With any endeavor, we all start at the same place: with an idea and the dream to make it a reality. So if that is true, then why do some businesses really take off while others flounder and fail?
Could it be our ability to recognize a critical mass moment of success and use it as a springboard for exponential growth that separates us? Trust me when I say that this proposition takes both courage and faith in the team you've assembled and in what you are doing.
When my partners and I got together to create Partners Trust Real Estate Brokerage and Acquisitions, our focus was on certain guideposts, such as the number of offices we'd have by a given time, the number of agents in each office and the profits realized by date X. Sure, we discussed the projected time when we'd go from negative cash flows to positive cash flows, but it was simply a point in time in the future and not much more than that.
During our 21-month evolution, we've achieved a measure of success founded on the principles and strategies in which we've had the faith and trust to focus on these above all else. Recently, we reached a fascinating point in our development: a measure of profitability, our company's fiscal tipping point, allowed us to give more back to all of our partners.
A little background: part of the initial income generated came from each real estate agent's contribution of a monthly $500 fee. The amount, designed to offset costs for enhanced programs (including our robust social media endeavors) that our company offers, was met with some resistance in our field. Yet those inspired to be with our company paid the fee and it has been instrumental in assisting our collective growth. Now, revenues have grown to the point where we can support all our initiatives beyond the reliance on our agents' monthly contributions.
Our critical mass moment was upon us and a question came with it: were we willing to forego the net effect of hundreds of thousands of dollars in revenues from those contributions by no longer requiring them to pay this $500 fee? Talk about your risk/reward moments for a young company in the real estate housing arena, which definitely has its issues right now. While it would mean eliminating an entire revenue stream, would continuing it go against those same principles upon which the company was founded? Would we seize our moment or end up being one to flounder?
On a recent Wednesday morning at our Beverly Hills office, we assembled the entire team of real estate professionals together and announced that because of their wonderful work and, as partners in all that we do, we had made the decision to waive the fee. To say the room was filled with both joy and relief was an understatement.
Are we crazy for forfeiting a couple hundred thousand dollars to our bottom line? Maybe. But if, collectively, we've created the resources to offer that sort of reward, maybe we're opening the door for even greater success, fueled by an appreciative group of fired-up salespeople who will spit nails with us all the more.
I applaud each and every business owner who is surviving this economic climate. We get up each day and slug it out, hanging onto a vision and dream, questing for its unveiling. When you realize your critical mass moment, perhaps you can capitalize on it and take off to even greater heights.
We'll see how our move plays out, but I know one thing for certain -- I'm truly excited by the possibilities of where we go from here because I know we've got proven talent who care for what they're doing as much as we care for them. And that is a critical mass moment worth appreciating.
Is your business or personal life at a critical mass moment that you can use to your advantage? Will you seize your moment?
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