How to Turn Setbacks into Opportunities to Achieve More


How to Turn Setbacks into Opportunities to Achieve More

Setbacks can happen to anyone at any time. No one expects a setback. Even those experienced real estate professionals who swear they can sense changes in the market are unable to predict what can happen. White you can’t predict setbacks, you can prepare for them. And, when you can prepare for them, you’re better able to turn them into opportunities that can benefit you in the long run. Here’s how:

Assess the setback

The first step is to see what you’re working with. By assessing the setback, you can understand what you’re facing and the steps you can take to overcome them. Here are some questions to ask yourself:

  • How big is the setback? If you were to give it a size rating, what would it be? It helps to maintain some perspective when assessing the size. While some setbacks may seem huge in the short-term, they may not end up being that big of a deal over the long term. 
  • What steps can you take to overcome it? 
  • Is it something that is easily surmountable? 
  • How long would it take you to overcome it?
  • Is it something you’ve faced before? Or, do you know someone who’s faced something similar? If so, you may be able to ask them what they did to overcome it.

“The important thing is not being afraid to take a chance. Remember, the greatest failure is to not try. Once you find something you love to do, be the best at doing it.”

Debbi Fields

Get perspective

The key to overcoming setbacks is to get and maintain perspective. As we said above, some setbacks seem bigger than they are at the moment. They shrink in size once we’ve taken the time to rationalize them properly. This takes experience. If you’re new to real estate, you may experience a setback and feel it’s a huge deal, whereas an experienced real estate agent may shrug their shoulders. The difference is that the experienced agent has seen enough challenges to better decipher what’s a big deal and what isn’t. That isn’t to say that experienced agents don’t face setbacks; it’s just that they’re better equipped to assess where to focus their energy.

“How many people are completely successful in every department of life? Not one. The most successful people are the ones who learn from their mistakes and turn their failures into opportunities.”

Zig Ziglar

Make it a learning opportunity

One of the best ways to face a setback is to turn it into a learning opportunity. Let’s say a transaction you were hoping to close didn’t close on time. Perhaps there was an issue with the financing and it pushed the closing back a few days or a week. If you were counting on that sale, it can feel like a huge setback, especially if you’re new to real estate. Experienced agents may be annoyed but understand that this stuff happens. Or, perhaps you missed your sales goal for the month. Maybe you thought March was going to be a slam dunk, but then you experienced a few setbacks. Maybe a transaction didn’t close and, while you did all of your daily lead-generating activities, it wasn’t enough to help you reach your sales goal. 

What did you learn?

This is a prime opportunity to think of ways to avoid this challenge in the future. What can you learn from this challenge? Is there an opportunity to grow from it and even avoid it in the future?

Perhaps you can add another Power Hour or two to the week? That would help you connect with more people in your network. If your network is small, reach out to your top clients and ask them to introduce you to people they know who may be in the market to buy or sell a home. The people in your network have networks of their own. Since they’ve learned to trust you to help them achieve their real estate goals, they may be more likely to introduce you to people they know. You just have to ask. If you’re not comfortable asking yet, practice scripts to make it easier. Practice makes perfect so be sure to practice them until they seem natural. Then, make it a point to ask the top people in your network to introduce you.

“My mother always taught me never to look back in regret but to move on to the next thing. The amount of time people waste dwelling on failures rather than putting that energy into another project, always amazes me. I have fun running all the Virgin businesses–so a setback is never a bad experience, just a learning curve.”

Richard Branson

Make a plan for moving forward

Once you see a setback as a lesson, it becomes more manageable to overcome. You’ve reduced its power over you so you’re less likely to let it paralyze you from taking action. Instead, you shift your focus from dealing with the setback to moving forward from it. 

Deal with the setback. Take steps to face it and overcome it. Increase your lead-generating activities, reach out to your best clients for referrals, or whatever steps you think to take to make the setback a thing of the past.

Take steps to prepare for or prevent similar setbacks in the future. If the setback can be avoided in the future, take steps to prevent it now. Or, if better preparation would have helped to avoid or minimize the issue, take steps to prepare for a similar issue in the future. 

Embrace the learning experience. Every setback is a learning experience. Find the lesson and learn from it. See it as an opportunity to grow as a real estate professional. The more you know, the better able you’ll be to help your clients. 

CircleCloser can help you overcome setbacks

We created CircleCloser to help real estate professionals build the foundation for strong real estate businesses. It has the tools you need to connect with your past and current clients as well as new prospective clients. Set goals, track your progress, and consistently reach out to your network as you grow your business. What more can you ask for? Click here to learn more.

Eric Johnson

Eric Johnson

Hi. I’m Eric Johnson. I help busy real estate professionals be more successful. I've spent the last 20 years teaching and training relationship marketing and coaching business owners to help them reach their goals.