Justin Stoddart 0:01
So the big question is this. How do we those of us in the real estate industry with crazy amounts of ambition? How do we think bigger than the building of our own empires? How do we simultaneously see success and significance, income and impact? My name is Justin Stoddart. And this is the Think bigger real estate show. If you knew how much money you were leaving on the table, and how much time with loved ones you were leaving on the table, through your do it yourself, not let go of anything mentality, you might just be sick to your stomach. Today’s broadcast is going to teach you how you can grow your business and improve your life with virtual assistants. I’m excited to share with you a guest. As somebody who’s who’s mastered this topic and stay with us. It’s gonna be great episode. So the big question is this. How do we those of us in the real estate industry with crazy amounts of ambition? How do we think bigger than the building of our own empires? How do we simultaneously see success and significance, income and impact? My name is Justin Stoddart. And this is the Think bigger real estate show. Guys, welcome back to the Think bigger real estate show. I am your host, Justin Stoddart excited to introduce to you Greg brooks of rocket station. They’re a virtual assistant company, serving over 900 Different companies 2500 Vas, that they have trained perfectly, we’re going to talk really today about how to really let go of the DIY, and to really entrust your systems, many of the things that are holding you back to somebody else who will actually be more proficient than you are at doing it. Greg, thanks for coming on the show today. Total pleasure to have you here.

Greg Brooks 1:50
Yeah, Justin, thanks so much for having us. I was I’ve heard your voice a lot this weekend as I was catching up kind of taking in some of your content. So you doing some great stuff. So we appreciate you having having us on the pod?

Justin Stoddart 1:59
Yeah, you bet, man. Great having you here. You know, let’s give us a quick backstory. Because I think it’s relevant, right? You come out of corporate America, where there are systems there, there’s processes, things are in order, you step into the entrepreneur, entrepreneurial world. In fact, if you put your head inside of many of our businesses, you’d be like, Guys, come on, this is not necessary to have so much chaos, so much uncertainty, so many variables, right. Talk to us a little bit about how your background in corporate America really set you up to take some of that those healthy structures and bring it to the, you know, to excuse me, today’s entrepreneur.

Greg Brooks 2:38
Yeah, no, definitely in it. And it definitely was eye opening, take taking the jump from, you know, a fortune 100 company, and jumping in to, you know, kind of very entrepreneurial, we were a little bit past the startup at that point. But working with, you know, real estate brokers, agents, investors all across the country, and realizing like how much inefficiency they had. And really, like, at the end of the day, how many deals and transactions they were losing just because they were the person they were the guy they were the girl that was getting all the work done every day, right? It’s a unique space, the real estate world, because usually you’ve got someone who’s betting on themselves, right? You’ve got that entrepreneur, you got that visionary, that person who very much has their own secret sauce, I guess, if you will. But when you kind of peel back the layers and you start to look behind, you start to realize like the top performers, they all operate their teams at various scales, relatively in the same way, right? So being able to kind of look at your business and getting to the point where you realize, like, Hey, I am good at what I do. You know, I’m great at closing a deal. I’m right in front of the clients, I’m great bringing in new business, but finding out ways to leverage other people’s time is the kind of that that that that influx that that that change in methodology that we try to help our clients kind of navigate because it is it is the unknown, right? It’s your business, it’s your name, it’s your reputation, it’s your name, on the on the billboard, or on the on the office door. So trusting other people is very hard, right? It’s hard for anybody. So really what we try to help our clients do and both myself as well as our partners backgrounds, it’s really helped them navigate that process and system development piece that is so hard, so laborious, candidly, so boring when you’re trying to make that first hire right, it’s, you know what, I’ll just keep doing it myself, I can do it, no big deal. Meanwhile, you haven’t taken a vacation in three years. And you know, you’re bottlenecked at a certain amount of transactions per month, we really try to help our clients Yes, hire world class talent. And I’m sure we’ll get into that. But really helping that entrepreneur kind of bridge that gap from solopreneur hustle partner getting it all done every single day, to developing really steadfast systems and processes so they can start to hand off their marketing, their lead generation, their transaction coordination functions, and at the end of the day, do more deals consistently every single month.

Justin Stoddart 4:53
You know, it’s funny, one of my favorite quotes from Shark Tank for any that have watched that entrepreneurs show it You’ve got very wealthy investors that are sitting there in a half circle, listening to the pitch of an entrepreneur. And oftentimes, these entrepreneurs have a very, maybe overblown perspective of their role in the company and how or how much the company is valued. And one of my favorite responses from one of them was your secret sauce is ketchup was like, nobody, it was just like bringing people down to earth is like, like very little of what we do, can’t be duplicated, if not done better by somebody else. And I think the moment that we think that everything that we do is secret sauce, is the moment that we choose to not grow. But the moment that we realize that, okay, there is this portion that is uniquely me, it’s the unique relationships that I have, like it maybe need to be my face and my voice on the videos, and my unique perspective here. Other than that, I can have people that are helping me extend that into the lives of other people in all kinds of numerous ways. And once we, once we really kind of get our head around the fact that I think it opens up that bottleneck, right? It helps us to realize like, Oh, that’s it versus maybe depressing, like, maybe like, shoot, I thought it was more important than that. But the cool thing is, you get a bunch of your time back, and you can actually go be more important to the people in your life that that actually matter the most. And I think that’s a big part of what we preach here. And I think bigger real estate show. So this, this episode is overdue, because not only do we preach success, but more importantly, that success and significance, right? How do you have both to where you don’t just become a slave to your job? And yeah, I’m a high performer, but at what cost? Do we actually are able to have some time to work on the business as well as work outside of the business on things that matter more? So, love your perspective, I’d love to ask you, Greg, if you could let us know, what are one of the biggest things why, like, when you’re talking to people who have now had that breakthrough? they’ve teamed up with rocket station, and they’re like, Oh, my goodness, I wish I would have done this five years ago, like, what was I thinking? What are some of the things that they tell you as to what kept them from doing it?

Greg Brooks 6:59
I think most of them, it was just that, you know, why spend the time doing this, I can do it better myself. type mentality, right, which that’s every entrepreneurs Achilles heel, you know, is just the fact that, hey, I could be out chasing down the next deal, or doing the next showing, who’s got time to sit there and document how my lead generation works, or how I qualify my leads, or how I upload a lead into, into my into my CRM or into my client management platform. And I just feel like that’s so backwards, right? It’s, it’s when you’re trying to get yourself out of work, like you said, at the end of the day, the great equalizer is time, we’ve all got the same 24 in a day. So being able to leverage your skills, your your skill sets, your area of expertise within your business, and within your brand is like so crucial. And usually, it’s the fact that they say I just don’t have time for this. It’s like, Yeah, well, well, you also don’t have time for your kids, you also don’t have time to support the other people in your office, you don’t have time to knock down three more deals like time is always the issue, we get that. And it’s it’s the people that we really work with that we help kind of create that bridge to process to freedom to scaling themselves, because that’s what we’re talking about, right? When you’re talking about working with top performing top performing agents or even up and coming agents in your local markets. Like you got to be able to scale yourself. And I haven’t found the time machine yet that allows me to work 48 hours a day. So maybe some of the listeners have but the only way to do that, you know is you got to you got to kind of take that short term time to really figure out where do you want to be? What do you want to get off your plate, develop those systems around it, and then hire like, like, I love the Shark Tank. Example of one of my favorite quotes is, you know, the John D Rockefeller, like I’d rather make 1% of 100 people’s efforts and make 100% of just my own. Right. And that’s what we’re talking about. There’s no company in America that was scaled by one person and their secret sauce, right. So being able to kind of dive in deep and and really understand kind of what it is that’s holding you back like what you know, whether it is hey, I want this to be I want you know my business to be more of a lifestyle. I’ve got young kids like I want to be at their sporting events, I want to take vacations. Or if you want to go out and close $50 million with a business next year. Right? Everyone’s got different goals, but typically evaluating like where your time is best spent. And then where are you actually spending your time daily. When you do that first pass through, those usually don’t match up. So usually kind of starting there and we help our clients kind of understand hey, you say you want to be doing this because this is what you love and why you got into real estate. But look at what you just walked us through 90% of your time you’re spent behind a computer or doing this or doing that. So it’s really that hey, well I don’t have time to do it. Well, no one’s got time right you got to you got to you can’t put the cart before the horse right you got to start and First understand kind of where you are what you want to get off your plate, develop those processes and then the hiring and staffing component becomes a lot easier.

Justin Stoddart 9:55
So really interesting because I believe when I’ve been fighting leverage, right when I’ve been fighting In bringing on additional teammates is typically like I don’t have the income, like I don’t have the revenue to be able to support that number one, and or number two, is what you described, which is I don’t have the time, I don’t have the time to train somebody up. On the revenue side, I think you have to be able to legitimately tell yourself with the activities that I’m giving away, I’m going to replace those with revenue generating activities, and you actually have a little bit of a buffer, right? I don’t think it’s wise for anybody that’s at the edge of their income right now, to go invest in somebody, right? But what’s taught is have three to six months, which you’ll learn right is that in, in when it comes to a virtual assistant, that’s not going to break you, right, it’s not going to break you. And you can actually get that in place. And then again, have the systems in place where you re dedicate that time to go generate revenue. And now all of a sudden, you’ve more than replaced the revenue. And you’ve you know, anyone that time back, something that you have explained to me, Greg, that I love, is that this component about about time, like okay, so I hire somebody, Greg, we meet, and you walk me through, we find the perfect person to support my team. And now what I was too busy when we had this conversation, I didn’t have time. And now I’m supposed to train them and find the right tools to walk us through what what you guys rock as they should do to really create this, this environment in which this, this hiree steps into and is already running, right? They’re not sitting at you, staring at you waiting for you to give them instructions will kind of walk us through that a little because I think this is a big breakthrough. Folks, if you’re not paying attention now pay attention here, because I believe that this will cause you to let go of some of the hesitation that’s keeping you from scale.

Greg Brooks 11:42
Now for sure, I’m sure lots of your listeners have heard of VAs or have looked into VAs maybe or even currently working with vas. And you know, yes, there’s a cost savings you know, working because vas, we’re talking about somebody in another country that just because of the economies of scale, you can get a much higher skill set for a lot less than it would cost you and Portland or Dallas or Boise wherever you are. But the say the biggest thing that you got to look at is your right don’t get in when you’re on your last dollar because VAs have never saved anybody’s business in the history of VAs for a terrible metaphor, right, they’re definitely something that you want to look at when you have a little bit of run. And you want to like you said have that that 234 months where you can you know really spend the time and invest in them. The benefit of working with a service like us is you get somebody who you’re not just tying in to that VAs knowledge and their skill sets. But you’re tying into I mean, we’ve got 2500 Vas working right now for clients all over the country, in the real estate industry. You know, we have two almost 250 people that work for us that all throughout our client lifecycle, both the recruitment side finding great talent, as well as setting our clients up through that process development and mapping. So you really get that end to end support in terms of higher caliber candidate, right, somebody who in our case has gone through real estate specific training, we’ve done the whole HR song and dance from the vetting, and the interviewing all the way through to all of our people go through four weeks of real estate practical training, based on kind of the position and skill sets that they come in the job they’re looking for. But the other thing you get on the back end is like you said, you don’t want to have to hire somebody and then have to spend six months, every single day three hours a day, getting them up to speed. So that’s where our dedication to that process development and really starting with you as the entrepreneur, I mean, I mean, the first tangible step we do is what do you want to be doing in your business? And what do you hate doing? What don’t you want to be doing? Because that’s typically what you’re handing off to the VA. So literally, from building that list to then backing into the processes and the technology, you then get end to end management support, who is there to ensure success of you and that you in the VA? And like what does that look like? We’re the ones that make sure we have a quick 30 minute call every morning to make sure if there was any questions from the previous day, we create intentional opportunities to coach and up train and develop that relationship with your VA. We also put score carding, we put you know all the KPIs around what does success look like, for this position in there for you right lessons that typically people when they hire first, you know, their first hire, they make they’re hiring at a need, you know, I’ve got more volume, or I just launched new marketing or I can’t keep up with all these referral leads that are coming in. And they kind of hire as the bandaid rather than hire it as the solution. You know what I mean? So what we help you do is from those processes back into, like, what does success actually look like? What is the number that shows this person is is a net positive for your company. And then we ensure that you as the entrepreneur know when you need to be involved with your team. But we’re also making sure that the VA is following and asking questions and staying locked into the processes and systems that we’ve taken to develop. And then we’re monitoring all the KPIs and metrics around the success of this role for you and we’re constantly calibrating right it’s just having the good goal of hiring a VA. So you can free your time up to do typically more revenue generating activities. So what we do is we help create that umbrella to where when we need you, we can say, Hey, Justin, come back here real quick, we need 30 minutes of your time this question came up, or we’re seeing this in the responses from your leads, how would you handle that we we problem solve, you know, we put a plan in place, and then we action it whereas for most people, they’re either sitting there micromanaging every day, because they just don’t trust or they’re not quite sure that their virtual team member knows what they’re doing, or what typically is more common, they find out six months later that the VA hasn’t been doing this right, or they’ve been sending the wrong email, or they’ve been, you know, not answering the phone correctly. And then all that time, money, potential profits, real money is lost. So we try to be very intentional through all those, those checkmarks. And all those gates that we’re getting the VA through to get them up to where, you know, they really just feel like somebody who’s sitting there that you can lean on that you can go off script with because they have a deep understanding of your brand your business and really what it you know, the reason why they’re there in that seat to begin with.

Justin Stoddart 16:06
So it sounds like you aren’t just having virtual assistants show up in your office, right, your Zoom Room on day one saying, Okay, what do want me to do, right, there’s some pre emptive preparation prior to even hiring that person. There’s some training, and there’s some monitoring, to where you can really identify, is this working? Is it not? How do we tweak this right to where you guys are acting to some degree as an intermediary? Right, really kind of identifying, like, how do we be sure that this is successful? Because that’s the only way that this works for anybody. Right? Right. And

Greg Brooks 16:34
we call it a partnership, because that’s, I mean, that’s really what it is right? That we want to be just as in lockstep with your business as you are right, especially, you know, in, you know, working with our agent and broker partners, you know, a lot of the times, they’re, they’re small person shops, or they are, they are the brand, they are the one person. So we try to be very in tune with being a partner that they can leverage and not just someone that says, Here you go, here’s your VA, have fun, let us know how it turns out, right, because, you know, candidly, and I’m sure your listeners can appreciate this, when you look at the lifecycle of a real estate transaction, nothing is overly complicated, right. But the feelings, the emotions, everything that’s involved with your buyer or with your seller, is really you know, at its peak, so what we try to do is really be involved in your business really have a deep understanding, because it just helps us really make sure that the VA is up to speed, make sure that they’re hitting the mark, make sure that you know that they’re the right fit, even just in communication styles, like all those little things, that kind of coming full circle, fortune 100 companies pay HR departments, tons of money to monitor and track, we step in there and help you, you know, the local agent who’s doing you know, six transactions a month in Indianapolis, we help you have that same level of professionalism, which just leads to a better experience, not only for your clients, but also for you actually enjoying your business again,

Justin Stoddart 17:59
let’s talk really quickly have several more questions want to ask you? But where like, how and where do people find out more about this, if they’re like having an AHA right now of like, Okay, last year, I couldn’t come up for air year before, same thing. This year, I’ve got a little bit of time, and I don’t want to waste it, I don’t think it’s gonna pick back up. Right? This isn’t a forever thing. This is a temporary thing, especially for the good agents that have been through this before. And or they just know that this is how real estate markets work. And they’re like, if I get to the other side of this little bit of an exhale, and I haven’t got some better systems in place. Shame on me. And if I’m gasping for air again, because I don’t it’s only me, when when things pick back up, like we’ve really missed a big opportunity. So I think that there’s agents right now that are saying, like, you know, what, I need systems, you know, I need leverage, and now might be the right time at least want to look into this, where do people go Greg to really kind of explore what this could look like for them.

Greg Brooks 18:52
Yeah, Justin, thank you so much for for having, having us on the podcast, I just think so much of what you’re doing, the people you have on here, even your own insights is it’s it’s really refreshing. And I think it’s very, you know, on the the tip of the spear, if you will, as to kind of what everyone’s dealing with, you know, as we all kind of navigate, you know, whether it’s going to be a recession or this turning market. So thank you, man, thank you for having us. Anyone that’s looking for more information I provide I got a link I hope you can put it in the show notes, we have a kind of an ultimate guide to listing management and how to leverage virtual assistants to specifically fulfill that task. So I encourage everybody, it’s a free download, you know, feel free to to look at that it kind of gives you an insight into what you know a lot of what we were talking about when it comes to like developing processes so you can effectively hand stuff off that is not revenue generating that is not really a good use of your time, you know, as an agent, and then anybody who wants to further the discussion, my calendar is wide open discovery dot rocket station.com is kind of my personal calendar. So whether it’s, you’re looking for a VA, whether you’ve got VA, and you’re looking to better maximize them, or if you just want to nerd out on processes, we’d love to talk to anybody who’s you know, trying to navigate trying to scale trying to win some market share in their local market. So once again, that’s discovery dot rocket station.com. And then for all of your listeners, Justin as well, if anybody does decide to kind of move forward with our services, we are offering a 50% off, you know, startup discount for you having us on the podcast. So like I said, really appreciate you, man, I totally bought into everything that you’re passing along and the knowledge that you’re bringing on the podcast, and just thank you so much for for having us on here, man, we really, really appreciate it.

Justin Stoddart 20:44
One of the things that we really believe and think bigger real estate, is, as I mentioned before, success is not enough, you’ll get to the end of a successful life as deemed and kind of today’s common thinking. And you may have missed out on the most important things. Let me share it this way. Tom Brady, I’m a big fan of Tom’s like a big fan of Tom Brady. Love the guy. He’s the greatest of all time when it comes to football. Right now I’m a little disappointed at Tom. Because Tom is obviously prioritizing football over his family. Now who am I to say it’s Tom’s life, right? Tom do what you want. But if it were me, I could get to the end of my NFL career, and not have a wife and have my kids not know me and I missed their magical years because I was so busy trying to layer on another Vince Lombardi trophy. Now, I’m pretty sure that Tom Brady won’t hear this, he probably doesn’t care about my opinion, but I hope that you do, I hope that you’re hearing this and that you care, because you can be very successful. But significance is another layer significance isn’t how much better you were than your competition, but it’s how much more you stepped up into the lives of the people who matter the most to you could be family, could be friends, could be neighbors could be community, it could be a cause that you care about. If you only focus on accumulating more trophies and more money, I believe you’re gonna get to the end of life, you may have a very full trophy case. But so but an empty life. So that’s my take on Tom Brady, take take it for what you will. But the things that we’re talking about today are much deeper and bigger than just have a little more time have a little more money. This is freeing you up to be able to go actually pursue the income that you want, without setting your family on the altar without saying okay, well, I gotta choose one or the other. So sorry, family, you’re out. And I would encourage everybody that to think and ponder about that. Because some of those decisions, they don’t come back, right kids are out of the house. All right. Personal Relationships are gone. And you’re thinking like, Hmm, I think I focus too much on work. And what we’re talking about here today, and I don’t know if we’re gonna get Greg back. So we’ll go ahead and wrap up this episode we’re talking about here today is much bigger than that, that this community think bigger real estate is for those that that want more than success that wants success and significance. And my belief is that if you don’t have the right coaching, or and or if you don’t have the right leverage, that you are selling yourself short when it comes to what you could be producing, both in income as well as an impact, both in success as well as in significance. So I hope that this has been helpful for everybody listening here today, I would encourage you, again to take a look, honestly, and how you spend your time. Maybe there’s some things that you can get off of your plate. If so, I would encourage you to do so. So appreciate you tuning in. And my final requests of everybody listening here today are these three simple words and they are go think bigger. Thanks, everybody, talk soon. If you enjoy this episode that I have a very special invitation for you. I have created a private Facebook community called successful real estate agents, where the focus is going beyond success having both a successful business and a significant life. If you’re not yet a member. Go sign up now.

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