Jared James says the difference between success and failure is a plan. Can his virtual coaching help you create and stick to one?
Jared James, the well-traveled keynote speaker, motivational expert, coach, former super star salesman and inveterate entrepreneur, has a lot of respect for Muhammad Ali.
“He said once that he never counted his sit-ups until they hurt,” James explains. “Imagine the power of doing what’s right for you every time — even if it hurts. It’s about living in the ‘what if I …’ — and then actually carrying through on your plans.”
As much as James respects Ali, he might also take a cue from Ali’s acclaimed trainer and coach, Angelo Dundee.
“I just put the reflexes in the right direction,” Dundee told the Associated Press in 2005, after a lifetime of coaching boxing’s superstars. Dundee was also the cornerman and trainer for Sugar Ray Leonard and George Foreman, among others.
Virtual Coaching Program from Jared James • $39/month • jaredjamestoday.com
Although Dundee died last year, he left behind a trail of unknown winners.
In addition to training big name boxers, Dundee worked with hundreds of young men who weren’t famous but aspired to greatness — but who never made it to the center ring.
Instead, they won power and confidence through Dundee’s coaching, qualities that imbued their lives with success far greater and lasting than a knock-out in a ring.
That is, I believe, the goal of Jared James Virtual Coaching: To deliver power and confidence to real estate agents who aren’t yet at the top of their game.
I want to take people from a place of dreaming to a place of action.
“My focus is on how people operate and what makes them do what they do,” James explains. “I want to help people find out why 90 percent of people say they’ll do something, but then they don’t do it.
“People don’t set out to disappoint themselves,” James continues. “But they do it, all the time. It just happens.”
That’s what James’ program is designed to prevent.
“I want to take people from a place of dreaming to a place of action,” Jared says, with the passion that he’s known for in his keynote speeches. “The number one reason for success is speed of implementation, not because you’re necessarily working the hardest or are the smartest person in the room. It’s about having a plan.”
James says that many real estate agents need that plan of action to get off the dime and start growing their businesses. He says it’s really just a matter of numbers — he claims it takes 41 contacts to get a lead. But James asserts that if you don’t know how to make the contacts, you can’t get the lead, and thus, you’re stuck.
Breaking It Down to Make Sense
“My job is to break down the numbers so they make sense to people,” James says. “The truth is, second place agents don’t make anything. So if I can unlock the system of how to get there, I’m influencing the lives of more people through virtual coaching that I ever could through one-to-one coaching.”
The only way people will be able to coach with Jared James is via his Virtual Coaching program. “It’s everything I used to do for $1,000 for $39 a month.
While virtual coaching is new for James, he’s offered personal coaching to dozens of clients for years. He also trained several other coaches in his methodology to expand his reach. But ultimately, he wanted more clients than he could personally service.
“One to one coaching simply isn’t scalable,” James explains. “I don’t care how many people you have on your team. There’s only so much time in the day. You can’t talk to more than one client at a time, and unless you’re willing to build up an enormous team of coaches under you, you’re capped.”
James wanted to build a scalable coaching business — and to reach the people who needed coaching most.
“The people who really need coaching don’t typically get it because it costs too much,” James explains. “Not everyone can afford $500 or $1,000 a month or more for personal coaching, even if they know they need it.”
But James admits that personal coaching does offer some advantages. He says weekly calls with a live coach and action plans can hold agents accountable.
That’s why James built his virtual coaching program with a mixture of video lessons and written content (ranging from sales letter templates to scripts) — and live weekly Google Hangouts that enable him to interact with his coaching subscribers.
The Hangouts are held every Monday, at 12 p.m. EST. James conducts them from wherever he is — which is frequently on the road. A typical Hangout lasts for about 25-30 minutes, and James takes questions from participants via live chat after he completes a short presentation about a specific topic.
In this week’s video, he talks about mobile tools and DotLoop (where he is a paid adviser):
Other new content is added weekly, including video and written templates for key sales opportunities (such as a letter for when a listing agreement is about to expire).
Subscribers are greeted by a dashboard which features the week’s Hangout and links leading to seven sections of content: Core 100, Buyer Process, Seller Process, Motivation, Growth, Technology and Other.
Each section is populated with 3-5 videos, most between 3-5 minutes long. All of the videos are anchored by James.
Obviously, it’s James’ coaching program, so the videos and written content are heavy on James’ theories. But even James admits that the content is not dissimilar from other real estate coaching offered by well-known personalities.
The difference really comes down to style. If you like James’ fast-paced, no-nonsense and motivational speaking style, you’ll enjoy the tone of his virtual coaching as well as the Hangouts. However, if you’re looking for a softer, gentler approach, you might find James’ approach somewhat abrasive, as he tends to tell it like it is — or how he sees it, anyway.
In one particularly compelling video entitled “Why Would You Rob Yourself,” James says that 80 percent of all sales are made on your fifth to twelfth contact with a potential client. He then asks viewers how many of them actually get to the fifth to twelfth contact, then answers the question himself: “not very many of you.”
Yet I found these bon mots thought provoking, because James follows up directly with what you can do about your situation in clear, practical terms. Since James is all about action, you can expect to hear a lot about exactly what you need to do to resolve an issue or get to the next level in your business.
Everything in James’ coaching arsenal is based on his proprietary CORE 100 concept, which he claims will create 350 transactions within three years — if you follow the program.
“The CORE 100 is a collection of 100 different businesses or industries you can network with for your business,” James explains in an introductory video about the concept.
James roots the concept in the fact that the average person buys or sells a house every 5-7 years. Thus, James says, if you connect with 100 core businesses that are as committed to you as you are to referring business to them, you will naturally build your referral base and generate real business.
James credits the CORE 100 concept with his success as a Realtor.
“This is what you need to master,” asserts James in the video. “It’s what built my business. And it just makes sense.”
References to CORE 100 are sprinkled throughout the rest of the program, so gaining an understanding of the concept is critical to making a success of James’ coaching. Fortunately, the CORE 100 section of the program has some of the richest and most in-depth content, so it would be difficult not to walk away with the central tenets of the concept.
Look and Feel
[EDITORIAL NOTE, September 26, 2013: The navigational issue mentioned in this article as it was originally published has been addressed through the addition of a large button that leads back to the user’s dashboard. James also notes that he is considering moving to a different training platform, which will address other design and navigation issues covered in this review.]
Overall, I found the program’s user interface remarkably clean and spare. In fact, it was so clean I found myself missing some rather simple niceties, like a program-specific subnavigation for the coaching. For now, the coaching program lives inside of James’ corporate site, JaredJamesToday.com, and is accessed via a link from the home page.
For example, once you dive into a specific category of coaching, the only way to return to the user dashboard is by hitting the browser back button. Unfortunately, I found that even the back button worked inconsistently on the latest versions of Firefox, Chrome and Safari for the Mac.
The result was that I needed to use the top navigation for JaredJamesToday.com in order to return to the dashboard. Every time I had to do this, I also ended up on the public facing side of James’ site, necessitating me to log in again to the coaching program.
To be honest, it’s not a deal-killer … but any serious user of the site would probably be at least somewhat annoyed by the clunky navigation.
James is aware that the site must continue to evolve, and has already come a long way since he launched it in May, 2013. Navigation issues are sure to be resolved soon.
Content and Followup
I also found myself wishing for more video content.
With only about 30 videos (not including the Google Hangout replays), James is clearly ready to go deeper into specific topics. Some sections are particularly slim. For example, the “Seller Process” category doesn’t contain any video, while “Other” contains a repurposed presentation from 2013 about managing your finances.
Yet even though the site contains a limited content set, I found that it covered the basics of how to be a successful real estate agent in clear language. There’s enough “there” there to make it worth $39 a month, especially for new agents or those looking to reenergize their businesses.
James is a compelling and persuasive speaker, and it’s hard not to walk away with at least three ideas about how to improve your business no matter which content you consume.
In the end, I suspect it will be James’ engaging personality, presentation style and pure hustle that will make the virtual coaching program grow. For now, just more than 1,000 real estate agents are on the platform. James says more join every week.
There’s another reason why James’ coaching program is likely to take off. That’s because it’s the only way his followers can get coaching from him. James wound down his one-on-one coaching this year to focus on his new coaching platform.
“My program is designed to give you the motivation and the principles,” James says. “One is no good without the other. Yet there’s power in simplicity. That’s why the program looks and feels the way it does. I wanted people to get what they need, simply.”
James says that program participants will never be deluged with emails — or alternately, forgotten. Three “helpers” on James’ staff assists participants when they have issues or questions. But James often dives in himself, both to take the pulse of his program members — and to hold them accountable.
“Every Friday, I pick up the phone and personally call five people in the program,” James says. Some are deeply surprised to hear James on the other end of the line. James also says he never sends an email out to his constituents if he can’t personally be available to respond to program participants for at least an hour after sending it.
“The truth is, my perfect client is the one who finds that they don’t have a ton of time and need something on-demand,” James explains. But there’s another nuance in the way James sees his virtual coaching program unfold.
“I genuinely believe we all have moments in our lives that drastically affect where our lives end up,” James says with absolute conviction. “If I can help just one person to achieve something they really want — that’s the heart of what I do, and that’s what I want the virtual coaching to deliver.”