Author Archive

Is Developing Grit The Key to Success for Your Business and Children?

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Success and fulfillment are common goals all parents have for their children, and also what all entrepreneurs have as goals for their businesses.  This summer my family relocated to Texas, with that move came the excitement of a new adventure, as well as the apprehension that comes along with change, including a new school for our children. It is certainly true that the type and quality of education for school aged children is different from state to state, city to city, and within different school districts.  We were very comfortable with the school environment we had been a part of in Florida, and wanted to replicate this experience in Texas.  Regardless of the school, there is always one child who is deemed to overachieve, and one who is categorized as not meeting their potential. I ask myself, what is one common factor that has such an important influence on an individual reaching full potential, or a business succeeding?

As the school year started, we became more excited about this fresh start for many reasons, but we were thrilled when we found out our new school is introducing a way to teach kids about grit.  Grit is a characteristic I have always firmly believed in to overcome the inevitable life challenges we all face, and thanks to the work of Psychologist Angela Duckworth, how to develop grit in children and apply it to your business is being made available to everyone.  In her famous TED talk and now best-selling book, Angela defined grit as “perseverance and passion for long-term goals,” and documented grit is a better indicator of future earnings and happiness than IQ or talent.

I am pleased my children’s school is using this research, not as another school assessment, but rather as a vehicle to build grit in the students.  The students are taught a simple way to remember the importance of building grit by using the acronym Growth, Resilience, Integrity and Tenacity.  After all, people and businesses generally won’t succeed if they don’t learn how to work hard, remain committed to their goals, persevere through struggles, and do not take short cuts.  It is these values we, as parents try to instill in our children, and it is powerful to see it supported in our new school environment.

Throughout my career, I have built several successful multi-million dollar businesses, having also conducted thousands of coaching calls with successful sales people and business owners; I know first-hand these same principals of having grit do hold true in the business world.  If it is important to instill these characteristics in your children, isn’t it equally as important to instill them in your business? The question an entrepreneur has to seek the answer to is this; how do they push themselves, making certain they have the optimism to reach their goals, knowing they will face rejection, feel uncomfortable, and receive no indication they are going to meet their desired outcome for months, years, or in some cases decades?  How do you, as an adult, become grittier to reach your goals?

The answer is complex, but there are some simple steps to get started. The three key factors I have found people should immediately focus on to build grit are:

  • Have a growth mindset – Learning is not finite and your commitment to research and learning about your profession should be a daily exercise. The goals of growth for a business should be large and a belief you can improve is a must to stay on course for the long run ahead.
  • Develop a routine of daily success – In order to end right, you have to start right, and that includes what you do when you start your day. Habits determine our behaviors and you want to develop good habits, not bad ones. Developing the commitment to daily exercise will give you a great feeling of improvement and control over your future.
  • Visualize success – If you train your brain to see success each day, you will begin to see the path to success in the real world – The old adage “I’ll believe it when I see it” is fine for the naysayers, not for the people who reach the pinnacle of success and fulfillment. Prosperous, thriving people stay motivated each day by visualizing their end outcome, knowing that setbacks are not a permanent state.

To learn more about Angela Duckworth’s work check out her TED talk

To find out where you currently rank you can take the grit assessment test

Best wishes on your success and enjoy the TED talk and grit assessment.  I would love to hear your story of success!

Peter

 

CAN YOU DEFINE FREEDOM?

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Freedom is a symbol of the American dream. The hope of freedom has attracted millions of people from across the world to come to America.  The idea that freedom has always been promised to people in the United States may be comforting, but certainly not factual. There is a checkered history of freedom in America being interpreted to be meaningful to an inclusive group while excluding others. As I travel and meet with people across the U.S., I am more interested in how they define freedom for their lives, as opposed to having a debate on the historical timeline of freedom in this country. After all, shouldn’t we know what freedom looks like and means to ourselves as individuals?

A common question I ask people I meet is “Can you give me a definition of freedom?” The reaction to this question usually brings the look of bewilderment and a quiet awkward silence.  When I give an approving nod and a look of assurance to those that I posed the question to, I often times get a response that typically falls into one of two categories.  Either 1) to have enough money to never work again, or, 2) to do whatever I want.

Both of those answers sadden me a little bit, as I believe we have a built in need to contribute. Most successful people who gain true fulfillment do so by the contributions they make in their career or business, that then afford them the opportunity to give back to their community and family.  The other reason, often stated as doing “whatever I want” is the leftover rebellion of teenage years and the desire to not have anyone tell them what to do.  With either response, the individual may be missing the fundamental truth that is associated with the pursuit of happiness.

At the 2016 United® Convention in New Orleans, we first introduced the Webster dictionary of freedom: The absence of necessity, coercion, or constraint in choice or action. However, as with most things in life, obtaining freedom is more complex than that simple definition in the dictionary.

Find Your Freedom® is United Real Estate trademarked recruiting slogan for real estate agents to work in a modern, relevant brokerage that allows an agent to grow their business, their income, their satisfaction in work and in life. What our slogan expresses is the reality that having freedom is not the ability to do whatever you want to do, but rather freedom is the ability to do what you are supposed to do! And in real estate that means investing in yourself to improve your business knowledge, while having the resources and training available to generate clients to meet your business goals. This is the dream of living life absent of necessity. To reach this level, it is critical to know what steps to take, and how to take them. In addition, this journey requires help and support.

At the 2017 United Convention March 2-4 in Austin, Texas, we are going to give you the knowledge to do what you are supposed to do to have the best year in your business and happiness in your life. Our special guest is one of the most dynamic speakers you will ever see. Mel Robbins energized the United audience last year, and she will spend more time with us this year to assist and push all attendees to do what they should be doing to gain success and fulfillment.

To learn more about Mel and her message, you can view a brief video clip here

To find out more about the 2017 convention, go to Unitedpalooza.com.

Peter

Have You Become Afraid of Risk?

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It’s impossible, said pride.  It’s risky, said experience. It’s pointless, said reason.  Give it a try, whispered the Heart. The month of June is traditionally the top month for closed transactions in the real estate industry.  As the school year ends, families are moving into their new homes to fit the lifestyle they are seeking for the next period of their life.  It is also a time where graduates of all ages and school levels are faced with making decisions that will affect their future. In 2016 getting into the school they desire or launch their career will be dramatically affected by the number and the quality of people they are connected to.

As an entrepreneurial agent, how successful you will be in building the business you want will also be determined by the amount of people you are connected with.  How many potential customers are you connecting with that think of you first when they think about real estate?  Unlike a typical individual who is managing a budget, as an entrepreneur you are managing a profit and loss statement.  As an entrepreneur, you must perform daily and your scorecard for year end is whether or not you made more money. Unlike an employee annual performance review, the result is always crystal clear.  You connected with more potential customers and you either made more money or you did not.

Unfortunately, too many people either seek a short cut to achieve their biggest goals and choose a path that takes the least amount of effort, while others never take a risk or fully commit to their business venture. Entrepreneurs make progress a priority. They strive to take action to improve their ability to attract new customers every day. Successful agents know if they don’t act on their idea to reach out to a new FSBO, an expired listing, immediately and continuously follow up on buyer leads, and meet someone new and friend them on Facebook, another agent will and they will lose the customer.  Often sales people will not reach out of their comfort zone because of a fear of failing. The fear of failing becomes too risky and they stay in the status quo. Successful entrepreneurs look at risk with a completely different point of view.

“Entrepreneurs may fear failure, but they are more afraid of what life would be like if they don’t follow through.” – Tony Robbins

The thought of not reaching your goal as an entrepreneur is a more frightening idea to contemplate than failing.  Successful people know they will fail, but they also know they have to make another call, see another potential client. They know each interaction with a potential customer both positive and negative will be a learning experience that will challenge them to improve their skill set to improve their experience for their next potential customers.

When I was 17 years old, I drove across the country with $300 in cash, no cell phone or credit card, to spend two weeks touring the coast of California staying in cheap motels and camping out.  As I retell that story now, I am often told I was crazy and that was too risky.  Granted some youthful risk taking is misguided, however, to be a successful entrepreneur you are going to have to take risks.  If you have the right service or product along with commitment, those risks you take will dramatically change your life for the better.  All you have to do is decide to take that giant action to realize your biggest dreams and get started.

Best wishes for a wonderful summer listening to your heart and taking the risk that will allow it to help build your business!

Peter

United Real Estate Group to be Featured on CBS’ “Undercover Boss,” Friday May 20th

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CEO Dan Duffy experiences front-line look into 90-year-old brand

United Real Estate Group, a fast-growing real estate franchise company that operates multiple brands nationwide and in select countries internationally, will be featured on the popular CBS reality series, “Undercover Boss.” The show will be broadcast at 9:00-10:00 p.m. ET/PT on Friday, May 20. This will be the first time a real estate franchise has been featured on the popular program.

United®, established in 1925, continues to grow dramatically and be recognized as an innovative leader in unique, specialized real estate marketing. United Real Estate Group operates under two distinct brands, with United Real Estate focusing on urban residential markets and United Country Real Estate focusing on lifestyle and country markets. As United celebrates its 90th anniversary, CEO Dan Duffy was a prime candidate for “Undercover Boss” as he examines company performance, execution and culture at the local office level. The series has perfected the ability to uncover what is really going on inside some of America’s most iconic companies.

In the episode, Duffy worked directly with affiliated real estate agents and auctioneers.

“With 6,000 affiliated real estate and auction professionals across the U.S., Central America, Mexico and Australia, it is often a challenge to know how services are being delivered to our clients in market and to know each of the amazing individuals that make this organization so successful,” Duffy said. “The opportunity presented by ‘Undercover Boss’ was an extraordinary chance to do just that.”

“Undercover Boss,” in its seventh season, is a two-time Emmy Award-winning reality series that follows high-level executives as they slip secretly into the rank-and-file of their own organizations. Each week, a different leader anonymously joins a team member and works with them as they do their job, offering insights into the inner workings of their operation.

“Supporting the needs of the people and communities in which United operates has always been part of our core values at United. This experience reminded me how important it is for companies to not only provide exceptional services to their customers, but also to ensure everyone working with the company is respected and provided the resources to achieve their goals,” said Duffy. ‘Undercover Boss’ provided us a behind-the-scenes view into our 90-year-old brand. The experience was amazing and emotionally powerful.”

About United Real Estate Group

United Real Estate Group, operating the United Country Real Estate and United Real Estate brands, addresses the unique markets they serve, lifestyle, country and urban, with exclusive marketing, technology and training solutions. Together, the United brands support nearly 500 offices and 6,000 real estate professionals across four continents with a unique, comprehensive marketing program that includes one of the largest portfolios of real estate websites, the largest internal real estate marketing services company, an extensive buyer database of more than 650,000 opt-in buyers, and regional, national and international advertising programs for properties. For more information about United Country Real Estate or United Real Estate, please visit www.UnitedCountry.com or www.UnitedRealEstate.com.

Did You Make a New Year’s Resolution or Did You Make a Commitment?

Each January as I head out to my gym, and like all other gyms experience, I see the same trend that begins each year as they all have one thing in common. They are all filled with new members trying to fulfill a New Year’s resolution of becoming healthier, losing weight, or getting back into shape. In many areas you don’t have to go to the gym to see this, you can just look out the window and see the influx of new joggers, walkers or cyclists. All the health clubs and gyms will also have something in common once March comes around. There aren’t as many people in them anymore. If you wait until summer and revisit again you will find that gyms are populated with what is known as the “regulars.” The same individuals at the same time of the day, month after month, year after year. The “regulars” like it when the year progresses as more exercise equipment is available without a wait. Unfortunately for most people their bad habits quickly overtake their New Year’s ambition and the status quo reasserts itself and they stop their exercise plan. Clearly the time honored tradition of making a New Year’s resolution is not a process for fulfilling a goal. The New Year’s resolution by itself lacks personal accountability, which is essential to achieve a goal.

“In essence, if we want to direct our lives, we must take control of our consistent actions. It’s not what we do once in a while that shapes our lives, but what we do consistently.” ~ Tony Robbins

When I speak about accountability, I am really talking about commitment. Instead of following the tradition of making a onetime resolution, why not follow a proven pattern of success and instead turn an annual resolution into a commitment day. One personal belief I like to share with people is, “tell me what you are committed to and I’ll tell you what you have a chance to accomplish.” The commitment is the starting point, not the guarantee of success as you will need to continue to grow and evolve as you mature and the world changes. Now this is where the accountability becomes real.  That commitment day is not a onetime event.  That commitment day is with you each day of the week all year! That commitment to take action becomes who you actually are as an individual, who you are as a contributor to your community and who you are as a business professional.

Taking one big action of joining a gym, taking professional or personal development classes, or signing up to volunteer to support a cause you believe in is not a bad thing.  However, to change your future and reach your goals of better health, financial freedom or even achieving happiness takes an understanding that every decision you make to do something or not do something will affect your future.  Now I am a firm believer that it is never too late to change and to make a positive difference in this world we are all part of, but why wait and put off living life to its fullest. The reality is the longer you wait the harder it will be, simply because you have built daily habits for an extended period of time and habits are hard to change. The good news is good habits can replace bad habits with commitment.

At United Real Estate we have a passion and commitment to make a difference and help all of our agents and brokers change their future. Needing more insight into how to make those changes so you can enjoy an abundant life and rewarding real estate career? Then I highly recommend you take one big action, and register for our annual convention in New Orleans. Take a look at our agenda atwww.ureconvention.com and I am certain you will find it has the right amount of motivation and quality education seminars that will get you committed to grow your business and grow personally.

Thanks again! I hope to see all of you in New Orleans.

Peter

A Message from the President

As the new school year begins, teachers are quickly assessing their students’ current knowledge base and

Advice from the President, Start Where You Are

Advice from the President, Start Where You Are

 

 

highlighting a plan of milestones to be achieved over the course of the year.  The students will be required to change and adapt as the demands of continued learning grows during the year.  This time of year also means the beginning of America’s favorite sport – football.  From high school to college to the professional ranks, those coaching and playing football had their new year begin even earlier.

Anything you are going to do that is meaningful in your life and in business you will have to spend time working on the skills needed to succeed before you start your quest. If you are a football player and did not work out during the off season, you will be behind your competition. One question each player trying to make the team must ask themselves before the season starts is, “How am I going to make the coaches need me?”  To put it another way, they have to figure out how they are going to win a spot on the team.  At the professional level this is at the forefront of the player not just during the football preseason but throughout the year.  Each year, teams change and update their strategies to reflect the anticipated changing competitive conditions they will face so that they give their players the best opportunity to win more games.

I recognized some time ago that in life and in business you always have a choice.  You can take the right action or you can take the wrong steps.  The path to your successful business future starts by recognizing where you actually are relative to the progress you have made in growing your business.  If you understand the truth of where you are; you can then move forward.  The general education you received probably did not teach you how to apply that knowledge to builds success, nor how to manage the complex relationships that you must develop in many careers.

At United Real Estate, we have a process that allows real estate agents to grow personally and produce the results their clients desire.  Start where you are, but take action!  Get involved with all United Real Estate has to offer by attending our national real estate convention in New Orleans.  Those few days of commitment will deliver to you years of information – passed on to you by experts -that will allow you to begin to master your profession and win more business!

For more information on the best real estate event you can attend to build your business visit www.ureconvention.com

All the best,

 

Peter Giese

President

United Real Estate

United Real Estate Partners with DocuSign

Complete your real estate transaction more efficiently with DocuSign.

Complete your real estate transaction more efficiently with DocuSign.

The real estate customers you serve are digital. The vast majority of real estate agents recognize that the home buying and selling process starts with a consumer going online to educate themselves about market conditions and the home buying/selling process. A real estate agent having an online presence is not the same as having a digital strategy and transaction management plan. This requires an agent to have an appropriate mobile technology strategy and a user friendly way of sending contracts and receiving legally binding documents with approved electronic signatures.

A good description of digital transaction management as it pertains to the real estate industry would be: A new category of cloud services designed to digitally manage document-based transactions. It provides a way for real estate agents and brokers to manage a real estate transaction which involves multiple individuals and documents to create a faster, easier and more convenient process for all parties involved. At United Real Estate, we have embraced a paperless transaction management and storage system through our Paperless Pipeline system. As the consumer demands for communication efficiency increases and the advancement of technology allows this to be accomplished, we at United Real Estate will add the services to meet our clients’ needs. The expectation of the consumer will not be just greater ease of access to information but also greater efficiency in handling the documents required to close a real estate transaction. United Real Estate has the services to meet the ever changing needs of our clients.

With estimates of up to 77 percent of the adult online population using smart phones and the majority of them using them for real estate searches, we proactively changed our websites last year to be mobile responsive. This redesign was done to adapt the layout and interaction of the sites to work optimally across a wide range of mobile devices and screen densities. The next step for real estate agents to embrace and stay current with their tech savvy customers is moving towards a digital transaction. Anyone who has experienced the ease of use of digital technology and digital transaction management knows this is the future of our industry.

We are happy to announce that United Real Estate has signed a preferred vendor relationship with DocuSign, the leading and most respected company for sending, managing and executing legal documents. DocuSign is the best product to use to digitize the real estate transaction, especially as more and more consumers review documents on their smartphones and tablets. The ease of use of the DocuSign product is unmatched, as is their training and support.