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Book review: SELL IT LIKE SERHANT

Book review: SELL IT LIKE SERHANT

I recently listened to Ryan Serhant’s (costar on Bravo’s hit show Million Dollar Listing New York and the star of Sell It Like Serhant and one of the most successful real estate brokers in the world.) book Sell It Like Serhant. My brother-in-law suggested I read it and told me he thought there were some great tid bits and takeaways… nothing earth shattering, but some awesome reminders about how to frame your thinking and actions. I would absolutely recommend it to anyone in sales – AND Serhant reads the audiobook himself, which I thought was a nice added touch that helped me internalize even better. I am including my notes (literally taken on my phone after I stopped driving as a recap of the main sticking points) below! Enjoy!

Take a step even small and you’ll be closer to goal. Don’t doubt magnitude a small action can have. You’ll only realize formula after you created it. 

The secret to your success will be revealed in hindsight. You won’t recognize it until you relive it. A life completely unhindered by anything. Moderately successful or phenomenally successful. 

Take initiative. It’s like breathing — you can’t survive without it. After taking initiative, self doubt sets in but don’t let that hinder you. Being different can be good and your skills add value to your character. Who you were before you entered sales matters. 

Choose success first and let the career follow. Commit to success and back into the career. 

Endurance for the win. Sales is about the work – no one is going to say I don’t want this perfectly priced gorgeous house in the neighborhood of my dreams. It’s a crazy race! 

Six rules to more sales:

1. Never hyperfocus on one sale. 

2. Never wonder about the next sale – it’s already in the pipeline. 

3. Surrounded by opportunity. Always reaching for new balls by making contacts and lead gen. 

4. Take as much energy to manage one ball as 6 balls. 

5. You control the flight path of the ball. You know which handle first, which fast, which need attention. 

6. Don’t blindly toss balls into the air – you care about where each lands. 

When you face your fears head on you become unstoppable. Ready. Set. Go. 

Initiative will seep from your pores. Endurance is middle name. Let your fear push you towards success and none of this works without confidence. 

Never underestimate the power of a face to face meeting. 

Always keep your ego in check.

You are in sales but also the service industry. You sometimes have to play your clients game and stay flexible to get the deal done. 

There will be an objection with almost every sale. The goal is to turn negatives into positives. 

People think you are crazy because they don’t have the courage to do what you are doing. 

Is this negative really negative? Think about objections and how you can turn them around. 

Team Improv Workshop. Practicing Improv helps you sell. Builds synergy and teaches our mind to fire off in a positive direction and saying YES. NOTHING IS WRONG. Anything and everything is positive. “YES AND…” because you have to listen and add to the narrative. 

Each sale is a scene. A story. You have to listen! What does this client need from me? Ask yourself if there is something I can do right now that makes my clients life better? Digest. Think about what you are saying. 

When you say NO it’s unleashing a monster that eats up all of your opportunity. 

Planet confidence is the place to be. Its a place where everyone wants what you are selling! Speak from a place of complete confidence. 

“I am the best of the best. Am I saying I don’t make mistakes or don’t have more to learn? I do know I’ll work more and fight harder than anyone else and do everything in my power to get a deal done and make my clients happy.”

Instead of fear, focus on the rewards. If there is the possibility of the reward – go for it. 

PLAY THE QUESTION GAME-

Set timer for 2 mins

Ask a question

They reply with a question

Whoever answers a question with a statement loses

People don’t like being sold, but they love shopping with friends. 

Connection first. Product second. 

Don’t always sell the most expensive product.

You must use your knowledge and expertise to connect the dots for the buyer.

People don’t know what they want until you show it to them. If finding what they want scares them. remind them, “I listened carefully to your wants, needs and know what you want”.

You can’t negotiate with someone’s wallet but you can negotiate with their feelings 

Your voice and body are tools! 

*good posture – easy breathing = sound better

*stretch your tongue. Say – he threw three balls. Unique New York. Red leather yellow leather. 

Purchasing is a process of elimination! Not a shopping spree! 

Follow up is an ART FORM! 

F1 – Follow up.

F2- Follow through.

F3- Follow back.

Always treat clients like they are brand new.

Seven stages of Selling – think of shopping! 

EXCITEMENT – All of the positives of the product and how it will positively change their life. Love. 

FRUSTRATION – All of the negatives. Blame phase. Impatient phone calls and texts. Threats to back out. 

FEAR – Bad investment. Or something else out there. Afraid of what they’ve taken on. Questioning decision. Anger. 

DISAPPOINTMENT – Magnitude weighs. Overwhelmed. Regret. Forget original love. 

ACCEPTANCE – Reminded of how hard we fought for the best deal. Positives flow back. Appreciate the journey. Joy slides back. Thank you s and gifts. 

HAPPINESS –  So glad we did this.

RELIEF – It’s over!

Checking boxes is for to do lists, not for getting deals done.

On INSPECTIONS – Inspectors job is to find problems. Assure them that when the inspection comes back there is no reason to panic. We can address these issues in negotiations. Set expectation. We will tackle these issues together. 

INDECISIVE 

1. Push – Incentive. Urgency. 

2. Pull – take away the possibility of the purchase as a gut check and see what they do.

3. Persist – Remind them they need it. Underselling. Every two days sent a message about the deal. New comp. Let’s see it again. The client might be stuck in the fear stage.

Time Management.

The different branches of business: 

  1. Finder: The big picture. Getting more business. Hitting sphere.  Finding new business. Creating new business. Expansion. Meeting clients everyday.
  1. Keeper: The economic piece. Budget. Money and time. 
  1. Doer: executes the business that the finder creates and the keeper budgets. Day to day work. 

We, as realtors, are in the business of people brokering. Connecting clients to a product they want. A place to live comfortably and happily. 

POSITIVITY. Don’t under estimate the power of positivity — it is the oil that keeps it all running smoothly. 

BE CREATIVE

1. Identify the challenge 

2. Dig in (history and knowledge of your product)

3. Grow it into a story

4 “E”s of an Amazing Sales Person

Energy

Enthusiasm

Endurance 

Education

Overall, I thought the book was great at framing some basic principles and ideas for improving your performance in the sales world.

by Kitty Mills
To the High School Seniors at my Alma Mater, Notre Dame Preparatory School, On Motherhood

To the High School Seniors at my Alma Mater, Notre Dame Preparatory School, On Motherhood

One of my favorite high-school teachers reached out and asked if I would write a little something about what it is like to be a mom in today’s world. Below is what I sent. Warning: if you did not go to NDP (a private, all-girls school) and are not from Baltimore, parts of this might read like an unfamiliar foreign language. J

Becoming a mom and beginning the journey of motherhood is like joining the most elite, special and universal club in the universe. Before I had my first son, I thought I had accomplished some pretty impressive feats — cough cough… a Senior Sweep Silver Cup win as gym meet captain 😉 — but the moment my doctor (who I should note is another NDP alum and mom of three!) placed Nolan in my arms, I realized there was NO greater achievement than creating, carrying and bringing another life into the world. It only took a few weeks for me to understand why my mom frequently told me that she would always love me, no matter what I said or did. Of course the nights and days were long, and I was absolutely terrified that I was going to somehow fall short or mess up, but with each struggle and hardship, I gained more confidence and became more comfortable with my new role as someone’s mom. And once you become a mom, you look at your own mom in a completely new light. For me, I was 27, married, owned a house, had a full-time job and on some days felt like an ADULT and MOM in every sense of the word. And then we would have a tough stretch of sickness and little sleep and bad weather and hard days at work and in the blink of an eye I had reverted right back to that place of needing my mom and feeling like a dependent, unprepared, overwhelmed DAUGHTER. No one really told me how you feel almost stuck between the roles of parent and child – and that it is totally normal and acceptable to feel that way! When Nolan was almost two, we found out what we thought would be our second child would actually be our second and third childREN – TWINS! As I write this, I have three under three! It is as wild and crazy as it sounds, but in the best way possible! 

I also work full-time as a residential real estate agent. Most people assumed that I would stop working once I had Max and Maeve because “how will you afford childcare for three!?” and “now I am sure your hands will be too full to keep working!”, but I knew that if everything went as planned and we had a healthy labor and delivery, I would go back to work after a few months of maternity leave. I said earlier that motherhood is universal, and it truly is an experience that creates a bond between women of different ages, religions, nationalities, backgrounds, etc etc etc, but every mother is unique in what makes her the best version of herself. Every mother structures her life differently, and there is NO right or wrong way to do that. For me, while the initial transition back to work after maternity leave causes a lot of nervous anticipation and anxiety, once I get into the swing of our new routine, I start to feel more “normal” again. I feel my best when I maintain a general balance between mom duties and work duties. I will say that having children was a major reason that I decided to change career paths from teaching high school English in Baltimore City to buying and selling real estate. I originally loved the idea of working 8-3 pm and having summers off, until I realized that I was getting in much earlier, doing work after school almost every night and weekend, and popping out to run an errand or missing a day because Nolan was sick or had an event at pre-school was much harder than I anticipated. I feel very grateful to now have a job that gives me the flexibility to make my own schedule and plan around important moments with my kids that I don’t want to miss! This is what works for me, for now!

And finally, I would say motherhood is unpredictable. I am not even three years in, and the landscape of my life today compared to what I thought it would be in the months leading up to Nolan’s birth is significantly different. Just like anything else worthwhile, you take it a day at a time, come from a place of gratitude and soak up the amazingness! 

by Kitty Mills
MAX + MAEVE ARE ONE!!! Answering some FAQs.

MAX + MAEVE ARE ONE!!! Answering some FAQs.

I could write a book about the last 12 months, but something I have noticed between having Nolan and having Max + Maeve is that the moment most people see or hear “TWINS!!!” several questions start falling out of their mouths regardless of how well we know them. SO here are some of the most FAQs I hear and my answers.


DO TWINS RUN IN YOUR FAMILY?

ANSWER: YES! My mom has twin brothers (pictured above holding my twins!!!) – my grandmother had my mom, two boys and then her fourth pregnancy was twin boys. My grandfather had a massive heart attack and died when the twins were only 5-years-old and in the blink of an eye she was a single mother of FIVE. When I think I am knee deep in the depths of darkness, snotty noses and dirty diapers, I think of her and my reality becomes instantly less stressful by comparison! There were also some other twins in the family tree on my mom’s side of the family. Twin truth: identical twins are always the same gender because they develop from a single fertilized egg that contains either boy or girl chromosomes that splits into two. Fraternal twins are two separate fertilized eggs and can be girl/boy (50% chance) girl/girl (25% chance) or boy/boy (25% chance). HOWEVER, ALL TWINS are natural no matter how they came into this world – one of my girlfriends who has twins loves telling people who ask her if they are “natural” (aka, did you do fertility?!?) that yes, unless they are actually aliens and not humans, they are natural. They are also two separate, unique individuals who happen to share a very special bond.


WHAT WAS THE MOMENT YOU FOUND OUT LIKE?

ANSWER: Surreal. Honestly, I’m pretty sure not that the fact that I grew two babies inside my body at one time will always be surreal. To paint the scene for others who love details, I headed to my 10 am appointment alone… second pregnancy, middle of the day, quick in and out and ON with the work week – surely it was not worth having my husband drive 25 minutes each way from work for this (irony)… We have told this story a couple (sarcasm) of times, and at this point Miller chimes in to notify all parties that he tried VERY hard to convince me he should come and he just KNEW he should have come, to which I respond by asking him if he thinks the outcome might have been different had he been present?! HA! Anyways, I waltz in with the typical first appointment nerves and the (in retrospect) atypical nausea and fatigue, climb up onto the examination table, pull up my shirt to allow my stomach to be coated with a generous pile of cold jelly (yickkk), watch the ultrasound technician place the wand on my stomach, and INSTANTLY notice not one, but two circles floating around a dark sea of fuzziness. Before the tech could say or do anything, I said, “Do I see two?” and she said, “Yup! You really must know what you are looking at. Congratulations, you are having twins!” And I threw my arm over my forehead and most likely (the next few minutes are a little fuzzy) said, “OH MY GOD! I LITERALLY CAN’T BELIEVE IT!!!” And went on to try to explain that while I understood that the chances of having twins was something like 1%, what were the chances that one of my absolutely best friends in the entire universe who lives two miles away was also a few months pregnant with twins?!?!?! The tech was less than impressed/interested and was much more concerned about how my husband would react (SMH). Not surprisingly, when I stepped into the hall to call Miller and asked him, “Hi! Everything is great, but are you sitting down?” to which he responded, “You’re joking.” because he read between the lines before I made it official with, “Nope! Not kidding! Dead serious. There are two of them in there! Fraternal twins!” And his first reaction was (as mentioned above), “Damnit! I KNEW I SHOULD HAVE COME!” And I laughed and he said “Well, I always said I wanted twins” (exact words) and I said, “Yeah, yeah, yeah, we will see if you change your tune by this time next year!”. It was SO much fun telling our friends and family and seeing the look of shock spread across their faces!


On the way to the hospital to have Max and Maeve!

HOW WAS LABOR AND DELIVERY DIFFERENT WITH ONE vs. TWO BABIES?

ANSWER: This is a loaded question that could easily send my detailed, long-winded tendencies into a the play by play of my birth story, but I will hit you with the highlights instead: it was VERY different for me. They both started almost the exact same way with very mild contractions in the afternoon that began to pick up regularity and instructions from my doctor to go ahead and head to hospital because it sounded like I was indeed in labor, checking into triage and finding out I was indeed having contractions and was now 3 centimeters dilated (I was zero centimeters at my previous appointments with both) and I was being admitted so Miller could go back out to the car and get our bags! From there, things go differently because Nolan was a vaginal delivery and a singleton and Max and Maeve were both perfectly breech, sitting Indian-style on my cervix, so they were delivered by C-section. End result of each method: healthy babies in my arms.


Reality.

HOW DO YOU DO IT?

ANSWER: Oh gosh there are so many ways I go with this and it depends on how on top of my game I am when the person asks BUT my go to responses… It actually takes a village and I have so many amazing members of my circle who help me more than they will ever know INCLUDING a rockstar husband who is an incredible partner/co-captain of our little team and talks me off the ledge several times a week (or day?!). I do think we both happen to be pretty positive people in general and that translates really well into parenthood because we make a conscious effort to keep things in perspective as much as possible! We also shamelessly leverage out ANYTHING and EVERYTHING we can in order to make our lives easier because we realized that during this season of life, we just cannot do it all and remain sane, so if we need to spend some money on a newborn night nurse, grocery delivery, a cleaning service, AmazonPrime everything, childcare, etc etc etc, we will build in those expenses until we can take back some of those tasks! AND finally, what other choice do we have?!? And I don’t mean to sound snarky, but that really is the truth and I do mean to sound cliché when I say we would NOT have it ANY OTHER way!!!

by Kitty Mills
MOMing Take 2: Best Purchases I Made Between My First and Second Pregnancies

MOMing Take 2: Best Purchases I Made Between My First and Second Pregnancies

Before we had our first son, Nolan, I spent an absurd amount of time reading blogs, playing on Pinterest and picking other moms’ brains about what the must haves should be for our registry. This addiction became almost like a game where I was popping around on different sites and places to price compare, read reviews and take in other moms’ opinions on everything baby gear related.

Fast forward a year and a half from round 1 of stalking baby gear and gadgets and SURPRISE, I am pregnant with twins and the script has flipped from feeling like a baby gear guru to feeling a lot like a first time mom in the sense of needing specific twin-centric things that I did not even know existed. THANKFULLY (and also very strangely) one of my best best best friends was also expecting twins and had done a ton of the leg work for me in terms of vetting products and talking to other twin moms. 

This post is going to list five items that I missed the first time around or were newer to the market that I absolutely adore and would recommend to all moms. In other words, these are not my must haves for twin moms, but general must haves as a new mom in 2018. If you are expecting twins, head **this** way to read about the items that I tell anyone I know who is having twins to purchase, like, yesterday! 

BabyShusher

Baby Shusher– All conversations with expecting moms who ask for advice or feedback with getting a baby to sleep more begins and ends with two words: WHITE. NOISE. I am a loyal Moms on Call subscriber, and one of the key components of Moms on Call is a healthy volume of white noise when baby sleeps. Sometimes, maybe that blaring white noise is not enough… or maybe your jaw is beginning to lock up from all the “SHHHHH”ing you are doing to try and get that precious bundle of joy to close his/her eyes and KEEP THEM CLOSED. Regardless of why we do the things we do, I will always say YES to something that will help a child to board the sleep train. I do think it helps, but I am not a scientist and I have zero hard data to support this claim… BUT I know a fair number of other moms who agree. I actually decided to order it after our newborn photographer used it during our newborn pictures and the twins were racked out for most of the time! And BONUS – you can hang it on the car seat for an on the go noise canceller!

Baby Bjorn Bouncer

Baby Bjorn Bouncer – I have no idea how I completely missed this boat on this with Baby #1, but I do know that my life would have been even easier had this chair been on my radar during our first go-round. I love: the simple design (easier on my eyes than a rainbow pattern with bulky toys and light up buttons all over it AND it folds down as flat as a pancake for easy portability – we literally threw it in the car anytime we left the house), the three different adjustable height positions (depending on the scenario, you can adjust accordingly! If you are making dinner or hanging out, you can put it on the most upright setting so that baby can see and take in his/her surrounding – OR if you are working for a cat nap, pop it down to the most reclined setting), the natural bounce element (you control the bounce with your foot on the lower part of the fabric, so you can bounce fast/hard/slow/soft/WHATEVER on your own terms. This seat was our go to during witching hour and I honestly don’t know what we did with Nolan during witching hour because I am certain I would have had several more mental breakdowns without this tool on my belt with the twins). The only con is the steep price, but I bought ours gently used on a Mom Facebook Group.

Babyletto Kiwi Electric Recliner and Swivel Glider with USB Port –  You are thinking, WOW, could the name of this thing be any longer?! And the answer is no, Babyletto could not have squeezed anything else into the name of this chair because it already HAS IT ALL! We have the Pottery Barn Comfort Upholster Glider in Nolan’s room and the difference in comfort, ease and practicality between the Babyletto chair and the PB chair is INDESCRIBABLE. My husband jokes that I have made all the right decisions when it comes to prepping for our kids EXCEPT my Pottery Barn glider purchase. The Babyletto is so much more comfortable, has an electric recliner that is basically silent and allows you to gradually, easily and completely recline so that you don’t startle a (hopefully sleeping) baby in the process, AND a USB port so that you can endlessly scroll Instagram and order all of the things on AmazonPrime in the middle of the night without running out of juice! We are obsessed. And major bonus points for the aesthetics – wingback look and great color options.

Baby Brezza Formula Pro

Baby Brezza Formula Pro – Imagine a Keurig for formula bottles and allow me to introduce you to the BabyBrezza Formula Pro. I just looked and saw that there is already a more hip and happening version of the one I have (called the Formula Pro ADVANCED) but I can assure you that the model I have makes all of our dreams come true. Much like a Keurig, you fill up a water tank, add the powdered formula to the top (I will not be surprised if formula companies come out with pods similar to K-Cups at some point because if they have already made it this easy, why stop there?!), select the number of ounces you want in the bottle, hit START, and you have a perfectly mixed, warmed and ready to be consumed bottle in your hands. Of course no one NEEDS the BabyBrezza, but if you despise the smell and feel of wet formula as much as I do and worry excessively about getting the bottle to the right temperature, this bad boy eliminates these issues and keeps everyone happy!

UppaBaby Bassinet

UppaBaby Bassinet – To be fair, I did own this when I had Nolan, but I never once used it during that first go-round. I broke it out a few weeks before I had the twins as another safe place to put someone down to sleep on the main level of our house. What I ended up LOVING about the UppaBaby bassinet was: the ease of transitioning from a walk in the stroller to inside and vice versa without disrupting sleep, the shape and size, the privacy it provided the babes while we were out on said walk from the nosy, grabby strangers we were bound to encounter,  and TWIN MOM BONUS – when they are little, you can easily fit both in one bassinet as pictured below, and avoid the additional attention that comes along with having not one, but TWO fresh babies in your stroller when you are out and about. You can use this has the bassinet your baby sleeps in next to your bed by purchasing the bassinet stand – I know a few mamas who did this and loved it. I should definitely mention that the bassinet is INCLUDED with your purchase of the UppaBaby Vista stroller system (as it should be considering you are spending more than I ever imagined possible on a stroller — and its not even the most expensive one on the market! AH!).

AND I have written yet another novel about things you likely already knew 😉 BUT if I help make even one mom’s life a little bit easier, it will be well worth it! What do you think – Agree? Disagree? What did I miss? (Actually, maybe don’t answer that… I am sure I will be livid at all of the amazing things I missed out on BUT SHARE for other mamas who could use it!)

by Kitty Mills

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