In episode 9 of Relationships First, Bill and Molly talk through the question of what the relationship with your work really means. How can you turn any transaction into a meaningful event?
Bill Risser: This is Bill Risser.
Molly McKinley: And Molly McKinley. And we're talking relationships.
Bill Risser: All kinds of relationships, from starting new ones to nurturing existing ones over time.
Molly McKinley: And each week we'll highlight something that inspires.
Bill Risser: Or triggers us.
Molly McKinley: To help get to the root of why relationships are key to our happiness and success.
Molly McKinley: Hey Bill, good morning. So today we are gonna be talking about our relationships with work and we can go in lots of different ways with this conversation but, with our 15 minutes we have together, let's focus on our relationships with work. So what does that even mean to you?
Bill Risser: There's work and there's jobs, then there's career.
Molly McKinley: Yes.
Bill Risser: Yeah, so, like you said, there's lots of different pieces to that puzzle. All three of them I think about differently, I would think, so I'll let you go the direction you wanna go and I'll follow along.
Molly McKinley: Well I think it's interesting that that's where you start too because that's actually where my head goes, is you have a job, you have your work or your life's work and most people are probably not doing ... their jobs are not necessarily their life's work, which is why we have hobbies and we volunteer and do all of these other things because we're complex beings that need lots of fulfillment from all different things. But for the sake of this conversation, I guess I keep going back to this notion of right living. This is something that I'm really focused in my own personal life right now and, for me, right living is am I doing work that's honest and valuable and service oriented and something that is aligned with my person? And I can't help but make this natural connection to real estate because I actually feel like this home and the sale of a home is so incredibly aligned with relationship and right living because we're talking about the sale of someone's nest, the very base of our existence. So I don't know, I feel like it's very ... it can be inspired work.
Bill Risser: That brings a thought to mind; when I was a branch manager for Chicago Title in Phoenix it was a pretty routine job, escrow and title, I mean title insurance is the least sexy type of insurance out there. There's nothing cool about title insurance. But what I was able to focus on, and this really was key to the relationship building I had to do with realtors, was making that experience for the buyer or the seller something special when I had them in my office for the 45 minutes to an hour, right?
Molly McKinley: Yeah.
Bill Risser: Yeah, so really treating that transaction, which is not a relationship sounding word, right, transaction?
Molly McKinley: Yeah.
Bill Risser: But turning that transaction into something that was meaningful, I really cared about how this was to finally transition the house to them or help them sell their home. It really was a focus for me and I know there are realtors ... you can talk to Jay Thompson or Nick Bastion who's got Rail Life out in Phoenix and they really appreciated the fact that that's the way I would close those transactions. So that's interesting, I never really thought about it until you said that, that that's how important that was.
Molly McKinley: Well I mean I think it's kind of magical and you've touched on something that I've actually been struggling with to, is there is the transactional piece in real estate, right? It's a transaction between people. But we sort of have muddied that word in terms of it being shortsighted or short term and transactional meaning the opposite of relational, but it is still a transaction between people, right? But the relationship aspect and layering on the meaning and the intention, really, is what you were doing, whether you knew it or not, was you were holding space. And you were creating a moment, you were holding space in a moment and that is actually very, very cool that you were doing that. So you actually are a yogi and you don't even know it.
Bill Risser: Well look at the time, I gotta go.
Molly McKinley: I just totally ruined Bill's street cred.
Bill Risser: Look, it really ... it's so critical, whatever your work is, whatever your career is, that there's the sense of pride. And for me, that's kind of tying in that relationship part of it as well. I don't care ... when I worked at Fosters Freeze, as a 15 year old, I wanted to make sure that every cone I pulled for a customer had the right curlicue at the top because I was proud of what I was doing. And I think that that's carried on in my life, I'm now in my late 50s and it's the same thing, I wanna make sure that everything that I'm doing I'm, like you said, honest and open and I make sure that I'm doing the best I can for that person because there's always someone else involved. Whether, now, someone in the real estate industry, it's a sales executive, it's my boss, I just wanna make sure that I'm doing everything that I can. For me, that's the relationship that I have with what I do.
Molly McKinley: With your work, yeah. And okay, so true story is I also use to pull ice cream at Susan's Premium Yogurt.
Bill Risser: Nice.
Molly McKinley: And I had the exact same experience and always over poured, right, because I wanted the experience to be great. So who knew that was a fun little connection we didn't even know we had.
Bill Risser: Right.
Molly McKinley: And, again, you've touched on this and it should be amplified here in this idea that it doesn't matter what the work is, it's the spirit behind the work or the intention behind the work. I think that really matters and that is the relationship with the work, is maybe our thoughts or why or how and the purpose and, again, the intention of the work, is maybe what it all comes down to. But when I think of real estate agents who are truly happy, like Katie Clancy just keeps coming into my mind because she exudes this wonderful positivity and energy and she also is very successful in her business. But she, I think, has a right relationship with what she's doing, she sees herself as a facilitator of homes and also, in all of the marketing that she's doing, is really just about serving the community. So she's being able to carry all of these things that we talk about in terms of be a community ambassador, be a servant, be valuable, be an expert. But she actually is living these things, which translates into this right living, which, I believe, this relationship then becomes a much more fulfilling way to work. Does that make sense?
Bill Risser: Yeah, it's funny you mentioned Katie, I have an interview scheduled with her tomorrow for another podcast that I do.
Molly McKinley: Oh, the Real Estate [inaudible 00:07:53], there you go.
Bill Risser: Yeah, so I'm really excited to chat with her. Because I had a long talk with her at the realtor.com summit in Vegas and I get what you're saying and doing some research on her relationship with her work, that's exactly what it is. She's done amazing things. Let me ask you this: what would you say to a realtor who has struggles with that, who doesn't understand that or maybe it's not the right fit. We know people like that.
Molly McKinley: We sure do.
Bill Risser: We won't identify those people on the podcast but we know them.
Molly McKinley: We'll wrap them in love.
Bill Risser: Yeah. How can you help them? What would you say to them?
Molly McKinley: Gosh, that's a really good question, Bill, and this kind of plays into what we were talking about in episode eight, or seven, I'm not sure, about how people aren't naturally ... we aren't teaching about relationship building as much as maybe we could, we just sort of assume people are good at it. But ... oh, gosh, I don't know. I mean that is hard because this is an industry where you have to interface directly with people closely, you do need to care and listen and all of these things that we have been talking about and if you're just kind of going on in your mode and on your own way, I just don't think you're gonna be very successful. Unless you have a specific role ...
Molly McKinley: I don't know. There's something for everybody, right? I mean that is also true. But the agents who are really winning just seem to be natural servants, I think that's the word that I'm looking for. And I have interviewed hundreds of agents in this industry with my experience with Adworks and beyond and that is a common thread. And it hit me like a ton of bricks the first time I ever saw it and I remember this; I was interviewing Mark Spain from Mark Spain Real Estate in Atlanta and he is an intense personality, he really is. Very focused and very driven and maybe was the most intense interview I've ever done. But while he was talking I had this epiphany that agents who are at the top of their game fundamentally have a servant's heart. That was it. Everything else was really about he was really wanting to serve his customer and make sure that their experience was top notch. And I remember it just hitting me at that moment, that that was that thread that I kept hearing in people who were winning and so, again, that's just one of those things.
Molly McKinley: So if you don't have that mentality, that mindset, maybe you need to find another system then, perhaps. But, from what I've seen, that is the common thread.
Bill Risser: I'm seeing more and more that myself. Even with, as you mentioned, top producing teams. I think about Jeff Sibbach and Phil Sexton, the Sibbach Team is the name of their operation out in Phoenix, and it is all about the consumer. It's how to connect, it's serving them, serving their needs. And you're hearing that more and more and more, and you didn't hear that 10 years ago.
Molly McKinley: Well that's really in connection then with right living too so we've kind of pulled it all back full circle, right? That this idea of what does the relationship with your work really mean and I think if work can become a part of a way to serve and better your community and align with your values, that's what we all strive for. And it doesn't really matter at what job that is, I guess, it's really about the work.
Bill Risser: Yep, yeah, the work, I love it. Well Molly, you know what I'm about to say, right?
Molly McKinley: I do, it's that time already?
Bill Risser: Yeah, you and I had a conversation when we started this podcast, really honoring someone's time in making these short little bits would be valuable, so. I know you have an idea for episode 10, what is it?
Molly McKinley: All right, so we kind of started to touch on it today and this is why I'd like to take this a step further. And when you're in this real estate world right now there's so much discussion about disruption and will the agent be relevant in the new world of tech and all of that. So let's break down the idea of relationships specifically to real estate now, because we kind of talk around it all the time but let's just focus on this relationships in the new world.
Bill Risser: I like it, sounds good. So that will be episode 10 so thank you very much for tuning in and listening to episode nine, we really appreciate it. And thanks for telling a friend, it's how our little podcast continues to grow. So Molly, thanks, I'll see you next week.
Molly McKinley: Thanks Bill, take care-
Sign up for the People First newsletter for the latest tips, tricks and product updates from First.