How To Make Working Vacations Work For Your Real Estate Business
The hardest part about vacationing while self-employed as a real estate agent is to find the “right” time to travel, while continuing to serve the clientele who drive your business currently as well as those who come to you through referrals. There are many benefits to taking a vacation — stress relief, time to recharge, moments to connect with family and friends — but where is the balance between serving clients and taking time to enjoy life? Is a working vacation an acceptable solution?
A working vacation: time when an individual brings their office along with them while traveling, handling only the most important of business and allowing all else to be responded with a cordial out-of-office reply. Many real estate agents are used to the working vacation, trying to close deals from their cellphones while sitting on a beach, but the benefits of handling things while away are tremendous.
First, a working vacation allows you to build connections with others in your office. Instead of being completely self-reliant, this is a great opportunity to ask, “Would you mind covering an appointment for me while I’m away? I’d be happy to treat you to lunch upon my return.” Many agents are happy to do this for another, knowing that one day they may need a favor returned. In the meantime, you, the agent, will benefit from not losing business, and you’ll have a great opportunity for a one-on-one with your colleague over lunch to share wealth-building knowledge. Why not collaborate with your coworkers instead of competing against them? This strategy allows for interconnectivity in the office, while concurrently shaping a stronger, better-connected office culture.
Second, you can handle everything from your phone. Technology is more efficient, flexible and easy to use than ever. For instance, many agents can execute contract paperwork from their phones. Business can easily be handled with ease from a cellphone, meaning one no longer must travel to the office to write, scan or print contracts. Instead, you could sit on the beach and write a contract while soaking up some rays. Many agents have mastered the art of email signatures to include typical explanations. Personally, my email signatures include a line-by-line summary of what a person is signing on a contract. I can send that email following an emailed contract, and in just a few moments of editing, my client can know what they are signing without an in-person consultation. Email systems can even notify the creator that “all signatures have been collected; here is the final copy of your document.” Then, you can send that along to the necessary parties with ease.
Third, your clients want a human, not just an agent. It’s better to connect with your clients over stories and similarities. Each homeowner or homebuyer deserves a great relationship with their agent, and by taking a vacation, you can actually improve on this relationship. While you’re traveling, clients will likely be accommodating in working with you. Everyone wants to see work-life balance being upheld, too — not someone who burns out and can’t perform the job well.
To reap the benefits of a working vacation, it’s wise to hire an assistant. Many agents are fearful that their business could change suddenly, and they may not be able to support a salaried position. What those agents often don’t realize is how an assistant can revolutionize your business. When countless hours of a week are opened up due to paperwork being processed by another person, appointments being set by a pro scheduler or office-related tasks being completed without your presence, more business can be actually made. Your assistant is able to cover you while on vacation — so take advantage of that opportunity.
Take vacation during the time that you want to travel; don’t wait until the times that are off-season, out of the ordinary or obscure just to benefit others. Summer season is always among the most stressful and hectic for agents — why not benefit from a few days off to recharge and keep business strong because your mental health is more in tune after being away? The benefits of vacations are worth it, and business can move 24/7 from anywhere in the world, so take advantage of it.