I just spent a blissful week in Florida, St Pete’s beach to be exact, and much of the time was watching my kids fish off Merry Pier, a tiny pontoon where locals go for a spot of peace and quiet and hope for a catch or two. It occurred to me that estate agency is a lot like fishing…
All the preparation, the patience, the anticipation and the excitement when the kids get a bite is simply thrilling. Plus, there’s the camaraderie of all the folk down on the pier – real team work. My son, Felix is fishing mad and my daughter’s competitive spirit comes to the fore when out fishing with her brother – surprise, surprise!
Felix is into fishing magazines (Carp, in particular); watching YouTube’s of Fishing fanatics and partakes in lots of chitter chatter with his fish-mad school friends. There’s even an Instagram-style fishing forum called ‘Fish Brain’ where he’s gathering a small following. It’s all about who’s caught what and where. It is simply delightful to observe such commitment and passion in an eleven-year-old, even if it’s not directed at any school work!
This outdoor lesson will no doubt reap rewards one day in his adult life, because it’s teaching him proper life skills, though he doesn’t know it yet. I’m pretty sure that he’s close to perfecting his 10,000 hours’ practice, all condensed into a few years, which apparently makes him an expert…
I love watching their reactions when they get a nibble. They rally round, waiting to see what they’ve hooked. This either concludes in the excitement of a successful catch; or disappointment of a near catch when the fish wriggles away or the realization that the pelicans have, in fact, stolen the shrimps!
Observing my children fish makes me reflect on how similar fishing is to working in property sales and lettings:
- Luck vs talent. There’s an awful lot of luck versus actual talent when you start out.
- It’s a numbers game. If you lose one sale or rental, you keep casting your line until you reel one in. You may often get minnows, but eventually, you’ll catch a big one!
- Perseverance is key. Those who keep steady, persevere and bounce back quickly after set-back will always win overall. Some days you win and some days you lose, but it’s how you dust yourself off and start all over again with a smile on your face and a mindset full of focus and determination that will influence your success.
- Patience is a virtue. The more intricate the sale or let, the higher the requirement to remain patient during the negotiation process to ensure successful completion or tenancy execution.
- All about practise. Like any good sport, the more you practise the luckier you get.
And of course there’s luck. But there again, I firmly believe that for the most part, you create your own luck!
The photo is of my son Felix, having cast his line for the last time, after a dud day of no catches. He was as cool as a cucumber in spite of zero success. My boy only went and caught this shark! Today, our last day, he’s gone large mouth bass fishing on Lake Manatee and I’m eagerly waiting his news…