Steven Burkhart: Well, Hey everybody, this is Steven with Burkhart Creative Agency with the Digital Hustle Show, and we got Danny with us today. He’s going to give a little introduction of himself, but we’re just excited to have him on he’s really built his own business from the ground up. He has a a team of people that works for him. And so he’s got like a really great set of knowledge on growing a team and company culture. And we’re just really excited for him to share his tips and tricks on growing a business. And so for those of you that are watching, that are growing your own small business hopefully this is both inspiring and very practical as well. So go ahead and introduce yourself and tell us a little bit about who you are.
Danny Brown: Thank you so much for having me on your show. I really appreciate it first. And as you said, my name is Danny Brown and I run a real estate team called myriad at my home group. And we started in 2013. I got my real estate license in 2007 when the real estate market in Phoenix around the country was collapsing around us. And I had joined a real estate team then and learned how to do real estate by selling bank owned properties in Phoenix. And there was a fair amount of them. And you know, that was really trial by fire and made me a veteran in the real estate market rather quickly, because I was doing upwards of 150 transactions per year to make a buck cause it wasn’t, it wasn’t glamorous work by any means. Sure. And I, I still remember to this day, the cheapest property I ever sold during that time was a $10,000 townhome in Maryville.
Danny: Yeah. And you can imagine the commission on a $10,000 townhome is very low launched, right? So you had to do a lot of transactions in order to survive. And you know, what I learned during that time was how to analyze a home in any neighborhood or market relatively quickly and how not to treat people. During that time, I came across a lot of individuals who had been taken advantage of both people who own the home, as well as tenants who were renting property from people. And I really learned what not to do and how not to treat people. And I vowed that through my real estate career, I would work extremely hard to create systems and processes that really took care of people, educated them on the process and help them build for their financial future, build wealth through home ownership and put them in the best positions for them in their family.
Danny: And I was with that real estate team from 2007 to 2013, when I founded myriad at my home group. And I’ve been doing that ever since, right? Yeah. Home ownership is definitely a trip cause like for one to go back to the 2007 crash, nothing made me sadder than seeing what my son, my home was worth then and thinking, Oh man, I could have actually saved $70,000 in front of bought my home like six years earlier. That was a little depressing. But yeah, but the thing was the thing with that, just like any markets is, it’s all theoretical. Right? Right. You only realize a lot. So if you buy into the stock market and the stock market crashed in February right off of its highs or early March, I can’t remember. It dropped like 35%. Right. If you would have sold out and gotten out, that’s when you realize those losses, just like home ownership, if you could afford to stay in your home and you maintained it, not that much further later, your home would have been worth more and then some what you paid for it, even at the peaks.
Danny: So it’s only a loss if you sell. Right. Right. So the same housing market stock market, you’re only realizing those losses if you get out. And if you have a long enough timeline, traditionally things continue to increase in value over time. Yeah. Certainly it would have been different for a home flipper than it would have been a home owner who’s looking to stick around. I just wish, you know, I just wish I’d have been able to buy my home earlier and then make all that extra equity. But you know, you can’t go back in time, I guess. That’s right. I mean hindsight’s 2040 for sure. So I can assure you when the market crashed, I could not afford to buy a home. I’ll say yeah. Part time at like a grocery store. So it doesn’t really matter how cheap my house would have been. Well, that’s why you know, in a there’s recessions and pullbacks in the market, it’s rich people who get richer and poor people can cause they’re prepared to take advantage of it.
Danny: They are, they are, yeah. They stockpile cash. And then they know that the market at some point is going to pull back and that’s when they that’s when they buy. So, you know, Warren buffet, right. He, he is nervous about markets when everybody is buying and he loves markets when everybody is selling. So, you know, you just he’s picking the opposite, right? Yeah. That’s why I got my, I just recently got a carnival stock. Cause it was like everyone was hitting on carnival. I’m like perfect. And I think they’re way off recently too. Right? Well, it dropped, it was a quarter of the like average price as it was like two years ago. And I was like, why? I think just last week because of the increase in the jobs reports, that was a surprise and things. I think that some of those really hit stocks like carnival, I think they’re up. I’m okay with them. Yeah. Their bottoms. Right. Thank goodness. Cause it was, it was low, low, low, low, but yeah, thankfully those companies are recovering and certainly for the context of people watching, you know, cause they could be watching a year from now, like kind of coming in off the tail end of a covert crisis and everything like that. Lots of people didn’t work. Small businesses were shut down
Steven: For what, two months almost. So people are going through some trying times and, and that’s actually like a perfect transition for you to talk about how it’s been for you because you started during that 2007 collapse, but I’m sure a lot of the people that work for you and certainly you as now the leader of the organization has really had to have some grit getting through these last times. You know what I mean? This last two months. So kind of walk us through what it’s been like, like not details as far as like what you did for COVID but more like what kind of mindset stuff did you go through and like what kind of things did you have to do for your employees to kind of like get everyone through this? You know what I mean, as a leader, the big difference friends,
Danny: Like you said was so in 2007 I was an employee, I was a team member of a real estate team and somebody else was leading the charge and kind of telling us what to do right this time around that’s me. And I’m like, Holy crap. So, you know, the pressure is on and you know, it wasn’t, I was like a lot of people, I think when, when all of this stuff was first starting where I didn’t think it was that big of a deal, you know it was, it was happening in, you know, overseas. And I was in that corner that, you know, the flu kills more people, people are overreacting and it actually wasn’t until I listened to a Joe Rogan podcast where he interviewed a scientist and my perspective or outlook on this completely changed, it was a complete one 80. And I was like, Oh my gosh, this is going to be really serious.
Danny: This is going to be really bad. What can we do now to be in a position to prepare ourselves for worst case scenario? Sure. And so I’ve always been the type of person who believes in having a three to six months cash available as an emergency fund, both personal and business. And so I think everyone should have a nest egg of at least three months of expenses, not like going out, it’s just your, your essentials, right. If you cut back on these things, what, what is your survival number for a month and how long can you make that last? Right. So I, I, I worked really hard coming out of the recession that if this happens again and it will, I want to make sure that we have at least three months cash available to survive and pay my team and, you know, pay our bills and keep the doors open.
Danny: And so, you know, that dollar amount increases because your expenses increase over time or whatever. Yeah. Yeah. So, you know, we were in a favorable, favorable position where I knew that we could survive. If we had no come in for at least three months with our current expenses where they were at, right. My COO and I, we sat down and we went through our entire budget line by line on, okay, what are things that we can kind of cut back on right now to lower our expense budget in the event that this does get really bad. So this was all pre shut down, all that kind of stuff. So it was before it was even talked about, or like after you’ve heard about it, but not yet after we had heard about it, but before the the government issued the stay at home orders all those things.
Danny: So we were already in the process of putting a plan in place to survive. It was before the announcement of PPP, all of those things. So I think, you know, what your audience, regardless of what time in history they’re watching or listening to this, it’s, you need to be prepared. There’s always going to be obstacles. There’s always going to be pullbacks in the market, regardless of what industry you’re in. And so setting yourself up for success during those times, don’t spend everything that you make during the good times, right? Put stuff aside for a rainy day, you know, have three to six months worth of expenses and then be prepared to cut back on things. You know, one of the hardest decisions that I ever had to make so far as a business owner was we, our first quarter of this year was the best quarter that we’ve ever had.
Danny: And my team model for real estate is wildly different than most T models in real estate. And we can get into that later if you’d like, but when my company does well, I do profit sharing. And so I paid bonuses to my team. Well, I had to, I was, I remember vividly I was sitting on this couch and I almost broke down into tears because I took it that hard that here we are coming out of the best quarter we’ve ever had. And I’m having to tell my guys that I don’t know what the next six months is going to look like. We’re on a a pay freeze. We’re not hiring anybody else on and I’m sorry, but for right now I can’t pay bonuses. I would rather keep you as a team member and an employee than pay you a bonus now and not have any money in the future.
Danny: So again, I think it comes down to when you are a leader, you have to really sit down and make some of those hard decisions and that the health of your company is the most important thing. Sure. and if you have to, you know, make those tough decisions of letting people go, if that’s what it means to, for your company survival, then that’s what it means. And so it, it you’re put in that position where you have to make some of those tough choices because those, those things are going to happen. Right. So if you’re willing to share I’m sure
Steven: Some small business owners will hear that and be like, Oh, that’s super cool that you’re able to like, save that up. That’s just not practical for me or whatever else, take us through, like some of the sacrifices you had to make to be able to save up that money that saved your company. Cause it really did. That’s the reason like people have desks still is because you did that. So like, what did you, did you, and what did you sacrifice to be able to like have that? Cause I mean, most people spend they’ll, it’ll go straight into marketing, go straight, go in hiring. Like, you know what I mean? Like what did you sacrifice for that to happen?
Danny: You have to have budgets in place. Okay. And you have to stick to those budgets. If, if you’re just living based on what is in your bank account, you’re never going to get ahead. Right? So you always have to have these budgets and systems in place to manage your funds. And I’ll be honest, that’s one of the areas that I’m weakest at. And I think as a small business owner, recognizing you, when you start something, you’re everything, right? You’re the janitor, you’re the salesman. You’re the ops person. If you’re a sole proprietor and you’re doing this on your own, you are wearing all of those hats and figuring out the parts of the business that you like and want to focus on and then outsourcing the rest. Right. And so I was in a fortunate position that one of our team members, Morgan is amazing at managing our financials and our P and L’s because that’s something that I’m super weak at.
Danny: So it was a talent for sure. It is a talent. Absolutely. So she keeps us lean and mean, and you know, I’m the business. So like I wanted to buy an iPad four or five months ago for these presentations. And I, you know, my wife was making fun of me cause I went and I asked her permission. She’s like, do you really need like, no. And I was like, okay, you know, and I’m the business owner, but I’m asking, you know, asking her if we, so but sacrifices, I like there were months when we were starting where I didn’t pay myself, you know, I paid my team, but I, you know, she’d ask like, am I cutting you a check for, and I’d be like, no, I’m not paying myself. And so it’s taking, it took time to get there. It wasn’t like I just immediately had three months worth of cash available. It took time taking a little bit each from each pay period from each check that came in and just setting that aside. And like, that’s not money that we can take from, we need to operate within, this is our budget and we’re saving for a rainy day. And so operating within the constraints of that budget.
Steven: So even when you did extra, well, it was being disciplined in saying like, okay, like we could all have brand new computers, but maybe instead we’ll save for rainy day or something like that.
Danny: Yeah. Yeah. It’s just, it’s kind of prioritizing and you know, I I’m very fiscally conservative, so I try not to run on debt. Although some debt can be great and especially when it’s extremely cheap, like it is right now, but I’m not a big fan of lines of credit, you know, running balances on credit cards. I try to operate everything, you know, as cash. Well, we, of course we charge everything on a credit card, but we’ll share it off every month to get the points and the discounts and those types of things. But you have to be prepared as an entrepreneur, as a small business owner to make those types of sacrifices and work, you know, 60, 70 hours plus a week where yeah, it would be nice to be able to hire somebody to do that, but I need to get to a point where we’re safe cashflow wise before bringing that next person on.
Steven: Well, that makes total sense. And my whole thing was like the whole COVID thing and dealing with the crisis is I think a lot of people just caught get caught in the trap of the comfort. It’s like, we live in an amazing country where like, everything is just around the corner gratification. Yeah, you can, you can, like you said, like line of credit, like you can just get a line of credit and you go buy something like no big deal. And it’s not terribly hard to get access to that money. And so you get yourself in a situation where you get used to that and certainly like probably 90% of your whole life as an entrepreneur would poly be like, not nearly as intense as this specific moment, but for the times that it is significant. It’s also significant, significant to everyone else because everyone else is relying on you. And so instead of just enjoying the comfort of like, Oh, the housing, market’s great. Like, it’s just gonna be like this forever. You know what I mean? Like you didn’t, you know, you didn’t do that. You, you were intentional about preparing your small business for weathering any kind of storm, which thankfully, thankfully that storm wasn’t like six months long.
Danny: Yeah. Well, I mean, rough, you took this. What we’re facing right now is taking what normally lasts a few years and his compressed it down into eight weeks. Right. You would just think about how many jobs were. It took us 10 years to get where we are at with unemployment. And we lost all that in what six weeks, 10 years worth of job growth was lost in six weeks. So you, people are getting a real aggressive lesson right now on what it’s like when the market pulls back. Normally it’s a more gradual event and this was just like a flip of a switch. Right?
Steven: Well, I just think it’s just like a good note to all small business owners is like, just be as prepared as possible in every way possible, which seems obvious. But it’s a challenge because reality is, is like, I’m sure you had months where things are a little tight, you know what I mean? Are the months, things are really great. And it’s about managing those times, like you said, with the budget. So that way, like when it’s like, it’s a little tight, it’s tight, but when it’s really good, man, get an opportunity to save up and prepare, which is awesome.
Danny: Yeah. You know, in real estate really kind of teaches you that because there’s ebbs and flows and it’s this up and down kind of roller coaster constantly of, you know, you’re working so hard to get busy and then you get busy and then you stop doing the things to get your busy and then you start slowing down and then you do it again. So it’s this constant up and down motion that kind of trains you early on that, you know, you’ve got, even though you you’ve sold so many homes or whatever, and you’ve got this cash coming in the next month, and then you’ve got to, you’ve just got a plan. You just, again, I think it comes down to having a budget and sticking to it regardless of, you know, how flush things are. And if you do have extra income, you know, then start investing that and you can invest it in your company, but being smart about it as well.
Steven: Cool. So if we were to talk kind of switch gears a little bit and just talk a little bit, like, like one of the things that we talked about when we were kind of preparing for this interview was talking about those like major jumps entrepreneurs have when they go from like solopreneur to having an employee, to having a couple of employees. Right. And how many employees do you have as of right now? Five. Five. Okay. So which is like, I feel probably like another one of those big hurdles, right. Going from one to five walk us through a little bit how that experience was for you. Was it scary? Was it exciting? Was it, you know what I mean? Cause like now you’re going from like running the ship and like you said, wearing all the hats to now, like trying to explain someone else, how to wear a certain hat. You know what I mean? Like, so how was that for you?
Danny: It is, it’s terrifying to bring on an employee and it’s tariff more, even more terrifying to bring them on when they have a salary, right. Because you’ve got to pay them no matter what and what, one of the things, you know, I mentioned earlier that I run my team differently is my entire team is on salary. So a lot of real estate teams offer work off commissions, right? And so when the business closes a deal, then that person gets part of theirs and then you get yours. And in really lean times when businesses down, that can be great because I’m not paying you if you’re not producing well, I’m paying salaries, just like any small business is whether businesses coming through the door or not. And so when you’re bringing on people that you have to pay, it’s, it’s a hard shift in your mentality to think about, you know, I’m bringing this person on at $35,000 a year.
Danny: You know, currently my profit is a hundred thousand, you know, and now I’m only going to be making 65,000 per year. Right? That’s the wrong mentality to have. And if that’s what happens, then you’re bringing the wrong person on. If you bring somebody on and you’re paying them a salary, they should either be freeing you up so that you can bring more money in the door or they need to be bringing in money themselves to your company that pays for themselves. And then some right. So that’s, I tell my guys, you want to make more money. There’s two things that need to happen. You either need to make the cash register ring, or you need to make yourself more valuable by doing more tasks that then brings in more money to the company. Right? So that’s really what it comes down to. And if so, if you are hiring people and all there are, is a drag on your company and they’re just costing you time and money, then that’s the wrong person and you need to get them get rid of them.
Danny: Right. That would be, that’s a hard thing. Yeah. Hiring is one of, one of the hardest things I think for any small business owner to do making sure that you’re hiring the right person or right. Individuals and being extremely protective of what you’re building, because those people may not be, you know, literally stealing money from you, but they are, if they’re not doing what they’re supposed to do, if they’re not bringing in the business, if they’re not reaching their goals, that’s a form of theft and they’re stealing from your pocket and costing you money and adding stress to you. And so you need to be aware of that. And so hiring the right people is extremely crucial when you’re running a small business. So is, do you have a way of like for the small business owners who are watching, who are like, okay, they need to be profitable, but like, how do you, you have a way of measuring that?
Danny: Like, do you say like, Oh, every person I bring on, like basically make me five times what I pay for their salary. Like, do you have like a way of knowing, like what profitable is for them? So for us, we should be, I mean, you know, mine is all real estate center, so I’m sure that there’s different metrics for different industries, but for my industry specifically for each team member that we have, we should be closing three to four transactions per person, even like admin, non sales people. Right. They should be taking enough of the administrative process off of other team members that allows your sales to increase. So for us, that is three, you know, about three transactions per person on the team is what we need to be consistently doing per year, per month, per month, per month. Okay. Yeah. Yeah. That’s awesome.
Danny: Yeah. So yeah, you definitely have a benchmark and if you’re consistently closing above that threshold, then it’s time to bring somebody on and you know, I’m a big believer in hiring six months in advance of what you need or having a bench in place. So, you know, whether that’s somebody that you’re mentoring or an intern that you’ve brought on, always be kind of building up, like who’s that next hire always have that in the back of your mind. So that you’re always kind of thinking six months ahead of what you actually going to need.
Steven: Do you tend to hire people with experience or do you like training people into their positions?
Danny: I learned early, early on to not hire people with experience especially in the world of real estate. They come in with a lot of bad habits, you know, they’ve been doing things a certain way for a long time. And if you bring people, I like hiring based on personality and attitude, I think you can teach anybody to do anything for the most part. What you can’t teach is personality work ethic, that attitude, that willingness to, to learn. And so I really focus on hiring based on those qualities rather than the experience that they have, every person who’s on my team, none of them started with a real estate license. They were in different industries hadn’t even ever considered real estate as a career. Yeah, because I mean, most people, when they think real estate, they think commissions and, you know, it’s a sink or swim mentality again, so I’m paying salaries.
Danny: So they have that built in and it’s kind of a mix of both worlds where you get the freedom of setting your own schedule and kind of living that, you know, that realtor type life versus I, you know, I’m, it’s not a requirement for people to come to the office from nine to five, Monday through Friday. Like that’s not what we’re creating. So it’s kind of the mix of the best of both worlds. And none of them had any experience when they started, right. They don’t even know how good they have it. I hope that they do. I mean, we talk about it and we talk about what’s happening in, you know, in the real estate market right now, your average realtor closes about 11 deals per year. Pretax makes about 35, $36,000 a year. So you figure when you’re self employed, about half of that goes to uncle Sam. So your average, you know, if you’re just your average realtor, you’re not making much per year. So you know, we, I take care of all the licensing. I pay four Oh one [inaudible], you know, all of that stuff is kind of wrapped in with what we’re doing. Right.
Steven: Well, that’s good that you have an expectation and an understanding of what people should or you know, how they can measure their own success and what numbers they have to hit. And I, yeah, just from what few conversations I’ve had with other realtors, it’s like the vast majority of real estate agents like don’t make any sales at all, like in any given year.
Danny: Yeah. It is a very hard industry. Your average realtor lasts two years. Yeah, yeah, yeah. So yeah, they, in, in the greater Phoenix area 10%, the top 10% of agents do 90% of the transactions. Right. So it’s a, it’s a really difficult industry to, to kind of master and it’s really easy to get in. Yeah. That’s one of my biggest pet peeves about being a realtor, is that getting a real estate license is super easy. So the bar is very low, but being successful at it takes a lot of hard work and effort, but just like, I mean, any small business does. Right. Yeah. So brag on yourself for a second. What do you think since, so you’re probably in that 90%, what, what you, what do you think sets you guys up differently that you’re able to pull in the amount of houses that you guys do in any given year?
Danny: I think it has to do with consistency. Okay. So again, like I said, you know when it talked about sticking to a budget that’s being consistent, so putting systems in place and sticking to those systems every single day is what leads to being successful. So I don’t, and I think that’s true for any business. And so you have to come up with processes, you have to be self disciplined enough to remain, focus, and get those, those things done. And spending a majority of your time. I call it green time so that our, that is money producing events. And I like that. That’s cool. And I think for most small businesses revolve around sales and it is very expensive to acquire a new client versus maintaining and keeping an old client. Right. And so we really pride ourselves in the amount of value that we provide after the initial transaction is done.
Danny: So we, you know, we stay in touch with our clients, we send them birthday gifts. We send them little treats. If something momentous happened in their life we send them an annual evaluation of what we think their home is worth on their anniversary month. So it’s it’s and it’s, and I don’t do all of it. I can’t, I don’t have enough time to do all of that. So it’s delegating that stuff out to the people on your team to do those things so that you can consistently provide a super high level of value to those people. So that in five, seven, 10 years, when they’re ready to do another real estate transaction, they just say, Hey, Danny, we’re ready to sell, you know, come out and see us. That is way better than somebody clicking on an ad that I put on Facebook or Google.
Danny: And now I have to convince them that I’m not terrible and trying to just steal their money. They’re learning about you for the very first time. It just learned about you. They already trust you. And certainly it’s, it’s probably outside of just doing more ad spend. I can’t think of any other way someone could possibly scale business, then being able to have some sort of return customer, if all they ever do is do one purchase, one transaction, how do you scale that you just have to buy more Facebook ads. Right. You know what I mean? Which I guess works, but that’s still in the short term, you have to onboard every client. Yeah. That takes time and effort. But I think those ads work just in the short term. Sure. Because eventually Facebook ads won’t be cost effective. I mean, Google ads have gotten very expensive and everybody’s doing them.
Danny: And then Facebook started to be very, very cheap to advertise on and pull in leads. And eventually that will disappear. And then it’s constantly trying to figure out like, what’s the next thing. What’s the next thing. What’s the next thing. And you know, I’m not saying that we don’t do any of those types of ads. We absolutely do. It is a, you know, one of the, the legs of our business is, is ads. But, but it’s only one of them. It’s only one of them. And for us, a majority of our business and which I think weathers pullbacks in the market is repeat business and referrals from your past clients that barrier to entry that barrier, to get someone to trust you when their friend says, you know, all you’re looking to sell your home, you gotta call Danny and myriad. They are awesome.
Danny: And when I go into that appointment, it is worlds different than me going into an appointment where I have to meet them for the first time on the defensive. Exactly. Like I’m trying to sell them something. And so it’s, it’s really taking care of those people who trust, you know, you like you it just makes for an infinitely more successful and, and more fun business. Yeah, absolutely. When it’s, it’s definitely both frustrating and challenging when like, you know, you’re trying to do the right thing and you’re just really trying to get someone to believe that you are, you know what I mean? Like there’s not every day that you run into someone who runs a business, that’s truly interested in your best interest. You know what I mean? And then like, you know, how do you convince someone of that? Especially, everyone’s trying to convince them of that, even if it’s not true and realtors get compared to used car salesman all the time, you know, and I’m not blasting used car salesman by any means, but there’s a reason they have reputation.
Danny: Exactly. Yeah. And there’s a reason in real estate and it has to do with how low the bar is set, you know? And so you do get those individuals in there that you know, they may have not sold a home in a really long time. Sure. They need to feed their family. So now all of a sudden, all they care more about the sale of that home than what’s really in the best interest of you. So for us, it’s, you know, if I am advising a client, sometimes my advice is you should walk away from this deal. Sure. It’s a denture detriment to my company in the short term, but it’s much, it is much better for that person in the here and now to have them walk away than to get into something that is going to cause them worlds of pain going forward.
Steven: Oh yeah. Because it may not mean they find another house that they liked for another three months or something, you know, like it’s three months you’re paying expenses. You know what I mean? That you’re not making an income on, so it’s, it’s definitely a sacrifice.
Danny: Yeah. And it’s hard to try and do the right thing all the time. But I do believe that, you know, I think it was one of my favorite coats. I’m going to butcher it Zig Ziglar, who said that if you help enough people reach their goals, you will in turn, reach yours. Yes. That’s the spirit of it presents the spirit of his, of what he said. And I firmly believe in that 100% that if I can help enough people achieve what they’re setting out to achieve, that I will achieve what I want to achieve in turn in a way that feels good because you’ve helped other exactly. Yeah. Yeah. For sure.
Steven: So just to loop back to your consistency comment do you feel like, cause I feel like a lot of people struggle with consistency. Yeah. I know. I certainly do. Especially now with working from home and yeah. It’s so easy to make an excuse and it’s very, I mean, it was already hard to be consistent. Let’s be honest. What about, is it your personality type to be consistent? Are you just very disciplined? Have you like really put yourself through the ringer to get that way, you know, or is it just like the pressure of the situation makes it, you know, like what is it about you that like has been consistent? Cause that is, I mean, if, if it’s as important as if you made it sound, I would, and I would agree people, people actually having their business last is going to depend on it. So what do you think is that, you know, the X factor that’s kept you consistent?
Danny: I have this uncanny knack for, I believe a hundred percent coaching. Okay. So in all aspects of your life and if you’re paying for it, I believe in it even more because you’re really committed at that point, right? Yeah. So I have coaches for nutrition for working out in my business. We have a separate coach for our team and I have this ability where if they tell me to do something, then I’m going to do it. Especially if I buy into and believe that they practice what they preach. Right. So, you know, they’re qualified to actually give an opinion. Yeah. You know, I’m not taking nutrition advice from somebody that’s, you know, overweight. Like I’m taking nutrition, you look like the way I want to look like, like what do I need and do this, this and this sure. And work. And so having somebody there to that keeps you accountable right. And going and finding that person or people to do that I think is extremely crucial because then when you don’t do it, they’re like, you know, asking you why, and then you have to talk about it and then we’re putting you on, on blast or a spotlight and you say it out loud. It sounds
Steven: So dumb most of the time. Yeah. Yeah. Like I was tired. It’s like, okay. Right. We’re all tired. Like suck it up.
Danny: You know? So, so I really believe in having coaches and mentors who give you this advice, tell you what to do and then just do it. And if you can’t afford that, then there’s so many books out there. Sure. And it’s not just reading the book and then putting it on the shelf and it’s actually implementing what is in there and sticking to it and just like anything it’s creating a habit around it. So, you know, we practice that we got into an, our team is we created the perfect week and then ideal, ideal world. What is your perfect week? You know, you’ve got so many hours in the day, let’s break it down by 30 minutes. Like, what are you doing at any point in time during right now fires are gonna come up. Stuff’s gonna come up. But I figure if you can do your perfect week at 80%, that is a good week. Probably way better than a normal way. Exactly. Exactly. And if you’re don’t have no what you should be doing, you look at your perfect week. And at this time you’re like, Oh, I should be making these sales calls. Like this is who I should be reaching out to. And so, you know, again, putting those systems in place
Steven: And then sticking to them, right. Well, it’s amazing how much BS you feed yourself until you make something like that. And then all of a sudden, you look at your day and you’re like, Oh, like, what did I do for these four hours? And you don’t even know, like, you don’t even know what you did. And you’re like, Oh, like, so I have four hours every single day that I can actually put towards something that helps my business or just makes me happy. Like, you know what I mean? Like, at least it’s intentional. Even if you spend an hour taking a nap, like at least you chose to, you know what I mean? And it’s like an intentional part of your day that says like, Hey, I’m taking my hour and a half here so I can get fueled up for the next thing. Or it’s probably more healthy just to work out for an hour. But, but either way, you know what I mean? But that’s still like an intentional part of your day. And when you write out the schedule like that, man, that’s helpful. So you actually walk through your whole team doing that. Yeah. Okay. That’s awesome.
Danny: Everybody has their perfect week. And then we when we first re they were turning it into me and they were crossing off what they were able to accomplish in that day and then circling what they missed. And, you know, this was our goal was to get as close to 100% as we possibly could. Sure. And I, again, I figure kind of my recipe is just in general, if you can do 80% of something, that’s probably good enough. I mean, and I think it’s a Gary Vaynerchuk who talks about in hiring that if you can hire somebody that is 80% as effective as you were at that, that’s probably good enough. Right. You know, so 80% of the perfect week probably that’s, that’s a good week. And being honest with yourself, you know, I think a lot of us lie to ourselves and come up with excuses. So that’s where having somebody to hold you accountable is really, really important.
Steven: So not to be cynical, but there’s certainly like a lot of people that you see on social media who are coaches, right. Yeah. And I air quote that for those who are on the audio podcasts of this heavy air quotes. And so like, how did you go about finding qualified coaches to do, did you just find other people in the industry? Like how, how did you evaluate? Because I do feel like when you go on Instagram or Facebook, you see a lot of advice. Most of it’s recycled, which is fine if it’s good. But a lot of it’s just not super credible. So how do you go about doing that
Danny: First off? I’m not going to get a coach who’s 23 years old. That’s a business coach. Like they have no life experience, like give me a break. So, you know, but really the, what I want in coaches are people who are living and doing what I want to do. Yeah. You know, or at least got to a certain point in their business and then sold it and are now coaching to help others do that. I want did it, but they did it. I want that. I want coaches that practice what they preach. Right. You know, I’m not going to take advice from a doctor that smoked cigarettes, right? Like you can’t lecture me on health when you don’t take care of yourself, you know, so working with, so that just comes down to, to doing background checks and digging deep, to see if these people are full of crap or if they actually implement the things that they’re coaching you to do.
Danny: And again, it doesn’t have to be stuff that you pay for, you know, you can, there’s, there’s a lot of small business owners out there that, and you can hold each other accountable. You know? I, I did a podcast not too long ago with the owner of my gym. And he was talking about one of the best things he ever did as a small business owner was having a board of trusted advisors. And it’s not a formal board, like he’s not meeting with a board of people, but it’s individuals that he selected and knows that are experienced and successful in their careers, that he can bounce ideas off of, you know? And so you can get with one of those types of people and be accountability, accountability buddies, you know, and hold each other accountable. You know, a lot of people, again, going back to working out, they go to the, you have a much higher level of success if you go to the gym with someone right. You know, than just by yourself. So, you know, if you’re not in a position where you can pay for coaching, then finding somebody, you know, a mentor or somebody that’s in you know, another business industry where you guys can talk about your goals and then hold each other accountable. Right. That has a lot to do with it. Sure.
Steven: Yeah. I definitely I’m missing the personal aspect of coaching for sure. Especially with my business, because I definitely like read a lot. And there’s a lot of, I follow people who are like legit, ridiculously successful. Like, you know I don’t, I don’t know who you listen to for your podcasts. Like the MF CEO podcast with Andy Frisella. I don’t know if that rings a bell at my let, I don’t know if that rings a bell, but those are like two of my main ones for now that have been like, kind of like my guiding lights, where like, those guys are like, multi-millionaires, they have huge businesses, they have multiple businesses and I’m still giving back and, and, you know, you kind of take on whatever you take in, you know? And so when you listen to those people over and over again, their mindset and their like thought patterns and stuff like that start to like sink into just like how you are as a person. Which I suppose is kind of like an indirect coaching, but not quite as maybe effective. So that’s interesting. That’s good. That’s cool that you’ve done that I’ve definitely seen in the people that I respect the most. That’s typically what they’ve done is had some sort of coaching. Otherwise it’s so hard to be successful in every area of your life like that. I think personally,
Danny: You know, left to my own devices. I’m super lazy. Like a lot of people, you know, I made excuses, like, I’m tired. I want to go home. I tried to make so many phone calls today, but stuff just got in the way, you know, I was guilty of that too. Yeah. And I think we all are. And when you, when you have somebody holding you accountable consistently, then you’re like, Ugh, I don’t want to get ragged on or, you know, and
Steven: You step up yeah. A hundred percent. Yeah. So you talked about when it comes to like the marketing for your business since marketing is the thing, like, so many people struggle with you mentioned the ads were a leg, right. What would you say just for the sake of asking like a percentage of, like, let’s say qualified leads would be like your ads, what would that be of your overall business strategy? Roughly 30%. Okay. So a chunk. Yeah. For sure. For sure. What other things are you guys doing for your marketing that you feel like is going well, or at least going well along with everything else that you’re trying to do,
Danny: You know, the best P and it’s not, it’s not supposed to be marketing, but the best piece of marketing that we do, it just kind of turned and evolved into that is that we love to love on our past clients. Sure. You know, they were gracious enough and they it’s them being gracious to give us the opportunity to help them with their home purchase. Right. Because there’s the number just came out 88,000 people in the greater Phoenix area with real estate licenses. That’s a lot. So, yeah. So they gave us an opportunity to help them. And we, we appreciate that. So we send all of our clients brownies on their birthday. You know, we support a small business here in Phoenix, a fairytale brownies, and we send all our clients brownies on their birthday. And it it’s a small thing, but our clients love it.
Danny: They love it. And they, they take a photo of it. We don’t ask them to do anything. We just send it out, but they’ll take a photo of it. They tag us, they post it on social media and they’re like my realtor from five years ago, they said, you know, thank you so much for the brownies. That is the best marketing that money can buy. You’re spending 25 bucks or whatever on some brownies and, and sending it to them. And social media has, you know, whether you love it or you hate it, it, it gives you a window into what’s happening in your client’s lives. And if you run your social media, like a CRM system and you take, and you friend your past clients, you know, I mean, this is a very heavy service business that we’re in. Right. You know, so if you’re selling goods, you know, I don’t know, maybe it’s not as effective, but in my world, you know, we friend all of our clients on Facebook, follow them on Instagram and we’d look for reasons to love on them. Right. Did they graduate school? Did they get a new job? Did they have a kid? Did they get a puppy? Like what, what is that? And then finding a reason to love on them and recognize them for that achievement and sending them something. So, so a large part of our marketing budget is surrounded by consistently catering and loving to our database and our clients. And again, those people who already know like, and trust us.
Steven: Right. Well, that’s neat. Cause you brought up Gary Vaynerchuk earlier. I remember he’s talked several times about that. Whereas like he’d find out someone, you know, bought a thing of wine from him and he’d find out what their favorite football team is and send him a Jersey. And it’s like, you know, as far as like the money relationship with that, he probably actually spent more money on the Jersey than they spent on a bottle of wine. But at the same time, it’s like one of those things where like everyone’s saying that they care for a customer, but everyone’s saying it, you know what I mean? Like you’re doing it. You’re actually putting some action behind those words. And how else is someone supposed to know outside of, of doing that? And it sounds like, you know, it’s like one of the things that like, nobody wants to know how the sausage is made, you know what I mean? And so like, nobody wants to hear that that’s like a marketing strategy, but it’s also just being true to what you actually say that you do, which is care about your customers. So
Danny: Yeah. Yeah. I mean, it falls under marketing, but I don’t necessarily view it as marketing. Cause it’s something that we love to do. Right. You know, so it’s not a targeted advertisement. It’s just a, you know, just a little treat because we saw that something big happened in your life and we want you to know, we still appreciate and congratulations on whatever that is. So I, yeah, I, that’s where I want, like the business that I want is just centered around catering and loving to people. That that’s the business that I want
Steven: If we were to wrap it up with one question and that is based on what you’ve observed from other business owners, what do you think if you could pick one thing that people should really like grab a hold of and take seriously, what would it be like things that you’ve seen people do wrong that you’re like, well, if you just make one little change,
Danny: So one thing that I’ve recently changed in our business that has been a complete game changer is trying to get rid of distractions. You know, I turn alerts off on my phone and I’ve recently outsourced my email. And for me, I was kind of analyzing my day and like, what, what is a giant time suck for me? And email, I was in my email kind of using it as a, to do list, you know, and somebody would shoot me a message. And then I, you know, you respond, you send it back. And I spending a lot of time getting trapped in that. And so we’ve, I’ve recently set up systems letting people know that I am not responding to any emails during the day except for at the end of the day, if they need immediate attention here’s the members of my team that deal with listings, you know, buyers, transactions feel free to reach out to them.
Danny: And if it’s really important, call me right. And you know, on my voicemail I have on there that I’ll be returning phone calls between these hours. So you’re setting that expectation, like, okay, he’s doing something, but I can expect him to get back to me at these times or, you know what I need, I can absolutely reach, you know, if I’m selling my home. And it’s just a quick question, I absolutely can reach out to this guy. Who’s helping with the listings to get that question handled. That has been a huge game changer for me and a huge stress reliever to just get rid of that. And only check those emails at the end of the day, check my voicemail during a certain period of time, call those people back. That really allows me to stick to my perfect week, a lot easier and really focus on generating business, contacting our clients and, and doing the things that I need to do and not getting trapped in email.
Steven: That’s awesome. When I, yeah. And you do, you know, the one thing in there that I thought was really awesome is you talking about how you still did a really great job of communicating with those people like that you are doing something and I will get back to you as opposed to like some people I think here you know, having boundaries in their life and they’ll just not call people back till the next day or something like that. But the person as with anyone else is expecting a pretty prompt reply, especially if you claim to be like really good at service, you know what I mean? And so for you to be at actually communicate that and say, Hey, you know, like you’ve got, these are the ways you can get ahold of me. This is why I’m not responding to you right this second. And you know, certainly people have got to appreciate that. Like you’re working hard with, you know, each one of your clients getting things done for them, you know, cause that’s, that’s all really people want is people to be heard taken care of and that you’re working hard for them. Right. That’s why they hired you. And so you’re doing a great job of communicating that with them, which is awesome.
Danny: And you, and again, it’s setting the expectations. So when we have a client come in, initially, you know, we let them know we’re available from the hours of eight to typically eight, you know if it’s after that time and if you send me a text message at eight 39, o’clock, I’m not going to answer until the next day. I think with our phones being attached to us now, at all times, you really have a tendency. If somebody shoots you a text message to just respond, right. And now you’re training that person, that client, that it’s okay for me to send them a text message at whatever time that is. And I’m going to get a response back. If you don’t set that expectation early, it can really get away from you. Now of course I say, you know, we always add the, if we’re negotiating a contract time, like there’s timelines that we have to stick to, obviously this isn’t a hard, fast rule, but we do try to stick between these, these windows. And people are usually very respectful of that because you’re communicating that to them upfront,
Steven: Right. And the point is not to push them away. The point is that you want to do the most effective work possible, which isn’t their best interest. You know what I mean? So like, you know, you go home and you get to spend time with your family like that refuels you so that you can go into work next day and do your best work. Cause you’re like happy cause your family is doing well. You know what I mean? Like you can’t, you can’t have both. Right. You know, or, you know, if you can, it’s just very rare, very, very rare that you can have both.
Danny: And I, I think it’s people lose track of the site that it’s okay to tell people. No. Yeah. You know, especially when you’re in a small business and every dollar counts, you’ve got to know what your time is worth. Yeah. And if somebody is not willing to pay for your time, then it’s okay to say no. Yeah. You know, and not help that person necessarily. So it’s a, yeah. You’ve just gotta be super protective of that. I’m just fine.
Steven: Well, thank you so much for sharing. We could probably go like another two hours. You seem to have like a never ending end of information. That’s helpful. So I do appreciate the time that you set aside for this and sharing your knowledge and your wisdom. Certainly there’s so much more there, but obviously I want to be respectful of your time. So thank you so much for sharing. For you guys that have watching just hope you’re taking notes, hope you took notes, go rewatch it and just you know, consistency, the hard work, the casting, the vision for the team, the preparing for the future. Like all those things are just super solid things that even though they may potentially seem obvious, obviously, usually everyone’s doing it. So it’s usually the simplest stuff is the right. Is the right answer. Right. It’s the real building blocks. Yeah. Yeah. So anyway, thank you guys so much for watching. Thank you. And hope you enjoyed this episode of the.