Round up your posse and save the damsel in distress.


I’m goin’ “Cowboys and Indians on ya today!

As I develop Pareto Realty, i often stop myself and think about WHO to invite to the party and WHY each person would be a good fit. What does each person bring to the table that will help all of us achieve our goals?

That then tumbles into thoughts of what the “end game” – The true mission of a real estate firm (or ANY organization for that matter) is?

Why are we in business in the first place?

Is it all about the money and personal success?

If I create a company that churns out lots of profit and makes tons of money for all of the employees, does that in and of itself make the venture a successful venture?

Maybe so in some folk’s minds, but that’s not good enough in my book. Without question, we do need to make money. We also would like our organization to be sustainable . . .

Sustainability comes from building a reputation of authenticity to something that is perceived by the end customer/client as being desirable and worthy of their investment (the money they pay for your widget or service).

So . . . the organization (that “Gets” this) FIRST builds a strong staff (Posse) that understands that their real job is to administer the firm in  such a way that THEIR primary customers (The Sales Force – REALTORS) can make a great living and develop a healthy balance of live, work, and play.

Each member of the sales force in turn develops his/her own posse of support outside the firm . . . The “right people” who can fill in all of the gaps (Lenders, Inspectors, Appraisers, Insurance, Title etc).

Posse comitatus (common law), a group of men assembled to assist in law enforcement (From wiki)

The posse’s job is to serve and protect the end client, the home Buyer and/or Seller, from all of the dangers and pitfalls lurking in the shadows of the real estate transaction.

I believe that all posses are not necessarily created equal and that the firm can sometimes do things that inhibit the agent’s ability to build his own posse. This issue arises when the firm makes what I believe to be an “addicted to cash flow” decision to align themselves with “affinity relationships” or “Joint ventures” and subsequently coerces the sales force to encourage their clients to use THESE “in-house” vendors instead of others (just to bring more dollars to the bottom line of the firm).

My issue with this is that it creates a friction for the Agent that can actually be inhibiting to personal performance . . . That friction comes from the nuance that the agent loses the power of having his OWN posse . . . a group of professionals who can support him unconditionally – work with him as sponsors for his business and who will refer him business . . . sort of his own personal “Chamber of Commerce”.

So we made a decision with Pareto Realty. A big part of our mission includes serving our associates in such a way that we educate them on the power of the posse and stay out of their way such that they can turn all of their energies towards their CLIENTS.

We think of Leverage through others . . . and this blog post comes from thoughts stemming from a few tough questions about why hire a Pareto Realty agent instead one of those other better known, larger, more “established” firms?

the answer gets easier when the agent can simply say that his firm provides appropriate administrative support, training and coaching, and collective depth of experience to enable him serve his clients at the highest level . . . and his POSSE has his back if anything goes awry.

I’m just sayin’



Does Zero Down Still Exist?

How certain are you of what lending options are available these days?

With the options and rules changing almost daily, I rely heavily on the knowledge of a few Mortgage Professionals.

Got me thinking . . . I’ll bet there are other REALTORS out there with the same kinds of questions.

So . . . I asked my friend (and very well qualified Mortgage professional) Gavin Gossett if he would consider speaking to a group of REALTORS.

Gavin agreed . . . and even offered to buy lunch for everyone who comes (30 Max) . . . .

He will give a brief presentation (Rural Housing, VA, THDA, Affordable Housing Fund, Fannie Mae’s HomePath program and FHA 203K Renovation Loans) followed by plenty of opportunities for discussion and/or questions.

You’re invited at NO COST – (Gavin is partnering with a Title Company to provide lunch at their expense)

Please contact me for more information – 30 Seats are available

 BTW – This meeting has NO Real Estate firm boundaries and is NOT a recruiting event although I’m sure Gavin would appreciate the opportunity to work with your clients 🙂

Here’s a little bit about Gavin Gossett in his own words:

“I am a rare breed these days: A Native Nashvillian! Growing up in Nashville in a real estimate family has given me an invaluable perspective on the local real estate market. I attended Freed-Hardeman University in West Tennessee, where I studied business, art and music. After earning my BBA degree in Finance in 1987, I returned to make my home in Nashville and went into business for myself. My experience as a business owner and my financial background – combined with my in-depth knowledge of Nashville’s real estimate market – gives me a powerful advantage as a mortgage lender. My greatest strength, however, is my genuine concern for people. I am a devoted husband and father to two children, and I am very involved in my church and my community. I am extremely knowledgeable of conventional, FHA & VA financing options for the complete range of buyers from condos to jumbos. My specialty is the extraordinary care I take with clients who are buying their first home. You will find that my easy, confident manner is refreshing and reassuring. I am a seasoned mortgage veteran, and have worked for the most prestigious financial institutions in the world including Wells Fargo, SunTrust Bank and Bank of America. My successful career has led me Peoples Home Equity (PHE), Tennessee’s premier billion-dollar mortgage lender. I am the Senior Loan Officer and Branch Manager of PHE’s new Green Hills office. If you ever have mortgage questions, or if you are considering purchasing or refinancing, I hope you will call me at (615) 400-HOME.”

What’s next? The multitasking myth.

Remember while in school, you might “tune out” occasionally in class while the teacher droned on about matters that you felt had no significance in your life (EVER)?

Your mind would wander off to wonderful places, but your body was imprisoned in that class room til the bell rang.

And then . . . WHAM!

Out of the bliss of your mental escape come the question directed at you: “BARRY OWEN! Considering all that I just explained why IS x equal to 7?


That feeble attempt at multi-tasking implodes and panic sets in as you dig in to the recesses of your mind trying to conjure up even a few of the words spoken in the past 10 minutes. No dice! . . . the teacher waits until she is certain the point is made and lets you off the hook by giving the answer and reminding you to pay attention in class . . . or else . . . !

Many folks brag about their ability to multitask even though it has been proven over and over and over again that multitasking is FAR LESS EFFICIENT than single tasking . . . or “sequential action”

Most of the folks who claim fame to super-human multitasking abilities are really not much more than very fast singletaskers (Even computers handle one task at a time very quickly) . . . or they are simply delusional . . . showing a lot of motion but not doing much of anything completely or well.

I’m as ADD as anyone . . . that’s an affliction I have grown up with and still hear stories from my early school days of teachers sitting me next to their desk so they could “control” me and keep me on task. It wasn’t until I entered the working world that I began to see and understand the inefficiencies of multitasking . . . that flying by the seat of my pants in all things was not moving me forward very quickly.

and so, i decided to fix myself as much as possible such that I could actually FOCUS and get something accomplished before moving on to the next thing.

The only trick that I’ve ever learned that works EVERY time is the question: “What’s Next?”

this doesn’t always work because my innate tendencies are to let my mind wander about in etherland . . . but at the point at which I realize that I’ve strayed off course and started down some obscure bunny trail, I simply ask myself “WHAT’S NEXT?”

That sole, simple question nearly always brings me back on task (SINGLE TASK) as I remind myself that I must finish THIS task before moving on to what’s next.

This ain’t rocket science, but it sure feels good when I hear someone say: WOW! How did you get ALL of that DONE today?

I just “What’s next?” my way along sequentially til it was all done 🙂

I’m just sayin’



PS – Pareto Realty begins our educational training calendar next week. We are offering vendor presentations on Wednesdays (Gavin Gossett with Peoples Home Equity on 10/6), I’ll be doing a session on “time Blocking” and getting the most out of every day on Thursday . . . and Masterminds on Friday. Every session starts at noon, and ANYONE is welcome.

10 things to consider if your business is down

Thing 1 – YOU! What’s your commitment to your business? Is it really your passion, or are you in it “just because”? Your clients know if you’re head’s not in the game. It puts a smell in the air around you. If you are “turned off”, we in the Army would say you have “Short Timer’s syndrome” . . . or “You’re a dead man walking”. Lack of passion will kill a career faster than ANYTHING else.

Thing 2 – The PEOPLE in your life – Friends, family, Clients, Associates/colleagues. Do you love them? Are they the right people? Do you coddle them? Do you pay attention to them? Do you participate in THEIR lives and include them in YOUR life? Are you showing up (Weddings, funerals, Open Houses, coffee just to connect)? These people will bring you great success if you’ll simply include them in your life.

Thing 3 – Your Database! Do you have one? Is it in a platform that you USE? Are there systems in place to automatically “touch” everyone in it on a regular basis. Will it prompt you when important things are happening (Birthdays, anniversaries)? Does it REDUCE your work load . . . or add to it?

Thing 4 – Your ROUTINE – Do you actually wake up and intentionally move through each day, or do you stumble along until the sun goes down and then fall into the bed? Take care of yourself first each day . . . Affirmations, Meditation/prayer, exercise, eat, play with family, THEN GO TO WORK . . . While at work, use your brain efficiently. Do the IMPORTANT (20%) stuff first (whether it’s fun or not) . . . Like lead generate . . . and the less important stuff (80%) later . . . Commit to meet with TWO people EVERY day about business. Have a real, defined “Quittin’ Time”

Thing 5 – Your work associates . . . Are they supportive? Who are the “coffee pot gossipers”? Stay away from them. Are you being dragged into drama that distracts you from your own work? Do these “partners in business” share and care about your success? Are they there for you when you need a lift? Who calls you when you disappear for a while . . . Just to check in?

Thing 6 – Your work environment . . . Is the physical space conducive to a good work flow? Do you feel “at home’ when you walk in the door . . . Comfortable? Is there natural light? Are your basic physical needs being met? Are the appropriate tools of your trade available. Are there paperwork flow systems in place such that you can spend less time moving paper and more time with clients and developing your business? What are the costs? Is it worth what you’re paying?

Thing 7 – Your Broker/Boss/Coach – Available when you need her? Does she schedule REGULAR meetings with you for “performance review/coaching”? Do you respect her and her knowledge of the business? Is she open and receptive to new ideas – new ways of doing business. Does she regularly and intentionally conduct appropriate training? Does she insulate you from the operational issues within the office to keep your focus on YOUR business? Is her focus on “working for you” such that you have all the tools you need to serve YOUR clients best? Is it all about the money?

Thing 8 – Are you the local expert in your field? If so, does everyone in your community KNOW (or are you a “secret agent”)? Are you published regularly? (If your answer is “No”, you can fix that by starting a blog and writing a post every few days – or better yet, daily). Do you brag about your accomplishments with press releases etc? Are you “out there” and engaged in your local Association of REALTORS, chamber of commerce, BNI, Local schools, or any other community initiatives for which you have passion?

Thing 9 – Your best friends . . . Your personal Board of Directors. Do you have one of these Boards? These are people who pick you up when you need picking up . . . knock you into reality when you need it . . . advise you candidly when things come up (personal or business). These are the folks you can go to confidentially when things go weird and you just need an ear. These folks won’t let you off the hook, and you leave every conversation feeling better about yourself and your path.

Thing 10 – ARE YOU HAVING FUN? If you’re not having any fun whatsoever, QUIT! Go do something that you enjoy even if it means taking a step back. Go back to school at a community college . . . or get your MBA . . . or a technical school. Would you rather be an auto mechanic or a writer or an artist or a musician? Don’t just imprison yourself in a dead end career (that you don’t enjoy) saying to yourself that “one day” you’ll actually be able to do what you REALLY want to do.

Life’s too short . . . REALLY!


So . . . 100% of the energy and creativity that has gone into the development of the Pareto Realty business model has been focused on crafting a “whole-istic” approach for a real estate firm. We believe we are in business as a real estate firm to anticipate and listen to the needs (Personal and Professional) of our members such that they can be the best they wish to be . . . and that this will result in an unusually high level of service to THEIR clients.

In the end . . . We ALL win.

Put some thought into these 10 things . . . and take some action NOW on any ONE of them . . . I assure you, it will positively affect your business.

I’m just sayin’



Monday Morning Coffee – too big for your britches?

Good morning!

Most of my best thoughts come to me while walking with Apollo in the early mornings. Dogs have this uncanny knack of being the best therapists money can buy.

Today, I released the leash and let Apollo RUN through a veritable herd of ducks . . . Tumultuous to say the least. He returned with a big, victorious smile on his face.

I’ve been thinking about what happens to people and organizations as they taste success and grow, and what it is that separates the long term players from the flashes in the pan.

The wheat from the chaff

The real cowboys from “big hat – no cattle”

We all see it around us every day. Very successful people and organizations creating their own demise giving rise to comments like:

The bigger they are, the harder they fall!

What goes up must come down!

They forgot who brung’m here – The “little people”!

and then the philosophers amongst us who say sage things like:

Be nice to geeks – They might be your boss one day.

Be careful about stepping on people on your way up the ladder, you may need them on your way back down.

Churn and burn is not a great long term strategy.

Why would a person or organization get too big for their britches?

Fame and fortune?

Riches and bling?

Perhaps yes to all of the above.

Here’s what I think . . . “Too big for your britches” means:

Amnesia . . . forgetting of the original vision.

I believe most all people are innately good people and do not intend to hurt other people as they get more successful. I think they just forget the things that created their success.

I’ve heard REALTORS say they don’t want to share their best vendors with other REALTORS because then their best vendors will get too busy to serve THEM . . . Like your favorite little hole-in-the-wall restaurant that gets discovered by the food channel . . . and subsequently too busy to serve you the same quality food and atmosphere.

Often as folks approach success, everything gets BIGGER . . . Suddenly, they have “friends” coming out of the woodwork. EVERYONE wants to be friends with successful people. It’s easy to fall into the trap of getting caught up in the excitement . . . and as the pond grows larger, the culture that “brung ya here” gets diluted . . . and suddenly the vision shifts from “excellence in all we do” to “We are NUMBER ONE with the MOST sales – The HIGHEST volume”.

So . . . Pay attention . . . Remember your real friends . . . and be wary of getting too big for your britches.

Oh! Be a good friend and pinch any of your friends who appear to developing “Vision amnesia”!

I’m just sayin’



PS: Pareto Realty is growing . . . Last week was a good week. We now have 7 agents committed to join us (this week) . . . and we are diligently working on developing the vision all the while keeping a close eye on the market trends. Give us a call if you have any Family, friends, or work associates in need of real estate services . . . or any REALTOR friends of yours considering a move to a firm that supports pure performance in life.