Monday, September 28, 2015

Once a Year

Hello all,

"Once a Year"

We appreciate that most everyone understands that we have some procedures and rules that need to be followed. However "Once a Year" I need to send an email like this to let you know there are some areas in the office we need to tighten up on. This is a general email for everyone and just a reminder for most. We will be keeping an eye on things and will follow up individually when needed. Here are the areas of concern.        

Copiers- The copier bills have been through the roof. We do not charge for copies in the office however remember the copiers are not for marketing in color or black and white, they are for printing day to day business items and small color jobs, 25 or less. If you print more then 25 color copies you need to let us know the number and you will be charged .25 cents each. Please work with us on this, the copiers get very expensive.    

Contracts- All ratified contracts must be turned into the office within 5 business days of being ratified. This is Maryland law and we can incur fines if we are audited. If you have anything you have not turned in get them in immediately. There are several consistent abusers of this, it must stop and contracts need to be turned in when ratified. 

Credit Reports- Staff is under strict instructions not to pull credit reports for rental applications unless they have the money in their hand. We have been paying out our money each month on this for uncollected reports. If you have questions about this please do not ask staff, ask me directly.

Cover Sheets- Cover sheets need to be filled out completely when contracts and listings are turned into the office. Please take the time to do it properly. 

Office Supplies- Office supplies are, well, for the office not your home office or your marketing. Please do not abuse this and I really do not want to have a conversation with anyone on this subject.

We pride ourselves on being an office without copier codes, locked office supplies, ease of operation... we just ask you to always keep in mind that we want to keep things simple and affordable but we need to operate a business.  

Enjoy the coffee,

Monday Morning Coffee

"Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs even though checkered by failure, than to rank with those poor sprits who neither enjoy nor suffer much because they live in the gray twilight that knows neither victory nor defeat."
~ Theodore Roosevelt
In an old "Peanuts" cartoon, Sally is making a list while Charlie Brown looks on. Sally says, "I'm making a list of all the things I've learned in life..." In the next panel she continues with, "Well, actually, I'm making two lists." Charlie asks, "Why is one list longer than the other?" Holding up the much longer list, Sally explains, "These are the things I've learned the hard way!"
It's easy to chuckle a little at the part about "learning things the hard way," isn't it? We've all done that. There's really a more revealing message though in this simple cartoon.
The short list of things we've learned generally contains lessons that required no effort, or lessons we learned passively, while just listening. For instance, we learned simple courtesies from our first grade teacher. We learned historical names and dates from our history teacher. We learned to tie knots from our scout leader. Our parents taught us to share. The list goes on.
The important list, the one that's much longer, contains the things we've learned from experience. These lessons are endless, and no matter how trifling the lesson, we learned one every time we took action. We dared to try a two-wheel bicycle and crashed - several times. We tried out for the school play - and made fools of ourselves in front of friends.
By attempting - at the possible expense of our pride, our self-esteem, or our physical well-being - we either succeeded or failed (and learned a lesson). It is our actions that produce results and teach us those valuable lessons. Teddy Roosevelt said it right: "Far better to dare mighty things..."

Monday, September 21, 2015

Two Brokers

Hello all,

"Two Brokers"

Mark and I wanted to let everyone know we are in the process of making some changes at the Broker level. Paperwork has been submitted for Mark to become the Maryland Broker for the company, I will remain as the Broker in Virginia and DC. There will be very few changes internally with the company, Mark will be dealing with the DLLR and the Maryland Real Estate Commission more and that will cover most of it. As everyone knows Mark and I have always worked hand in hand running the company, that will not change. Since we are a Maryland based company Mark will be the official Broker of record for the company. This is something Mark very much deserves and the company could not be in better hands. I take great comfort knowing my friend will have our backs. Overall you should view Mark & Al as your go to's for contracts, scenarios, outside agent issues... and I will continue to oversee operations, accounting and some training. We are all always available for all of you for any reason. If you have any questions please feel free to get with Mark or I, we will also be having a question and answer session on this at the next sales meeting. We hope you will be okay having two Brokers when needed :)

Enjoy the coffee,

 Monday Morning Coffee

"Competition will always place your life in the hands of others, while initiative gives you the freedom to choose your own destiny."
~ Willard & Marguerite Beecher
From childhood we learn to win by competing. If one marble player wins, the other loses. If our football team wins, the opposition loses. If we earn top honors for the greatest sales volume or number of transactions, our fellow associates don't. We are taught to be competitive - and we learn the lesson well.
In being competitive, however, we must always measure our success in relation to others. First we choose the leader whom we must surpass. Our objective is to exceed the performance of that individual - the current Number One. Then, when we become the leader, we live in constant fear of having our performance exceeded by those striving from below to surpass us.
By always competing, then, we are not free to focus on doing our very best. Everything we do is related to what others have done or may do. A refreshing alternative is to put initiative to work. You freely choose your own destiny, then work to achieve it - totally oblivious to what others around you are doing.
Initiative begins with a delightful vision of yourself achieving what you think is important. Followed up with action, you achieve not only your objectives, but also the thrill and satisfaction of knowing you are in charge!

Monday, September 14, 2015

Sales Meeting

Hello all,

"Sales Meeting"

Reminder that we are having a Sales Meeting this Friday, Lakewood Country Club from 11-1. October 1st will arrive soon along with it comes changes to the Contract and TRID will be in full effect. These two topics will be covered along with some other fun stuff... Mark will be your host! Please join us for lunch and spend some time with you Co-Workers.

Enjoy the coffee,

Monday Morning Coffee

"Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it."
~ Goethe
On a recent A&E Biography segment, Oprah Winfrey was being interviewed. She was asked whether she considered all the competing talk shows to be a threat to her own daytime show. She answered with a personal story about running in a marathon.
It seems Oprah had always had a dream of running in a marathon. She trained for two years to get ready, and she ran her marathon. Oprah explained that, to her, competition was like that marathon. As long as she was hitting her stride with her goal of winning in clear focus, there was no time to consider the competition. She added that just turning her head backward to see how close competing runners were to her position was enough to rob her of energy needed to win the race.
Oprah's view of the competition brought to mind the U.S. Army recruiting slogan: "Be all that you can be!" Note that it doesn't say, "Be all that THEY can be!" Even when your competition has a recognizable face, why would you want to be them? If you want to improve yourself, speed up your achievements, or earn more money, why not just better your own time? Comparing yourself to others is a waste of precious time and energy.
Realizing your dreams requires a roadmap. First, you decide on a destination - your dream. Next, you choose a route. For Oprah, that involved hiring a personal trainer, improving her aerobic capacity, and adding strength training to her daily regimen. It also helps to identify some stops or landmarks along the way to help you measure your progress. Finally, you apply all your energy to running the race - and achieving your dream.
Oprah's dream was to run a marathon. What's yours?

Monday, September 7, 2015

Seacrets Tickets

Hello all,

"Seacrets Tickets"

The RE/MAX party at Seacrets during the MAR convention will be on 10/4. As always we purchased our allotment of tickets and have them to give out. I do not believe anyone from management will be attending so you must babysit yourselves... The tickets are a bit pricey so we need to put the usual rules in place if you would like some.

You must go & tickets are not available for outside vendors (Title, Mortgage...) No exceptions.

Please email me directly if you would like to go.

Enjoy the coffee,

Monday Morning Coffee

"Take your life in your own hands and what happens? A terrible thing: no one to blame."
~ Erica Jong
"The dog ate my homework." Teachers hear that one every week. "Jimmy made me do it!" Parents hear that one often, too. Fast-forward a few years to the college student with bad grades, and you hear, "The professor doesn't like me." Then, before we know it, we're all grown up. Now we hear, "My manager didn't give me enough time to complete the project," and, "She doesn't understand me," or, "The customer wasn't honest with me, so I couldn't close the sale."
Where do these fabrications of blame originate? They probably begin in our childhood imagination - and that's also where they should stop. Blaming comes easy since we tend to do it when the person blamed isn't around. Who's going to dispute our blame claim?
Take a moment to re-read the first part of today's quote: "Take your life in your own hands . . ." What a breath of fresh air emerges from that phrase. By accepting responsibility for our life and all its actions, we no longer need to alienate those around us by blaming. We can live a no-excuses life.
We either accept the low classroom grade without complaint - after all, we earned it - or we change our approach to homework the next time. We simply allot enough time to complete our manager's special project on deadline, or be willing to be employed at a lower level on the food chain. We invest ourselves more deeply in our personal relationships, or accept a less-than-fulfilling bond with those we love.
As quoted before, "All that a man achieves and all that he fails to achieve is the direct result of his own thoughts." If you're tired of perpetually being on the defensive, ban blame from your life - forever. It's a wonderful way to live stress-free!