In Episode 73 of the Wandering But Not Lost Podcast, co-hosts Matt Emerson and Jan O’Brien begin a series on how to move from being a Realtor into becoming a real estate business owner.  This 4-part series will include information on operations, marketing & advertising, sales, and referral business.  In Wandering Zen,  Matt heads back to Kings Canyon where he podcasts on location with Dennis & Sue Nespor who were making their 50th annual trip to Cedar Grove.



WBNL 52: New Series – Be a Real Estate Business Owner


Business Owner Mindset – It All Starts Here!


How do you answer the question … What do you do for a living?

“I am a real estate business owner!”

  • Are you just a salesperson or do you truly own and run a successful business?
  • Do you have a written business plan and goals?
  • Have you implemented effective systems for your business?
  • Are you in control of your schedule?
  • Do you block time daily to attract new business?

The Four Cores of Every Business

  1. Operations
  2. Marketing
  3. Sales
  4. Referrals

Building Your Brand

  • Who Are You and What Do You Do?
    • Do you have a clear message that builds trust?
    • Does your online presence reflect the true you?
    • Are you transparent and authentic?
  • Who Do You Serve?
    • Who is your perfect client?
    • What is your niche or specialty?
  • How Do You Do it?
    • How are you different?
    • What makes you and your service or product unique?
    • Why should someone choose you?

Episode 29   Defining Your Brand | What is Your Brand Mantra?

Episode 30 – Building Your Visual Brand | 3 Keys to Managing Your Brand 

Be a Real Estate Business Owner – Operations

Operations refers to the day-to-day activities of being IN your business!

  • For real estate, it’s taking listings, showing homes, writing and negotiating offers, managing the escrow to closing, communicating with other agents, lenders, escrow and all other parties to a transaction including the buyer or seller
  • How much time are you spending IN your business?
  • Do you make time to work ON your business?

Solopreneur vs. Team

Leverage the power of a transaction coordinator or assistant

Create an Operations Manual

A Real Estate Operations Manual …Why you need one!

  • Written procedures for the primary pillars of your business operation will provide consistency, efficiency
  • It’s a reflection of your expectations and standards for all team members
  • Create checklists, job descriptions and clear tasks for every member of your team
  • Your manual becomes your training document when onboarding new team members
  • It is a Key asset for your eventual Exit Strategy
  • You can build it as you go (don’t get overwhelmed … it is a process!)
  • Leverage your admin staff to help you create the written procedures as required
  • What are those key pillars of any business?
    • Business Plan & Goals
    • Database Management & Referrals
    • Lead Generation & Marketing
    • Client Service Pre, During and Post Sale
    • Financial Management & Operations

For Real Estate Agents, Teams and Brokers:

  • Listing System
  • Buyer Sales System
  • Recruiting & Growth Plan
  • Hiring System
  • Retention, Training, Coaching

Download and customize the tasks and then add written procedures for any tasks that take 2 or more steps in the manual template based on how you conduct business:

  • Listings (Sellers)
  • Sales (Buyers)
  • Lead Gen – Database
  • Lead Gen – Farms
  • Lead Gen – Social Media, Internet
  • Marketing Networking
  • Hire-Onboard
  • Team Admin

Here is how we recommend you get started working on this project;

  1. Work on Listing & Sales tabs first (use any checklists or procedures you already have in place)
  2. Revise and customize the tasks for both areas (essentially everything you do from A to Z when working with a buyer and seller)
  3. Use the columns to identify who is responsible for the tasks now (and who would do what for future team members and growth)
  4. Next, write the procedures for any task that requires 2 or more steps.  Use screenshots to illustrate steps if applicable.  You can also use screen capture software to record video tutorials (Snag-it, Camtasia, ScreenFlow)

Use your CRM!  A great CRM is more than a contact management system!

Design and follow a perfect week

Wandering Zen – The Return to Cedar Grove


The only thing better than a trip to Cedar Grove in Kings Canyon National Park is a trip with your very BEST friends (more on that when you listen).  This was the 50th annual trip to the park for Dennis and Sue and we had the honor of crashing their campsite for a few days of fun, exploration, and laughter.



In the vast Sierra wilderness far to the southward of the famous Yosemite Valley, there is a yet grander valley of the same kind. It is situated on the south fork of King’s River, above the most extensive groves and forests of the giant sequoia, and beneath the shadows the highest mountains in the range, where the cañons are deepest and the snow-laden Pus are crowded most closely together It is called the Big King’s River Cañon, or King’s River Yosemite, and is reached by way of Visalia, the nearest point on the Southern Pacific Railroad, from which the distance is about forty-five miles, or by the Kearsarge Pass from the east side of the range. It is about ten miles long, half a mile wide, and the stupendous rocks of purplish gray granite that form the walls are from 2500 to 5000 feet in height, while the depth of the valley beloved the general surface of the mountain mass from which it has been carved is considerably more than a mile. Thus it appears that this new Yosemite is longer and deeper, and lies embedded in grander mountains, than the well-known Yosemite of the Merced. Their general characters, however are wonderfully alike, and they bear the same relationship to the fountains of the ancient glaciers above them.  – John Muir, The Century Illustrated Monthly Magazine, November 1891 read more

More places to wander:

  • To listen to the shenanigans from last year jump to Episode 22


sentinel campground, cedar grove

Roads end - cedar grove

Bubb's creek - kings canyon

Zumwalt meadow, kings canyon

Roaring River falls, kings canyon

Mentioned in the Episode (Resources & Links)



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