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EXECUTIVEAGENT MAGAZINE

Alex Gonzalez Executive Agent of the Month

PROFESSIONAL PROFILES Marcy Cisneros Andy Deluca

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www.loandepot.com/branches/rancho-cucamonga-ca

we’ve moved! RANCHO CUCAMONGA BRANCH

OUR NEW ADDRESS: 3281 E. GUASTI ROAD, STE 550 ONTARIO, CA 91761 DIRECT OFFICE: 909-912-7810

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VA RENOVATION MORTGAGE - Standard VA guidelines apply - Owner occupied, primary residence only - Seller concessions allowed up to 4%

SAME GREAT SERVICE. SAME GREAT PEOPLE! Richard Hedrick NMLS# 1059650 Branch Manager

(909) 912-7835 office (714) 400-2753 cell 3281 E. Guasti Road, Ste 550 Ontario, CA 91761 rhedrick@loandepot.com www.loandepot.com/branches/rancho-cucamonga-ca

Contact us today to discover how you can advance towards your dream home!

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NOTE: Residency restrictions may apply to loan programs. By refinancing the existing loan, the total finance charges may be higher over the life of the loan. Rates, terms, and availability of programs are subject to change without notice. loanDepot.com, LLC NMLS ID 174457. Licensed by the Department of Business Oversight under the California Residential Mortgage Lending Act CRMLA 4131040. (06262017 9949)


Executive Agent of the Month

Alex Gonzalez Excellence Empire Real Estate

19 17 Professional Profiles

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Marcy Cisneros

Andy Deluca

loanDepotÂŽ

Kinecta Federal Credit Union ExecutiveAgent Magazine


September, 2017 - Inland Empire

Editorials 32

What To Do? What To Do? -Patti Brotherton

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Choose To Enjoy Life! -RVM

E XECUTIVE AGENT

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Fred Arrias Executive Publisher PO Box 73384 San Clemente, CA 92673 Ph: (949) 297-8323 Fax: (949) 266-8757 Fred@eamag.net www.EAMag.net

ADVERTISERS’ INDEX City of Hope..........................................................26

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iPhotography Studio...............................................23

Call-Killing Phrases -Wendy Weiss

Kinecta Federal Credit Union...............................36 loanDepot®..............................................................2 PWAOR...................................................................34

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Your Attitude - You Choose -Chris Widener

SBAOR...................................................................27 The Termite Guy......................................................3

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5 Ways to Have More Best Days at Work -Teala Wilson

Photography: i Photography Studio, Ian Wiant, Rob Paino Graphic Designer: Garon T. Arrias Editorial Manager: Trudy Van Writers: Haley Freeman, Shannon Hartsoe Editorial Writers: Linda Brakeall, Bill Brooks, Patti Brotherton, Tamara Dorris, T Scott Gross, Rich Levin, Chris Widener, Dirk Zeller, Zig Ziglar

Choose Your Clients-Choose Your Business -Dirk Zeller

© Copyright 2017 Executive Agent Magazine. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission is prohibited. Although every precaution is taken to ensure accuracy of published materials, Executive Agent Magazine cannot be held responsible for opinions expressed or facts supplied by its authors.

Success - What it is and isn’t -Zig Ziglar

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Written by Haley Freeman

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home transaction can be a challenging process, not only for the buyer and seller, but for everyone whose job it is to see it through to the finish line. It takes a winning team to ensure

that escrow closes on time, and all parties leave the table with everything they were promised. Marcy Cisneros, Production Assistant at loanDepot in Rancho Cucamonga, is a key contributor to a winning mortgage team led by veteran loan consultants Javier Brito and Michael Encarnacion. Marcy grew up in Whittier and has happy memories of her days as a cheerleader at El Rancho High School. She went on to attend San Diego State University with aspirations of becoming an UCA cheer instructor. Then she was introduced to the mortgage industry, and she changed both her major and her professional future. Marcy’s natural enthusiasm propelled her through the industry ranks, as she took on a range of positions from operations, to closing, to management. “I became a sales manager taking care of loan officers and helping them cultivate more business, and then I was offered an opportunity to be a branch manager.” Then an unforeseen life event slowed her down, when she was diagnosed with cancer in 2016. “I was going hard at my career as a single mom, and life put me on pause,” she recalls. “It put things into perspective, and I had to reprioritize my life. It was really a blessing in disguise.” As part of her reprioritization, Marcy joined loanDepot, where a harmonious relationship between sales and ops makes for a positive and productive work environment. “They made me feel like family instantaneously. This company provides the tools to always be developing into a better version of yourself. They invest in people.”

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Making Sure Everybody Wins Marcy brings the benefit of her 20-plus years of mortgage experience and her contagiously optimistic spirit to her colleagues at loanDepot, with the perfect blend of team leader and cheerleader. “Over the years, I’ve learned the importance of time management, and making sure that whether you have a seasoned loan officer or a new person on the transaction, you have a process flow ready for them so they can dive in.”

For this busy mom with two teens, her work is never done. Marcy starts each day early so she can deliver focused service to her clients and still be a strong presence in the lives of her children. “Life is full of excitement,” she says. “I have a policy not to bring business home. But if someone calls while I’m at one of my kids’ games, I acknowledge them and let them know I will call back. I think mutual respect stems from having transparency and setting the right expectations.”

Whether she is providing a status or requesting documents, Marcy is the team’s conduit for communication. “Even when the loan officers are out in the field, communication continues because they have someone here to represent them. I think the

During her recent personal crisis, Marcy says she was faced with a choice: “You can either grow to be a better version of yourself, or you can let it break you. I’ve chosen to come back bigger, better and stronger from all my obstacles. Through my adversity, my little ones have seen me continue to smile and face it fearlessly. I try to bring that same philosophy to my work. I want to fix problems and make them better instead of focusing on them. Having a team with the same goals and mindset makes it possible for everyone in a transaction to win.”

worst frustration for any Realtor® is a lack of communication. Even if there is nothing new, I can still keep them informed.” Marcy’s personal integrity and positive, can-do spirit inspire the confidence of both clients and Realtors®. She sets clear expectations from the beginning of the transaction and then diligently follows through. “My job is to help everyone work smarter, not harder. By helping them to be more efficient, it makes everyone more successful. If a client, a Realtor® or a loan officer is inquiring about something, I may not know the answer, but I’ll definitely get it. I want them to have a sense of completion, and I sincerely want to make sure the buyer gets into their home.”

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Marcy Cisneros loanDepot® 3281 E. Guasti Road, Suite 550 Ontario, CA 91761 Tel: 909-912-7862 Email: MCisneros@loandepot.com Web: www.loanDepot.com NMLS ID 613307


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Choose to Enjoy Life!

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e have a choice to make our life interesting and exciting, or we have a choice to get into the mundane of life. When we get into the mundane of life, life escapes us, to be gone… never to return. Very few of us actually take it up as a challenge to enjoy life and to make it exciting. Most of us just slip through life. We drive through life as if we are driving on a highway without choosing to go left or right. We just keep going where the road is going, and at the end, we arrive at a destination that we may not have decided to reach. But because we did choose to go where we want to go, we have reached and arrived somewhere else.

Stop! Don’t just drive through the highway of life, but think who are you? What do you want? Where you want to go? If you keep going where you are going, will you get to where you actually want to go? When you get to where you were going, will you be happy? These questions must always be on the top of our minds , and they must decide the direction and where we are going. RVM is a ‘Positivelife’ philosopher, an Author, Speaker, Poet, Singer, Philanthropist and Motivator.

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CHOOSE YOUR CLIENTS – CHOOSE YOUR BUSINESS

he path to failure is trying to please everyone you come into contact with. I believe that I was not put on this earth to help everyone buy and sell. I can’t help everyone, and I don’t want to. Too many Agents believe that they are forced to work with anyone who shows up. By excluding people, you will create better and more loyal clients.

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porting documentation. They open up about their goals and desires for real estate and their expectation for service. You will always know where terrific clients stand; they don’t play “hide the ball.” You are not the enemy. You and the terrific clients will be on the same team, working toward a common goal. They also will be fantastic referral sources for your business.

Some of the people we meet are unreasonable and should not be clients of anyone. They don’t deserve the honor of any Agent’s time and attention. Our job is to recognize their low probability of ever becoming a quality client and to run away quickly.

No-Clue Clients: No-clue clients live in a dream world. It is difficult to get them to look at the facts and figures that might upset the fantasy world in which they live. These clients really don’t want to know the truth . . . that their home is worth 15% less than they think. Each one believes that he or she will land the one buyer who will pay above fair market value. Unless the no-clue client has extremely high motivation – job transfer, divorce, new children — you will have no sale. If the bottom line is that they have to move, you may be able to bring them to reality. In that case, the no-clue client could eventually make progress toward becoming a terrific client.

The feeling of walking away from someone who would otherwise cause my staff and me great frustration was even better than that of getting a new listing. The look on that person’s face was always priceless. Most Agents never experience the thrill of doing business on their own terms. Most Agents compromise their philosophy and beliefs for dollars. Below are four different categories of people you will find yourself working with regularly. Terrific Clients: Most salespeople are just looking for the sale. A professional salesperson is always on the lookout for terrific clients. Terrific clients respect people who are highly skilled at their professions. They listen to advice and guidance that is presented well and that has sup10

Information Service Clients: These people just want information and expertise from you. They have no intention of creating a relationship of trust; you are only there to provide your knowledge. The information-only client truly believes that this approach is justified. He or she also believes that if you are foolish enough to give your knowledge for free, then that’s your problem.

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These clients will take your knowledge; they will either use it to buy or sell on their own or will give it to a friend or family member who doesn’t have your skill level and put the business into that person’s hands. Information-only clients will rarely answer direct questions. They are evasive. They will challenge your knowledge, beliefs, advice, fees, and services; these challenges will usually become their justification for not working with you. Sometimes they get offended at your questions. Their belief is that the expertise that they can get out of you is useful, but that their way is better. Distrusts Everyone Clients: These clients believe that everyone is out to get them. They believe that everyone is trying to reach into their back pockets. They believe that every question you ask comes with its own hidden agenda . . . that what you are really looking for is the weak point that will allow you to destroy them. Even when, with a lot of care and attention, you manage to win these people over and make them your clients, they will be gone if you or your team make one honest error. They believe that whatever negative experiences happen to them it is all part of the big conspiracy against them.

tations of clients themselves. Some people just don’t make good clients. Create a strong interview process, so you can quickly and efficiently remove the problem prospects before they get inside your inner circle. The price you pay for letting them inside is wasted time, wasted energy, emotional drain for you and your staff, and certainly loss of revenue. Focus on working only with terrific clients. You’ll be amazed at the increased income and job satisfaction you will enjoy. Dirk Zeller is an Agent, an Investor, and the President & CEO of Real Estate Champions. His company trains more than 350,000 Agents worldwide each year through live events, online training, self-study programs, and newsletters. He’s the widely published author of Your First Year in Real Estate, Success as a Real Estate Agent for Dummies®, The Champion Real Estate Agent, Telephone Sales for Dummies®, and over 300 articles in print. You can get more information by visiting www.RealEstateChampions. com. © 2008, Dirk Zeller. All rights reserved. For information contact FrogPond at 800.704.FROG(3764) or email susie@FrogPond.com; http://www.FrogPond.com.

Selecting and excluding people at the outset is the best way to ensure good client relations. Many problems with clients are caused, not by external events or deficiencies in our interpersonal skills, but by the perceptions and expecExecutiveAgent Magazine

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Written By Haley Freeman

Andy Deluca

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ndy Deluca has spent most of his life in Orange County. He was a talented high school and collegiate athlete with the discipline to achieve academically while also playing football. He earned his bachelor’s degree in business economics from Willamette

University, and returned home to California with the future wide-open. When he took a job at a local mortgage company, little did he know that it was his first step to a successful, lifelong career.

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Building Relationships That Last A Lifetime He recalls, “In the beginning, I was thinking commission sales sounded scary, and the first six months were tough. But I learned as I went, and I became more confident and resonated with the Realtors® I met. I always followed the market and kept myself up-to-date on economics, finance and politics. Things started rolling, and I knew this was the career for me.” It was the career for him, as evidenced by his 31-plus years in the industry. Today, Andy is a top-producing loan consultant at Kinecta Federal Credit Union in his home community of Tustin. “Our branch is only a mile from where I live,” he says. “I can ride my bike to work.” Kinecta’s strong ties to clients and community fit perfectly with Andy’s relationship-driven approach to business. He prefers to meet with people face-to-face, and he takes the time to get to know them and their needs. “I genuinely like people, and I’m interested in learning about them and their own unique experience. If I can understand the nuances of their situation, I can package their loan better, so their transaction is smoother all the way through.” With the broad menu of lending products available at Kinecta, Andy can effectively serve a full spectrum of clients from first-time buyers to high-net-worth individuals, and he has the experience and program knowledge to match the right financing with the right buyer. “We are able to facilitate good financing for the majority of folks out there, and we can do loans in 13 western states. I invest a lot of time up front on each transaction and think like an underwriter as I’m putting the file together, anticipating what could come up with the loan. There are so many gray areas. But I am an expert in guidelines, and I make a case and fight for every deal. It comes down to doing your due diligence, packaging it right and believing in the deal. It’s more than just numbers; it’s also about presenting a compelling story about the borrower. We have some portfolio capacity, which allows us some leeway for out-of-the-box scenarios that make good financial sense.”

his philosophy that he is in “the solutions business. I don’t ever want to leave a client and just say, ‘I can’t help you. Have a nice day.’ I have to do better than that. I make sure the client understands if I can’t help now, here are the reasons why, and here’s what they can do to get there. If they’re not quite financially ready to buy, or they need to clean up their credit, I want to feel like I’m marching them in the right direction. I always want to leave them with a way to succeed.” Andy’s mantra is be available. “A lot of activity happens on weekends, and you have to be accessible. If somebody calls me and I’m at my kid’s soccer game, I let them know I’ll call them back and get it done. I answer the phone and execute. This is a time-sensitive business and a very emotional time for people. I guess it comes from my good middle class roots where I learned an oldschool work ethic. You show up, do the work - and a little extra.” Andy’s ongoing cultivation of lasting relationships and service excellence are the keys to his professional longevity. He says, “Show up every day with a positive attitude, and make each day better by contributing what you can. At the end of the day, I think what Realtors® and home buyers remember most was that you delivered on your promises, and you stayed in touch.”

When a loan approval isn’t possible, Andy still goes the distance to provide value. This approach comports with ExecutiveAgent Magazine

Andy Deluca Kinecta Federal Credit Union 2324 Park Ave. Tustin, CA 92782 Tel: 949-291-7189 Email: Andrew.Deluca@kinecta.org Web: https://www.kinecta.org/adeluca NMLS ID 440903


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5 Ways to Have More Best Days at Work

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hink about the last time you had a “best day” at work. What happened?

For some people, it involves being a problem-solving hero. Others like being a valued contributor of a team working on a particularly challenging project. A really great day at work could even be a time when someone is trusted to get things done within a team.

work against life has us forgetting too often that we’re still living life when we’re at work. Our work ambitions are often rooted in personal ambitions. We are personally attached to the work we produce. We take personal pride in our work accomplishments and want to talk to our friends and families about them, and we want to talk about the great things happening in our life with the people we work with.

Whatever the reason, something about your best day just clicked. And having one can be energizing and invigorating. It also makes you want to have more days like that.

It makes sense that we want more best days at work because we want more best days in life.

If you could have more control over how many best days you have, I bet you’d jump at the chance. In fact, many people would. In 2016, The Conference Board, a global business research association, found that more than 50 percent of American workers were unhappy at work.

Let’s say you get a solid eight hours of sleep every night. That leaves you with 112 waking hours per week, more than a third of which you spend working if you’re a full-time employee. Having some control over whether those hours are good is important. Think about it. For you to enjoy life, and for your employer to benefit, it all starts with having someone who enjoys what they do for a living.

Why should you want to have more best days at work? Back in the 1980s, the concept of work-life balance gained popularity as a way of separating the personal from the professional. Before that, the common term was work-leisure balance.

What can you do to have more best days at work?

Here are some ways to help yourself have more best days: 1. Understand why your work matters.

Both terms are a little misleading. The idea that you must balance work against life or leisure leads many to think that the scale tipping too far in one direction or the other means they’re shortchanging employers and colleagues, or friends and families. The bigger problem is that 30-plus years of pitting

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If you walk into work every day without knowing how your work contributes to achieving team, department and organizational goals, it can feel like you’re spinning your wheels with no real purpose. Even if you feel clear on how you fit into the big picture, take some time to sit down with your manager and discuss it. You might even

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get some insights about what you bring to the table that you hadn’t realized before. Better yet, you’ll begin to understand your why, something very deep and personal that can really open our eyes to realizations you might not have considered. 2. Ask for opportunities to grow. Whether it’s taking a course that teaches new skills or assignments that build your knowledge and abilities, seeking out opportunities shows your willingness to meet new challenges. When you have a growth mindset in your approach to life and work, you can learn from everything you do. 3. Work with people you like and trust. Working with a connected team that is invested in the work they’re doing is a gift. When trust is strong, people are more open to ideas, information and even being challenged. There’s a collective interest in achieving the goals of the team. Building solid relationships on teams can open the door to more opportunities to grow. It’s not about working with your best friends. It’s about working with people who help you be better.

5. Speak up when there are issues. Just like certain aspects of our lives, work can be tough. But nothing will change if you don’t stand up to say something. Before you assume the answer to what you want is a no, have a conversation about it, especially if you’re considering looking elsewhere for work. Need more time with your manager? Ask. Not sure how you’re doing? Ask. Having a hard time with a project or another person? Speak up. You can have more best days by staying authentic, honest and curious. When you take an active role in seeking out the opportunities, feedback and information you need to grow, you’ll feel more connected to the people around you and to your work, and more invested in the goals you’re working to achieve. Teala Wilson is a talent management consultant at Saba Software. She supports HR professionals on a national and global level in areas such as performance management, recruitment, employee benefit programs, training and talent development, workforce planning and internal communications. In her spare time, she enjoys visual arts and design.

4. Be confident in being yourself at work. No one should have to put on a work persona when “clocking in.” It’s stressful to hold back parts of yourself or hide them out of fear you won’t be accepted. There’s some evidence it can hurt your career but it can also damage companies that don’t value inclusion.

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Nomination Form Nominate a fellow REALTORÂŽ to be featured in one of our feature stories; on the cover as Executive Agent of the Month, or as a special feature story. All candidates must be nominated by a real estate professional. The selection process includes a questionnaire, personal interview, reference check and final approval by the Advisory Council. Candidates are evaluated based upon professionalism, length of service and uniqueness of story, as well as industry and community involvement.

I Nominate: Name_______________________________ Company___________________________ Address____________________________ _____________________________________ City, State, Zip_____________________ _____________________________________ Phone______________________________ Email_______________________________ Submitted By: Fax/Email nomination to: Executive Agent Magazine PO Box 73384 San Clemente, CA 92673 Fax: 949.266.8757 Email: Info@eamag.net Tel: 949.297.8323

Name_______________________________ Company___________________________ Phone______________________________ Email_______________________________

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Cover Story

Alex Gonzalez Executive Agent of the Month

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Alex Gonzalez Excellence Empire Real Estate Written by Haley Freeman - Ian Wiant Photographer

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a position in the Financial Advisory Services division at PricewaterhouseCoopers. His future looked bright until the tragedy of 9-11, which resulted in firm-wide layoffs as the demand for services declined.

A strong academic performer, Alex took that inspiration and went on to USC, where he earned a business degree with an emphasis in finance. His senior year, he obtained

Shaken but not defeated, Alex signed up for real estate classes. He got his license and finally went back to financial consulting, this time for Grant Thornton. He continued to practice real estate part time and went on to obtain his broker’s license. Bound by his personal ethics and bolstered by this professional knowledge, Alex avoided the real estate frenzy and subsequent crash of the mid-2000s. “In 2005, I saw how the market was going, and I expected it to correct sooner than it did. Having a finance background, I was seeing the weird things that were happening, and my intuition and education cautioned me not to follow the pack.”

roker/Agent Alex Gonzalez is the first son of a hard-working immigrant family. He grew up in Lake Tahoe, and he still remembers the pride he saw in his father’s eyes when he came home from his casino job with a Supervisor of the Year plaque. “My dad used to tell us how he had been an agricultural worker when he first came to the United States. I learned later that he had worked his way up at the casino from a dishwasher to a supervisor and then a manager of 3 departments managing almost 500 people at one point. He was an inspiration in terms of succeeding and growing as a person and professionally. I learned how important hard work and dedication really are.”

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In mid-2007, he opened a mortgage brokerage with a good friend, where he soon learned another aspect of the industry and found satisfaction helping clients through challenges resulting from the market crash. By 2010, Alex was ready to take on real estate full time, and his path eventually led him to Excellence Empire Real Estate. Alex recalls, “When the brand came to Moreno Valley I had already heard good things about it, so it registered on my radar. My wife and I checked out the office, and we met Amado Hernandez, the local owner. Right away, we connected on a deep level. Our being here is more about the relationship than anything else. He is a great person who is very caring and also very knowledgeable about the business. We’ve been helping him continue to build the office, and the number of agents has more than tripled since we first joined three years ago. It’s nice to see the growth, and see the office succeed.”

Together with his wife, Itzel, Alex has also been growing a team of like-minded professionals who share his commitment to hard work, integrity and service. Two buyer’s agents and a strong production staff have freed Alex to focus on listings, refine processes and acquire technologies that benefit the team and their clients. “Most of our team is younger in terms of experience and age, but they are focused on learning and growing,” Alex explains. “They are all open to exploring different tools to make transactions more efficient. I’d like to scale to a bigger team so we can serve more people, and our constant learning and exploration will help make that possible. We’ve invested heavily in online marketing, we recently invested in a drone for photography, and we’re beginning to do more video marketing. As we set up better systems, our agents can go out there and be more productive and successful. At the same time, we’re able to offer great service to buyers and sellers. Being more efficient means we can serve more clients the way they deserve to be served.”

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Serving With Excellence “My wife Itzel has also been a huge asset to my business. She has a great personality and brings a track record of sales experience to the table. Although not involved in daily operations, she’s instrumental in building quality relationships and putting the word out on behalf of our business. The team wouldn’t have the same success without her support!” A big proponent of personal development, Alex says he has learned a lot from his leadership role. “It’s been a growth process for me personally. With the background that I have, I give a lot of attention to detail, and it’s hard for me to let go of things. I’ve had to learn how to delegate, which has helped me to be more productive.” Alex has benefited from the guidance of many good mentors during his career, and he continues to invest in his own

education. In turn, he is passionate about developing his team and providing them with the tools to succeed. “I try to coach and role play with them so they can be prepared and respond when they come across a challenge. I want to help them achieve the best possible outcome for the client while building a great career for themselves.” That client-focused mentality results in service characterized by honest communication, full transparency and trust. “I educate and try to lead people through a transaction. I give them all the facts so they can make an informed decision without feeling pressured. Our focus is on producing quality work and building long-term relationships.” Clients feel that authenticity, and they have great things to say about Alex and his team. Here is just one example:

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“Working with Alex has been a great experience. I have never come across a Realtor® with his patience and understanding. My experience in the past with Realtors® has been off-putting, as some can be pushy. However, Alex was not, and I can genuinely say I was given a fair deal. I highly recommend that you work with him. I will definitely seek his assistance in the future, and I hope that he gets much business for being great at what he does! If you need a patient, responsible, professional, and fair Realtor®, call Alex. He will assist you!” Life outside of real estate is busy for Alex and Itzel, as they are raising three young children. But the values they apply in business come from their strong faith and commitment to family and community. Both Alex and Itzel are actively involved in administrative and other leadership capacities within the Latter Day Saints church they attend. “We work in unpaid callings, and they can be big commitments, but we enjoy service, especially the community service projects. Our faith impacts a lot of the decisions we make both professionally and personally.”

According to Alex, his philosophy about life and business can be summed up in The Golden Rule: “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” “The reason why I like that, is because I like to treat clients the way I’d like my family to be treated - with fairness and honesty. We believe it’s important to deal fairly with everybody. I believe there’s somebody bigger keeping tabs on what we do, and I take that to heart.” In reflecting upon his real estate career, Alex credits his father with teaching him to serve people with excellence. “Through his example, I learned to take pride in my work, knowing that it can affect other people directly. It’s truly a privilege to help people as they’re making one of the most important decisions of their lives.”

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ALEX AND ITZEL GONZALEZ Excellence Empire Real Estate 12220 Pigeon Pass Rd., Ste. O Moreno Valley, CA 92557 - Tel: 951-563-5093 AGonzalez@thegonzalezteam.com www.IE4Sale.com - CalBRE # 01384006 / 01831564 ExecutiveAgent Magazine


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Your Attitude – You Choose

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Written By Chris Widener

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here are lots of things in this life that we do not get to choose. On the other hand, there are lots of things in this life that we do get to choose. Our attitude is one of the things that we get to choose. Nobody else lives inside our brain. Nobody else controls what or how we think. It is up to us, moment by moment, to choose what our attitude is. It is up to us to determine how we will look at and perceive the world around us. It is up to us to decide how we will react to our world around us. My advice? Choose a positive, optimistic attitude! Here are some thoughts on choosing your attitude. We cannot choose our circumstances. For the most part, this is true. We cannot control if someone around us gets ill. We cannot control how another person will treat us. We cannot control the global economy. We cannot control the direction our society as a whole will go. For some, this may seem scary. For me, it is freeing. I do not have to control my circumstances. Running the whole world would be a big responsibility. It is good to know that I am not in charge of, or in control of all of my circumstances. This dose of reality frees you to focus in on what you can control – your attitude. We can choose our attitudes. That’s right. We get to choose what our attitudes are. Here is the definition of attitude: “The feeling or opinion about something or someone, or a way of behaving that follows from this.” We choose how we feel about others and situations. We choose our opinion about people and situations. We choose the way we will behave in relation to other people and circumstances. We choose it. It does not have to be bad. It does not have to be anything but what we want it to be. We have the option.

of magic; it is just how the world works. Now, do not get me wrong. It will not cure everything and turn your world into a virtual Shangri-La, but it will significantly improve the world you live in. For example, let’s say that every day you go into work and you gripe about life and work from the moment you get there until the moment you leave. Will others want to be around you? Will others ask your opinion? Will others like you? Will others ask you to join them for lunch? Probably not! But what if you come to work every day and you are the positive optimist of the crowd? Will everybody love you? No, but significantly more people will than if you are the office pessimist! Your choice of attitude will determine what kind of circumstances you get! Ultimately, it is our choice on what we have as an attitude. Nobody else can force you to have a bad attitude. Nobody else can force you to have a good attitude. It is simply a choice you make. Where are you with your attitude? Do you have a good one? Why not sit down and give it some serious thought? Then, no matter where you find yourself, decide to take your attitude to the next level! If you have a really bad attitude, decide to take it up a couple of levels! Your attitude. Your choice. Choose wisely. Chris Widener is the President of Made For Success. He teaches leaders how to become Extraordinary Leaders. Chris’ speaking and consulting services have challenged the best to become optimists, to pursue excellence relentlessly, and to dream big dreams. Copyright© 2007, Chris Widener. All rights reserved. For information about Chris’ speaking and consulting services, contact the FrogPond at 800.704.FROG(3764) or email susie@ FrogPond.com; http://www.FrogPond.com

The choice of a right attitude will significantly determine new circumstances. Choosing to have the right attitude will change the world around you. This is not any sort

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Our bone marrow transplant reunion is now standing room only. Each year, City of Hope invites bone marrow transplant recipients and their families to attend the “Celebration of Life” event. It’s a joyous time during which survivors of blood cancers such as lymphoma, leukemia and myeloma embrace their health, their life and each other. It began more than 35 years ago when City of Hope created what is now one of the largest and most successful bone marrow transplant programs in the world. In fact, we’ve completed over 11,000 transplants and, according to national reports, our outcomes are among the best in the nation. The goal of curing cancer isn’t just something we work at. It’s what we live for. If you have cancer, make us your first call. Or ask your doctor for a referral. We accept most insurance. 800-826-HOPE

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WE LIVE TO CURE CANCER. Science saving lives. cityofhope.org/bmt

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Call-Killing Phrases

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ow often have you started a call to a friend, family member or business associate with the phrase, “How are you?” I’m willing to bet the answer is a lot. I know I say it frequently. It’s commonly used as a greeting, as a “hello.” Because “How are you?” is so commonly used, how often have you started your introductory calls with this phrase? If you do use this phrase as an opening for your introductory call, please stop immediately. It’s an introductory call-killer, and this is why: 1. If you ask this question, you must be prepared for the answer. What if your prospect answers, “I’m having a lousy day. My back hurts, I have a cold, I hate my job and my wife left me yesterday”? Do you really care? Is this the reason for your pho.ne call? 2. You lose control of the call. (This is probably the most important reason.) If your prospect does respond, “I’m having a lousy day. My back hurts, I have a cold, I hate my job and my wife left me yesterday,” how are you going to get the call back on track? 3. It’s a set up, a tip off to your prospect that you are making a s.ales call. It gives your prospect the opportunity to say, “I’m busy. What do you want?” (See number 2 above.) Similar issues apply with the introductory call-killing phrases, “May I have a moment of your time?” and/or “Is this a good time to talk?” With both of these phrases, you lose control of the call right at the beginning, before you’ve had a chance to say anything at all. If the prospect answers, “no,” the call is over. These are also both tip off phrases. Friends, family and important business colleagues would probably not say, “May I have a moment of your time?” or “Is this a good

time to talk?” Only someone making a s.ales call would use this language, and it’s all too easy for your prospect to respond negatively. I know that many of you reading this will argue, “Wendy, it’s polite. It’s polite to say, ‘How are you?’ as a greeting and it’s polite to ask permission to speak.” There are, however, many ways to greet a prospect - saying “hello” works just fine. It is also equally polite to simply introduce yourself and get to the point. This is not only polite, it’s respectful of your prospect’s time, it’s more effective and it allows you to retain control of the conversation. In order to be truly effective prospecting or selling by phone, it is imperative to control the conversations you have with prospects. You want to set yourself up to have the best possible conversation that you can have with any given prospect. While it is true that not all prospects will respond badly to the above phrases, why take the chance? Why risk blowing a lead at the beginning of the call if something as simple as not starting out with, “How are you?” can totally eliminate that possibility? Say hello. Introduce yourself. Get to the point and say what you have to say. Then ask for what you want. This is the formula for a successful introductory call. Save the “How are you?” question for those whose answers really interest you. Wendy Weiss, “The Queen of Cold Calling,” is a s.ales trainer, author and s.ales coach. Her recently released program, Cold Calling College, and/or her book, Cold Calling for Women, can be ordered by visiting http://www. wendyweiss.com. Get Wendy’s free e-zine at http://www. wendyweiss.com. Copyright© 2007, Wend Weiss. All rights reserved. For information contact FrogPond at 800.704. FROG (3764) or email Susie@FrogPond.com; http://www. FrogPond.com

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EA

SUCCESS - What it is and isn’t

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hat is success? It is many things to many people. Here are a few signs of success:

• Success is closing the door to your office at the end of the day with a smile of satisfied contentment crossing your face. It’s knowing that you did a good job and that those who interacted with you had a positive experience. • Success is looking forward to getting home and seeing the people you love. It’s being mentally and emotionally free to share yourself with them and to be interested in them. Success is being loved by the people you love. • Success is sitting down to pay the bills and knowing that you have enough money to cover them, this month and next month. It’s knowing that you have taken measures to ensure the financial security of your family in the event of your demise. • Success is knowing where to turn when it seems that there’s nowhere to turn. Having a spiritual life is akin to eating food and drinking water. It’s necessary! • Success is having interests or hobbies to call your own. It’s things that you personally anticipate doing again and again. Having interests gives you job and peace. • Success is waking up in the morning and feeling food. It’s knowing that you eat right and exercise regularly and that you do everything you personally can to ensure continued good health. • Success is turning out the lights, slipping under the covers, and thinking to yourself, “It just doesn’t get much better than this!” It’s whispering a prayer of gratitude to your Creator before you fall into a deep, restful sleep.

fourth time this week, apologizing because you’re going to miss dinner with the family again. • Success isn’t hurrying into the house and hiding behind closed doors or the television set because “After the day I’ve had, I need my space!” • Success isn’t having all the riches in the world and still trying to figure out how to have more of all the riches in the world. • Success isn’t physically going to a worship service and mentally writing a to-do list for when you get home. • Success isn’t all work and no play. • Success isn’t burning the candle at both ends and living on a diet of food that’s delivered through little windows. • Success isn’t spending mental energy figuring out how to explain why your project isn’t going to come in on time, why you have to miss your child’s school play, why you can’t pay the bill in full as you promised, why your eyes are red and your blood pressure is going through the roof, why you’re canceling your golf game, and why you just don’t find any joy in living. Success is directly related to having a balanced life. If any one area is out of sync, all the areas of your life suffer. Take the time to examine your life and take small steps to gain balance. Zig Ziglar is a beloved author and America’s motivator. He is the author of 25 books and offers training and consulting to organizations all across the globe. To learn more about Zig and his business visit his website at www. ziglar.com.

And here are a few things that success is not: • Success isn’t calling home from work for the

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EA

What To Do? What To Do?

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es, we are in a changing real estate market. Yes, the events of the last weeks have changed our lives forever. Yes, there is positive about what is happening in the real estate market. Yes, we need to be the leaders in this industry and do what is best for our sellers and our buyers. We need to keep them informed. We need to help them make informed decisions. Let me give you some ideas to keep in mind right now to help all your clients. Re-qualify Your Buyers The interest rate changes have made a significant difference in this market versus other times when the economy was slowing. And with the changes in the demand of the bond market, we have seen the interest rates again drop to a 30-year low. To give your buyers more confidence, have them pre-qualified again. The chances are that they can qualify for a larger loan. And with softening in home prices, it’s the best of both worlds for the buyer. Even if the buyer didn’t want to use the higher loan amount, it will make him see that this is a benefit to him. It may even motivate your buyer to purchase a property now by giving him more confidence in what he is doing. Educate Your Sellers We all talk about keeping our sellers informed, but do we really? You need to tell them when you see one page of new listings coming on the market in a week and two pages of price reductions. Something is happening. An easy way for the market to talk to your client and be the “bad guy” instead of you, is to prepare a CMA every month on the sellers’ property. Show the sellers in black and white what is happening-the competition is coming on at better prices, homes are on the market longer, there are more price reductions than ever, there are more properties falling out of sales transactions, etc. Your CMA will do that. If you don’t want to do a CMA, then just make a copy of the MLS data for a week and highlight all the activities. Let the sellers draw their own conclusions based on the printout.

you talk with your sellers. You don’t want to just be painting a “doom and gloom” picture because that is definitely not the case. The truth is, we are in a transitioning market and you are trying to have their property lead the market, not chase it. There are lots of properties selling! And like every marketplace that ever was, price is the key! Put the right price on your listings and if they don’t sell within 60 days, start reducing the price. One of the problems for us as Realtors® is that we use comparable sales from the last six months, and when prices are changing fast, we don’t always adjust up or down. You need to watch for the signs. Are you seeing more signs? Are you seeing sales fall out? Are you reading the local newspaper to see what the consumer mood is? Are you seeing properties sell fast when they are just a tad below the comps? You know what to look for. Be careful; don’t “buy” a listing. It will cost you much more in the long run. The Bottom Line When you keep both your buyers and sellers informed on what you believe is happening in the marketplace and back it up with facts from the MLS, everyone wins. Your seller will be more inclined to price their property correctly and the buyers will want to purchase sooner than later. It’s a great business-real estate is a sound investment for now and for the future. Patti Brotherton is President of PAB Performance Partners. Patti’s company was formed to reach a broader base of agents, managers and companies to help them in any way possible to do more business, to improve their business, to help them balance their business and generally improve the quality of their professional life. Patti believes in individualized marketing programs, including graphic design, as well as business systems that have proven to work in many different market places. Copyright© 20002001, Patti Brotherton. All rights reserved. For additional information about Patti’s presentations and company services, please call the Frog Pond Group at 800.704.FROG (3764) or email susie@frogpondgroup.com; http://www. frogpondgroup.com.

Lead the Market Make sure you emphasize something positive every time

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Written By Patti Brotherton ExecutiveAgent Magazine

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