Your value in this business is not your availability.
Read that again. Let that sink in a moment.
Your value is not your availability.
Your value is also not how much commission you charge. There is so much more that we bring to the table. The key here is to surround ourselves with people and clients who understand our value. That is how you build a long term, sustainable, meaningful business.
But first, you must understand your own value. I've struggled with this in many different areas of my life. When I look back, it was when I had forgotten my value, didn't understand my value, didn't value myself that I allowed myself to be taken advantage of. It was when I made poor decisions. It was when I struggled the most.
Your value is not your availability. We've all had those clients. The strangers who call and need to see our listing right now, in an hour, this afternoon. The current client who regularly and repeatedly calls and wants to view homes with an hours notice. What do they think we do all day, sit around waiting for their call? Even if our business is slow, and maybe they are our only client, what about our family, our personal life? Does that not exist or matter? Of course there are always exceptions. The new listing that comes on and needs to be seen quickly, but I'm not talking about that scenario. I'm talking about the houses that have sat for months, the buyer who doesn't really want to get pre-approved yet, whose in a lease for another 6 months, who hasn't sold their house yet (and declines every other showing because it is inconvenient for them), yet calls at 7 am on a Sunday morning to view $2M listings within the next 2-3 hours.
Your value is not in your availability. Some clients can and need to be trained. Never ask, "when do you want to meet?" When scheduling with a client, you offer the times, "my first availability is today at 4 pm, or tomorrow at 10 am, which works best for you?" Most of the time they will pick one of those times, and you have set the expectation, established the guideline that you are the professional, that you have boundaries.
Your value is not in how much you charge. There isn't a dollar sign attached to your head and clients pick you solely based on the size of that number. We are not a commodity, or a one size fits all solution. There is so much more that we bring to the table.
Will you lose some clients along the way if you can't run right out the door the minute they call? Possibly. Will you lose some clients along the way if you don't charge the lowest commission rate or give the biggest rebate? Yes. Are those clients worth sacrificing your time, your life, your business for? Almost always the answer is no.
Know your value. Understand what you bring to the table. Own it. You ARE worth it.