Happy Birthday to Slammin’ Sammy
Today would have been golfing great Sam Snead’s 101st birthday. Born May 27th, 1912 in Ashwood, Virginia, Snead would become one of the all-time greats to ever play the game of golf. Considered by many to have the finest golf swing ever, Snead still currently holds the PGA Tour record for career victories with 82. (In case you’re wondering, Tiger Woods passed Jack Nicklaus last year for second place on that list and now trails Snead by just 4 wins).
While I didn’t have a chance to watch Snead in his prime, I do remember seeing him play and will always think of him as one of the original honorary starters of the Masters Tournament. He, along with Byron Nelson and Gene Sarazen, would hit the ceremonial first tee shots early on the Thursday morning of Masters week to signify the start of the year’s first major tournament. Today, golfing greats Arnold Palmer, Gary Player and Nicklaus carry on that tradition.
Lessons from the Legend
Snead had plenty to teach young golf professionals and many are better players today because of his example. He uttered some legendary quotes from his years on the tour and while, at the time, he wasn’t talking about sales or real estate when he said these statements, there sure is a lot we can learn from the following quips.
“You can not go into a shop and buy a good game of golf.” – In real estate, you will never be able to buy your way into success. You could be born into money or you might have 5,000 friends on Facebook but neither will insure success. Sure, investing in the right tools, systems and products might help a little but it still boils down to building relationships with people. You can join a fancy country club or belong to the best gym in town but if you’re a jerk to everyone there, it won’t help you secure more business.
“Practice puts brains in your muscles.” – Like in the game of golf, the more you practice, the quicker you will start allowing your brain (and mouth) to act instinctively. Scripts and dialogues will feel as awkward as hitting a 2-iron from a tight lie does when you’re a beginner but with practice and repetition, you’ll start building confidence. Before you know it, the words will come out naturally and sound like your own.
I always say, we all have a “mental rolodex” in our brains and instead of business cards, it’s filled with dialogues and responses for every situation you will ever encounter. As a newer agent, the rolodex has few cards and rotates very slow. In fact, most new agents think of the right thing to say 24 hours after they needed it. Experience will begin to oil that wheel and those cards will start accumulating quickly as you start facing more and more scenarios and learing new things to say and ways to say them.
Think of the golfer feeling comfortable and playing better at a course he or she has played hundreds of times. Nicklaus played hundreds of rounds (both practice and competition) at Augusta National so it makes sense that his skill coupled with his intimate knowledge of the course allowed him to win 6 coveted green jackets that are awarded to the Masters Champion.
“Correct one fault at a time. Concentrate on the one fault you want to overcome.” – No golfer will ever hit every shot in a round of golf exactly as they wanted. Likewise, no Realtor will ever have a “perfect” transaction. Something is sure to go wrong along the way. The sooner you can identify your strengths and weaknesses in your daily business, the sooner you will be able to identify how to best focus on your strengths and manage around your weaknesses.
You can’t fix all of your faults at once. If you tried, you would have to take time away from the things you’re good at and that you enjoy (your strengths) and dedicate them to things you aren’t good at and don’t enjoy (your weaknesses). Figure out the best ROI you can get from your efforts and go “all-in” until it is adding positively to your business.
“Of all the hazards, fear is the worst.” – Seriously, what do you have to be afraid of? Real estate is a relationships business. There is rarely any physical danger involved. It’s not about the houses. Those are just the widgets we use. Our entire career is built instead around the people who live in (or want to live in) those houses.
And just like when you’re playing golf, focus on where you WANT to go, not where you DON’T WANT to go. See the large fairway in front of you, not the bunkers or water off in the distance.
It’s almost your tee time. I hope you play well this week!
Photo Credit: Derek Gavey via Creative Commons
Photo Credit: By ABC Television (eBay item photo front photo back) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons