Get Rid of Your Junk

“The idea of being all things to all people is a thing of the past.”
– Michael Dell

I recently watched an interview on YouTube featuring the CEO of Nike, Mark Parker, and Robert Safian, Editor of Fast Company. Parker mentions a conversation he had with the CEO of Apple, Steve Jobs, where he asked Jobs if he had any advice for him as he took the helm at Nike.

Jobs paused for a moment but then offered up these powerful words of wisdom to Parker:

“Nike makes some of the best products in the world,” Jobs told Parker, “Products that you lust after, absolutely beautiful stunning products. But you also make a lot of crap. Just get rid of the crappy stuff and focus on the good stuff.”

It was not long ago that car giant, General Motors, was facing bankruptcy. What did General Motors do to start the turnaround for their company? They reduced the number of brands and focused their time and attention on becoming great at a select few well-performing products and brands. Is it working? I would suggest so far so good.

Let’s look at a large number of real estate sales professionals who are what I refer to as “general practitioners.” These “jack- of- all-trade” agents show property one day, lease space the next, list a house an hour outside of their own market and search for rental for someone who happened to call in while they were on duty.

Whenever we try to be too much for too many people, we will never be great at anything. We fall into what is called an opportunity trap and take anything and everything that comes our way.

The great real estate sales professionals specialize. They may specialize in a geographical area, a price range, a real estate type such as commercial or residential, but they specialize nonetheless. Who do you believe is more sought-after and therefore commands higher compensation – a general practitioner or a brain surgeon, a general accountant or a tax specialist?

Bottom line, specialists are perceived as experts and in most cases are able to provide more value to the customer, and therefore command higher compensation.

What junk are you hanging on to in your business? Spending too much time with unqualified prospects, spending too much on non-dollar productive activities? Focus on what you do great and get rid of the junk!

Until next time, make it count!

Richard Robbins