Empowering all 240 associates and sharing in knowledge is paramount to the success and culture at Partners Trust, and there’s no better example of this than the company’s Ron 101 talks. One of four original Partners Trust founders, series host F. Ron Smith is consistently ranked by Wall Street Journal and REAL Trends as a top real estate producer, both nationally and by state, and he was just again named among Variety‘s 2017 Showbiz Real Estate Elite. He is also the “Smith” in the top-producing Smith & Berg team at Partners Trust, which closed 2016 with more than $200 million in sales.
In his latest Ron 101 “Masterclass,” which took place in Partners Trust’s La Canada office, but also drew associates from the westside, Ron offered his tried-and-true strategies, some of which have applications reaching far beyond real estate.
Part of leading your life vs. living your life, and achieving what you want to achieve, is simply showing up. But according to Ron, showing up, whether to a listing presentation, meeting or networking engagement, doesn’t just mean walking in the door. “When you’re there, you need to be in the moment,” Ron says. Be prepared. Be early. Be present. Listen. And actively participate with your true authentic self.
Offense in the AM – Defense in the Afternoon
It’s no secret that self-awareness is key to success, and if there’s one thing Ron knows about himself, it’s that he has the utmost energy and enthusiasm in the morning. A self-proclaimed early-riser, he awakes about 5 a.m., gets to the gym, hits Cafe Luxxe in Brentwood for a double shot, and strides into Partners Trust’s glass-clad office on Wilshire, where he starts the day making calls. “Get the challenging things done early,” he says. Of course, emails and tasks start to pile up, but he takes these on later with confidence, knowing he’s already made strides toward the bigger, more fruitful goals.
Setting goals, especially regarding sales volume, is an important part of the Smith & Berg team’s routine. “We take them very seriously,” Ron says. “Walk into our office at the end of the month and we are hustling.” He recommends writing down how much you want to make in a year and dividing it by 12 to track and work toward a specific number each month. Beyond work, Ron acknowledges that vacation time needs to be consciously worked into your goals as well. “Write down where you want to go, and hold yourself accountable.”
Set Aside Time & Money for Marketing
Have a strategy, don’t be afraid to spend money and be consistent. “Lean into marketing on Mondays,” Ron says, adding that it should be a part of your actions, as a person and/or a team, for the entire week. Whether you’re bringing in a videographer for a new listing, brainstorming your next blog post, or together deciding to attend a charity event, make time to iron out your strategy for promoting your personal brand and your business. “Your name is everything,” Ron says. If you’re starting from square one, try typing it into Google and assessing the results. Then build your profiles—Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram and post to them consistently. This will evolve into your digital persona and, take it from Ron: “It’s great to have your persona known there before you even meet a client.”
Establish Meaningful Relationships
In 2016 alone, 27 of Smith & Berg’s transactions were made with Partners Trust agents, and a significant amount were done with the same handful of outside brokers. This is the power of building meaningful relationships. And it’s more than grooming and growing your database, Ron says. “Once a week, get coffee with a colleague and once a month, with an agent outside of your local area. At the end of the day, agents don’t do deals with buyers and sellers; they do deals with other agents. Competitors can be a most valuable resource in this industries and many others.