they will make bad presentations and bad decisions, learn from them and say next!
Michael Jordan was one of the best self-coaches ever. In 1993 when he walked away from basketball with a world championship and the MVP to play baseball the world was stunned. All the reporters wanted to know what would happen if he failed at baseball. Michael was always on his own side self-coaching his belief that he could make it. When he didn't, it did not crush him. He went back to the NBA and won a few more championships. Develop a strong self-coach and self-belief inside. Expect to get in "the zone." Expect to succeed daily.
If we could condition ourselves to operate at peak performance, our entry into "the zone" would be more frequent. You cannot force your way into "the zone." But you can put yourself at the threshold with regularity. If we are at the threshold, some days the door will be open. If we are still playing in the street, it is a long step to get in the door.