Transcript and Audio

Episode 14 - Jessi – Commercial Real Estate Agent

Brian (00:00:00):

This is Brian Margolis and welcome to the Simplify Your Strategy, Magnify Your Results podcast, where on each episode, I use The Pillar System to help a sales pro, entrepreneur or other results-based professional create a weekly strategy to run a simple, more lucrative business. A strategy so simple, it can fit on an index card, but so powerful, it’s actually helped create multiple seven-figure earners and is now licensed by some of the largest companies in the world that create strategies for their teams.


If you’d like a free copy of my book on exactly how to do this, or want to be considered as a guest on a future episode, head on over to Enjoy the episode.


Okay. So I have with me, Jessi, and for the first time in my life, I am somebody’s birthday gift, correct? Jessi’s husband met me at an event. I now do a lot of work with his company on pillars and some of the stuff we’re going to talk about. And so he’s either a really great husband or a really cheap one, but as a birthday gift, he got you this, he got me on his podcast. So if I’m correct, Jessi, you are a commercial real estate agent, correct?


Jessi (00:01:21):

I am. So I have two different roles. I’m a commercial real estate agent with a brokerage firm. And then I also am the partner and manager of my family’s real estate investment business. So I play two hats. Sometimes those two roles overlap and other times they are completely distinct for one another.


Brian (00:01:42):

Ok so you’re an agent on one side. And on the other side, you run the, like your family invests in properties and has rental properties in different buildings or something like that?


Jessi (00:01:54):

Correct. So they invest in different land development, properties, commercial, residential properties. And I manage all of those different entities that they own. And then in addition to that, I’m a commercial real estate agent. So it overlaps when I’m advertising their properties, it doesn’t in most other aspects.


Brian (00:02:18):

Gotcha. Okay. And, and the way I approach things like this is, you know, to me, it’s Jessi Incorporated. So to me, your pillars, you should be about all of the business things you need to get done each week. Right? And then, you know, in my opinion, your personal stuff as well, meaning, you know, for some people that might, and we’ll talk about this, it might be working out certain eating pillars, working out personal relationship pillars to me cause the long term, and you read the book, so you know, this, um, the long-term picture is that pillar execution becomes a habit and a way to think about it, Jessi, is you know, when I hit, when I do these, you know, one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine things, you know, whenever it comes out to, when you add them all together, you know, as long as I do these things, my life works, my business works. Right. And so to me, if you’re going to take the time to develop that habit, you might as well incorporate all of them together. Okay. So we can dive right in, because you have read the book you have given this some thought. And so the first question I’ll kind of ask is just give me a little background, how long you’ve been doing it, kind of what’s working in your business and what’s not working in your business, maybe where some of the frustrations are…


Jessi (00:03:47):

Sure. So I started in this business a little less than a year and a half ago. And I previously to this worked in corporate America at the same company that my husband worked at, so starting off and going and taking on my family’s company where my parents are planning on retiring. So I’m eventually going to be taking this over completely and owning it. And then I also had a baby in the past year. COVID hit, which was not a good time for commercial real estate. And so I’m on an extreme learning curve for this business still because the previous company that I was with has nothing to do with commercial real estate. But what I’m taking from my previous role is a lot of the same business skills that I can apply to this new role. And just the relationship aspect of working with clients directly.


Jessi (00:04:43):

Some of the sales experience that I had at my previous company, but a lot of it is brand new information. And I came into it and it’s a small business, but it was already a pretty thriving business. And I am trying to come in and make it much more efficient so that I can continue to grow the business. But also, um, it was really outdated. A lot of things weren’t really, um, templated or there wasn’t a process behind anything. So I’m right now really struggling with balancing the growth of the business with also building the efficiencies, the foundation and my own expertise in order to move forward.


Brian (00:05:27):

So, so I feel like you’re you might be conflating two things, and I need to get some clarity here. Are you talking about the family business that you now manage?


Jessi (00:05:36):

Yes, so the family business that I manage is, what I stepped into and I also stepped into commercial real estate.


Brian (00:05:46):

Both they’re both 18 months. Yes. Okay. So, so you have to you’re you’re you went from not being in the real estate business at all. I mean, you had exposure to it, I’m guessing through your family, but you went from not being in it to managing the business. And in addition, you’re also a commercial agent as like a second source of revenue or in other, so I won’t call it a second. We’ll, we’ll call it another source. Okay. So you’re going to have to build the kind of pillars that encompass compass both of those things.


Jessi (00:06:21):

Right. And I think my ultimate goal is to be able to right now, the business that my parents have, and then also the commercial real estate business I have about 50% of my week dedicated to both. I would like for it to be that my family’s business is operating and efficient enough that I can be a little bit more 80, 20, um, and where it’s 80% commercial real estate and 20% operating the family business.


Brian (00:06:54):

Got it. Okay. And in the family business, your family right now is still involved, but eventually they you’re going to over, you’re going to eventually head that, so to speak they’re phasing out. Okay. Got it. So, so let’s just talk about the family business for a split second. Okay. And, and you kind of, I think that’s where you started going down in terms of what’s working and what’s not working. Right. Are you, are you tasked in the family business with generating any kind of revenue like rental revenue or finding new properties or finding deals, or are you more on the administrative management part of it


Jessi (00:07:34):

I’m on both, where the, the revenue generating side comes in is I actually used my commercial real estate agent opportunities for that. So I would be looking for a new investment properties, um, through the brokerage firm for my family members. And then I also am doing all of the day-to-day administrative things. If I’ve about 60 different tenants, if any of them contact me, it’s me that they’re working with. And then I also have about 10 different entities or properties that are different sizes that I manage. So there’s a lot of day to day, which I would call a lot of the urgent, significant activities that I have to do on a daily basis. And then there’s some of those that are very insignificant but still take up that administrative time.


Brian (00:08:29):

Got it. Okay. So if I said what’s working and what’s not working, it sounds to me like based on those two pieces of conversation on the, on the, on the real estate investment side, it sounds like what’s not working. And what needs to be improved is you need more automation, more leverage points, more systems to minimize the amount of insignificant kind of transactional things you’re doing all day.


Jessi (00:08:58):

Correct. Like for example, I purchased a property management database and it will make our lives so much better when we have tenants that are able to able to use the portal owners that are able to use the portal. And then a lot of my day-to-day activities are significantly reduced. However, one of my pillars and I’ll get to this in a little bit is building business efficiencies because I’m not dedicating enough time to actually get this database up and running in order for it to become efficient yet, or save me any time. So right now I’m operating off my old spreadsheets. I am paying for this database and nothing’s getting inputted into it yet. Got it.


Brian (00:09:43):

Okay. Fair enough. All right. And then on the commercial side of things or the HR or the agent side of things in terms of what’s working, what’s not working.


Jessi (00:09:57):

So what works what’s working is that for being new to the business, I actually have a large number of leads and different listing opportunities. What I would say is not working is I need to build a lot of what you learn is from experience, but I still feel like I need to really build my knowledge because ultimately you generate the most revenue in this business by getting investors and new investors that want to buy commercial real estate and helping them through that process. And just staying with them as they’re looking for new tenants, things like that for their own properties. And I am not in a position yet being so, um, junior to this business that I’m able to confidently go to all of these investors and say, here is exactly how I’m going to look for this property for you. Here is, um, what your cap rate should be, and really speak intelligently to them in order to gain new investors. So I feel like I need to build the foundation there as well, so that I’m marketing myself, able to represent myself in a strong way to those investors.


Brian (00:11:11):

Okay. So let’s let, let me hear it. The potential pillars that you came up with, and then we’ll kind of, we’ll use that as a guide, but then I actually want to run through the process with you and fine tune them.


Jessi (00:11:24):

Sure. So I would say, I know that pillars are not goals, but my goals are to double last year sales revenue from the commercial real estate agent side, and then also build on the real estate investment side, build efficiency with, within the business so that I can spend more time doing lead generation and focusing on the commercial real estate side. Okay. So with those in mind, my pillars are spending four hours building business efficiencies, spending one hour analyzing properties in the area, reading to commercial real estate article,


Brian (00:12:11):

The one hour analyzing properties you get, let’s get a little more specific about that.


Jessi (00:12:17):

So we have, different websites that as agents, we have access to you pay a membership fee for it. And there are different ways that you can analyze different properties that are for sale in the area in order to find good potential investment opportunities. So I have current investors as, um, that I’m helping to represent right now. And unlike a residential sale, they could be, they’re looking for the right investment property. So they want somebody that can analyze property over time and find them new properties as they come up. And I’m just not spending enough time going through the searches and finding different, um, properties out there too.


Brian (00:13:00):

And that could also be for your family business, if you find one.


Jessi (00:13:02):

Yeah, absolutely. It could be for myself, for my family business. And it’s also just so valuable to help me learn what a good investment is versus what a poor investment might be.


Brian (00:13:13):

And just so we’re clear all this is under the world of commercial. We’re not talking residential, right?


Jessi (00:13:18):

Correct. For the most part, yes. I do have some residential real estate properties that I manage, but it’s so insignificant compared to the amount of commercial.


Brian (00:13:29):

Got it. So your family’s mostly in the commercial? Yes. Okay. All right. Four hours building efficiencies, one hour analyzing properties, go ahead.


Jessi (00:13:38):

Read two commercial real estate articles, update my prospect pipeline, spend one hour learning how to grow my business. One content, so this could be LinkedIn email blast to demonstrate my knowledge.


Brian (00:14:03):

All right. So we’ll hold on, one hour of building, um, you said your, was it your business, your business…


Jessi (00:14:12):

How to grow my business or honing in on my business skills? Got it. Okay. The last one was one content to demonstrate my knowledge. So whether that’s LinkedIn, an email blast to potential investors to show that I understand the industry.


Brian (00:14:36):

So it’s, so it’s, it’s creating and sending that blast or creating and putting up that post. Correct. Okay. Got it. Anything else?


Jessi (00:14:49):

And then my personal are run/walk 15 miles and arrange one social event for my kids each week.


Brian (00:15:02):

Define a range.


Jessi (00:15:04):

So, um, talking or listening to your podcast and talking with, different people right now, a range is just trying to set one up. If it doesn’t get executed with COVID right now, I’m finding that a lot of things are getting canceled because of outdoors and all of that. So as long as I’ve made the effort to plan a play date or something, to get my kids, some social interaction with other children, then I feel like I’ve accomplished that.


Brian (00:15:34):

Got it. Okay. So it’s basically scheduling it, scheduling it, like, is it, is it over when you reach out to two moms and say, “Hey, let’s get together?”. Is it overlap? It’s gotta be on the calendar.


Jessi (00:15:52):

Yeah. It’s gotta be on the calendar or I have to take them to the park where they can interact with other kids.


Brian (00:15:59):

Got it. Okay. All right. And what did you call that schedule or arrange…


Jessi (00:16:05):

Arrange one social event for my kids.


Brian (00:16:08):

Got it. Okay. So let, now, let me ask a few questions to maybe identify some other potential pillars, and then we’ll, we’ll kind of clean all these up and finalize it. So there’s three questions, as you know, from the book to kind of identify potential pillars and the one thing is the first one is – what is something that you already know how to do effectively, that if you just did more of, or were more consistent with would have the biggest impact on your business. Right? So we’re looking for consistency there. What do you need to make sure you’re doing every week? And I know you addressed some of them here. Yep.


Jessi (00:16:53):

That one is to build efficiencies or processes in the business in order and this could be both in the commercial real estate side, where I developed different tools, , that make prospecting or leasing a lot easier, or building something from the real estate investment side of the business, where we have a bunch of tenants to make it easier.


Brian (00:17:20):

What about, and I’m just gonna throw stuff out there. When you said update prospect pipeline, what does that actually mean? Because I have an idea for something, but I want to make sure you’re not covering it here.


Jessi (00:17:32):

So what I’ve found is most valuable is just an Excel spreadsheet. That’s my prospect pipeline and I have it divided by listings, potential investors, buyers that I’m representing. And it’s just something that I want to it’s administrative, but when I’m getting calls or inquiries, I want to make sure that I’m logging it so that I don’t miss the opportunity for other listings out there. And then it’s also, um, I want to build it as a foundation so that when I’m focusing more on lead generation, I have this template of something that I can already use to make additional contacts or the SSTs, things like that in order to continue with my pipeline.


Brian (00:18:19):

Okay. So, so, but right now the pillar is just to update it.


Jessi (00:18:23):

Yes. Right now the pillar is to review and update it so that I’m staying current with who’s out there.


Brian (00:18:31):

Okay. Would that include then as part of your review, would that, would that also encompass what you would consider follow-up?


Jessi (00:18:39):

So I wanted, I wanted to ask you about that because I think that there, you shouldn’t have a prospect pipeline out there if you’re not going to do anything with it. Otherwise it is just administrative and it’s not creating any leads, but I also want to be careful, I think, for different properties or leasing activity, any follow-up or reviewing it and reaching out to somebody during the week will be a good, sorry. Um, a good reminder. Got it. Okay. But the actual, should we stop that?


Brian (00:19:28):

We’re we’re we’re good. Work from home. No one can see ya. Go ahead. Okay.


Jessi (00:19:33):

And then, so I would say one of the things that I’m struggling with is making sure that I am marketing myself, but also making sure that I’m not, I’m building my foundation getting enough of an understanding of my business so that when I’m going out to different prospects, that I’m not that I’m going out with the expertise in the knowledge that I need at this time to be effective. Okay.


Brian (00:20:03):

So again, let’s just, let’s just double down on this consistency thing. Right. What about asking for referrals? Is that something you’re consistently doing or, or maybe you just don’t have enough going on to consistently ask, right.


Jessi (00:20:18):

I’m not consistently doing that right now.


Brian (00:20:20):

Okay. But is that something that would have much of an impact or is that, are the numbers so low that it’s, you know, right now it’s not a big deal?


Jessi (00:20:27):

Asking for referrals would be a huge benefit to my business. What I’m struggling with right now is that I don’t know how much time I have to take on a ton of new prospects right now until I increase the amount of efficiencies in my business.


Brian (00:20:48):

Got it. Okay. So, so right now there’s a hedge on the commercial real estate stuff that the eight, the agent side of it, right. Basically if the business isn’t coming to you at this point, for the most part, you’re not fishing for it right now. No. Okay. That’s fine. Um, but you do, if I’m understanding, you do want to spend time though, learning how to grow your business so that when it’s time, you can, you can do that. Right?


Jessi (00:21:14):

Correct. And that doesn’t necessarily, so part of that could be learning more about lead generation ways to effectively market in this industry, but it could also be something as far as how to be an effective salesperson and the right way to close the deal.


Brian (00:21:31):

I understand. Okay. Um, so what about, let’s, let’s talk about effectiveness, right? And it sounds like you’ve already kind of, you already kind of went there, but, but let’s just get a little more crystal clear on it. Okay. At this point, let’s, let’s talk about the first business, the managing the properties, right. Ma managing the family business at this point. You know, it, think of it this way. If I could add, if any skill, if you think of a scale of zero to 10, if I could add five points for free. So if you’re a three, you become an eight, right. If you’re a five, you become a 10. Okay. What skill in terms of the managing of the properties, if you improved, and if I magically helped you improve in would have the biggest return on investment. Is it the building, the efficiencies, like, is that the big bottleneck in that business right now?


Jessi (00:22:33):

Yes. I would say that’s the biggest bottleneck in the business. Okay.


Brian (00:22:36):

So it doesn’t have, the building efficiencies is not about revenue generation right now. It’s about the management of it, correct? Correct. Okay. The analyzing the properties that is just to go out to your existing database, that’s, you’re looking for opportunity.


Jessi (00:22:57):

That is to go out to my existing database, but in the event that I feel skilled enough in it, then I can go out to others and start doing the lead generation there. So that’s it, it’s one of my short-term goals, um, to just build the better understanding so that I can effectively start going out to new investors.


Brian (00:23:22):

Part of analyzing those properties then is not only looking for opportunities to, for, you know, for deals to bring to your investors and things like that. But it’s also, you get better at the business by doing that. Correct?


Jessi (00:23:35):

I have it actually down as one of my learning pillars.


Brian (00:23:37):

Got it. Okay. I’m with you now. All right. Anything else? What about the real estate agent side of things that, that was more, where you were talking about sales skills and marketing, right. And all that kind of stuff. So, yeah, go ahead. But I think we need to get real specific, right. Because one of the things we don’t want to do is just learning for learning’s sake. So I know you’re early on in your agent career. Okay. But at this point, okay. What is that one skill that if I could, you know, I could, I could magically help you improve in, would it be lead generation, would it be the actual closing? Would it be, you know, what would the, what would that one skill be?


Jessi (00:24:25):

It would be the closing of a deal. I think that I’m strong when I’m showing the properties, I’m responsive. I’m on top of the actual, um, relationship. But as far as closing the deal, asking those challenging questions, a lot of sales is challenging the personal on the other side to get them to think a certain way. And that’s where I don’t have that skillset.


Brian (00:24:52):

Are you trying to get real estate? Are you on the commercial agent side of things are you trying to get listings as well?


Jessi (00:24:59):

I have, I have about 20 different listings right now. So I have a lot of listings at different properties. And then I am trying to get tenants to lease those properties right now. So some are sale and some are for lease.


Brian (00:25:20):

Okay. So, okay. So I see what you’re saying. So you’ve gotten those in the last 18 months? Yes. Okay. Now, cause isn’t listings really where you, you know, isn’t that the ideal thing for an agent, because as long as you stay in the listing agent, you’re ultimately going to get a commission. Right?


Jessi (00:25:39):

Right. So if you, if you stay, if it’s important to have listings, because a lot of times those lead to different prospects from the buyer side, but from a commission standpoint, you get more money off of representing somebody who’s looking to lease a property or somebody that’s looking to buy a property. So from a commission standpoint, it’s more money to, um, that you gain more money through representing the buyer side. What it’s lease for sale. The actual lead generation always comes from listings because you get somebody that calls about the property isn’t represented, and then you might be able to pick them up as a potential client.


Brian (00:26:23):

Got it. Okay. So, so when we think about lead generation on the agent side of your business, really the lead generation, you want to be generating listings.


Jessi (00:26:34):

Yes. I want to be generating listings and I also want to be yes, essentially that helps me get potential buyers. Um, what you don’t get as much through the listings is if you’re representing listings, you might be representing investors in commercial real estate, which is great if they want to purchase additional real estate, but it’s not, um, you don’t always get people reaching out to you about that. I gotcha.


Brian (00:27:03):

Um, so, and then, okay, so we have the lead gen part, and then you said about the closing, the deal, like, give me the, are you talking about closing? Like when you walk someone through a building and they’re thinking about renting a floor or something like that is getting them to actually, is that what you mean by closing?


Jessi (00:27:20):

Yeah. So it’s, it’s a little bit of both. It’s getting somebody that’s, if I’m showing them the property and then I’m submitting an offer, I think there’s other agents out there that are much more direct and challenge the potential tenant a little bit more to make them get the offer and cross over that finish line. Um, I think I play nice a lot of times, and I don’t necessarily act as direct or as challenging. Okay. And sometimes I think that doesn’t work to my advantage.


Brian (00:27:53):

Got it. Okay. Now what about, do you, at this point in the game, so I know you’re heavy in the family business right now. Do you need any kind of consistency pillar to generate more listings or do you not want more listings? Really? Like if they come great, but…


Jessi (00:28:12):

I would say if it’s the right listing, then I would want it. I’m not at the stage right now where I’m taking a listing just to take it, it should be worthwhile.


Brian (00:28:26):

Right. But that criteria will probably ease up. Like, let’s pretend you didn’t have the family business. Right. Would you then be more aggressive about getting listings? Absolutely. Okay. So you have enough listings right now. That’s not something we have to focus on with your pillars?


Jessi (00:28:43):

Right. I have enough listings right now to fill my time. It’s more of, there’s different ways to look at the business. Some people saying no business is bad business. And then other people say that you should be more selective and have go after.


Brian (00:28:59):

Well, you definitely need to be selective because you’re running two different things. Right?


Jessi (00:29:01):

Correct. And so I think I need to be more selective right now. Right.


Brian (00:29:04):

And then, and then, so then the last question, the strategic pillar is, you know, what is something you can organize plan or create each week, prior to taking action, so that something else becomes more effective. Right. I probably, I think I just muddled up my own question, but what is something you can organize, plan or create prior to taking action that will make that action much more effective? Do you have any kind of thing you think you need to do each week where you organize something before you do something else, or you plan something or create it before you kind of get after it, if you will, did anything pop in when you were thinking about that question?


Jessi (00:29:47):

Yes. So I think I need to spend like 15 minutes at the beginning of the week. Time-blocking um, and I, I’m thinking that that’s getting more into how to be effective with my pillars, um, more on the, how to hit your pillars. That’s yeah. That’s maybe more how to hit my pillars, but as far as a consistency pillar, um, I think that the, this is where with the building, the business efficiencies, I think I can get to a lot of other pillars that are, I want to go to in the future, if I’m doing this consistency pillar of building the business efficiencies.


Brian (00:30:33):

Alright. So let’s talk about that now. Let’s, let’s take this list and let’s really kind of clean it up. Okay. Right. And get real specific here. Obviously the one that keeps coming back is this building efficiencies. Right. Building those efficiencies, there’s an input and there’s an output, right? Correct. The input, meaning you’re learning about how to put efficiencies in place in the world of property management and different things. Right. Like actually learning, and then there’s the doing, then? There’s like, okay, this I like this system, or that’s a good idea. Or I’m going to, I did buy this software now I have to actually, you know, execute or put it together. Right. And they’re both important. Right. They’re both important. Do you tend to favor one over the other? Like, would you rather sit there and learn about efficiencies and look at what other people are doing? YouTube videos on property management and blah, blah, blah, or would you rather actually get to work and put them in place or you don’t care either way?


Jessi (00:31:43):

I’m a hundred percent the latter. Um, I, so this is a perfect example of today. I was working on my pillars this morning to try to build a business business efficiencies. And I put on my calendar training videos in order to learn how to input this data into this property management database. And I thought to myself, I’d so much rather just input the data and try to try it on my own. So I just went off and started inputting data where I could and skipped to the training videos. So I, it’s hard for me to sit and watch the YouTube video to learn. It it’s much easier for me to execute.


Brian (00:32:24):

But what about watching the YouTube video or reading articles on just ways to be more efficient, like learning about those software programs and learning about things you can outsource and learn? You know what I mean?


Jessi (00:32:36):

Yeah. I don’t spend much time doing that at all. Got it. Okay. So because of what I know and what I, yeah.


Brian (00:32:44):

That to me, because here, you know, this is more of the “who” not “how”, in my opinion, the leverage is that there are people out there who have already cracked the code. Right. Being a prop, essentially let’s call it, you know? And I’m not, I don’t know if this is how you think of it, but essentially you’re a property manager.


Jessi (00:33:03):

Yes, absolutely. Okay.


Brian (00:33:04):

So there’s no shortage of information on there about property management. Right. A lot of people are in that business. There’s a lot of services that you can subcontract, but there’s a lot of stuff you can learn. And I think in a lot of ways you talk about efficiencies before you just jump in and say, okay, I need to make an Excel sheet for this. Or a whatever for that. Sometimes other people have a better way. Right? And so I think of those four hours, I think at least at least 90 minutes has to be input, if that makes sense.


Jessi (00:33:39):



Brian (00:33:43):

And so I would call that that four hours, like the way I would look at it is I would call it 94, 90/4 hours building efficiencies.


Jessi (00:34:02):



Brian (00:34:04):

And again at least 90 minutes a week has to be you learning because you can learn one thing that could save you a ton of time and a ton of headache. Believe me, you’re not trying to solve any problems that someone else hasn’t already done.


Jessi (00:34:21):

Right. Right. Okay.


Brian (00:34:24):

That one also, you’re going to need a reference document for we’ll come back to that. Okay. How to set that reference document. Okay. The one hour, a week of analyzing properties, I liked that I liked that it both helps you learn and, and identifies opportunities, um, is one hour, again, these are minimums, but as right now in your world is one hour the right amount, at least one hour a week.


Jessi (00:34:52):

I think that’s the bare minimum. So I was trying to just based on your guidance start small. Perfect. But I think that that’s the bare minimum that I should be doing each week. Okay.


Brian (00:35:06):

The reading two real estate, commercial real estate articles, do you have a source for that already that you kind of go to, or…


Jessi (00:35:16):

There is the database that you run the searches from has a new source, connected with it. And then it also just linked me to a bunch of different articles. So I read, I have an easy source to get to.


Brian (00:35:31):

Is there a reason you’re counting articles versus time?


Jessi (00:35:38):

So I don’t know the actual, there wasn’t an actual scientific reason. It was just more so rather than saying, I need to spend 30 minutes. I feel like if I find a really good article that I want to read the entire way through, then I might get just as much from that as if I’m spinning my wheels for 30 minutes.


Brian (00:35:59):

Got it. Okay. So read two CRE articles. Now, is there anything that can substitute that? Do you ever listen to podcasts on commercial real estate or anything like that?


Jessi (00:36:14):

I would say if I’m listening to a podcast on the economy or because I think a lot of the economy in general factors into the commercial real estate world, and that’s really what I’m trying to gain from this. So I think if I re-listened to a podcast on the economy, then that would suffice as well.


Brian (00:36:38):



Jessi (00:36:40):

The news or, you know, any, it’s, it doesn’t have to be an article.


Brian (00:36:44):

Yeah. That’s cause I think there’s a lot of really good podcasts out there.


Jessi (00:36:48):

There are, and I would say commercial real estate. Yes. And I am, I do a ton of podcast-listening on walks, which I think it’s nice when the pillars can kind of blend together. But a lot of, all of this learning is I do when I’m going on walks.


Brian (00:37:10):

Right. So do you feel like you need a pillar for this or do you feel like you still want to kind of hold yourself accountable to the two articles or…


Jessi (00:37:18):

So the reason I said that commercial real estate articles was, I tend to really gravitate towards the business podcasts more so than ones that specialize in commercial real estate. Um, so I was just trying to focus more in on that, where I would say.


Brian (00:37:33):

That’s what you like to do. What should you be doing?


Jessi (00:37:36):

Well, that’s why I was saying it’s not much of a habit at this point. I think the growing the business one, I would say it’s more of a habit. I’d have to focus in on sales skills, more so than business podcasts. Um, but the commercial real estate, I don’t tend to gravitate towards those as much as I do. Like I love reading audio books too. So, that’s something, but I always, I will read the E-Myth revisited over a commercial real estate podcast.


Brian (00:38:08):

Got it. Okay. So reading two CRE articles, or I guess you could substitute a podcast is what you’re saying. Okay. Um, okay. So this is the one, well, let’s skip this one cause I want, I want to do that one last one hour of sharpening the ax. You were talking about that one, right? You thought really at this point it was closing skills, right?


Jessi (00:38:34):

I think so. Yes.


Brian (00:38:36):

Is it too early right now to start getting better at lead generation for your agency business?


Jessi (00:38:45):

I don’t think so because I, I think for me, it’s just trying to figure out what time is associated with that. But I would say that’s something where lead generation and sharpening my axe for. Right now I don’t have that shine. And like when I was listening to your podcast or reading your book, you were talking a lot about having the marketing shine and being able to represent yourself is half the battle. And I, I keep thinking, Oh, I don’t have the expertise yet, but could I help develop the shine while I develop the expertise so that when I’m ready to go, I can be full throttle out there.


Brian (00:39:28):

Got it. Okay. Um, so then why don’t we do it this way then for now? Because I think over time you’re going to gravitate towards certain things. But so again, if you’re doing 60 minutes of sharpening the ax each week on the business, you know, marketing side of things, um, I think at least maybe, you know, you could tell me, but at least 15 minutes of that 60 should be dedicated. And again, when I say at least that means if you find something that’s 25 minutes long, then by all means, but needs to be in on closing skills. Okay. Right. Because I have a feeling you’ll gravitate. Like you said, toward the things you like versus the things that you need. Right. Like learning to get better over time is a great investment, but you also have to make sure short term you’re focused on the skill. That’s going to give you the biggest ROI right now. So what did you, I’m calling it, sharpening the axe, but what did you call it?


Jessi (00:40:35):

I called it sharpening the axe too, I think.


Brian (00:40:38):

Sharpen the axe on marketing and sales.


Jessi (00:40:44):

Okay. I think I kept calling it, um, marketing shine.


Brian (00:40:51):

Look, use whatever words work, work for you. Right. Um, okay. And then you want to create one piece of content each week.


Jessi (00:41:02):

Right so I don’t think that this is at this point, it’s the highest leverage activity. So that’s one of the reasons that I had it ranked lower. But my idea behind this was that if I am going out and generating future leads, I would like for them to look up who is Jessi and see that I have a track record of sharing my expertise and my knowledge.


Brian (00:41:28):

I think it’s a good, I actually think it’s a good investment of your time right now, because that kind of stuff takes a time to get any traction. And you want people to know, you know, on LinkedIn, I’m not saying you have to do it. I dunno if you’re on Facebook, but if I’m personal stuff, I’m not saying you have to do it. But I think on LinkedIn and you should be, you know, at least let people know what you do and that you’re active. Right. Because a lot of people say I’m a realtor. And then it’s like, oh yeah…and I also have two full-time jobs and I cut hair at night. And so I think it, I think it is going to benefit you and look, you probably have a pretty good network. Right. I don’t know if you, do you have a good network on LinkedIn? Have you built up your network or no?


Jessi (00:42:12):

I did. But majority of them are from my previous company or other agents out there.


Brian (00:42:21):

Well that’s fine. We call those people investors. Let me call those people investors and tenants and all that kind of stuff. Do you think you need to build up your LinkedIn profile? Not your profile, but your network?


Jessi (00:42:32):

I do because I think there is where a lot of the real estate residential business comes from your own personal connections and social media accounts. I think that LinkedIn is a really the social media source for commercial real estate.


Brian (00:42:47):

Right. So I, this is, this is what I think. I think that you should have a LinkedIn pillar. Okay. And that LinkedIn pillar should go something like, you know, five, three and one. Right. And here’s what I mean, you should invite, you should reach out to at least five people you want in your network every week. So they don’t call it friending, whatever they call it connecting. Right. So send out five invites. Right. And I don’t care if those are potential investors, potential landlords, but you know, whatever it is. Okay. Right. Okay. Send out five a week. Just be consistent. You can do more one week if you feel like it. Right. But five a week, five a week, five a week. I think you should do a, we’ll call it two for now two interactions a week. Meaning you comment on someone else’s post. Because when you comment on someone else’s posts, then your stuff will more likely show up in their feed. Right. The kind of the algorithms and all that. But also everyone loves being validated.


Jessi (00:44:01):

Yes. They’re more willing to validate you back as well.


Brian (00:44:04):

So they’ll, you’re more likely to, to them to notice you that you even exist. Right. Right. Cause you, cause you validated them and you know, that’s why everyone posts, they want to be validated. And then the one is you should put up one post and that post can be you sharing something and giving your opinion on it. It could be just whatever right. Real estate involved. Right.


Jessi (00:44:26):

Right. And I think that that’s beneficial because if I’m building, if I’m sharpening my axe, building my knowledge of reading these articles, listening to these podcasts, I can gain a lot of content through that. That will then be able to be, yeah, you don’t have to go nuts.


Brian (00:44:45):

Your, your goal is not to be a thought leader. So just sharing other pieces of content and then putting your own like commenting, like, ah, see below blah, blah, blah. I think this, you know, in that, um, but I also think you probably, you said, do you keep an email database? Like, can you send an email to all of your prospects and clients?


Jessi (00:45:05):



Brian (00:45:07):

So do you think you should be doing that once a week or is that overkill?


Jessi (00:45:12):

Right now once a week I’m sending out just listings that I have and that goes out to potential agents that might be interested in bringing their clients to my listings. And I think that that helps, but I think that there’s more that I can be doing there. I think that I can be really promoting different investors. I have to see if there’s any opportunities out there for them, or even using the email blast feature to talk to my investor prospects or any different prospects that I have for different reasons to say here’s opportunities that I’m thinking about for you. And here’s why.


Brian (00:45:55):

So these investors, like, let’s say you’re on your list as an investor, right. There’s probably a pretty good chance. I have other realtors looking for me too. Right?


Jessi (00:46:05):

There is, it depends on if there’s a contract or not. Um, but yeah, there could be other people reaching out to you as well. If you’re a known investor in the area.


Brian (00:46:16):

Got it. I guess what I’m saying is, do you need to make, you know, with your focus on multiple businesses right now, do you need to make, do you feel like you need to reach out to them once a week, just so they remember you exist or do you think the list, actually the listings might accomplish that as long as they all get that right?


Jessi (00:46:36):

If they all get it, um, but there’s two different audiences getting the listings then are getting the, I’m not necessarily using that as a target them as a target audience for my listings,


Brian (00:46:49):

All investors are getting your listings and all the agents that you know of right now are getting your listings. Right?


Jessi (00:46:55):

All agents are getting my listings, not necessarily all the investors, because they might be investing. I’m looking for them as investor. I’m thinking of them as investors in properties, themselves, not necessarily leasing opportunities for new tenants. Got it.


Brian (00:47:16):

Okay. So, what reason would you have to reach out to Those investors? Like, is that, is that kind of like when you find a property through your, or whatever, you’re like, “Hey, take a look at this one”.


Jessi (00:47:31):

Yes. So there could be, right now, there’s a lot of office buildings for sale, for example, that are being sold for lower, but they have a lot of vacancies. So I would be able to say here’s some potential opportunities out there if you’re looking for this type of investment option. But I don’t think that it’s really something that should be measured weekly. I think that that would be at this point in time, I think that that would be overkill with the amount of investors that I have.


Brian (00:48:02):

Right. So you, so you’re saying it’s an, on an as needed basis, but is it going to slip through the cracks or does it naturally happen cause you find opportunities?


Jessi (00:48:11):

Well, that’s, I was thinking of, so I don’t think it necessarily has to be sent out on a weekly basis, but I think as I’m analyzing properties, I should be thinking through content and maybe having this as a goal once a month to be getting this out to potential investors, but not, I mean, the same properties are a lot of times listed on there for a long period of time. So I don’t think that it could be something that would be missed if I don’t get it out every week. Right.


Brian (00:48:40):

Okay. So yeah, maybe you should just put in your account, like, here’s something I do. Right. Some things aren’t pillars, they’re just tasks. Right. And so if there’s something I want to do once a month, I’ll just put a repeating thing in my calendar just in the morning when it’s not going to overlap with any, any meetings or anything. And I’ll just put it in red and not like, for example, one of the things I do you read in my book about re-epiphanies, right. And the, I have something called an epiphany card where, you know, whenever I think of something or I know something works and I don’t want to forget that it works I write it on my re-epiphany card. And then once a month I have a reminder to look at my re-epiphany card. Right.


Jessi (00:49:26):

I actually started doing that. Um, I loved that idea and I started doing that it’s with the idea, in addition to the ideas one which has helped me a lot is the re-epiphanies. So both of them have been helping me.


Brian (00:49:41):

So my point is I have to remember, okay. I have to remember, I need to remember to look at that thing. So if you just put a standing appointment, like the third Wednesday of every month, it doesn’t matter what, which one you pick what’ll happen is once a month you’ll be reminded like, Oh, I got to put together that list for my investors or that email. And then you’ll put it on your to-do list, your weekly to-do list or whatever it is. I don’t, I don’t, like you said, I don’t think at this point it’s going to be a pillar, but I do think the LinkedIn, the five, three, and one where it’s five connects, you know, two, five, two, one, two interactions. And then one post, I think if you do that each week, you’ll start building up your LinkedIn network for when you’re ready.


Jessi (00:50:31):

Yeah. I love this one. The LinkedIn pillar, I think is great.


Brian (00:50:36):

The running, walking 15 miles. That’s an easy one. Well, it’s not easy, but it’s a pillar.


Jessi (00:50:43):

Speak for yourself haha


Brian (00:50:45):

The schedule one event for your kid, we know that.


Jessi (00:50:49):

The running, walking. So, I was trying to be, I’m trying to run more than walk, but it’s tending to be the walking more than running, just the way that the schedule and my kids work but do you think that if that, if it’s consistently happening through walking, but not running, I should just change it to a run pillar?


Brian (00:51:16):

Well, I think if you find yourself that happening, you can, again, you can do one of these, like you could do it 5/15 right? I need to do 15 miles a week at minimum, at least five has to be running. Does that make sense? And again, I’m not saying that’s the right number, but if you can, you can set it up that way, like five and 15, 15 total, but at minimum five have to be running.


Jessi (00:51:45):

Right. Okay.


Brian (00:51:49):

Um, okay. So, so let’s go back to this update, prospect pipeline and review things. So I, I guess in your business, I’m having a hard time, or at least the way you described it, understanding the difference between a client and a prospect. And here’s the reason because of the kind of business you’re in clients are kind of like always prospects. You’re always trying to find them the next deal. Right? Whereas it’s not like, okay, I closed that prospect. Right. He’s done. Like, he’s now a client. I don’t have to worry about him anymore. Right. And then, so am I on, am I, I mean, it seems like it’s pretty much the same thing at this point. Right?


Jessi (00:52:35):

Right. It’s not like residential real estate where if you find somebody a house, unless they happen to want to move again, and then future, you have them as an immediate client again, this is you hang on. Your prospect pipeline is so important because you hang on to people who you’re looking for, different lease opportunities for their lease is going to be up in three to five years potentially. And so then you could be looking for them again. And so it’s important to be on top of that, um, on the flip side…


Brian (00:53:08):

But also investors… Because they buy one investment property off you there could be another one coming up.


Jessi (00:53:14):

Yeah. They’re not one and done properties.


Brian (00:53:17):

Okay. So to me, this is the pillar that I would create then. I would say update and review. Now, what are you calling this client prospect database? Do you have a name for it or pipeline? Okay. So again, you’re just calling all clients prospects, which is kind of what I was getting kind of what I was getting at. Okay. Right. So I would have the pillar of update and review your prospect pipeline each week. Now, what does that actually entail? How do you finish that pillar? The update part. Basically you look at your calendar since the last time you, or you look at your phone records, you know, whatever, you have to do your notes, whatever, since the previous week when you did it. Right. Right. And you need to make sure anyone, you, you know, that something happened, like you added someone or something changed, right.


Brian (00:54:15):

That it gets updated. Correct. Cause I’m guessing between your notes, your calendar, your call log, whatever you can probably within a week or so, remember which ones have to be updated. Right. I can remember that. Yeah. So that’s the first component of that pillar. Okay. Then the review component is you should then go down your prospect list, line by line. Right. And anyone who you feel needs some kind of touch or outreach, they get it. Okay. So that pillar could take you 15 minutes or it could take you two hours depending on how much you have going on. Right. But that’s how you complete that pillar. You update it and then you review it line by line and then nothing falls through the cracks.


Jessi (00:55:01):

Okay. And so is this what that review is? What you were associating with? The follow-up part of it as well. Right?


Brian (00:55:09):

That’s kind of, that is follow up in your world because if you’re working on a deal, like what I do for mine, I have something like this. Right. The things that are most relevant and recent and whatever, I move them to the top anyway. Right. And so every week it’s like, okay, I’m working on something with that person. I’m working on something with that person. Right. So that, that encompasses everything that, that basically is to make sure you stay on top of opportunities.


Jessi (00:55:39):

Yeah. And I think that’s so important. And I, it’s critical because even today I was in my prospect pipeline and there was somebody that I had talked to previously and all of a sudden I gained this new listing. And so I looked at it and I reached out to this person again, saying I actually have something if you’re still interested, that I think would be perfect for you here but had I not had that open, I would have probably completely forgotten about it.


Brian (00:56:05):

Right. And the idea is you can’t forget now because you have to see their name every week. Right. I mean, mine’s, mine is super simple. Mine is literally three columns or four columns. I have, I have a status column. So like, I’ll, if someone’s, if I’m working on something with them, like I want to make, you know, there are the top, I’ll call them like, , a and so that way I can sort it. Right. And the newest ones are at the top. That’s just my thing. But really it’s just three real columns, which is their name. Right. The second column is date of last contact. Okay. So anytime I reach out to them, I, I hit control a semi-colon or whatever it is that in Excel that puts in today’s date. Right. And then the third column is my notes. What am I working on with them? Okay. In your case, it might be a little more like, what are they like, what are they looking for? Who knows? But you want to keep it pretty, you can keep it pretty simple.


Jessi (00:57:03):

And I think that’s maybe where I might be going wrong is I feel like it’s so administrative. And sometimes I’m saying, how valuable is this? Because I have way too many columns in it right now. Are you having contact information in there or do you just feel like it’s in my phone or it’s in my email that I’m fine?


Brian (00:57:22):

It is. It’s I, the way my email’s set up and most of them, I already have their email. I can just start typing their name or whatever, and it’ll populate their email. Okay. Um, or I can do a search forum. Right. I mean, that’s how I know. Like sometimes I forget what the last thing I sent them is I just look, I use my email is kind of that repository. Right, right.


Jessi (00:57:42):

Yeah. And that’s what I generally ended up going to anyway. I think some of the things that I really want to try to avoid while I’m building efficiencies is that I’m not putting too many efficiencies in place that it becomes even more work because I’m putting all of this stuff. And


Brian (00:58:01):

To me, to me, this pillar is not administrative right. To me, this pillar is how you get paid.


Jessi (00:58:08):

Right. This is strategic, and


Brian (00:58:10):

This is the number one way you get paid the way you get paid in business is walking opportunities across the finish line. Right. Staying on top of them. If you’re waiting for people to be proactive, good luck. Right. And so to me, yeah. Update and review your prospect pipeline sheet or whatever, you’re calling it, do that once a week, do that once a week. And nothing’s going to look again, it’s a serious pillar once your business really gets going, right. It’s a serious pillar. And eventually you might realize like some people, you might just say, yeah, I’m putting those on the, you know, maybe someday I’ll reach back out to them, but, you know, um, so the last thing I want to talk about is that very first pillar and the, and then we’ll, we’ll finalize, this is the, the building efficiencies. Right? Right. This is one you, you read in the book where I talk about reference documents.


Brian (00:59:04):

Right. And I, I like, in my online pillar course, I have an entire video just on this. Right. Because the, the reference document to me, the last thing I want you doing every week is starting from scratch or doing what you feel like doing. So to me, I would have, and, and the way I would do a reference document for your building efficiencies is I would have three columns. All right. Okay. And before you start that pillar each week or whatever it is, you, you know, you, um, you open that thing up, the first column should be your to-do list. Okay. And, you know, in other words, what you’re currently working on, right. What the next step is and the next step and the next step, and then future steps. Right. Okay. So right now your to-do list could have, you know, finish whatever you called it, finished populating that software.


Brian (01:00:04):

Right. That would be like the next thing to do. Right. You know what I mean? Just so you can keep track. You don’t have like, to-do lists all over the place. It’s, you know, this is where I left off. These are the things I want to do after that. So on and so forth. Does that make sense? Okay. That makes sense. Okay. The second column would just be ideas, as you read and learn about building efficiencies in business, which you’re going to be, you know, in commercial real estate, or sorry, property management, you know that 90 minutes a week, you’re going to come up with ideas and you don’t just want to jump on every fricking idea that you have. But so that’s a place to keep ideas that you think of, right. Very specific ideas like, Oh, I should do this. Or I can do that.


Brian (01:00:48):

Or I, you know, and then the third column would just be resources. Let’s say you find a really good site on property management. And you’re like, man, they got a ton of stuff on here. I could spend three years on here. Right. Right. Well, don’t spend three years on there, but put that in the third column. Okay. That website or this person, or whatever, people are, great resources, other property managers, people who are in that business, just simply talking to them and going, what do you do about this? And they’d be like, Oh, there’s a, you know what, there’s actually a website. You can just upload that to, you know, that’s the classic who not how, right. Right. You don’t need to figure out how to do everything. Forgot who already knows how to do it


Jessi (01:01:31):

And just duplicate it right. Or hire them. Right. Exactly.


Brian (01:01:36):

Or at some point you’re probably going to hire people to do stuff, but yeah. Or hire them. So that will kind of be like my, my reference document. Okay. Right. That, that would be my reference document.


Jessi (01:01:47):

Now, how do you, so you have the reference documents. I have the 8×11 card and that’s more of my high-level weekly to do list, including my personal things. So do you just have you have a reference document for this one pillar, and then you also have the, the weekly document that you have that has these ideas and to-do lists as well. Right.


Brian (01:02:13):

So a reference document can be a lot of things. It can be an Excel sheet. It can be a word document, could be paper file. It depends on what the reference documents for in this case, you have this Excel sheet, right. The idea behind the reference document is that the pillar forces you. Okay. The pillar forces you to open that reference document. Okay. So it’s not just a black hole of data. You’re never going to look at, it’s a repository of information that you’re going to access each week. Okay. Right. Great. And so I’ll send you a video on how to plan your week, plan your day, let me write that down real quick or I’ll forget. Um, but so what I do is do you remember in the book, the, um, on the, so I plan my week with the index card, the oversized index card, the eight and a half by five. Yes. That’s what I’m using to. Okay. So that’s how I plan my week. Remember that middle column is blank and that’s where you’re just supposed to put down ideas that pop into your head.


Jessi (01:03:25):

Yeah. That’s what I’ve started doing. Right.


Brian (01:03:27):

Those ideas before I rewrite that card, the following week. All right. 80% of those ideas are crap. I jot down just to get it out of my head. I’m like, I’m never going to do that. Right. The ones that survive go into reference documents. Okay. That’s a great idea. That’s kind of how the cycle works and then I don’t have to worry about it. Cause I know I’m going to see that when I open that reference document, when it’s time to do that pillar. Right. And then I plan my day, my day gets planned with the legal pad. Yes. Okay. Just to be clear. So that’s kind of the cycle of the, those middle notes in that reference document.


Jessi (01:04:10):

Yeah. That’s the margin, the appointments that you have set. Right.


Brian (01:04:14):

Okay. All right. So let me do a quick review of your pillars. Okay. Just make sure we’re on the same page. I have 90 /4 hours building efficiencies. Yes. I have one hour of analyzing properties, read two commercial real estate articles…


Jessi (01:04:34):

Or one podcast or one podcast. Okay.


Brian (01:04:39):

Right. That’s kind of like an equivalent. I have 15/60 sharpening the axe on, you know, marketing and sales business, at least 15 minutes of that has to be on closing. That’s what the 15 represents. Right. Right. Okay. LinkedIn, five, two, and one five connection requests, two interactions in one post. Yep. Update and review your prospect pipeline each week. Those are kind of your six business pillars. Then we have run/walk 15 miles, five 15. Oh, you did. Okay. I was just saying that was an idea. Okay. So 5/15 and then schedule one social event for the kids each week. Yes. Okay. So those are your pillars and the way you want to feel, you know, when you kind of take a look back at them as look, as long as I, you know, do these six things for your business and the other ones, you know, these eight things I know on Friday night, I had a great week. It’s just a matter of time and pressure.


Jessi (01:05:57):

Yes. I will. I want to have the Friday feeling


Brian (01:06:00):

The Friday night feeling. Yes. Um, go ahead.


Jessi (01:06:04):

Sorry. I just had a question regarding the updating, the prospect spreadsheet. Have you seen that people have, because I think this tends to be in the world of sales, a lot of people’s pillars. Um, but in the, when you’re updating, you’re reviewing, do you think people have found more success doing at the end of the week? Like as a Friday before the close of business or okay.


Brian (01:06:28):

Because you don’t want to be following up with people on Fridays right. Every week. Right. In other words, when you do that, when you tackle that pillar, that’s going to be your follow-up. That’s when people are going to be getting emails from you, phone calls from you. Right. Right. So this is not what I said, this is not an administrative thing. This could take you 90 minutes to do. Right. Right. But because you might call someone, you might feel like someone needs a phone call and guess what? You might catch them on the phone and now you’re yapping. Right.


Jessi (01:07:02):

Right. So sticking that to the end of the week wouldn’t necessarily be advantageous. It’s when you feel like you have the bandwidth to be able to complete that task and do it effectively.


Brian (01:07:15):

Yeah. And you don’t have to do it. Look, if it becomes this thing where it’s a lot, it’s just starts getting longer and longer. Each time you do it, then you can break it up. Like, like when you go to plan your day, one of the things you can put in your priority list. Right. You know, that I talk about there in the book that left column on the legal pad, you could just put, you know, maybe you’re like, I’m not gonna finish it, but I’m gonna spend 30 minutes updating and reviewing it. Right. And then the next day it could be finished, you know, updating and reviewing it. Same thing with your building efficiencies. You, you know, you can decide the third, most important thing to do on a particular day is to spend, you know, at least 90 minutes on your building efficiency stuff, that particular day. Okay. It doesn’t have to be all or nothing. It just depends on the pillar.


Jessi (01:08:01):

Right. I like that. Yeah. I feel very good about these.


Brian (01:08:10):

So yeah, you’re kind of, I guess the way I would summarize it, Jessi, is you know, you’re running Jessi Incorporated.


Jessi (01:08:19):

Yes. I like the sound of that. Alright? Alright.


Brian (01:08:27):

Thanks for listening to another episode of Simplify Your Strategy, Magnify Your Results. If you know someone you think could benefit from this episode, be their hero and share it with them. If you’d like a free copy of my book, or you want to be considered as a guest on a future episode, head on over to Have a great day and thanks again.

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