Reflect on your experiences. It’s one thing to write something, it’s another to write something that empowers your readers. By reflecting on your experiences, you are empowering your readers to follow in your lead, on their journey to success.
As part of my interview series on the five things you need to know to become a great author, I had the pleasure of interviewing Kathleen Black.
Kathleen Black is North America’s leading real estate team coach and trainer, delivering her proven success techniques to agents and teams around the world. That growth is worth billions in additional sales volume annually across her client network with 80% of her clients being national top 1% producers. Kathleen, the best selling author of “The Top 1% Life”, will help you to expand your business, at a fraction of the time and cost, using the tried, tested, and true “KBCC Ultimate Expansion Strategy” that has powered her client growth.
The success of KBCC centers around integrity, honesty, and results-driven measures, the very things that represent Kathleen. Kathleen has been named twice as Top 50 Elite Women Driving the Future of Real Estate (REP), Top 20 Emerging Leaders (Swanepoel Report). She was recognized within the top 1% of Realtors in the Toronto Real Estate Board, has ten plus years of agent development experience, and hundreds of teams attribute their growth and success to Kathleen’s leadership.
Most recently, Kathleen was recognized as 45th on the Top 100 Industry Trail Blazers (The BUZZ). Awarded as Iconic Leader Creating a Better World for All Award (Women’s Economic Forum), based on experience, results, influence, and commitment to change the world for the better of all internationally.
Kathleen is also the driving-force behind the Ultimate Team Summit, the largest team specific Real Estate summit in North America and the Ultimate Mastermind Series of events, including the 100 Deal + Ultimate Mastermind.
Kathleen lives in Oshawa, Ontario, Canada with her love Nicholas, and her two free spirited, independent, and very loved children Ethan and Ella, and their cats Ethel and Willow.
Thank you so much for joining us! Can you share a story about what brought you to this particular career path?
Beginning my career as a RE/MAX Real Estate Agent and working my way to being recognized within the top 1% of Realtors in both the Durham Region and on the Toronto Real Estate Board, many would agree that this level of success is the pinnacle achievement amongst their peers; but for me it was only the beginning.
Identifying the need, I set out to work on further developing the systems and platform of educational programs and coaching methods to which I attributed my own professional and personal success.
With the launch of KBCC in 2015 and building upon my 10+ years of Team and Agent development and guidance, hundreds of teams (80% of which are top 1% producers) have attributed their growth and success to my integrity, honesty and results driven leadership directly or through one of her coaching programs.
I was selling real estate as a busy single mom of two children and I had done a lot of content and systems development with a look to creating better work life balance. The team I worked with was creating a coaching company and I had a background in psychology, so it just seemed like a natural fit to try to become involved. That coaching company found itself in some challenging territory in early days and there were differing opinions within the ownership as to how it should be resolved.
This ultimately resulted in the departure of the director of coaching and I was given the opportunity to step into that role within 18 months of the company going live. I had been a coach for just under one year at that point. It was really a chain of complicated events that led to a great opportunity for me.
Can you share the most interesting story that occurred to you in the course of your career?
Every single time someone has tried to harm my career or damage my business, it has always led us into better opportunities.
When I thought I was going to lose my first coaching business, it actually led to working with higher caliber people, which further expanded the business.
The interesting thing in my journey has been that at the beginning of my career as a coach, I never had the support of the ‘big’ Real Estate boards, or conferences and ironically, it drove me to create and hold my own events without relying on other people.
In the end it actually gave me an edge, because I didn’t have to rely on the support that other people were getting. Even though it was more difficult to get there, it made me and my company stronger in the end.
What was the biggest challenge you faced in your journey to becoming an author? How did you overcome it? Can you share a story about that that other aspiring writers can learn from?
I’m going to answer this as an overall vision because that’s how I am!
A significant hurdle I had to overcome in my journey to becoming an author was honestly learning how to be my own light in a dark room.
I think when you’re building a business, you’re going to have times when you have no one around you who’s there to support you, and you need to believe in yourself.
That was the most important thing I was able to do, to realize that if you believe you can create something important on your own, you can create that light and do it for yourself.
Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?
An example that I give often is I used to mentor, coach and train while I was relatively new to selling, so I often had someone shadowing me.
I ended up realizing a couple of years into it when I left a buyer presentation, which I would sign 98 per cent of, with one of my mentees, when she told me that she had seen me present my buyer consultations many times, and that she had learned so much, but the logo on the PowerPoint said ‘Your Team Name Here”.
I didn’t even realize that for two years I had been using my coaching company’s version of my buyer consultation and it didn’t even have our team logo on it, and yet I was still signing 98 per cent of all consultations I sat down in front of and attended.
When building a business, it’s really easy to say you need the perfect brand, but in reality, what you need are the clients.
What are some of the most interesting or exciting projects you are working on now?
We’re always expanding. We’ve currently been expanding our resources to help people obviously during the COVID-19 pandemic, to suit their needs of moving remotely.
But COVID-19 has definitely given another reason for top producers to build systematic process driven businesses, where clients get a higher level of services and the team or brokerage have a more organized way to conduct more business and transactions, while also having a life.
Our focus is on making sure the teams and brokerages that we support have a quality of life, to enhance their lifestyles in order to sell more homes. Our systems are allowing them to hit two very important goals at once.
We’re also expanding our services globally, by building systematically, we’re offering teams 16% higher profit margins than a typical team model would. Having agents on the top teams using our models sell 10 to 20 times the average transactions on most of their local Real Estate boards. Additionally, we’re aiding them in converting at up to 7 times higher when they get to our advanced conversion systems.
We’re really committed to helping our agents build the most efficient, productive and profitable teams in the world. Why would agents follow another path and journey when we’ve already created this path with a predictable track record with our agents?
Can you share the most interesting story that you shared in your book?
What is the main empowering lesson you want your readers to take away after finishing your book?
I come from the Real Estate world, and in this world we have this large goal to be top 1 percent in production and personally, in my first year, I accomplished that goal within North America’s top Real Estate Board.
What happened was six months in, I went through a very difficult separation, I had two young children, and to say I was hustling would be an understatement.
What I found was that this thriving business that I always dreamed of became a prison to me, because I didn’t have the amazing life I always thought would come with the successful business.
Because I got into coaching, I have helped hundreds of thousands of agents have top 1 percent production AND have the lifestyle, and quality of life that they want.
Based on your experience, what are the “5 Things You Need to Know to Become a Great Author”? Please share a story or example for each.
- Reflect on your experiences. It’s one thing to write something, it’s another to write something that empowers your readers. By reflecting on your experiences, you are empowering your readers to follow in your lead, on their journey to success.
- You Have to be so Good People Can’t Ignore You. Our benchmark is to be the best in the world at what we do. At the end of the day we have to be so good, and bring so much value to the market and let our results speak so strongly for themselves that they can’t ignore us. Setting the bar up so high will give you an edge, because most people aren’t confident enough to show up and be the best.
- Plant the seeds without expectation. In the tarot world, they call it the fool’s card. Many would suggest that if anybody knew what was going to be involved in overcoming all of the obstacles that stood in the way of our current place, that only a fool would knowingly choose the path I did. I made a conscious decision that whether it took 2, 5 or 10 years, that’s where I was going. Ironically, every time I have made the commitment the results typically materialize faster than hoped.
- Believe. From a spiritual standpoint, I believe I am meant to perform service to people in sales-based functions. I cannot afford, either spiritually or financially, to be distracted from my greater purpose. The trials and tribulations in the business along the way, I believe, serve only to remind me that I’m strong enough, and that my intentions are pure enough to overcome them, and that they existed to educate me and enrich our offering to our clients.
- Stand on your own. Be comfortable with the idea of standing in a dark room, with nobody around you, by yourself. The people you thought were standing with you may not truly be there. My willingness to leverage myself and risk everything is the purest example of this.
What is the one habit you believe contributed the most to you becoming a great writer? (i.e. perseverance, discipline, play, craft study) Can you share a story or example?
The top two habits correlated with entrepreneurial success are staying active, which is physical fitness, and meditation or focused thought.
When I started going to yoga classes, I started to think about eating better. Before I knew it I was. Even though I could indulge in unhealthy food or drinks, I feel like eating healthy, unprocessed foods. It changed my mind set.
When I start to do work after a yoga class, I seem to be more productive. My mind is clearer, and my thoughts flow easily. And at the end of the day, I fall asleep quickly. I tend to sleep more and feel fresh when I wake up.
When I don’t exercise or go to my yoga classes, I see the opposite effect. I’m more prone to eating junk food. I stay up later, get distracted more easily, and I waste time on unimportant tasks. Stress builds and I start to feel tension in my back.
In other words, fitness and meditation are the keystone habits that put the rest of my life in place. I don’t have to think about eating better. I don’t have to force myself to focus on getting things done. Exercise naturally pushes me towards my best self.
Which literature do you draw inspiration from? Why?
The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho tells the story of a young shepherd named Santiago, who is able to find a treasure beyond his wildest dreams. Along the way, he learns to listen to his heart and, more importantly, realizes that his dreams or his Personal Legend, are not just his but part of the Soul of the Universe.
It tells and captures an amazingly beautiful story that deserves to be heard. The book resonates with me so much, as the constant theme in The Alchemist is to pursue your dreams by following what your heart desires. During the young boy’s journey, he learns to listen to the heart and to follow the language of omens. With each passing obstacle and hurdle that the young boy encounters, there is a lesson to learn.
You are a person of enormous influence. If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂
Conscious living. I think people who are conscious about who they are, their values, and what they’re bringing to the world are typically better parents, better team members, better community supporters, better people.
I find the ability to ‘do good’ is just more naturally present for people with a conscious mindset. If I can help people raise their consciousness and see their abilities and power, they will ultimately serve the world through their greater purpose with ease. If KBCC can have any influence on people leading themselves versus looking at others, that’s a win!
How can our readers follow you on social media?
Thank you so much for this. This was very inspiring!