Is your marketing creating the change you desire?

“When you’re marketing change, you’re offering a new emotional state, a step closer to the dreams and desires of your customers, not a widget.” (From This Is Marketing by Seth Godin page 78)

4 pages later, he offers some sage advice to REALTORS entitled: “No one is happy to call a real estate broker”. I’m not going to type the 4 pages . . . You’re gonna have to get yourself a copy of the book to get the full text – and no – Seth is not paying me to promote his book.

I will, though, offer some very sound bytes of knowledge:

  • “It’s our job to watch people, figure out what they dream of, and then create a transaction that can deliver that feeling.”
  • “people confuse wants and needs. What we need is air, water, and a roof over our heads. Pretty much everything else is a want.”
  • “people are intimately aware of their wants (which they think of as needs) but they are absolutely terrible at inventing new ways to address those wants. They often prefer to use a familiar solution to satisfy their wants, even if it’s not working very well.”
  • (The confusion of) “mistakenly believing that everyone wants the same thing.”
  • “Nobody needs (to work with you) . . . They want (to work with you) because of how it will make them feel.”
  • “We take people on a journey; we help them become the person (Family) they’ve dreamed of becoming, a little bit at a time.”

End of quotes . . . You’ll have to get a copy of the book for the rest. This is NOT a book you read at a single sitting. In fact, we “Vital Few of Pareto Realty” are reading only 2 chapters each week and gathering for 30 minutes every Thursday to discuss. I cannot imagine a more appropriate “Training Regimen.”

and the best part about it (for me)? . . . I didn’t have to write the “curriculum”, and I’m learning along with the whole tribe as well as a few other folks from other firms and industries. You, too, are welcome . . . Simply get your copy of the book and join us Thursdays at 11 in the Pareto Realty Office.

I feel like I cheated on this blog post because I didn’t write it – Seth Godin did the heavy lifting.

As I was reading these 2 chapters this morning, I felt that these ideas are too important not to pass along to anyone and everyone within my Sphere of Influence . . . and my best “venue” for spreading great ideas is here at

Now . . . Go forth and work your magic!

When your mojo is low

It happens to all of us.

Funk sneaks up on ya, and you just don’t want to do “it” anymore.

The pile is getting deeper . . .

The bills aren’t paying themselves . . .

You’re not doing the good-for-you things you know you need to do . . .

You feel like you’re spinning your wheels – treading water – marking time . . .

You know what you “should” be doing, but you’d rather just not do anything.

Don’t let this be you for any longer than necessary!

It’s time to take ACTION!

What was the thing that triggered this apathy?

At a minimum, I believe it’s time for a break.

Take a walk in the park, meet a friend for coffee, go for a work-out in the gym . . .

What NOT to do is beat yourself up for being so “stupid” as to allow yourself to be derailed.


and then just be the wonderful human being you are.


Let’s kill the change while it’s still young

Oh my! Why do some people have make things SO difficult?

Just when we start getting used to THIS way of doing things, someone feels compelled to CHANGE something. Why can’t we just leave things well enough alone? What we are doing now works . . . It does what it’s s’posed to do and has been doing its job reliably for all this time. What’s up with these rebels who are all about “out with the old and in with the new” attitudes?

They’re not happy unless they are stirring the pot. Yeah . . . That’s it . . . They’re trying to drive us bonkers. These “innovators” – “Early adopters” are trying their best to force all of us to become “adapters”, and we don’t like that because it’s not comfortable.

We dislike this change so much that, when we hear it’s coming, we become ostriches – stick our heads in the sand and subscribe to the belief that if we cannot see it or hear it, it doesn’t exist and will not happen.

Of course, this enables our ability to be COMPLETELY disabled when the change does happen (as a complete surprise to us even though the word’s been broadcast far and wide for many moons) . . . We can belly-ache that we didn’t know it was coming.

We can DEMAND to know WHY!

We can gather all of our compatriots so as to be a unified FORCE against this change.

We can even REFUSE to participate in this change!

I heard much of this in the mid 1990s as the internet started showing up . . . Many REALTORS proclaimed that under NO circumstances would they EVER use the internet . . . They would rather get out of the business than succumb to this idiocy. 5 years later, these same agents were happily selling real estate and enjoying the benefits of being able to use the internet.

With change comes grief for the death of the way we’ve been doing things around here for all these years. Many very smart people have analyzed grief and recognize 5-7 “stages” of grief from that moment we realize change is, in fact, going to happen . . . all the way through to “Acceptance/hope”.

From “The seven emotional stages of grief are usually understood to be shock or disbelief, denial, bargaining, guilt, anger, depression, and acceptance/hope.”

Even what would seem to some folks to be the smallest of changes triggers the manifestation of these grief stages, and this can be poignant and emotional.

I have some advice based on my own experience:

  • If you’re the change agent, acknowledge the current way as having served us well.
  • Identify the things about this current way that could be better.
  • Explain the benefit of a new way to the users.
  • Clearly explain how this change affects the work flow.
  • Describe the mechanics of the change-over as accurately and succinctly as possible
  • Know that whatever you say or do will NOT diffuse the naysayers, and don’t take their assaults personally.
  • Focus on “hope” and “gratitude”

If you’re the one who hates the change?

  • Accept that everything is always moving and change is inevitable.
  • At your first whiff of impending change, wake up and choose to participate.
  • Before gathering your resistance force, seek to understand this change and it’s effect
  • Be the leader amongst the adversaries by educating them (Getting them to take their heads out of the sand)
  • Don’t fight this change until or unless you fully understand its ramifications.
  • If you fully understand and still don’t like it, you have 2 choices:
    • Engage and be an active participant in improving this change to be more palatable
    • or move on – use your 2 feet to take yourself to a place that’s more “useful” and in alignment with you beliefs and perspectives

No victims here!

Below is my morning Http:// for this morning addressing the recent change in log-in procedures in our local MLS system.

Dangling Threads – Procrastinated Completion

How many projects on your list are almost completed?

Why are they ALMOST completed?

What’s happened?

At the beginning, you had such great energy for each of these projects and tackled them with vigor.

As you approached the finish line, you took your foot off the gas?

Was there some other slique, new project distracting your attention?

Have you decided cut the dangling threads and cease work on the project, or will you do the hard work of gathering those danglers and weave them into the fabric of completion?

Don’t let complacency and distraction turn you into a starter who doesn’t finish . . .

Unless there’s good reason . . . Like it’s not important anymore.

When the weather outside is frightful

Most of the schools in Middle Tennessee are closed today due to the forecast of apocalyptic rainfall.

It’s not so much the rain that’s the concern . . . It’s the VOLUME of water that’ll be deluging the creeks and Rivers and the low points. One might wonder why we Nashvillians can’t seem to figure out this “water Management” thing. One valid excuse is that there is SO much property development of houses, apartment complexes, and commercial buildings, the water drainage routes are ever changing.

When I was in the Army (Combat Engineer), our most formidable foe in terms of clearing clear paths for mobility of personnel and vehicles/equipment was NOT the enemy . . . it was WATER. When water flows, it will always follow the path of least resistance . . . and if that path is obstructed, the water will accumulate until it’s raw FORCE either overcomes that obstacle or finds another way which often is what results in the destruction of man-made structures (Roads, Dams, Buildings).

We humans learn humility from excessive water events. These are among the most wide-ranging in-discriminatory, mass casualty, destructive happenings known to man. Others that come to mind are hurricanes which add the element of high winds to the force of water . . . and earthquakes which shake the world and . . . and create tsunamis which are . . . HUGE surges of WATER.

Water is essential to sustain all life!

It’s not the water’s fault that all this destruction of man-made stuff happens.

The destruction occurs because we humans build stuff in the water’s natural way of travel.

Water reminds us daily of it’s power – A small roof leak can silently create HUGE damage in a house . . . and a huge volume of water can pick the house up and take it down-stream.

So . . . other than teaching us the importance of respecting the value and force of water, what can we learn that will help us in our personal and professional lifes?

What’s your ToDo list look like? Does it seem to never have an end?

How about your goals for each day?

If you fall behind on you “plan” (Goal is to write and send 15 Handwritten notes), do you “roll” the undone ones over to tomorrow? If so, how’s your blood pressure as you see your obligations accumulate? Does it seem that the faster you go (harder you work), the behinder you get?

It doesn’t have to be this way . . . You can fix all this by giving yourself permission by removing the obstacle of rigidity of the plan. Just as when you’re on a diet and you gorge yourself on “bad food” which you know you cannot un-eat, you simply commit to return to the regimen the next day . . . It’s not useful to starve yourself next day as punishment with “Roll-over calories”.

Don’t fall into that trap of creating conditions for your todos to accumulate until that list becomes insurmountable. Just pick yourself up, brush yourself off, re-evaluate your daily goals and adjust accordingly, and climb back on that horse.

Sensible “Volume of flow management”