Global Leadership Speaker and Premier Work-Life Balance Speaker
Speaking Information at (727) 467-0202 or e-mail

Turn off the autopilot!

I have a close friend who began her second career as a realtor when she was in her mid-40s. She dove in, contacting all of her friends and asking all of us to pass her name on to all of our friends. She went through intensive training on cold-calling, then spent hours every day on the phone making those excruciating calls to strangers. She had to make a success of herself, and she did. Within two years, she was one of the nation’s leading agents for her company.      

At that point, things got very easy. People came to her, she didn’t have to go to them. The market heated up, then became red hot and her business expanded so quickly she could barely keep up with it. I could never reach her directly – she was that busy.

And then? Everything stopped. People stopped buying homes, she stopped making money and she confided a great sense of helplessness that made her feel defeated. She’d started living off of her savings and lamented having to start a new career at age 55.

“Why are you giving in so quickly?” I asked.

“Real estate is dead.”       



“You mean, dead as in nobody is buying homes?”

“Nobody is buying homes.”

“Nobody? Not one home has sold in the last month?”

“Well, a few here and there.”

“Because I look at the paper and they still have a hundreds of real estate transactions listed here every week.”

“Your point?”

Somebody is buying those homes and somebody is selling them.”

“I haven’t sold anything in three months. I’m not getting any clients.”      

“What have you done to attract them?”

“Postcards and the usual.” 

“Cold calls?” I asked.        

She grimaced.

“I stopped doing those years ago. They don’t work very well.”

“But, they worked well enough for you to start your business. Right?”


“When is the last time you reached out to your network and said you needed referrals and asked for help?”

“Everybody knows I am here now. I don’t need to…”

“Are you making any money?”


“Then, you need to. You need to reconnect with your network, get the buy-in, ask everyone to start referring you to other people who will refer you to other people and then, you get the joy of making some cold-calls.”

“That’s for beginners. I am beyond that.”

“It’s for beginners who want to build their business. Don’t be so impressed with yourself that you think you are too good to do the things that made you successful in the first place.”

She grumbled a bit, but apparently, my coaching advice worked. We talked several weeks later and she’d gotten a few clients who were ready to buy. One of her friends even referred a transferring executive who called her one morning, rode around with her that one day, then bought a $600,000 house.

“I guess I’d gotten smug and forgotten my roots,” she admitted.

We all do that. We work so hard to make our name, then once we’ve got it, we turn our noses down at the hard techniques that helped us succeed in the first place.

Leave a Reply