The Curse of Agents That Actually Prevents Growth

Eden Sunshine
Vice President
Realty Executives


“Stop innovating to get your needs met!” I had to remind an agent recently. “Just because you’ve got an idea doesn’t mean you need to pursue it. Just because someone else is doing something, doesn’t mean you need to implement it.”

“I get the feeling,” I continued, “You are innovating because it feels good and it’s your nature. You’re not unlike most realtors who are much like a typical entrepreneur. Further,” I added, “I’m not absolutely convinced that the innovations you are proposing are actually necessary for your business right now.”

“What do you mean by that?” The agent asked.

I proceeded to explain. “It’s the nature of entrepreneurs to identify an opportunity to make something better and then pursue it. Entrepreneurs are creative problems solvers. In order for them to do their work, they have to identify a problem and come up with a solution. The fact is, in some unconscious way, when entrepreneurs are solving problems, it brings some meaning to our lives. It’s like a person who feels good when they serve others. Entrepreneurs feel good when they are solving problems and making things better. It is why they exist to some degree. In order to solve problems, they have to recognize or identify something that is broken or could be made better. Real Estate agents often have those same entrepreneurial qualities.”

I continued, “This inherent strength of seeing opportunities to make things better, can also be a curse. In extreme cases, entrepreneurs are never satisfied, and they can quickly neglect or overlook victories. As a result they fail to recognize and celebrate when things are performing well. They often tinker and messing with things that are working just fine. I have even seen some realtors unconsciously creating problems just so they can fix them.”

“Now that’s sick.” The agent added.

“Yes, but unfortunately those obsessed agents never recognize that defect.” I said. “Understand, I am not suggesting that you stop improving your business.” I continued, “but you do need to be more systematic about it. And you need to stop messing with things just because it’s your nature or because it feels good.” 

I cautioned him. “When you are random about innovation, the effect on your business can be more detrimental than good. Random innovations often don’t get fully implemented because they are often poorly thought out.”

I proceeded to share an example about an agent who overheard another agent talking about how they were using social media in their business and decided that he was going to start using Tik Tok as soon as he got back to his office. I suggested the agent be aware and to stay away from shiny objects. I challenged him to carefully consider how he was going to use Tik Tok his business and asked him if he had a strategy. I reminded him that the agent who was using it successfully had a well-developed strategy and it made sense for his business. I encouraged the agent to stop and think before he runs back to his business and interrupt his team members with this random innovation.

Business owners and agent need to stop being attracted to shiny objects. I know it’s difficult but necessary to be truly effective when it comes to innovating in an organization.

Here are the steps to go through before implementing random innovations or disrupting the way you currently do things in your business.

  1. Determine the Goal or Purpose. When you hear an idea, suggestion, or new way of doing things, ask yourself ‘what is the result you hope it will accomplish for you or your business?’ Is it produce more leads, convert more listing presentations, simplify your transaction management process etc.?
  2. Check Your System. Do you have a system or process for producing the result or are you wingin’ it? If no system, is in place, create that first. In the absence of a clearly defined and documented process, results can vary greatly. Creating the system is an absolute first before innovating.
  3. Evaluate Your Current Results. Look at the current performance of your system. Is it producing the results you want or desire? Can your current system be scaled without adding something new? Sometimes the results we are getting are optimal and don’t require innovation. Leave them alone.
  4. Improve as Needed. If your current system isn’t producing optimal results, then focus on making system improvements. Even a minor tweak could be all that is needed.

Most importantly, be aware when you find yourself getting caught up in random innovation that takes you off track or distracts you from doing the proven, results oriented work that will bring you business today and tomorrow.

Want to have a tough conversation about advancing your business? E-mail me at