What Estate Agents Can Learn from a Late, Great Legend

What Kobe Bryant’s Legacy Teaches Agents

I got emotional researching and writing this article.

There’s a sense of enormous loss when writing about someone who achieved so much and would’ve gone on to impact millions more people but was tragically taken from us way too soon.

I’m talking about the basketball legend Kobe Bryant.

On 26 January 2020, Kobe, along with his 13-year-old daughter Gianna and seven others, died in a helicopter crash in Calabasas, California.

I’ve never been a basketball fan. I’m not interested in American sports. They declare their national league winners as the World Series champions, etc.

I was never that aware of Kobe when he was alive.

And I only became fully aware of just how great a man he was after his death – reading about him, watching his interviews and listening to him.

His work ethic, obsessive attention to detail, self-belief and desire drew me to him. His legacy is wisdom. An inspirational life that stands as a template for wringing out every last drop of your potential.

In my office, I’ve got a poster called Bryant’s 10 Rules. If you Google it, you’ll come up with variations on this theme. You can’t define a human being of such magnitude with a few bullet points, but you can learn from them.

Here are a few things estate agents can learn from Kobe’s 10 Rules.

Work on your weaknesses

Just as Kobe spent countless hours perfecting his craft, estate agents must identify and refine their areas for improvement. Whether it’s enhancing negotiation skills or understanding the latest market trends, focusing on weaknesses turns potential vulnerabilities into strengths, ensuring you’re prepared for any challenge the market throws your way.

Study success

Bryant meticulously studied his opponents and basketball legends to improve his game. Similarly, estate agents should analyse successful market strategies and innovative property listings. Learning from the best practices in the industry can inspire new approaches to sales, marketing and customer service. There’s no excuse not to do this as it’s all out there for us in the biggest library humans have ever had a free pass to – the internet.

Push through the pain

The path to success is fraught with obstacles. Kobe’s career was a testament to perseverance through injuries and setbacks. For estate agents, the ‘pain’ might be a tough market, a challenging sale or adapting to new technologies. Take on these challenges and push forward – even if it’s painful.

Have a strong purpose

Kobe’s drive was fuelled by his love for basketball and his ambition to be the best. For estate agents, having a strong ‘why’ – whether it’s a passion for helping families find their perfect home, having the biggest market share or a commitment to doing things better across the board in the property market – can provide the motivation needed to succeed, even in the most challenging markets and tough days/weeks/months/years.

Be a great teammate

Success in the property industry is rarely a solo effort. It requires collaboration with colleagues, clients and other stakeholders. Bryant’s ability to inspire his teammates’ play is a reminder of the power of positive teamwork. Supporting your colleagues, sharing knowledge and working towards common goals can lead to success for everyone involved.

Nurture good relationships

Building and maintaining positive relationships are as fundamental in business as they are in sports. For such a prodigious individual talent, Kobe did all he could to make his teammates better – he knew he couldn’t do it all alone. From clients to contractors, building trust and rapport can lead to repeat business, referrals and a supportive network that can help navigate the industry’s ups and downs.

Focus on one thing

Kobe’s dedication to basketball was all-encompassing. While multitasking is often necessary for agents, having a clear focus – whether it’s specialising in a particular type of property or market area – can lead to greater expertise and better results.

Work the hardest

The Mamba Mentality, which Kobe introduced to the world, is synonymous with an unparalleled work ethic. In the competitive world of estate agency, being the hardest worker in the room, staying informed about market trends, and going the extra mile for clients can set you apart from the competition.

Be a problem solver

Kobe’s ability to adapt and overcome on the court was legendary. Estate agents face problems ranging from challenging negotiations to issues with property chains. Approaching these situations with a problem-solving mindset can turn potential deal-breakers into opportunities for creative solutions. Our time-poor society values people who can solve problems for others.

Have fun

Despite the pressures of professional sports, Bryant found joy in the game. Similarly, estate agents should remember to find enjoyment in their work. Celebrating successes, enjoying client interactions and maintaining a sense of humour can make the hard work and challenges more rewarding. Take your work seriously but not yourself.

Here is a Summary of Kobe’s 10 Rules

  1. Work on your weaknesses
  2. Study success
  3. Push through the pain
  4. Have a strong purpose
  5. Be a great teammate
  6. Nurture good relationships
  7. Focus on one thing
  8. Work the hardest
  9. Be a problem solver
  10.  Have fun

While researching this article, I watched plenty of YouTube clips and interviews featuring Kobe.

He shared so much wisdom that I could write 50,000 words on it – not the 950 or so you’ve read if you’ve made it this far.

But one quote that sticks in my head is ironically not from Kobe but from his high school English teacher, Mr Fisk, who told his young students: “Rest at the end, not in the middle.”

Rest in peace, Kobe.

Thanks for reading. I appreciate your time.