Eleven years in as a realtor, and I have to admit that it was about 4 years ago, I realized, or acknowledged that I actually ran a small business. You know, all those good things like carrying inventory(listings), budgets, planning, staffing, human resource issues, payroll, expenses etc.
Its the time of year to plan, budget and set up 2017. Our team is extremely grateful for the growth of our small business this year, in large part due to the people who know us, like us, trust us and support us through word of mouth advertising and most importantly, personal referrals. For us, we also know that each real estate transaction can impact and help to employ another 45 jobs. We refer out to lawyers to close, painters to paint, locksmiths to change locks, contractors to improve homes, handymen to repair, plumbers for emergencies etc....45 trades. So what we do, not only matters to each of our clients who trust us with their most important financial decision, but also to all the 45 local trades/professionals we may also refer to. Small business does make a difference in the local economy, and I don't think the general public thinks of realtors in that way (took me awhile before I acknowledged that myself).
This week, I had the pleasure of brainstorming with my favorite General Contractor, Richard Larocque, www.valahome.com whom I have known for over 25 years. We typically brainstorm on our businesses in December and garner opinions and insight from each other that are invaluable. We share a common love and high standard of how to treat clients and give a higher level of customer service. This week we focussed on growth, people, social media and marketing. I wish I could have been more helpful on the social media/marketing side of things, although I was able to point him in the right direction at least.
And that direction led to my Digital Mentor, John Hennessy, www.johnhennessy.ca of The Business House in Ottawa. Interestingly enough, John was one of Michael's (my son, the realtor) professors at #Algonquin College and that's how we originally met. We spent the morning defining gold standards of how to market with social media, along with sharing a few laughs and antidotes of life in general. Now I have to do the work, but at least I have the tools. Needless to say, I referred him to Richard (see how small business has spin off to others)
My reflection on these two meetings, which always include a general great conversation in a nonjudgemental environment of caring, sharing and laughter is this.....we do business with people we like, people we know care about us and people we trust. Not any different than how you pick your realtor to work with.
I hope you take the time to get to know us a bit, we would like the opportunity to get to know you, and help you achieve your goals. In return, our modest small business will be helping may others achieve their goals too. Small business is the heart of our economy. You are the heart of our business. Enjoy your weekend!