Sharing Your Why With Real Estate Clients • Kelly Parker

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Kelly Parker the founder of Chicago Home Collective goes back to the beginning of her career in real estate. Kelly emphasizes the importance she and her team gives to making the home-buying process enjoyable to their clients. Next, Kelly discusses why she doesn’t set up goals for her business but aims in building a relationship-based business and how that’s helped in growing her business. Kelly also discusses the importance of sharing your WHY with your clients and how that helped her find her niche. Kelly also talks about how come she’s not worried about 2023 and how she plans in navigating it. Last, Kelly discusses the importance of celebrating your achievements.

Please follow Kelly on Instagram here or check Chicago Home Collective’s Instagram account here.

If you’d prefer to watch this interview, click here to view on YouTube!

Kelly Parker can be reached here.

This episode is brought to you by Real Geeks and FollowUpBoss.


D.J. Paris 0:00
Are you nervous about 2023? Well don’t be because today we’re talking to a top producer, and she’s going to explain exactly how she’s going to stay busy and thriving, so you can to stay tuned. This episode of Keeping it real is brought to you by real geeks. How many homes are you going to sell this year? Do you have the right tools? Is your website turning soft leads in interested buyers? Are you spending money on leads that aren’t converting? Well real geeks is your solution. Find out why agents across the country choose real geeks as their technology partner. Real geeks was created by an agent for agents. They pride themselves on delivering a sales and marketing solution so that you can easily generate more business. Their agent websites are fast and built for lead conversion with a smooth search experience for your visitors. Real geeks also includes an easy to use agent CRM. So once a lead signs up on your website, you can track their interest and have great follow up conversations. Real geeks is loaded with a ton of marketing tools to nurture your leads and increase brand awareness visit real geeks.com forward slash keeping it real pod and find out why Realtors come to real geeks to generate more business again, visit real geeks.com forward slash keeping it real pod. And now on to our show.

Hello, and welcome to another episode of Keeping it real the largest podcast made by real estate agents and for real estate agents. My name is DJ Paris, I am your guide and host through the show in just a moment, we’re going to be speaking with top producer Kelly Parker. Before we get to Kelly, just a couple of quick reminders. Number one, please help us continue to grow. By supporting our sponsors. They are the reason that we have such an amazing team. They keep us in business, and we want you to keep them in business. So please check out their products and services and support them because they support us. And the second part is the other way you can help us is by telling a friend I think of one other realtor that needs to hear what you’re about to hear with my conversation with Kelly and send them a link either over to our website, which is keeping it real pod.com or to any podcast app, they just search for keeping it real. And they hit that subscribe button and if you haven’t subscribed yet, please subscribe as well. And if you also want to leave us a review, let us know what you think of the show. We would also greatly appreciate that Okay, let’s get to the main event, my conversation with Kelly Parker. Today on the show we have Kelly Parker with Chicago home collective with compass here in Chicago. Let me tell you more about Kelly Kelly has over 13 years of residential real estate experience and her expert guidance professionalism and passion for mentorship has allowed Kelly to grow Chicago home collective into a top 1% team across the entire country. Now this was a business that was born during the 2009 housing crash and has since transverse transversed many real estate markets serving she served over 500 clients she has generated over 250 million in production, and recently grew into a coaching platform for other female realtors. To learn more about Kelly and her team, please visit Chicago home collective.com also follow her team on Instagram, which is Chicago home collective. And also follow Kelly, personally on Instagram, which is Kelly underscore e underscore Parker, all of those links will be in our show notes so you don’t have to type them in. Kelly, welcome to the show.

Kelly Parker 4:01
Hi, thanks for having me. So nice to be here.

D.J. Paris 4:05
Yeah, I am really grateful that you’ve come on. You’re very, very popular person here in Chicago in the realtor community and we’ve never had you on the show. And I know I see you at events and I am really grateful to finally have you on after all these years. Because you’ve really built an incredible team. I’ve actually had some of your team members on the show before I’ve had Emily on and I really would love to talk to you about what you think is happening right now what’s happening was maybe will happen 2023 What agents can do to get prepared. But let’s go all the way back to the beginning because I always think it’s fun to hear about how you got into real estate so do you mind sharing with our audience you know why real estate and how you got it?

Kelly Parker 4:53
Sure. Absolutely. Yeah, I got in in 2009 the worst time according to some to get into The industry. But truthfully, it was like perfectly timed for me, I got in, because I was watching what was happening, I watched, you know, the housing market come to a screeching halt and essentially crash. And I have always been someone who really, truly like value, the power of home and what it can mean for you and your life. And I just could not understand how people could lose their homes. Like how could you have a foreclosure? How did Why were you having to do a short sale, and I really like it. It really broke my heart to watch this happening for people. And essentially quit the job that I was doing. I was in fashion merchandising, quit that and jumped in full time into real estate in the like spring summer of 2009. And truthfully never looked back since. So it’s it’s been a journey, but that my reason at the time. And it still is the reason today is that I just truly wanted to help people who were experiencing so much so many feelings around something that to me is just so important, which is your home. So

D.J. Paris 6:08
yeah, I think that’s I think that’s very right. Odd with respect to the fact that making a home buying or selling decision is it’s an incredibly big decision for most people. And I mean, even for me, when I bought my second condo, I mean, not a second, I only have one condo, but my second time purchasing a condo, I was surprised at how stressful it was for me. And I’m in the industry. And I have a lot of resources at my disposal. And I had a lot of people to ask to go, did I’m making a horrible mistake, or is this a good investment? And even with all of that, it was still like really, really scary. And I’m curious how, you know, one of the things that I’ve always admired about you is I feel like you and your team are really good at understanding your client’s needs and concerns and stress and anxiety. Do you think that’s Is that an accurate description?

Kelly Parker 7:10
Absolutely. You know, I think one of our like taglines for Chicago home Collective is the journey is just as dares the destination. And it’s because we really believe that your whole experience leading you up to actually closing on your home and moving into your home, you carry that experience with you into your new home. And so to me, it was it’s so important that you enjoy that process that you enjoy the journey of it, and that your home not be marked like one of your initial memories of your home is drama or stress, or, you know, there’s already usually a lot of life stuff already happening around a new home, you know, marriage, children, our new job or a, you know, a breakup, like there’s always something else that tends to accompany a transition to a new home. And so to us, we’ve really made it our personal responsibility that you enjoy that process because you carry that energy, you carry that memory into the new home. And so yeah, I mean, particularly in 2009. And that’s why I’m saying like, that’s why I got in was I just felt like we could do so much more, I can’t change the circumstances, I couldn’t change that people were having to short sale their homes and make these choices. But I could at least help that transition out of a home feel a lot more enjoyable, the best that it could, and then also carried that into educating those who are going to start buying in that market. And, and also enjoying that process. So yeah, I think you nailed it spot on. I mean, that’s really what we stand for in Chicago home Collective is enjoying the journey.

D.J. Paris 8:46
And you have a all female led team. And Is that intentional or in? I’m curious, tell us about your team?

Kelly Parker 8:56
Yeah, oh my gosh, where do I start? They’re the most fabulous humans in I’ve ever known. Like, seriously, they’re such an extension of my own family. Now, it would be wild to not have them, um, I, you know, started Chicago home collective eight years ago. And it wasn’t because I wanted a team. It’s just because I was growing. And I didn’t need support. But I was like, if I’m gonna have support, I’d rather do it in a mentorship form. And so I started mentoring Emily, who you’ve had on the show, and you know, that sort of birth Chicago home collective, I was like, Well, I guess I gotta give this thing a name. And it’s not the Kelly Parker team, because it was never it’s not about me. And this is what we also say at Chicago home Collective is not about us. It’s about our clients. There’s no real hierarchy within this team. We are all collaborating. We are all collectively working towards the same end goal. And so it started with with Emily and then over the years has multiplied and now there’s a total of eight of us. We are it is all female. You know, I think at first, I wouldn’t say it was intentional. I would say this, I don’t recruit people come and ask to speak to me and to join the team. And I, I’m not surprised that it’s women, because a lot of how I speak and what I stand for, I think is, is, you know, specific to females and a little bit different than some of the unusual narrative in the industry. So it’s now we are very proud all female team, and we will definitely be staying an all female team.

D.J. Paris 10:31
I love it. Well, you know, it’s we’re getting so by the time this episode airs will be in December, it’ll be basically the end of the 2022, you know, business season. Where we’re at currently is, you know, a lot of agents are thinking about 2023, trying to figure out what am I going to do differently in 2023? What are, you know, what skills do I want to develop? What goals do I want to set? You know, how many homes might I want to sell? What does my production want to look like? You have a very unique approach to thinking about sort of objectives. And I’d love to sort of dive into that. So how do you think about, you know, you’re a business owner? You have a team? How are you thinking about next year?

Kelly Parker 11:18
Wow, I think, you know, if I were to just speak to like, goal setting, specifically, I will say that I don’t set goals, I don’t have production goals, or financial goals. And I know for some people that makes them crazy. And they’re like, well, then you don’t have a business plan if you don’t have a goal. And I just don’t operate like that. Like, truthfully, I believe that it changes the way you do things, the reason you do things changes the way you do things. So if I am doing things to reach a goal, and that is my focus, I truly believe it changes the way you do things, and often disconnects us from, what our passion is why we’re really doing this. And from there is where we derive a lot of our inspiration and our drive from. And so I think that I don’t have a goal because it it also then starts to feel very transactional. Right? Like, I always use the example of cold calling, right? People are like, Well, if you cold call 10 people and you got two people to answer and then you get one of them as a client. It’s the same sort of thing, feeling of this highly transactional and removes this human to human sort of like co creation, if you will, of the work that we’re doing, I run a very relationship based business, I have I am referral based, it was intentional, it’s how I built my business from the beginning. Because I also believe that whoever controls the leads, you know, controls, the market controls the business, as I’m sure you’ve heard 1000 times and in having that relationship, then this isn’t a transaction. These are not, we cannot just reduce this to transactions and production. And so if I’m only measuring based on a production or financial goal, I missing a lot of the other, you know, opportunities for growth, I’m missing a lot of the other successes that we’re seeing, we were kind of mentioning prior to even I think recording, like success is actually very different and looks very different than just production at times. And so I really feel like the key to a lot of my success is that I didn’t I don’t have these goals. Now I measure at the end, I measure at the end of the year, and I say okay, like, yeah, how much production do we do? Let’s celebrate that because that is valuable, and it tells us something. But I use it as an after the fact measurement and not a you know, carrot that’s sort of like being dangled out in front of you. To kind of Yeah, for for all those reasons that I stated. But

D.J. Paris 14:00
you just you said a lot right there. And I want to just sort of unpack a little bit that because I think this could be really helpful for our audience. And you reminded me of and this is funny because I know nothing about sports. But there was a famous NCAA coach named John Wooden and he was it was the UNLV or UCLA I’m sorry, UCLA. He was the winningest coach in NCAA history. I think he still is I think he won like seven NCAA Tournaments in a row. I think he won like nine out of 13 or something ultimately in his career, but anyway, he’s a big deal. And he never looked at the scoreboard and so you reminded me of him? And he would say and and and reporters and people that studied him and he was literally the winningest coach in NCAA history. And they would say What do you mean you don’t look at the scoreboard How do you not look at the scoreboard? He goes because he said the scoreboard is not really an accurate representation of the performance of my team. He said something times things like luck just falls your way, sometimes luck doesn’t fall your way, the numbers up on the scoreboard may or may not be reflective of like the actual effort that was put in. And he also had said, There’s times when we’ll win a game, because the score, we’ve scored more than the other team. But we actually lost because we didn’t actually play that well. And he’s like, you can walk off the off the court. And even though we technically won, if you didn’t play your best, so and so team member, you’re going to feel crappy about yourself. And as you walk off the field, you’re off the court, you’re going to not feel good, even though you technically won. And vice versa. There’s times when, when you know, you lose technically, but you played your best and you still feel okay about it, I’m sort of getting that vibe from you. It’s sort of like, let’s, let’s just do our best and kind of let the chips fall where they may. And while that may seem a bit risky, or non traditional, you are a top 1%. Producer. So it does actually

Kelly Parker 16:03
it works. It works. Here’s the thing, I do have parameters, and I do have standards. And I think this is what’s important is like I do set out the year thinking how do I want to grow? How do I need to align my actions to where I want to go? What how can I make my process and my experience for my clients? Even better? How can I be more knowledgeable and more experienced? Like I have things that I’m working towards? That I know if they keep those is my focus, right? Then those will result in more clients and more transactions and ultimately, the production. So then at the end of the year, when we’re measuring, you know, what was the production? If we feel like, if I feel like dang, I really I could have maybe gone further, it then tells me, what do I need to learn? What do I need to do to be able to hold $50 million in business, you know, and it starts to inform a whole other set of actions beyond just, you know, the traditional tactics, if you will, of like, how to get clients and how to market yourself. I’m really way more focused on myself and also my team about our personal growth or personal development, raising our standards. And I know as we do that, right, the business comes.

D.J. Paris 17:22
It’s a lot of it’s, it’s, you’re basically taking things on faith, I mean, really, what we’re talking about is this belief that if I do the actions, that I’m pretty confident, or if I continue to develop skills, that I’m pretty confident, are skills that my clients deserve, and need and want. If I can develop those in myself, my business will, I’ll be able to offer more to my age or to mark to my clients, and therefore I’ll attract more clients, because I’ll be able to give more, and I’ll do better, and then they’ll refer more is that essentially the philosophy?

Kelly Parker 17:59
Yeah, absolutely. I mean, I if I were to reduce it down to one thing, I would say that it’s personal power, I have a lot of personal power around my success. And what I’m able to create, my success does not is not predicated on the circumstances, it doesn’t matter what’s going on in the market. It doesn’t matter what’s going on with interest rates. It doesn’t it doesn’t matter because I’m focused on myself and investing in myself and honing this skill and this expertise. And as long as I continue to, to prioritize that great the rest the rest follows

D.J. Paris 18:36
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Kelly Parker 21:55
Yeah, cuz it really, it’s reducing everything down to this means to an end, like you said, right? Like, if your top and then bottom, there’s automatically a huge separation, which like you were saying, it forces your brain to be like, well, then what do I need to do to get from here to here? And it that you lose something in that process? And so when people have asked me like, how do you have the success you have? It’s like, I’ve stayed really like connected to not just the like act of doing things like mailing postcards, or sending open houses, but like, what is what is right for me? How do I develop myself and then show up in a way that’s authentic and aligned for me? And in doing so that draws in clients who liked my style, who appreciate what I’m doing? Who, you know, are connected to even my why, like, I share my why why do I do what I do? as sort of like a leading message with my clients? Because people want that connection? You know, and then they’re happy to refer me and the circle just continues. So yeah,

D.J. Paris 23:01
do you mind sharing your why with us? What is your why?

Kelly Parker 23:04
Oh, yeah, I mean, the why is I just have such a deep, I really, truly believe our homes provide a place where we can be free to be our full authentic selves. And there’s not other than our four walls and a roof, right? When we go outside, we not always are that way, we’re dressing for a certain reason, or we’re talking in a certain way, or we’re doing certain actions for a certain outcome. But our home is like the safest place that hopefully you can be right. And I just value the power of it for how it allows us to show up in our lives. That to be a play a role in people, you know, starting that chapter and creating that mark in their life is just feels so special to me, and and then again, like the further Why is like also just making sure they enjoy that process, because I understand just how powerful it can be so staying sane connected to that, I think has been one of the biggest, biggest things for myself, but also even my team as new agents come on, like sharing with them like, Okay, how do I market myself? How do I get clients? I’m gonna share your Why. Why do you do this? Because people want to know like, because if not, they’re gonna make up. This is what I’ve learned. If you don’t tell people why you do something, they will make up why you do it. We all tell stories, we all create stories about other people. So tell people why you do it. And it’s the quickest way to diffuse something feeling like a transaction is like Emily right. We use Emily’s example, but like she really wanted to help her peers who were coming out of college who didn’t have you know, advocates when it came to finding their Chicago home and and it’s true, that’s a good truth for her. But she has shared that and people resonate with that and then choose to use her because of it and So I think that if there’s one takeaway just be be vocal about your why I think I kind of took us off course is what we were talking about.

D.J. Paris 25:07
No, I don’t think it took us off course at all, I think this is all absolutely relevant, because what we’re really talking about is finding your tribe, I think and understanding that there’s going to be a certain subset of the home buying or selling population that resonates with your particular style. So you might as well be, the way I’m hearing you is you might as well be yourself. Because, you know, you got to be yourself anyway. And they’re assuming you’re authentic. And you know, you have the qualities that you know, that are helpful to people looking to buy or sell homes, you should have a pretty reasonable career, but you shouldn’t necessarily be afraid to say, here’s why I do what I do. And in fact, I think people connect more with understanding someone’s why than then maybe even their actual skills. I think we want to know why somebody does some something. I think the fact that they’re competent at it is first most important, but then we want to know like, why do you do this? What what’s in it for you and you just eloquently shared, why you do it, and why it’s important for you so that somebody can be their full, authentic self in their home. And you said it in a much better way than I just expressed it. But I think that’s really powerful. Because if you if you can have that conversation with clients and go, the reason why I do this is I want you to be full feel fully safe and authentic in your house. I think, you know, I had never thought of that until you would set it and as soon as you set it, I was like, that’s absolutely right. I feel the same way I want to feel safe and authentic in my home. And it’s it’s this is kind of an intangible thing that might even sound a little or new agey or whatever, but it’s really true feelings are real in the sense of, they’re important. And we want to we’re going to be staying in this this physical space for, you know, a good chunk of our lives every single day. So and they

Kelly Parker 27:08
transmit those transcend markets to your feeling about your home doesn’t matter what’s happening in the market, right, and your desire for a new home or needing to move out of another one. So I know it does. It does sound New Agey, but it’s to me, it’s like the heart of what this can do. And I think particularly if you’re an agent looking to grow your business, and you’re not sure how to market yourself, or what to do, it provides like to me provides like a core element of like, why do I do it? So based on why I’m doing it, then who are my clients? Who am I speaking to, you know, if it’s like Emily, it’s like, Well, why do I do this? I want to help my peers, okay, then those your clients, that’s who we market to. That’s your niche. You know, now you just have to tell them what you do and how you do it. And you’ll and then you start to see the clients come in like they had

D.J. Paris 28:02
Yeah, it Yeah, I love that. I so so it seems like what you’re saying is to find your passion, in in, in your industry in this industry of what really moves the needle for you as the realtor like what, what gets you the most excited about the process, sort of digging in leaning into that and then continuing to develop skills around whatever that passion might be. Maybe it’s first time homebuyer, maybe it’s maybe it’s maybe it’s even being with somebody all along their apartment journey until they’re ready to buy their first home. Maybe it’s being there to guide them or maybe it’s I don’t like working with those people. I only like working with sellers or condos or, or co ops or whatever it might be single family homes, or people moving from another state I guess whatever it is that that you sort of get lit up the most about is probably an indicator of like, Oh, I really liked doing real clothes or you know, I really liked doing you know, or maybe you’re one of those rare people who likes calling expires or fizz bows like people

Kelly Parker 29:09
think like it works for people but it’s not what they’re doing it’s it’s the energy behind what they’re doing it with so if you really love Calling Strangers in cold calling fizz bows and you’re like I could do this all day, then it is your indicator that that is your lane and go go crush it you know and so I think that’s where we get a little bit scrambled of like we think that there’s a certain ways that we have to get business and and then we force ourselves to show up in these ways and I’m like I don’t really want to do that I don’t really want to cold call I don’t really want to sit in open house that feels weird to me or whatever. we force ourselves and then we wonder why we’re not getting business. And is it because we can do that. And now I’m really gonna sound new age but like the frequency of that precedes you precedes your words precedes your action. So if something lights you up, double down on that, do that. And let that that excitement and that joy drive, what you do after that, and then the steps and the choices you start to make and how you show up in your business.

D.J. Paris 30:16
I think that’s really good advice. So before we started talking today, or absorbed before we started turned on the recording where I was asking you about 2023, because we have I have we have 800 agents or close to 800 agents in our firm, you’ve got a lot of agents, obviously, compasses, Kelly’s a compass, they have 1000s of agents here in Chicago. Kelly is around a lot of agents. I’m around a lot of agents. And I’m certainly getting a sense that there’s a low level of stress. That’s that’s, that’s present right now, although I feel like there’s always stress, being a realtor, but particularly right now it’s the end of the year, it’s the holiday season, we’re of course, we know where rates are, we know inventory is where it is. And I know there’s a lot of concern about 2023 as I’m hearing it in the ether from other agents, but you don’t you’re not worried about it at all. And I really, I’m bringing this up, because you’re the first person I’ve talked to who doesn’t who didn’t even break a sweat when I mentioned it. So why are you not worried about 2023?

Kelly Parker 31:23
Well, I think for some as some of the reasons I’ve mentioned, right, I think that I’ve never let my success be dictated on the circumstances. You know, I really, truly believe that the success that I’ve seen in my business is because of what I’ve, who I am and what I’ve done and the skills that I have developed. And I think that’s where we get a little bit hung up. A lot of times when people are stressed, it’s because they have made their success circumstantial on a low interest rate market or a pandemic. And I think some people, like there’s elements, there’s Is there a percentage of my business that was up because of the circumstances? Sure. But would I have still been successful and still done what I’ve done because of my own sort of, like personal power in my, my, myself and my belief and all that? Absolutely. So I’ve truly believe that, because I have that outlook, it doesn’t matter what’s going on in the market. And, and so I’m not worried. But I’m also like, I’m weirdly excited, I think it’s great. I think this is the market where we get the ability, we have the opportunity to make the biggest moves and the biggest growth and secure the most market share. And, and I fully know that i i have the skill set, and I have the knowledge and i i have the inspiration to make sure that I’m able to to operate as I want to during this time. So I think that, ya

D.J. Paris 32:58
know, it’s so interesting, it’s just not even, you’re not too worried about circumstance, you’re not worried about sort of the conditions because number one, he can’t control them. So you have to deal with them anyway. And number two, you started in a down market, right? So you started at, you know, 2008 to 2010 was not the time to get into real estate. And but it was probably such a great time for you because you only knew a difficult challenge. And so and you got through it. And so then you see maybe maybe the mountain looks a little steeper this next year for a number of reasons outside of our control. But you’re just are you just going to pivot if need be and make adjustments and changes. And, you know, you’re you’re telling me what you’re thinking about?

Kelly Parker 33:49
Well, I think that like I mean, I’m curious what you mean by pivot. But I think that one thing that I talk to my team a lot about is like being aware of the context that we hold our business, right, like looking at just next year, to me is a very small context, I have a 13 year career, right, there’s going to be chapters. And even if you’ve had a three year career, this is a chapter of the greater story of the career that you are writing. And so if you’re so hyper focused on you know, the next six months or the next 12 months, again, it kind of goes back to like you start to inform how you behave and how you show up and it’s gonna change it if you can just keep a broader context of like, we might have a down year next year. Sure, possibly, yes. Do I need to be a responsible business owner and start to make some modifications to like our spend and make sure that we’re not you know, that I’m being smart? Absolutely. I can do those things. You know, and then we see what happens and we we don’t pull back on investing. I still invest in the spirit in in the support that we need and this stuff that we know works for us. But I think that I have a broader context, if you will, for, for what this will mean and the greater story. And so I know everyone’s talking about 2023. But I think in my mind, I’m already in like 2025. Because I can see how this will play in the next few years.

D.J. Paris 35:21
It’s, it’s a really important point, because I think I think you just said something really, really big, which was, I’m thinking about 2025, because 2025 is going to come. And we’re only thinking about 2023, like you were saying, a lot of us are just focused on, you know, we might be in survival mode, or we might be just nervous about. But regardless, it’s going to come and go, and we’re going to need to adapt, and also there, right there, there are cycles, and there are ups and downs, and life isn’t linear business isn’t linear. And that’s, that’s the challenge. I think, for some of us when we get into the business, and we have our first five years, and it just looks like this linear graph up into the right, because we sell more homes every year than we did previously. And then maybe all of a sudden the market, you know, has a correction or, you know, the there’s other factors at play that that affect our ability to to keep that trajectory going. And it doesn’t necessarily mean the end of our business. It just means that you know, in the natural cycle of life, there’s ups and downs and things that happen. But it’s it’s about really weathering the storm. So you were saying like, yeah, of course, as a business owner, I’m going to make responsible decisions, I’m going to keep my spending in check. And I’m going to make sure that you know, my team is getting the resources that they need. But we’re going to we’re going to make it through because I’m already thinking of 2025 I think that’s really interesting. I don’t know how many people think that way. And I think that comes with experience, which is, which is what you have?

Kelly Parker 36:55
Yeah, I think so, you know, I think I’ve always had a unique outlook, just in general on what we’re doing here. Which is why I tend to just kind of keep my head down, and I kind of just do my own thing, because I don’t, I don’t want to get too influenced, if you will, by you know, by by narratives and opinions and things like that. I think that what you touched on, about being linear, really takes us full circle back to like the whole production and goals and success. Because we think that like if we do these things, we’ll get this end result. And we can contain it into a whole year, when the truth is stuff that you’re going to do in 2023 is actually going to pay you in 2025. But we don’t let ourselves accept that or see that or measure that because it’s not this like tangible thing in front of us right now. And so I always like kind of low this time of year. I mean, we’re speaking it’s November, it’s like everyone should be so excited right now about what they did in 2022. And celebrating and go on vacation. And don’t worry, and just like live your life, because everyone has worked so hard the last couple of years. But I’m watching agents not do it. Because they’re starting to freak out about next year, and thinking they have to pull back and and they’re just like automatically bypassing to me what is the most important component to continued success, which is honoring what you’ve accomplished, celebrating it, sharing it, like sitting in it. And knowing that it doesn’t end January one it carries it carries with you and there’s going to be stuff you did this year, you never saw the production for that will show up next year, or maybe in 2024 2025. Like we don’t know. And so I think if I can just share one thing, as someone who’s been in this business as long as I have now it’s like it’s never contained to a year ever. It always bleeds over into each other. So let’s not let’s not be so linear and how we measure and and where we begin and end these chapters of the story.

D.J. Paris 39:01
Yeah, I agree. I, I want to talk about celebration because I that’s not something I’ve really delved into too much in this show. And I think it’s something that’s worth worthwhile to talk about because I think since so many realtors are individual practitioners or maybe they are on a team and there is some sort of recognition about, you know, milestones or certain types of activity gets noticed or appreciated. But I do think that it would likely be a good idea for people individually to learn how to celebrate their own achievement and it doesn’t necessarily have to be related to a goal that that got hit could be a skill that was learned it could be the way that you know somebody improved their customer service could be a way in which you know, something got better or or or something new was was brought in Here’s how do you recommend to people to celebrate their success? Because I think we don’t we do a lot of it on social media, right? There’s a lot of like, look at me, I just sold this home. I don’t, I’m not talking about that I’m talking about internally, processing, feeling actually good about something that you accomplish, because the reason I’m making such a big deal of this, and I’m going to, in a moment, just turn it over to you, is I think that can help get us through the hard times, if we can remember what it feels like. So what are your thoughts on that?

Kelly Parker 40:32
Absolutely. I love this question. And specifically, like the this, the separation to the external, right, like, social media is a tricky beast. And, and I think that a lot of people think that they have to celebrate as a form of validation. And so there’s a little bit in my mind too much ego that gets attached. And I think this is what we’ve all felt, right, we see the celebration, and you’re like, that kind of feels, feels like it’s a little bit loaded, right. And it’s, it’s, and it’s okay, we’re humans, we all have egos, there’s that moment of wanting to like wave the flag of what you’ve done and what you’ve accomplished in a tangible material form. But I think that, it’s it cause that seeing other people do that there’s a certain sort of subset of people who, like myself, who are so turned off from that, that I’ve actually held off on celebrating, because I didn’t want to come off as a certain way. And I didn’t want it to feel a certain way. Because, again, why I do what I do is so heartfelt, and like heart led, that the dollars and the goals and or the, the celebrations will never really capture all of that, right. But it I have learned that celebrating is truly the biggest form of expressing your gratitude. And I’m, I’m really, I’m in I have my own mentor. And that came in light of a conversation I had with her about how, how that’s really what it is like, it can be done behind closed doors, it can be done with your team. It’s like what you’re asking. And so we do a lot of closed doors, celebrations, like, you know, we and our a lot of our goals, same thing, our personal and production and whatever. So we’re never just celebrating the metal achieved, were celebrating the whole human. And so I do think it’s incredibly important to anchor that in for the reason that you said, it’s something that creates a tangible, you know, feeling inside of you, or recognition for what you’ve done, I would say that I celebrate myself and my accomplishments and in several different ways. I think, what you were saying, for even for me, right now, this year, one of my biggest accomplishments is that I got to spend more time with my daughter, and nothing was sacrificed to do it. And that has been something I had to learn the hard way, and I worked really hard to get out. So, you know, do I have like extra production to show for something No, but I have these memories and these experiences with her. And, and that’s something right and, and so I as I’m living life, I think being very present in my moments, and recognizing that I don’t have to wait until the end of the year to celebrate that a lot of the time we are we are our goals and our dreams are actually being asked are actualized in everyday moments, but we’re just not present enough to see them. So I think I have a sense of presence out of just sort of like reverence for celebration in general. But um, I do like to travel that’s kind of always been my thing that I feel like traveling gives you this sense of experience. And I it’s like, sort of hard for me to explain without over talking. But like it, there’s something that really helps me anchor a feeling around a celebration. And so I actually tend to use use that. But again, I noticed that a lot I want to encourage people to celebrate because I think that seeing others celebrate helps to give people examples of what’s possible. And if you’re looking for a way to ground yourself in a celebration, so it doesn’t feel so showy. And looking at me. I always just go to the place of kindness provide an example to another female in the industry about what’s possible, you know, five years in your business eight years in your business, you know, and and kind of be mindful I guess of the narrative. That’s what you’re approaching it but

D.J. Paris 44:39
yeah, the idea of celebration, you you really got me thinking I was I was thinking it got me thinking about the, for anyone who’s ever looked into relationship stuff you probably you know, if you have a significant other and you’re trying to get along better with them and have a better relationship, you probably will stumble Across the Gottman, the Gottman, who are who are kind of the world experts and researchers on how people can can coexist and cohabitate and they’ve written a million books, and they’re a married couple out of, I think, out of Oregon or Washington anyway. But anyway, they have, they have this ratio that they’ve proven that for a healthy interpersonal relationship, you know, romantic relationship, the golden ratio is five affirming things. For every one sort of negative thing, a very critical thing, one critical thing. So if I want to say, oh, you know, you’re doing the dishes the wrong way, or whatever, or you didn’t do the dishes, or whatever, whatever the criticism might be, if you can, if you can have five affirming things, but here’s all here are the things you did right away, you know, you would sprinkle those throughout the day. That’s what a healthy relationship and a happy relationship looks like. It’s five affirming things to everyone. One sort of non affirming thing. And what you were saying is really important, because you’re talking about celebration. And I was thinking about that. And I was thinking, How often do I celebrate myself? For the things that I may have accomplished, or, in our listeners ears, what you have accomplished today? You definitely did some things well, today, and I did some things well, and I did some things that maybe I could improve on. But how often am I even celebrating those little milestones? And I used to think you had to get to the end of the goal before you could celebrate, but I’ve learned and I’m curious to hear your thoughts. I’ve learned that celebrating along the way. It actually keeps keeps the engine running for me. It doesn’t actually stop the motivation, like, oh, I accomplished it, I’m good. No, because that was kind of my fears. I can’t I can’t celebrate until I get to the end. And I think that’s a mistake. Because we’re talking about celebrating throughout the journey. And I think there’s a lot of, you know, you hear about, like gratitude groups. I don’t think we have a gratitude problem. I think we have a celebration problem. I think we’re all I think we’re all grateful, or if you’re not whatever, there’s there’s there’s lots of ways to become grateful. But I think the bigger issue is around celebrating one’s own, you know, Power Agency success. curious to get your thoughts on that.

Kelly Parker 47:15
Yeah, no, I would agree. I think that the celebration somewhere along the way got tainted. Right. And, and to your point, it’s like, if we just bring it back to the gratitude, and you just can focus on that, then then it helps clear the air for a lot of other people to step into their own gratitude. So I think we’ve tangled celebration and gratitude. So it’s like people aren’t even taking a moment to be grateful for what they’ve done or accomplish. Because it feels gross. And it feels showy, or they have we’re very tangled in that. And so I yeah, I would agree, I think we have more of a celebration problem. And to your to your point of, you know, I think a lot of people wait until the end of the year, they wait till they hit the goal. But the truth is the goalpost literally moves every time. Like, okay, I want to do $20 million, I did $20 million. And I was like, We did it like okay, like it. And then the next without, if you’re not conscious, and you’re not aware, it’s automatically 25 Before you even like get 20 out of your mouth, and then it’s 30 and then it’s 35. And all of a sudden, you’re living your life towards this end goal. And you’re missing all of the moments in between all of the beautiful things that have compounded and compounded that are worth celebrating on the way to this, you know, this goal. And and I also think being present in those moments of yourself and celebrating yourself really helps this to not feel like a winner or lose. Right? If you have a goal and you don’t make it then it means you lost. If you have a goal and you made it then it means you succeeded. And I think that diametrically I don’t know if that’s the right word. That’s the word I want to use. But like that, that sort of like two dimensional, like you win or you lose mentality is what keeps so many people from celebrating because like why didn’t hit my goal? Well, that wasn’t the definition of success. Did you show up every day? Have you grown? Have you changed? Did you help someone? You know, that’s what we should be celebrating?

D.J. Paris 49:28
Well, I think that’s a wonderful place to sort of wrap up because this idea of celebration, it is the time of year to celebrate, you know, we’re the holiday season. This is time to reflect, to be thankful, and also to think to the future and you’re already doing that. But I think it’s to your point about being increasing the celebration there. I think it would be really neat to almost even start like a celebration accountability partner, where every week, instead of just talking about what you accomplished, well, in addition to holding each other accountable for things that you want to accomplish, which I think is a good idea, also having some sort of celebration, even if it’s just one to one, one person to another Hey, man, great job this week. Hey, so and so, you know, you even if you didn’t necessarily achieve your goal, you’re still on target. You’re you’re still trying, you’re still, you know, this, this idea of encouragement. Really just gets everyone through the hard times. And I think I think we’re coming up on some some more difficult. Well, it’s been difficult to be a realtor in the last couple of years. I mean, I also want to say, just because rates were lower, didn’t make it any easier to be a realtor. In fact, if you I mean, I wasn’t out there in the trenches with like you and your team. I mean, it was hard to be a realtor last couple years,

Kelly Parker 50:51
it was hard. And I think that’s why my outlook for the next year is very different is because I think that, yeah, it’s it was hard. And it was, there was a lot of other things we were having to navigate. And a lot of certain clients in the market for different reasons. And I think that we, again, we’re gonna get to decide what this means. And I think I’m making this mean that it’ll be at a pace that’s more sustainable. It’ll be with, you know, slightly more favorable outcomes for all clients. I think it was very skewed the last, you know, couple years. So again, it’s just sort of that perspective shift on what we make these markets mean. But yeah, they haven’t. They haven’t been easy. And so I really hope that everybody does celebrate. I love what you said actually about an accountability partner, because something I’ve been thinking about, and we try to do this we could be better at it is celebrating agents that you don’t actually like, aren’t maybe even in your team. I see so many women, particularly in these magazines, who who accomplish amazing things. And I’m like DMing them, why isn’t this on your Instagram? Why didn’t you talk about this, like we’re celebrating you, I think we though, we can lead by example, and celebrate each other, and congratulate each other without prompt, because it really helps, I think us all feel a little bit more seen and accepted and encouraged to celebrate ourselves. So

D.J. Paris 52:21
I think that’s a great point. You know, for everyone listening, pay attention to the milestones that other people might be hitting people that you like, that you respect, reach out to them, when those milestones happen, it might be exactly what they need to hear and they may just be more like Kelly, who’s like, I don’t really want to put that out there because maybe I’d seen his show offy and, and put it out there for them. Be proud of the people that are in your community and watch what happens. You’re not going to do it for this boomerang reason that it’s going to come back to you but it probably will come back to you to this idea of of lifting other other people up, you know, in their successes. It’s worked well for me I’ve had a similar mentality when I’ve when I see things that happen to people that are very impressive to me, I’ll often I’ll reach out to them and just say congratulations on such and such, even people I don’t know. And and I found that in many cases, they will say things like you’re the only person that reached out to me it doesn’t make me a great guy. It just makes me the one person who did it. And anybody can do that. And what I think well what comes with that is a lot of times a lot of opportunity ends up coming from that because people will go wow, well that’s nice that so and so thought about me. I’m going to take a closer look at this, this particular individual it’s almost very similar to what you do for clients this idea of giving to give and give give give authentically and then you know you sort of hope that things come back and they do but we should also talk about your team your team is growing you know 2023 is not a scary year for you. So if there are any anyone who thinks that they would love to work with someone like Kelly and maybe join Chicago home collective and learn more about what they offer Kelly what’s the best way that our listeners can reach out if they think they’d be a fit.

Kelly Parker 54:15
DM us on Instagram we are in the final stages of a new website that is been a labor of love and it’s not quite done yet it will be done in the new year so don’t judge my website it’s a solid eight years old at this point. But go on our Instagram you can send me a DM on there you can follow you can you can go on my personal account you can you can message me either location. That’s how most people end up finding us.

D.J. Paris 54:41
But here are the links we got Chicago home collective.com Which again is going to get a refresh although I think it looks quite lovely even now. And then also follow Kelly on Instagram the two Instagram accounts are Chicago home collective, and Kelly underscore e underscore Parker to learn more about Kelly, I mean, if you if anyone is out there, looking at 2023, and thinking about making the shift, and saying, you know, I really want to sort of hitch my, my, my horse to, to a dip or hitch my wagon to a different horse, I don’t want to, I don’t want to I don’t want to be the horse do with being a horse. But the metaphor is, I think, okay. But I just had to think about that I was like, anyway, if you want to connect with somebody who’s who’s really got an interesting philosophy, who’s been successful, and kind of approaches her success a little bit differently, but in a way, I think that makes just all the sense in the world. You know, those Chicago home collective might be the team for you. So check out Chicago home collective.com, reach out to Kelly slide into her DMs as the young people say, although I think I think that might be like a dating reference. So don’t do that unless you more maybe do that if you want. But reach out to Kelly in any way that you want to. She is easy to find. And she would love to chat with you and see if you might be a good match to help them grow into 2023. So, and 2025 Because Kelly, many many years out. Kelly, thank you on behalf of our audience, this is a really fun conversation. For me personally, I appreciate you for being on our show I’ve always wanted to have you on and I’m so glad we finally did get you here. And hope we can continue to to get you back on the show from time to time to get your philosophies and thoughts about you know, growing a team and sort of navigating some some difficult times in the business. Thank you on behalf of the audience. On behalf of Kelly and myself to the audience. We want to also say thank you. Please remember to tell a friend that’s the only thing we will ask of you is just tell one other realtor about this episode. Send them a link over to our website, keeping it real pod.com They can stream every episode we’ve ever done right from their website, or this pull up a podcast app search for keeping it real and hit that subscribe button. We would appreciate it. Kelly, thank you. Thank you and AJ

Kelly Parker 57:01
Thank you. It’s a great conversation. I appreciate it.

D.J. Paris 57:05
I do I do as well and we will see everybody on the next episode.

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