Gavin became an agent at the age of 20 after returning from a gap year in Europe. To help finance his travel Gavin talked his way into a job as an events manager for a company in London that ran top-tier nightclubs, where he worked for 18 months.
“I loved it. I was 18, the youngest guy working at the company, but I had a lot of responsibility which was great. I soon realised the lifestyle that came with that career wasn’t what I wanted long term, so I began to think of other career paths,” he explained.
“Real estate always appealed to me because it’s people based. I’ve always been good with people and building relationships, and it’s one of the few careers that has uncapped income opportunity without requiring any tertiary education.”
Learning in the field
Gavin always knew university wasn’t for him, but he still loves to learn and believes this is absolutely crucial for any agent who wants to be successful in today’s competitive world of real estate. “I prefer to learn in the field from people and experience. One of the things I love about real estate is the opportunity to be constantly learning,” he said.
“When I find something I’m interested in, I become obsessed. So when I was starting out, I researched and found out everything I could about real estate and I made a plan for the future. I think some people don’t realise how important having a strategy is. There is no way you can be successful in this business without a clear strategy.“It’s simple when you think about it – you create a plan and you work to it. I sat down and thought about what I wanted my business to look like, what suburbs I would work in and how I was going to build a name and a brand that is instantly recognisable, and then I worked to that plan.”
And then he put in the hard yards. “I was relentless – I still am. I think you need to be in those first few years because it’s all about putting in the work, but you won’t see results straight away.”
“Discipline is the bridge between goals and accomplishing them, and the reason why most agents fail is because they aren’t disciplined.”
In those first few years, Gavin set himself the target of having 30 conversations a day. “Not just calling 30 people and being hung up on, but actually having a conversation about the market, which meant 150 new business opportunities a week,” he explained. “It was hard, but if you’re not prepared to put in the work, you won’t see results. Discipline is the bridge between goals and accomplishing them, and the reason why most agents fail is because they aren’t disciplined.
“I was taught early on that ‘frequency builds trust’ and that’s what you’re doing in those first few years – building familiarity and trust, so you’re top of mind when it comes time for your contacts to choose an agent.”
Gavin also looked at other ways to build his profile in the market, beyond the usual sales, listings and signboards, and has leveraged the power of video and social media as a tool. He began creating high-energy clips of his auctions that included vendors’ comments and posted these on his Facebook page, which boosted his presence in the marketplace.
Finding great mentors was also integral to Gavin’s strategy early in his career and it has continued to be an important part of his ongoing success.
“I have a couple of mentors and they are really helpful when it comes to advice and helping me to implement changes and strategies to improve and expand my business,” he explained. “For agents starting out, my advice is to align yourself with an agent who has experience, and use that opportunity to learn all you can about the marketplace, gain product knowledge and develop your skillset to become a master at your craft.”
In just three years, Gavin went from being a personal assistant to the number one sales person in NSW for Ray White and has held the title ever since. Driven by this passion for learning and a passion to always do better than he did yesterday, Gavin has a stack of accolades to his name that track his steady rise, culminating in a career highlight of being awarded number one sales person in the Ray White Group International in 2015.
“Being invited to speak at AREC this year in front of 4,500 people was also a career highlight for me,” Gavin said. “The positive response I received from people who saw me talk and got value from implementing my ideas into their own business was so humbling. It was incredible.”