Principles of business cross boundaries of profession frequently, and the one shared today is inspired by Dr. Thomas Stanley, author of The Millionaire Next Door and The Millionaire Mind. If you get the chance to read either of these books you will be taking a lot of notes… and you won’t be the same. Throughout the pages of his book, Dr. Stanley reveals details about the lives of millionaires and decamillionaires, what they are doing, and where they are spending their time. He lets us in on the secret of where these people are investing their money. And the investment strategies he proposes could not be applicable to the work you do as an appraiser.
Where are millionaires investing? Take a guess, where do you think that is? You could assume these people are heavily involved in the stock market, constantly weighing their stocks and bonds, but they actually aren’t as invested there as you might think. They understand that one individual will have little to no influence on the market, one individual won’t affect IBM, Amazon, or blue-chip stocks all that much. Rather, they choose to invest where they CAN make a difference: their own practices and businesses. This investment strategy focuses your efforts on things you can control and places that, with a little extra investment, you can not just hope for, but expect growth to happen.
How does this stack up against your current mindset? We will always be confronted with things we can’t control, and from analyzing the process and mindset of appraisers (and all the rest of us), the natural response is often to complain. But spending precious time griping won’t be a good prologue to whatever you want to happen next. Whether it be criticizing AMC regulations, nitpicking AQB requirements, or butting heads with Fannie, you don’t have a lot of effect in putting your hard-earned hours there. These are, in fact, things out of your control. If you do have an opinion about something needing to change, speak up and try to make a difference! Pick those battles wisely and then invest where you can make it count.
This might just be the mindset shift you’ve been looking for. Understanding your circumstances and conditions and creating influence on things you can control could change the way you do business. After all, the greatest effect on your way of living is going to be at your level; in what you control. So where is your focus? Where are you spending your time? Just as millionaires are not so focused on things they can’t control, they are very focused on things that they can. Although life is never going to be perfect, you can be the means of creating a business of value as you make a difference that matters.
For more information on this subject, please download and listen to The Appraiser Coach Podcast Episode: