Today I had lunch at the incredible but always very crowded Whole Foods world headquarters here in Austin, and walking through the store I ran into a friend of mine in the mortgage business. (Remember when you were a kid and the prettiest girl or hottest guy in the school could make you stutter? Well, imagine that the person is really really nice and you bump into each other in the lunch room and he/she wants to talk and you sweat it out as you stutter your way thorough a conversation. A grown-up version of that is basically what just happened to me so it's a wonder I remember what was said at all!)
But I do remember what was said. I asked, "How's your business?", thinking if I stayed professional I'd hopefully not sound like an idiot! The answer he gave me was (paraphrased) "Not so good.". That response I thought was honest and amazing and a little endearing because it was not expected. Let's be honest, in real estate we have perfected the art of putting up a front. I know tons of Realtors who's business is in the toilet but if you were to ask them the same question, you'd get a "great!" or "fantastic!" for fear of...well, fear of a lot of things actually but they all come back to having a fear of what others think of you.
I'm a salesperson who also happens to be a motivational speaker/trainer and when it comes to controlling your thoughts - projecting and surrounding yourself with positive energy - fake it 'til you make it, trust me I get all of that. This was in fact a very positive conversation and also a very human one. Not everyone will blow the doors off in production all the time. And when things aren't going your way it's okay to signal you could use some help, in fact I walked out of there pondering ways I could help the guy.
It comes down to how you look at it. A slump in business is not in and of itself negative but maybe just an opportunity to learn a lesson, get better at a basic skill, reach out for help and strengthen a relationship - that all sounds like positive stuff to me. I'm not certain I didn't sound like an idiot just a little while ago, but what I know for sure is that if you look around your office, not everyone is doing as well as they'd like you to think so don't be fooled. What if we all were to drop the facade and just answer honestly? I for one appreciated the message today.
PS. Thankfully, business is actually good for me. But this year I'd like to continue training through the holiday season (usually I'm done by Thanksgiving), mainly because I've tacked on some extra goals for myself mid-stream, and so I'll have to stretch myself. With that in mind, who do you know who owns or manages a real estate company that would benefit from having a Floyd Wickman program in their life? Would you help me by making an introduction?