Winston Churchill eloquently said, “Never let a good crisis go to waste.” COVID-19 has presented itself as an opportunity to flounder or flourish. Crises gives way to opportunities that would not normally be present. However, the onus is on us to seize the lesson.
Quarantine and physical distancing has forced us to adapt, learn and grow. Applications like Zoom that, perhaps, we were gleefully avoiding, have become a staple in almost every business. Getting comfortable with virtual meetings and remote workplaces has changed the way we do business, perhaps forever.
As COVID-19 continues to impact lives around the world, we must remember to never lose the lesson difficult times bring us.
Here are 7 Lessons to Learn from COVID-19
Expect the unexpected.
Of course, no one (except Bill Gates), could have predicted a pandemic of this magnitude, however, there is a lesson to be learned. Change is the one constant we can count on with absolute certainty so taking steps to ensure we are prepared for just about anything is the secret to success in volatile times.
Until the spring of 2020, the real estate market in most locations was exceptionally strong. However, as Baby Boomers know, the real estate market is not immune to volatility. In 1989, we saw record declines in pricing and sales volume. In 2008, US real estate dropped significantly and Canada markets stalled due to a global recession brought on by the US mortgage crisis.
On the flip side, in 2018, some markets in Canada were so hot that the government intervened with legislation designed to slow the market down.
Today, COVID-19 is injecting fear into economies around the world and we simply must prepare ourselves for just about anything. We must expect the unexpected to succeed in changing times.
Be financially prepared for a cash flow crisis.
According to Forbes, 78% of people live paycheck to paycheck. I’ve been in business long enough to know that cash is king. Experiencing 9/11 and understanding how life can be flipped upside down without notice, taught me to always be prepared.
I always recommend having at least 6 months of cash flow at your disposal. If this isn’t possible for you, work your way there. Albert Einstein once wrote, “A calm and modest life brings more happiness than the pursuit of success combined with constant restlessness.” Just remember, that living simply, is still living well. Everything you own in life, owns a piece of you.
Our health is our wealth.
It’s said that the person with their health has 1000 dreams. The person without it has only one.
The entire world was shut down with the motivation to save lives. The health of the individual outweighed the health of the economy. This is a message that we all need to absorb and take note of.
There is nothing more important than our health. Whether it be eating better or drinking less, working out more or simply taking a walk once a day, health must remain a priority for us all.
Flexibility and adaptability are essential skills.
Like it or not, COVID-19 forced us all to change.
For those people on the sidelines waiting for things to return to normal, I’d suggest you may be waiting a long time.
Now is the time to embrace change, resist sitting on the sidelines, and learn to adapt to a new way of doing business.
Zoom CMA’s, virtual open houses, virtual market updates and more are just some of the positive ripple effects quarantine and physical distancing has had on our businesses. Ready or not, COVID-19 has thrust you into uncharted territory which, with a little flexibility and adaptability, can prove to be a very good thing.
Trust and long term relationships are non-negotiables.
Whenever there is confusion or uncertainty in a marketplace, there is a thirst for credible information from the people we know, respect and trust. However, building trust and long term relationships takes time and requires consistency in delivering ongoing, relevant value to your clients and referral sources.
Your lifetime referral system (repeat and referral strategy) has always been the keystone of any successful real estate business, and those who have been proactive and consistent in delivering value to their clients – are seeing the benefits of their hard work today in COVID.
Adversity reveals our true character.
If there’s one thing I know for sure, it’s this. You choose your attitude. You can choose how you respond to adversity and challenge. You can choose to wallow and wait it out, or you can choose to face it head on. Just know that the decisions you make today will impact your life for the foreseeable future.
Real estate is an essential service.
How lucky are we to be in this great industry?
While other industries have been forced to shut their doors, ours are being kept open because of the service we provide the community. Do not take this lightly. This is your opportunity to provide invaluable service and insight to people who need it most.
Learning without action doesn’t lead to change. COVID-19 is teaching us all something, the question is, are you paying attention?