It’s not uncommon for new real estate agents to go broke waiting for those first few deals to come through. Today’s guest, Realtor Kaisen Mitchell, watched his savings dwindle down to nothing as a new agent, but he didn’t give up; it paid off. Now, Kaisen’s closing over 30 deals annually, sometimes making more in a single month than he did in a year at his previous job. Hear how Kaisen’s persistence put him on the path to success and discover the strategies he used to start winning clients on this Real Estate Rockstars.
Listen to today’s show and learn:
- Kaisen’s message to listeners [2:56]
- Why and how Kaisen left his nine-to-five job for real estate [5:00]
- Kaisen’s experience going broke as a new agent [9:09]
- Kaisen’s sales figures [11:42]
- A proven strategy for winning clients at open houses [13:16]
- How to ensure people show up to open houses [22:13]
- An agent’s most important hire [34:07]
- How meditation helps Kaisen stay productive [37:10]
- Why consistent prospecting is so important [39:13]
- How big goals can drive big business [42:57]
- A system for evaluating and improving your life [46:01]
- How to break through your goals.
- Plus so much more.
Kaisen Mitchell moved to the Tampa Bay Area when he was 4 years old – He grew up there, went to school K-12 and college and began his real estate career there. Kaisen believes Tampa and the surrounding communities are phenomenal places to live and he loves helping people live out their real estate dreams there!
Kaisen’s real estate related accomplishments and awards include Top Producer, various multi-million dollar sales awards and his team is currently one of the Top 100 teams in the area. Kaisen believes that the decision to buy and/or sell a home(s) is a hugely important one, and whom you choose to represent you MATTERS!
Kaisen believes there are two things that set him apart, one he is available 24/7 for his clients, he believes communication is key to having a successful transaction. Also, beyond the knowledge, availability, communication and experience Kaisen and his team have, he truly cares about his clients — in fact, once they decide to work together, his clients become “my people” and are treated like family. This makes it easy for Kaisen to become both professionally and emotionally invested in, and committed to, his people. Which in turn makes for a unique and improved overall experience for all of them!
Because of Kaisen’s commitment to YOUR expectations, he believes YOU will have the most pleasant experience in YOUR real estate transaction. His knowledge, skills, and experience will guide YOU through the intricacies of buying & selling real estate. Kaisen’s experience in negotiating millions of dollars of contracts and delivering services will ensure YOU the best possible representation. By putting his knowledge, professionalism & expertise to work for YOU, together you can achieve YOUR real estate goals.
Related Links and Resources:
- Grow Your Real Estate Profits with Our Agent Success Toolbox
- Get 6 Steps to 7 Figures by Pat Hiban for FREE
- Get Tribe of Millionaires by Pat Hiban and David Osborn for FREE
- Episode 605 with Matt O’Neill
- Lock & Key Realty | Greater Tampa Bay Area Real Estate
- Kaisen’s Facebook
- Lock & Key Realty | Facebook
- Download Kaisen’s Life Happiness Index from the Agent Success Toolbox
Thanks for Rocking Out
Thank you for tuning in to Pat Hiban Interviews Real Estate Rockstars, we appreciate you! To get more Rockstar content sent directly to your device as it becomes available, subscribe on iTunes or Stitcher! Reviews on iTunes are extremely helpful and appreciated! We read each and every one of them, please feel free to leave your email so that we can personally reach out and say thanks! Have any questions? Tweet me, Facebook me and ask Pat anything. Don’t forget to head on over to Bare Naked Agent for Pat’s answers, and advice. Thank you Rockstar Nation, and keep rockin!
Read the Full Interview
Matt O’Neill: What’s happening Real Estate Rockstar nation? I am today’s host, Matt O’Neill. I am happy to be here today with Kaisen Mitchell. Kaisen, what’s up?
Kaisen Mitchell: How’s it going, Matt?
Matt: Man, it’s going awesome. I cannot wait for this interview. We’re going to bring some value. We’re going to change some lives today.
Kaisen: Awesome. Yes, I’m looking forward to it as well.
Matt: Pat Hiban interviewed me as a guest on this show a few years ago. I think it was two years ago and he was interviewing me about a big challenge I was facing at the time, similar to something you went through two years ago where I wanted to get out of production in real estate and grow my team to the point where I didn’t have to physically be going on appointments. Two years later, we’ve grown our company 75 million since that point. We’re going to sell 225 million this year. I haven’t sold a house in two years since I met Pat. I’m the success story from where you could be at this podcast to another two years even though you are already amazingly successful.
Kaisen: That’s incredible. That’s awesome.
Matt: Then Adam Roach and I started a real estate coaching company called Get Real Coaching and we produced a weekly newsletter that talks about the state in the market and talks about training tips real estate agents on getrealinsight.com. We’re going to dive into what has made you so successful. You’ve been in the business just two years?
Matt: I just want to start out and ask you, what’s the reason that you want to connect on this podcast today? What’s the message you want to send?
Kaisen: My message essentially is just I want to let people know that it’s achievable to achieve what I have achieved in the real estate. So many people just start out and I’ve seen a lot of people quit or give up just because it’s so difficult initially in the business. I just want to let people know if I can do it, then they definitely can.
Matt: That’s awesome. That’s the message that we’re going to deliver today. You’re going to inspire a lot of people. As we were saying, you’ve been in business just two years. You started out. We talked earlier this week that you had the courage to quit a 9:00 to 5:00 job that wasn’t serving you that you weren’t living to your highest potential.
Kaisen: Yes, I did. It was definitely a big leap of faith, but I just felt like I was in a place where I could just take the leap. I’m young and I didn’t have that much to worry about initially. The present is always the best time to just make that move, just dive right in.
Matt: The best time to make a change is now. That’s awesome.
Kaisen: Right, exactly.
Matt: We’ll get into that. We’ll get into how you almost went broke. Then in just your second year, you’ve made over 150,000 in gross commission income, and then in just one month this year, you made more money than you made the entire year in your 9:00 to 5:00. We’ll talk about your secret weapon that find so much success and that is your killer open-house strategy. I know you’re going to dissect exactly how you do that so that the listeners of this podcast can take away some value.
Then the thing I’m most excited about, we’re going to get to at the end, which is the life happiness index that you and your friends have created to not just make a bunch of money, not just have a bunch of success, but have a whole life success and have that fulfillment to go along with it.
Kaisen: Yes, sir. I’m excited.
Matt: Awesome, man. Let’s dive right in. Take me back. What was the job, what was the career two years ago that wasn’t fueling your passion?
Kaisen: I’ll just give a little brief bio about myself. My name is Kaisen Shawn Mitchell. I’m located in the Tampa Bay area. I’m a realtor with Lock & Key Realty. I’ve been licensed since August of 2017. Before getting into real estate, I was attending the University of South Florida. I was studying finance. While I was in school, I was working as a patient registration rep at a local hospital. Prior to that, I was a server at a restaurant.
Matt: Yes, man. Awesome. Hey, that servers relate really well to real estate too. You got to make connection quick in an instant and you make connection over and over and over again. Any servers, bartenders that we brought onto our team we’ve been able to have really quick success because you’re trained how to make a quick connection.
Kaisen: It’s just about being personable, being able to talk to people, and just keep a conversation going. I think people in the restaurant or hospitality industry as a whole really make great agents, great salespeople, in general.
Matt: That’s awesome. After server, you were working in the medical field, right?
Kaisen: Correct. I was thinking that, serving, I was making tips and everything like that, so I wanted something more consistent. I was like, “Okay, let me just hop into the medical field because everyone needs healthcare and stuff.” I was working at the hospitals 9:00 to 5:00 and I was a patient registration rep. What I do, I’m in the front desk and I ask everyone the same questions every single day for 12 hours a day. It was a little rough. Well, I worked three days a week and then four days off, so three on, four off. It was pretty rough.
Matt: You’re just watching the clock?
Matt: Every day watching the clock, not engaged. What’s that life like?
Kaisen: Well, there’s a lot of people that like it and it’s necessary. It’s something that somebody needs to do. It just didn’t fit my lifestyle and didn’t fit my goals. While I was there, I was always reading books or online looking at real estate, or reading articles about people who were successful. That also ties in with me get in the financing degree because I wanted to learn about money and how money works, how to be successful in business, and so on and so forth.
Matt: That’s step one. If somebody is stuck in that 9:00 to 5:00, it is advance your skillset, advance your knowledge, start reading books. You’d spend all of your time studying what you really are passionate about. Good for you. We do not just count the minutes and then wait for the weekend. All right, so talk with me about courage. What was it that gave you that courage to go ahead and make that leap?
Kaisen: I really had a good support system around me. One of the things is you can’t really make a leap without a plan. You can’t jump out of a plane without a parachute. One thing that I did, I surrounded myself with the right people. I asked good questions. I took notes. I started saving up money for my job while studying from our real estate license. One of the things that I was told is that really you have to be a fulltime agent and being able to service your clients better.
Rather than just trying to do it part-time and not being available three days out a week, I just was like, “Let me just go take the leap. Let me just dive in and I’m going to make it work.” That was my mindset. There’s no other way but to make it work.
Matt: I love that, man. I saw an interview with Will Smith and he said, “Burn the fucking boats.” People talking about plan A and plan B. There is no plan B. There’s plan A. Be committed. That’s what you were. You were committed. Now, the fear is real and the fear is justified because as you said, you almost went broke. Tell me about that.
Kaisen: Well, I did. I just didn’t have any money. I saved up probably three or four grand. I thought that would have been enough, but when you’re getting your license, there’s a whole bunch of expenses that you just don’t necessarily plan for. It wiped out a lot of that. I really had to be very frugal with my money. I ended up running out. It was hard. It was one of the things.
At that time, I was reading a lot of books and I saw that a lot of the best or biggest most successful entrepreneurs they went broke in the beginnings of their career, specifically Kevin Hart. I remember reading a part in his book, I don’t know if you’ve read it, where he just didn’t have any money at all. He was driving back and forth from Philadelphia to New York to do these shows and it finally paid off obviously. I was just committed to the plan. I was just going to be steadfast, I was going to do whatever I could do to make it be successful.
Matt: Committed to the plan. I just literally just had lunch with Dave Ramsey.
Matt: Are you a fan of Dave?
Kaisen: Yes, he’s a great guy. I read his books too.
Matt: Yes, man. Dave was just sharing the story and he got emotional about how he started and how broke he was. He was a real estate agent like us and made a bunch of sales, and then lost it all and lost his house, foreclosures. When he’s got to do his education career, he just started to show up and got one radio station to host him and had a couple followers. He said, “I’m a 30-year overnight success,” and he said, “You want to know why we have a 240 million a year revenue company?”
He said, “It’s because I get on air three hours a day every day and I have for the last 30 years and I brought it every day. If I’ve got the flu, I’m on air. if I just had a shitty meeting and things blew up and I got to go on air, I’m on air.” He said, “I am consistent.” That’s what you just said too, you show up.
Kaisen: Yes, you just got to shop up. Absolutely.
Matt: I love that, man. All right, so you made the leap of faith that paid off. Let’s get down to the nitty-gritty. In the last 12 months, how many houses have you sold?
Kaisen: In the last twelve months, I’ve sold 34 houses.
Matt: Awesome, man. Second year of real estate, 34 houses.
Kaisen: Yes, sir.
Matt: What was that total volume?
Kaisen: The total volume was just around 6.6 million.
Matt: Congratulations, man.
Kaisen: Thank you.
Matt: That’s killer. Then how much of that is profit for you?
Kaisen: Profit in my pocket is around $70,000. The GCI total was about 175.
Kaisen: Thank you.
Matt: That is awesome. All right. Now, talk with me about how your business is composed. What’s the percentage listings versus buyers?
Kaisen: With listings, I’m a little bit short on listings, about 35% listings and then heavier on the buyer side. More of 65% buyers. I’m looking to get it more to 50/50, but right now this is how I setup.
Matt: Yes, absolutely. That’s the progression most agents take too, is heavy on buyers in the beginning and then a shift to listings. Let’s talk about, and you’ve got this amazing system for open houses that really drives a lot of your success. 6.6 million in your second year of real estate, you’ve helped 34 families in two months. Man, that’s awesome. That’s like every week, you’re closing a home every single week. That’s such a success.
Kaisen: Yes, just about.
Matt: Talk with me about this open house system. Tell me, if you can, take our listeners right through exactly how they could do this too.
Kaisen: Sure. I actually learned this strategy through being a student of this podcast. Pretty much what I learned is that 99% of prospective clients that visit open house, they don’t end up purchasing that specific home. In the event that that client doesn’t like that home and you don’t have anything to show them as an alternative, the chances of you getting a sale from that encounter drops significantly and you’re left trying to follow up with them after the open house, and then trying to establish rapport and getting that sale.
My strategy is very simple. You just need three things, a laptop, a phone, and you just have to have availability. When someone walks into the open house, I just strike up conversation with them and I just say, “Hey, what brought you into my open house today?” I’m looking for specific keywords and statements here, maybe, “Oh, I just sold my house and I’m looking for somewhere to stay,” or, “I just retired from military,” or, “I want to be closer to my job.” I’m just looking for specific things to let me know that they’re a buyer.
After I have that initial conversation, they sign in on my sign-in sheet. I let them look around, and I have my MLS prepared on my laptop and after they’re done looking, I dig a little bit deeper. I’ve tried to get more of an idea what that client is looking for in a home and what their preferences are, and then I asked them, I said, “Hey, what are some of your likes and dislikes about this house?” Then I asked, “What are some of the things that you’re looking for an additional, like the price, bedroom, bathroom, location, square footage?”
While the client is giving me this information, I’m plugging it into my MLS and I’m trying to narrow it down to about 10 or 20 different results. I just show them I say, “Hey, based on the criteria you gave me, you have about 15 homes in this area that match what you’re looking for.” I just show it to them and I’d say, “Hey, have you seen this one?” I filter it from newest to oldest, and most times they’re like, “Yes,” or, “Oh, no, I actually haven’t seen this one. This one looks really nice.”
Then once I show them, I say, “Hey, my open house ends in about 15 minutes. I can shoot you a text when I’m leaving here and we can go see that house right now.” Then typically more times than that, they set aside time to look at houses. They’re usually available, but if not, I try to set the appointment right then and there to go check out that house.
Matt: You know what that is? That is the secret, that’s the killer strategy. Open houses don’t sound sexy. Agents are like, “Oh, I’ve tried open houses, they don’t work.” You know what? When I started my career, I started with open houses and I killed it. Look, how much does an open house cost to hold?
Kaisen: Oh, zero.
Matt: Nothing. You’re in this business, you’re getting started, you don’t have money, but you got time and enthusiasm, open houses. They cost you nothing, they get you face-to-face, your best asset, getting face-to-face with home buyers and home sellers. I’m sure you’re getting listings about open houses too.
Matt: Well, what I love in what you’re doing and this is the tweak that probably all the 99% of other agents are not doing when they hold an open house is you are right there, you’re asking the questions, everybody asks the questions, you’re getting the information, but you’re putting it in the MLS and pulling up a house and saying, “Hey, have you seen this one?” Then you say, “Hey, this open house ends in 15 minutes. Well, why don’t we go take a look at it?”
Kaisen: Exactly, exactly.
Matt: You are putting the buyer that came in the open house in your car right then and showing them a house and making a client.
Kaisen: Or they’ll follow me in their car, but yes, pretty much.
Matt: Yes, absolutely
Matt: Now, let’s dive into this deeper. Is your open house really ending in 15 minutes?
Kaisen: Typically. I don’t always say ending in 15 minutes. I usually say, “Oh,” if my open house is 12:00 to 3:00 and it’s two o’clock, “Oh, it’s ending in an hour. I just need to pick up my signs and I’ll just take you to go see it right after, immediately after.”
Matt: Okay. You actually stick with the– If you plan to stay till 3:00, you’ll stay till 3:00 even if the person comes in at 1:00 and it’s two hours, you say, “Hey, my open house ends at 3:00, why don’t I meet you over at that house at 3:30?”
Kaisen: Yes, or even if there’s a long period of time. Let’s say two hours or so, I would say, “Hey, why don’t you go check out your other open houses that you have a list for or why don’t you go grab lunch? I’ll send you this list of homes,” Right? I’ll put in their email address, “Look through a few and then text me a couple of other homes that you want to see in addition to this one and then I’ll get them scheduled for you, and we can go see it right after I’m done.”
Matt: Oh, that’s even better. Amazing. This is the secret sauce, too. You’re getting the cellphone number because you’re saying, “I’ll text you.”
Matt: You have a reason. How many times when they fill out that form before you connected and provided value? Do they give you a different phone number or a different [crosstalk]
Kaisen: All the time, all the time. They would go back to the sheet and they would scribble out, and then they would put the right number or not put their email address and put it in my computer. I’m being purposeful about gathering their information.
Kaisen: Yes. See, you’re not just gathering their information, you’re leading the value. When you have something somebody wants, then now they’re willing to communicate with you and make that connection. I just read the National Association of Realtors survey of home buyers, home sellers. They spent over a million dollars a year asking home buyers what they want in an agent. The majority, like 54%, the number one thing they wanted from a home-buying agent, what do you think it was?
Kaisen: Availability, probably, or communication?
Matt: It was help me find the right home.
Kaisen: Right. It’s true.
Matt: It’s exactly what you’re doing. The overwhelming majority, the number one thing they wanted was, “Help me find the right home.” You are in the open house, and you are right there helping them find the right home right there. Any agent can say, “Oh, I’ll send you a list from the MLS,” or, “You go on Zillow and find a home.” You’re actually doing the work to help them find the right home. That’s exactly what they want from a buyer agent.
Kaisen: Well, most agents are pretty passive when they come into the open house as well. It’s from what I have observed. It’s like, “Okay, check out the house. If you see anything that you want to see, just shoot me a text or give me a call. We’ll schedule a time to meet next week or something like that.” I just like to be active. I tell new agents. It’s like they’re selling me their information. I have to provide some value for them to give me their information and give me their time. That’s all it is. It’s about me creating immense value, so much value in that short amount of time that they’re like, “Oh my gosh. You’ve done more for me in 15 minutes than the person that I was talking to online that hasn’t even shown me a house yet or hasn’t done this,” or whatever like that. That’s what I aim to do.
Matt: Let’s back up because, in my opinion, the hardest part of open house is to get people to show up, right?
Matt: I’m sure you’ve held open houses, and one or two or fewer people or zero people have shown up before.
Matt: How do you pick the house? Let’s say you’re an agent, you don’t have a ton of listings, how do you pick the house? How do you get somebody to let you hold one open? Then, two, how do you get people to show up?
Kaisen: Let’s say you’re a single agent. The first thing is, how do you find the listings? I would reach out to agents that have multiple listings, especially if they’re by themselves or they don’t have a big team. They want to leverage their time. Not a lot of these big agents, they don’t like to be at open houses all day every day. I would just go up to them and just be like, “Hey. Can I host your open house? I’m a new agent. I’ll sit it,” or whatever like that. Even if it’s an older house, I would just ask them that if I can host it open. Then to answer your other question, how do you get people to show up? I would probably call around the neighborhood the week before. I would door knock 10 homes.
Matt: Let’s talk about what you actually do, not what would you do. What are you actually doing to get people to show up to your open house?
Kaisen: I typically call around the neighborhood probably a day or two before to just get people to show up to my open house.
Matt: What are you doing to call around the neighborhood? How are you getting those numbers? What’s your system for that?
Kaisen: I use the tax records. That’s what I look for. I go on the tax records. I do a reverse search. Then I use white pages to plug in their name or their address just to get a quick phone number, not just call around. If their number is not in tax records, I would go to the actual neighborhood, and I would door knock specifically the first 10 houses on one side of the street, and then the next 10 houses on the other one. Then I’d give them a little flyer of like, “Hey. My name is Kaisen. Your neighbor’s selling their house across the street. I’m hoping to hold an open house. I just want to invite you over there to just check it out and just see if you had any friends or family that were thinking about moving into the neighborhood.”
Matt: Are you using scotch tape and a flyer and taping it to the door or 10 houses to the right, 10 houses to the left, 10 houses across [crosstalk]?
Kaisen: Well, I would not. If they’re not there, I would probably leave it on their front step with my business card and then a flyer that says, “Open house this Saturday, 12:00 to 3:00 or Sunday 12:00 to 3:00.”
Matt: Great. Then on the day of the open house, are you doing anything special? Are you putting into paper? Are you advertising online? Are you using a bunch of signs?
Kaisen: Not necessarily. I would definitely use a bunch of signs. I’d put up as many signs as possible. I would like to hold open houses where there’s a high traffic area. If there’s a major road and there’s a neighborhood right off of it, those are probably the prime open houses because you get a lot of eyeballs on your signs. It’s just a lot of traffic that potential buyers would see it and come to your open house.
Matt: There you go. This is what I’ve always talked. The house you pick is the number one determinant of how many people are going to show up.
Matt: For me, I’ve got this rule. The house needs to be fewer than four turns off a major road. The second thing is the house has to have great curb appeal. If you’re in an ugly house, you’ll see the car slow down and then just drive right by.
Kaisen: Then speed right up.
Matt: That’s great. You pick a house as close to a major thoroughfare. How many signs are you using?
Kaisen: I have about 25 to 30 signs in my truck. I may not use all of them, but I try to use a lot. I don’t want to be obnoxious. I don’t want to put one sign next to another, but I would always look for specific turns. If you’re going down a straight road and there’s multiple turn roads, I just want to make sure I’m directing the traffic in the right area, because it can get confusing if you’re just randomly following signs.
Matt: I would always be obnoxious with my signs. As long as you’re town is okay with it, there’s not a sign ordinance, because I also got fines for using too many signs. My minimum was 50. I put 50 signs out. Like a moth attracted to light. I’d have a turn here. It’s like hundreds of yards away from the turn. Open house today. Turn here. I would have 12 signs off that major thoroughfare telling them, warming them up to the idea we got an open house. Then when they turn off the major thoroughfare, I don’t need as many signs now to direct them.
Kaisen: True. I like that.
Matt: You might want to throw that in. There were open houses we had over 50 people show up.
Kaisen: That’s awesome. That’s an awesome turnout.
Matt: Then there’s still open houses where, again, you got to look at the sign ordinances where we’re holding them today and we’ll only have four or five people show up because we can’t put that many signs up. That was a way we were really able to drive them there. What we didn’t do was your magic bullet. You’re using your phone as a hotspot, I’m assuming.
Matt: Then you’ve got your laptop right there, and then you follow it up as they’re telling you what they’re looking for, you’re following it right up. You pull up a house that you think looks really interesting and one of the newest listed ones. You’re sorting by listing date, right?
Matt: Then you’re saying, “Hey, have you seen this one yet?” Now, what happens when you start striking out and they’re not connecting with you, and they’re like, “Oh yes, I’ve seen that.” They’re not warming up. Do you have any tips on how to get them to keep warming up?
Kaisen: At that point, if they’re not warming up and if they’re not connecting to it, I would just see if there’s any discrepancy with the search. Is there something that you’re looking for that I haven’t put in here? I would just go back to that. What are you looking for? If there’s not, there’s not. I don’t want to force something that’s not there because you can’t really sell every single person. Sometimes that’s what people try to do. They’re like, “Oh, well, I can do this. I can do that.” They’re just trying to oversell where there’s not something to sell.
I’m trying to trade value for value. If I don’t have any value to offer, then I would just, “Yes, okay, well, I can just continue to follow-up with you.” I’d set them up on a search because things pop up every single day, and I already have their criteria right in there, so I could just plug in their email, plug in their name, and I say, “Hey. If anything pops up that matches your criteria that’s new, it would send to your email immediately.” I always say I’m available 24/7 to show you properties. If you see something, just call, text, or email me. Generally, they respect my time. They don’t call me at eleven o’clock at night or anything like that.
Matt: Do you pick up when they do?
Kaisen: I’ve had very few people call me at eleven o’clock at night, but my girlfriend would be very mad if I picked up when I did.
Matt: Oh, you don’t? Okay, good. You don’t. All right, good. I know you’re a hustler and I know you’re killing it, but good way to set those boundaries. Man, that is so awesome.
Matt: Let’s dive a little deeper. I know you said you got a new system coming up that you’re really excited about. Tell me a little bit about the system you’re most excited about that take you to a certain level.
Kaisen: We have an ISA, Inside Sales Agent that I recently started and he’s going through all our internet leads, because we have a team about seven agents. He’s going through our internet leads and he’s just calling them and just trying to set up new appointments and new opportunities for our agents and he’s going to be passing off those opportunities, just send appointments to be like, “Hey, Kaisen, you got someone at 123 Main Street wants to sell their house,” or, “You have this person that’s interested in buying. I already set up the meeting time,” and everything like that. I think that’s going to be very powerful and it’s going to be able to help us double our business, if not more. I’m excited about that.
Matt: I’m excited about it too. I think that the most important hire for any real estate agent that is looking to hire is an Inside Sales Agent. That’s awesome that you guys are going– Think about it, you make money when you’re meeting people face-to-face.
Matt: If you’ve got more people putting you face-to-face and you’re face-to-face more of the time, you’re using your highest dollar productive time.
Kaisen: Right, exactly.
Matt: All right, let’s get into the phone app. What phone app are you most excited about right now?
Kaisen: I recently got this app, Headspace, that I think is really cool. In the mornings after my workout, I would download it. Headspace, for those of you who don’t know, is a meditation app. It has guided meditations. It’s really cool. It quiets your mind and focuses on your breathing. I’m super excited about that and just using it more and just that really it helps me be more productive with my day. When I heard about meditation stuff, I didn’t really think it would help with the production that much, but it really does significantly.
Matt: Meditation is always one of these things that people are skeptical about. Maybe I’m using my lens. I was a person who was super skeptical about meditation. I bought a how-to book on how to meditate and I bought a how-to audio program on how to meditate and I’m listening to these things. I’m trying to follow along, focus on the breath. I just couldn’t get into it in the beginning, years ago, when I was first starting to do this. How does this Headspace app help make meditation work for you in a quicker way than the way I was trying it?
Kaisen: With Headspace, what it does is you have specific time allotments, right? Because it’s hard to stay in a blank mental state like nothing on your mind for 20, 30 minutes when you first start out. Headspace, it starts off five minutes where you could just go into a quiet space, sit down, putting your headphones, and just go and start meditation. He’s guiding you through it the entire time, speaking to you, telling you to reset your focus and lend your mind, rest and relax.
That’s one of the things that you can build off of because meditation is like an exercise. You can’t just start off super heavy because it’s going to fail, so you have to start off slow and gradually increase going from there.
Matt: It sounds like that’s an app that can take you from a beginner meditator or a never meditated and you could ramp up, so start with smaller shorter meditations, listen to this guy’s voice, learn how to quiet anxiety or quiet your mind or quiet stress or change your focus in just five minutes and then start to ramp up if you start to really see some results from it. Talk with me about productivity. How do you feel meditation has made you more productive?
Kaisen: It just helps me focus on the things that I really, really want to accomplish. After I meditate, I just write down what I want to accomplish for the day. I just take some time out to journal, what do I want to accomplish throughout the day. It’s just more of a clear mind, clear focus. I have it all out on the paper. When I do get to the office, I’m just able to go and knock it all out one step at a time.
I heard someone explain it like it’s like a car that’s parked on a hill. If you’re not meditating, you’re not really set on that plateau and you’re just rolling down the hill. Your focus is going everywhere and it’s just going faster and faster. Then all of a sudden, you just can’t focus on anything. The meditation resets you, gets you back on that plateau, and just helps you just set your day I guess. I don’t know if that was a good example or not.
Matt: No, I love the analogy. In a thousand percent, I’m picturing this car starting to pick up steam as it’s heading down the hill and things starting to fly by and getting a little bit dangerous and being a little bit scared and frightened. I think that’s what can happen too with thoughts go unchecked. You’re living your life on purpose and you’re setting your own priorities, what are going to make you successful rather than just being in this reactive mode which is I think the way that most people live their life, which is, “Hey, let me check my email. Let me see who’s calling me, who’s mad at me. Let me take care of all these other people who are pulling up my time.”
Rather than me saying, “All right, let me clear my head. Let me listen to my intuition and figure out what’s the most important thing for me to accomplish my goal today.” When you have the meditation to get your mind right, set your own priority and put other people’s priority on the back burner. That’s the way in year two, you sold 34 homes.
Kaisen: Yes, sir.
Matt: It’s awesome, man. Let’s talk a little bit about failure. What failure have you had that you look at today as a successful learning experience?
Kaisen: The failures, so pretty much when I started getting my first few deals, this was a year ago or so, I’m super excited and I was like, “Okay, I can breathe now. I can relax. Oh, I don’t have to do this, lead generate as hard today or tomorrow,” or, “I don’t have to have as many open houses this week.” I really stopped doing activities that produce the business in the first place and I didn’t stop it altogether. It’s just here and there.
It was just like the car on the hill, it was just a gradual thing, and you don’t see the negative effect on day one. You’re going to see it 60 to 90 days down the road. After a few months, I didn’t have those deals. I didn’t have two deals a month or one deal a month or whatever like that. I had nothing coming in. It was like, I just hit rock bottom again. It took a few months before I was able to get going after that to ramp up my business.
What did I learn from that? Real estate, you’re not paid by what you did yesterday or last week or whatever like that. You’re really paid in proportion to what you did 60 to 90 days ago. You’re not going to feel that negative effects today or tomorrow. It’s going to take a while, but you’re definitely going to feel it 60 to 90 days down the road. I pretty much have learned to project myself and project my business 60 to 90 days out. Right now, for example, it’s November, the deals that I’m putting together, I’m focused on January 2020. I’m already in 2020, focused on making sure it’s strong, and I have the pipeline filled, and so on and so forth.
Matt: That’s a lesson that every single real estate agent has to experience. I see it happen again and again even in one person’s career, where it’s like, “Oh, man, I finally made it, I’m successful. Let me relax a little bit, everything’s coming to me.” Then the same thing can happen again. Let me ask you, because I really want to cement this learning for you because it is the most powerful lesson, it’s what Dave Ramsey talked about today, consistency for 30 years produces amazing results. How can you remember this when things get five times better than they are today?
Kaisen: You always have to be in a constant state of reflection, I would say. You got to measure where you came, and just say, “Okay, by me doing this-” Just like Dave Ramsey, I’m sure he was reflecting when he told you that, it’s like, “Okay, by me doing this, five years ago or six months ago or what have you, it’s produced this result.” You just got to know where the source of that business is coming from, what activities is producing that result. That way, if you’re always in a constant state of reflection, you’re not going to really put yourself in a position where, “Oh, I’m not going to do this today,” because you do know that it’s going to have this negative effect down the road.
Matt: I had a chance to talk with Jay Papasan one-on-one. It was a couple of weeks ago, and I was asking Jay the same type of question. He said, “Set really big goals, massive goals. Every year set giant, massive goals that are bigger than anything you’ve ever done, so that what’s required of you is to act more appropriate in this moment to try to hit that goal. If your goal is always really big compared to where you are, you’ll always show up.”
Kaisen: Yes, I like that.
Matt: I’ve experienced that myself. We had this big, hairy, audacious goal. At the time, my company was selling 20 million or 23 million a year and I had this massive goal. I was like, “All right, man, we’re going to sell 80 million in a single year.” Then somebody on my team, this girl named Kai, she’s like, “Let’s double it. Let’s do 150 million. We’re going sell 150 million.” It scared me when she said that number. I couldn’t see a clear path to it, but we set it and we set a date. We said, “Well, we’ll sell 150 million by 2019.” It was 2017 and we sold 148 million.
Kaisen: That’s insane.
Matt: That was the goal. We did it two years early and at the time I had no idea how to get there, but when I hit this big, hairy, audacious goal we’ve been working so hard at, I think we set the goal in 2012, I got stuck. I didn’t recalibrate. I didn’t have another goal and my happiness actually went down. It’s like once I got to the top of the mountain, I was like, “All right, is this it?”
That’s something too that we’re going to lead into with what you’re doing with this life happiness index, because, of course, life is more than just selling a bunch of real estate and making amazing money and having a lot of success in your career. Talk with us about what is this life happiness index that you use and how do you use it? How did it come about?
Kaisen: The way it came about is, I’m part of a tribe of younger professionals. People that are my age that I can relate to that are building their business.
Matt: What’s that tribe?
Kaisen: We call it the Getaway. It’s 11 guys that are affiliated with either GoBundance or Big Life Blueprint and all these different conferences that we just decided to get together and just talk about–
Matt: I love GoBundance, man. GoBundance is awesome. You’re going to Aspen with us, right?
Matt: That’s awesome. All right. You got guys that are in a GoBundance tribe, that you guys locally have started your own thing and there’s 11 of you. How did that come about? How did you get 11 guys to show up? Because that’s not easy to do.
Kaisen: A lot of these guys, they’re used to traveling to go meet with other high-level thinkers and stuff like that. With GoBundance, you travel all across the country, you go to different spots. These guys, we decided that we’re going to meet up in Aruba. We went there for five days, and we pretty much masterminded for six hours a day, three hours in the morning, and then three hours at night. Our mastermind was centered around the life happiness index. We went through each one of the categories, diet–
Matt: What are those? Do you know what the categories are?
Kaisen: Yes. The categories are diet, water, exercise, dollar-productive activities, love for work, romance, relationships with parents, siblings, friends, horizontal income, adventure travel, risk and excitement, giving back future planning, relaxing time, and then your gratitude thermometer. Those are all the categories of life happiness index.
Matt: Whoa, man, those categories are awesome. I was trying to write as quick as you were speaking. It looks like you’ve got 10 or more?
Kaisen: Yes, just about. I think probably maybe 12 or something like that.
Matt: We’ve got these amazing 12 categories that would make an incredible life if we were crushing at all of them. How does it work then to figure out where you’re at with those and to improve them?
Kaisen: Pretty much what you do, you rate yourself. You go through each category and you rate yourself. I’m going to correct myself. It looks like there’s about 16 categories. You rate yourself in each category, and then you just take notes, “Why do I feel like I’m a seven in diet and water and exercise?” and so on, and so forth. You go through that list.
Then, because I feel like sometimes you’re a lot harder on yourself than someone who may be in your life, I actually, and all the other guys, actually, we would use this as a template and we send it to our significant other, and we’d let them rate us and see where they see us in those different categories. For example, one of the guys brought up, “Oh, I put a nine on romance and my girlfriend put a four.”
Matt: Oh, no. [chuckles]
Kaisen: There’s some discrepancy there. Pretty much it’s like, you take notes on there, and then you create action steps.
Matt: That is such powerful insight if that happens and your significant other is like, “Look, you’re no Casanova, we’re lacking in this romance department.” What a gift that would be to have that insight. That’s so cool. I’ve never had my wife go ahead and rate me on how I’m doing in romance or relationship or connection and those types of things.
Kaisen: It’s pretty cool. It’s very powerful. It was just like, “Okay, what do you–” You just create action steps around that, like takeaways and action steps and goals. Okay, maybe it’s to go on 5 or 10 more dates a week, not a week but a month, or maybe it’s to under diet. It’s like, “Okay, I need to not eat fast food or completely eliminate any alcohol from my system.” Something along those lines.
Matt: To get that number up. What’s been the benefit for you since you started doing this? First of all, I got a curiosity question. Did you rate yourself overall higher or did your significant other rates you higher?
Kaisen: My significant other actually rated me higher than I rated myself.
Matt: I figured that.
Kaisen: Yes, so it was pretty interesting.
Matt: You’re a driver, you want the best for yourself. You’re always looking to improve.
Kaisen: Yes, absolutely.
Matt: What’s been the impact in your life as you’ve seen this life happiness index started to work for you?
Kaisen: It’s just having clarity on what you want to improve, knowing what you’re good at. Everyone pretty much knows what you’re really good at, what you’re really successful at, but there’s areas in our life and then in anyone’s life. No one’s going to be a 10 in every single category, but if you know where you’re at and you know what you can improve on, it’s just getting some clarity on that.
Matt: Could you give us just one or two specifics? What are one or two specific things that your life has improved on from tracking and masterminding about this?
Kaisen: I would say risk and excitement, right? Just doing more exciting things like jumping out of a plane or–
Matt: You did that. You jumped out of a plane?
Kaisen: I booked the tickets.
Matt: Yes, you did it?
Matt: When are you going?
Kaisen: I’m going next year in 2020. That’s something I’m looking forward to. I’m a little scared, but yes. Just different things. It’s like different things that you can improve on. That I think I’ve improved on being purposeful by giving back. Every house I sell, I donate some money to different charities and yes.
Matt: That’s awesome, because now that you are tracking where’s my level of gratitude or where’s my level of giving back, you know, all right, well, I want to improve that. Your mind starts to search for, how could I improve that? You’re finding ways to give back, make a difference in the world with every home that you sell. That’s amazing, man, It’s going to fill you up more than making sales too.
Kaisen: Yes, absolutely.
Matt: Or maybe just as much. All right, so what’s next for you? What’s the goal for 2020?
Kaisen: The goal for 2020, so I’m trying to do about 48 units. I’ve rounded up to 50, but based off of my business plan, it’s about 48 units. I want to hit 10 million next year and I just want to be just focus on that.
Matt: That’s awesome man. Well, Kaisen, this has been a ton of fun, and thank you for sharing your wisdom. Thank you for being so open. We’re going to have the life happiness index as a downloadable document that we can share with the Real Estate Rockstars group, right?
Kaisen: Yes sir.
Matt: All right, man. Well, thank you so much, really appreciate you.
Kaisen: Absolutely. Thanks, Matt.