Hi Tara! Thank you for taking the time to speak with us today and provide insight to your pathway to success. You changed careers to get into real estate. How long have you been in Real Estate now?
I have been in Real Estate for 10 years, 11 years in October.
What made you decide to switch to Real Estate?
I went to a business Real Estate boot-camp to learn more about investing in real estate, and I really liked what I saw. While I was there, I started meeting and talking with more realtors. Before that, I didn’t think you could have a really successful career in Real Estate, but the people I was meeting were able to change my view on how successful you could become in the real estate market. I loved that it was a business I could run myself!
It’s interesting, you were very successful in the corporate world. What caused you to say “I’m going to make the jump” into a new career?
With all the shenanigans you have to deal with in corporate America in sales, I needed a change. It was a significant life decision at that juncture because I was well established as a sales professional in technology. It was a difficult decision to leave a career I had been in for 12 years to go out on my own with no safety net into a new venture. I was doing well and I was established, so many people did not understand the switch I wished to make. I was working for Fortune 100 companies, so to many, it seemed to be a big gamble.
In short, I had the resume, but I wasn’t happy so I wanted to try something new. I had no passion for what I was doing.
It sounds like you wanted to have more influence over your business and the direction of it.
I like that in Real Estate you get what you put into it. If you work hard, you earn what you work for; it’s all on your shoulders. I will always gamble on myself. I knew I could be successful, but it doesn’t mean it wasn’t still scary.
One thing we appreciate about you is that you have a great ability to take a leap and push yourself. You never settle. Your entrance into the real estate industry is a great example of that. Even 10 years ago, you were already taking risks in order to go after something greater.
I feel like everything that I choose to do, I will do it with excellence and pride. When I see an opening or opportunity that presents itself, I take that as an opportunity to move forward. Opportunity and risk can be seen as stepping stones rather than obstacles.
If I wanted to become more daring, take more risks, and stop settling, what advice would you give me?
Well, first, you should define your goal. Identify what you want, take the lead, and go for it. If you’re crystal clear on what that goal is, business or personal, you have to put a plan in place. I had my son on my own and I was ready to be a mom. I was getting to this age where I knew time was starting to run out, and so I asked myself “Is this going to be a defining moment for you where you will look back when older and have regrets if you do not attempt your goal?” I do that with most of my decisions and if I feel that it’s a situation where I need to pursue it, I put a plan in place and execute that plan.
So you create clarity. “What is it I want? Do I have a clear plan for it?” If not, you start to create and plan and take steps forward.
Yes, exactly. Get clear on what you want and then ask yourself, “How do I pursue it? What should I do?” Don’t worry about what other people think, and focus on what you want. I have women who will text or call with all types of questions and I will help them as I’ve been through it, myself. When you’ve been through things, You can put people on a path of guidance, but it’s ultimately their choice on whether to follow through.
I love that you don’t let doubt or difficulties stop you. Was there doubt that crept up in your planning? How did you move through that?
Sometimes you have doubts and you feel like you don’t have the support that you want. I leaned on some of my best friends to help me work through my doubt to support me. My coach was also a great source of help for me. When you have 1, 2, or even 3 people on your team, it really makes things a lot easier to make those hard decisions and make things happen for yourself. It’s not uncommon to be a little nervous or scared. Just focus on what is right for you.
How do you avoid becoming complacent or settling?
Growth is really important to me. That’s how I rate myself. I can’t look to my left or to my right, but I’ll look in the rear-view mirror and go with the options that will help me become a better person, every day.
It sounds like you are very grounded in who you are. How does that play into your Real Estate Career?
I am passionate about getting my clients to attain their goals. I am trustworthy and I am their coach through the real estate interaction. Communication styles can be different, and we’re all different, so my passion helps me bring that to the table every day with those I work with.
Your real estate business is very relationship-oriented, did that transfer over from your previous work in corporate sales?
Yes, establishing those connections is a relationship game and I care about what is going on. At the end of the day, I want my client to make a great decision, and that’s why people continue to hire me. I want to become their resource. I want to learn about them and I work to stay connected to them. Just like when I was in Corporate America, I’m looking to deepen my relationships and connect with new people all of the time.
I know you are someone who is very disciplined. What are some of the habits you have that have created some of your success?
I am disciplined to structure and I’m old school. I like to talk on the phone and I like to call people. I think thank you notes and writing handwritten notes in the mail are great ways to maintain contact beyond just phone calls. I like to separate myself from the pack and keep up with people in many different ways.
What would you say are three things you need to do to be successful in Real Estate?
- You have to stick with it and have stamina. Do what you say you’re going to do and know what you’re talking about
- You have to sell your value
- Educate yourself
How do you get educated?
I study the market. When I was newer, I would also study agents. When in the office, if anyone was around, I would pick their brains or pick up leads from them when they were too busy. That’s a big recommendation for those who are working in an office is to learn from those who have been in the business longer. Stay connected to the top professionals in your industry.
How do you define success?
As long as I have a lot of options available at my disposal, in business and my personal life, that’s success to me. It’s the freedom to choose the lifestyle I want and choose to live. It’s staying connected, and serving others at the highest level.
What has been your biggest lesson from working with YPP?
It’s the little things that add up over time. The things you do consistently, on a daily basis, will build into something bigger. I learn many things every day, personally and in business, when I’m with YPP. When I am on my coaching call, I approach the call with the mindset “I am learning something today.” I feel like over the past 3 to 4 years I have elevated myself to become a better leader and mother. To me, that’s huge.
What is a book you think everyone should read?
The Gap and The Gain. It’s really fabulous. YPP has been teaching the main philosophy for years, but everyone has a different way of wording it. Performance is based on where we come from and looking at your progress, instead of comparing your achievements to others.
If you could put any saying on a billboard, what would it be?
Have the belief that you can be better every day.