Your Checklist for 2024

Set, track, and modify goals to achieve real estate success.

Setting goals offers hope in an uncertain economy, yet expecting results to materialize without planning and monitoring results is unrealistic. Instead, accountability needs to be assured if you wish to expand your sphere of influence, open another office or increase transaction volumes.

As much as people may wish they could do more and improve, only 3% actually set goals and only 1% put them in writing, according to Jackie Matos’ eponymous consulting firm advising hundreds of CEOs and thousands of teams about its significance. Overall, only 8% achieve their goals according to Matos’ research.

Why don’t more of us plan? Matos offers several potential explanations, from prioritizing tasks or being too busy, to not understanding goal-setting. “Saying that one wants the best company is ambitious but doesn’t specify any goals or how you’d get there – you need a clear idea of your destination and ways of measuring behavior along the way,” she suggests.

“Totaling up the goal can be too vague; instead, a specific time and date of return are required to accomplish your dream of traveling to the moon.” Otherwise, plans cannot be carried out successfully resulting in feelings of dissatisfaction and an inability to achieve happiness.

Step one is to simplify goals, setting only those which are realistic and straightforward. Matos suggests narrowing focus. She advocates following an established method such as the SMART approach; which states goals should be specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time-bound.

Garry Anthony Johnson, founder and CEO of Paradise Express Ferry and Harlem Rocket, quickly recognized the value of setting goals early in his career to avoid repeating the errors made by his manager. Johnson recalls: “His manager was fairly successful but poor at running the company: spending more than earned without increasing billings,” according to this economic development chairman of NAACP New York State Conference.

Steps two through four: Set goals that you can easily refer back to, modify as necessary and hold yourself accountable to.

“As an architect and developer, I learned the value of measuring twice and cutting once,” Johnson notes. He also learned the significance of tracking projects – something he does on a monthly basis since weekly or quarterly tracking could potentially get too out of hand; monthly tracking allows more regular adjustments.

Matos and Johnson recommend taking advantage of coaches, seminars, webinars, podcasts and AI, while leaving plenty of time for personal goals such as unwinding.

REALTOR(r) Magazine spoke with six real estate pros about their goal-setting methods and managing inevitable setbacks. While some report finding it more challenging to reach their goals in 2023 due to market circumstances, their emphasis remains on relationship-building as well as flexibility and course correction – all characteristics which need not change over time. Their responses below have been summarized and reformatted accordingly.

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