Statistics show that nearly 87 percent of new real estate agents quit within their first year. What a number! Why do so many agents fail or quit so quickly? My aim in writing this book is to help you answer that question and help you not become just another statistic. Well, I do want you to become a statistic, but just the kind that wins—that precious 13 percent of new agents.

First rule? It’s all about your mindset. Since most of us had other jobs before becoming licensed agents, we may carry preconceived beliefs into the profession based on our earlier experiences. While it makes sense to assume what we learned at previous jobs would be applicable to this new field, that’s not always the case.

Agents need to be many things all at once. At times you will wear the hats of legal counsel, therapist, financial advisor, friend, organizer, market expert, and salesperson. Odds are the hats you are most comfortable wearing are the same hats you wore in previous occupations. We tend to build upon our past success, using those previous experiences as building blocks to help us achieve new heights.

However, our previous experiences can also hold us back. Self-limiting beliefs, unreasonable expectations, or a reluctance to accept and adapt to our new environment can hurt our chances for success. Having worked with dozens of new agents on my own team, coached dozens more, and trained hundreds, I believe the No. 1 reason most do not find real estate as exciting or lucrative as they hoped is because they try to apply their past experiences to their new environment. I believe this is a problem throughout our society.

Consider our public school system. Children are told when to arrive for class, where to sit, what to study, and when they will be tested. Their daily schedule is orchestrated by a bell that rings at predetermined times. Their performance is graded on a five-point system, and they are allowed to progress through the school system as long as they meet the minimum standards. They are evaluated based on tests that primarily measure their ability to recall information based on memorization. Unfortunately, students are not taught how to learn, and do not develop the skills required to navigate life outside of school. As a result, students are not prepared to succeed in today’s workforce.

The public school system and the model it follows are not evil. They were created during the Industrial Revolution, when factories needed employees who could stand on an assembly line or operate a piece of machinery for significant periods of time without losing focus. Today’s workplace requires a different set of skills, which the students’ education has not provided. Problems arise when those students are then dropped into a work environment for which they have not been properly prepared. Those who take longer to adapt to this new environment may find themselves out of a job. Those who do adapt may find the process difficult and confusing.

As an agent who is entering the world of real estate sales, you are being dropped into an environment that is completely different from anything else you’ve ever experienced. If you aren’t prepared for what to expect and don’t adapt quickly, you will find yourself frustrated, discouraged, and ultimately hopeless. The faster you can adapt, the faster you can start generating revenue.

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