Tell me a little bit about your journey. How did you get into Real Estate?
I found myself in a position of needing a job. Someone I went to the gym with mentioned that I should look at Keller Williams. I interviewed with Chelsea (team owner) as an EA and I got hired. I found that I wanted to be an agent.
What made you want to be an agent?
I wasn’t really using my skillset in the best way. At the time I was EA and Transaction Coordinator but it wasn’t fulfilling for me. I didn’t feel like it was touching everything I was passionate about, like the relationship piece and being face-to-face with people.
It seems like you are constantly challenging yourself to be more.
I am really driven by mastery and different layers within that. I feel like I have moved up a lot, because I am constantly pursuing mastery. When I was a buyers agent, I felt like it was a well-oiled machine and then I pursued listings. I like working in all of the layers, not just jumping around but gaining the skills and knowledge along the journey. That’s what mastery is about to me.
How do you know when it is time to move to what’s next?
A combination of not being challenged and not feeling fulfilled. I start to feel bored, I get an intuition that I am ready for something new. It is not about changing what I am doing, but pursuing the next layer or level. Once I feel comfortable and confident, I know I am ready to pursue what’s next.
Do you ever worry about hitting a ceiling?
I don’t. The coolest part about real estate is that you can make it whatever your goals are. How many jobs can you be like, “I only want to serve the appetizer?” In Real Estate, you get to break the job down into pieces and be a specialist.
You’ve worked with YPP for a couple of years now. What is your favorite thing about working with YPP?
Earlier in this interview it is clear I appreciate mastery, I don’t think I could be getting the mastery I strive for with any other company. I am surrounded by masters.
It is the most human company I’ve ever worked with. I don’t think I could have committed or seen the importance of giving myself grace if I wasn’t around people doing the same and preaching the same. There is a consistent message of we grow together, learn together, we are all humans trying to be better. I see the same message from everyone in the organization. It is clear that everyone is in alignment.
What has your return (ROI) looked like from your coaching relationship?
I am always the product of my results but nothing will guide the course like coaching. Every year I get closer to meeting or exceeding my goals. Every year I set really aggressive goals and every year I get closer to hitting it or beating it because of the alignment/check-ins/constant coaching.
In what ways are you pursuing mastery right now?
Leadership. I think these layers have built confidence and validity for me to step outside of myself and help others walk the journey and go through the battles. I think it’s helpful to have a coach and mentor help you say, “I’ve been there, let’s go through this together”.
What have you learned as you’ve moved into a leadership role?
Just because you are in a leadership role doesn’t make you a good leader. I want to see others aspire, reach their goals, and be a part of their journey.
I feel a little like a fish out of water sometimes, but not as much as if I just jumped into leadership without doing the other roles. I’ve learned a lot of lessons around patience, understanding, and being open to being a good leader. It feels good to say I’ve sat in all the seats and been able to be in all positions.
What has the shift into leadership been like?
It’s required me to think differently. One thing I’ve noticed is that some things in leadership have felt like they are against my thinking or my programming. It’s instinctually easier for me to trust systems vs. people. Not in a negative way, systems are predictable, navigating that with humans is a whole new beast.
What did you notice when you started to work on getting results through others?
I think at first I thought other people were the problem, that they need to communicate better or work faster. However, it is a 2-way street. I have to learn how to be patient, set expectations, and work into becoming a better communicator.
What are your thoughts on the idea that talent will push you and the right person will make it work?
I think it sets the wrong expectations. You have to water the plant; if they are getting good water and good sunlight they are going to grow. Outside of that, it’s not necessarily about talent, it’s about happiness, strength, alignment. We’ve generalized that sometimes when someone is not successful, that means they are not talented, but in different sunlight and different water they would thrive.
How do you determine that someone needs different water/sunlight or that they are going to grow through this challenge?
I remember when I was new to the industry, Chelsea told Sharon, “Jessica is going to have to sink or swim.” I thought that was so rude. Now, in hindsight, I can see that had I not been allowed to fall down, I wouldn’t have grown at the rate I have. I know that I have to allow for mistakes in any position.
I’ll be the first to admit that my first instinct is usually, I’m unhappy or they are not the right person. I’ve found time is on my side. I need to give it a moment.
When there are mistakes, I will get immediately charged, and I know that once I can unplug and not make it about myself, I can connect with them. That space invites the conversation to find out and set new expectations.
For me it is about reflection, even looking at my last showing agent who wasn’t a fit. I think sometimes your values don’t align with a person and you have to get real with that and make peace with it.
I think a lot of us work so hard to make it work and if we give permission for it not to, it opens the door and makes things a little bit more clear.
Recently you did the 75 Hard, can you explain a little bit about what that is?
A mental toughness exercise, committing to yourself for 75 days. Workout 30 minutes to an hour twice a day, one has to be outside. Read 10 pages a day. Stick to a diet/meal plan of your choice. A gallon of water a day.
What did you learn through that experience?
I’m surprised how much patience and grace it taught me. We talk a lot about how your self-talk has to be better. You wake up and put yourself first for 75 days, that’s a long stretch. You are breaking a habit at that point. Mentally, I feel like it transformed me and my self-talk pretty drastically.
I learned to be okay with “you are doing your best”. Before I would have beat myself up. With 75 Hard I had to sacrifice things and it had to be okay. I had to get purposeful and real. Sometimes that meant setting boundaries. I was more purposeful with my time.
How do you define success?
I have learned it’s more about the journey and not a destination. I’ve found myself having to re-align often in my life. Pursue being in alignment and stay the course. Making sure you are true to yourself the whole way through. Reflection, if you are getting sick constantly, not sleeping, or something is wrong with your health or your happiness, it is a sign.
What is a book you think everyone should read?
The Go-Giver by Bob Burg and John David Mann.
If you could put any saying on a billboard what would it be?
If it’s not okay, it’s not the end.