Hey ladies, welcome to this episode of The she is extraordinary Podcast. I am here with a beautiful lady, another beautiful lady I get to interview. Her name is Rhonda ryles. And she is a real estate agent with fathom realty in Tampa, Florida. And she and I connected you may have heard from me I’m really trying to be intentional about actually having one on one conversations with all of my Facebook and Instagram friends. I know that’s like a big thing. Like how am I going to accomplish it? Well, how do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time. And so the other day I was talking with Brandon, I said, You’re pretty amazing. I need to get you on the podcast. So let’s say hey to Rhonda.
Hi, Aaron. So Rhonda has been a real estate agent for three years. And I know there’s so many real estate agents that follow me because I used to specialize in working with agents and brokers. So how about we start Rhonda with telling the ladies before we tell them about how much success that you’ve been able to achieve in three years time. Let’s talk about before real estate Can you give the ladies kind of a background thumbnail sketch?
Okay, well, so Oh, I am. I was married pretty early. So I married right out of high school. So I was married at 18. And pregnant at 20. I had my first note pregnant at 19. I had my first child at 20. And for 20. Some years I was just that I was a mom life. And I never worked full time. And then all of that came to a halt when as a Blue Sucker Punched, my husband said that he wanted a divorce. And so my world was turned upside down. And all of a sudden, I had you know, two kids and actually also a mentally disabled mother that I take care of. And I had to find a full time job and had to navigate the world on my own now.
So I mean, what was that? Like you’re a Christian woman. And here you go, you’re thinking life is hunky dory. Until one day, like you said, You got sucker punched? I mean, how did you get through that and come out of it so well.
So I, I’ve always had this kind of mantra where you’re allowed five minutes, right? You’re allowed five minutes to just scream, cry, feel sorry for yourself. But after five minutes, you you have to move on. And I really feel that in my soul. And you know, I had three people depending on me. And, um, it was horrible To tell you the truth. I mean, for a good six months, it was a lot of ups and downs. You know, I even turned to like, you know, asking your doctor for an antidepressant, which totally didn’t work. Um, I would say six months just really sucked. And then after that, then, you know, you go through the grieving process, right, just like if, you know, my marriage died. So I had to grieve for it and go through all the process of being sad, being mad.
And then I kind of just started, you know, I was done with my five minutes and just decided that I had to had to move on. So I did get the full time job. We had to, we owned a house. So of course, we had to move into an apartment, me and the kids and my mom and sell the house and it took maybe like a year and a half, two years to even, you know, get a divorce. And that was final and go through all the
custody and all of God.
Right. Right. So So I love your five minutes. I always say like two minutes, because I think that’s true. Yeah, you do five and which, you know, like you said, As a practical matter of six months of hell, I’m sure right. I’ve been divorced. It’s not a fun experience, no matter the reason, even if it seems like the right thing to do under the circumstances, but I love that idea because that’s what the top 1% that’s how we approach things. Right? I mean, think about that. The only way you’re gonna come out, okay is number one with the Lord Jesus Christ. And number two, when you say because of him, I’ll be okay. Even though I don’t feel okay right now. I don’t feel like being happy. But the Bible says Be joyfilled even if, because of who he is. So I just love that. So ladies, I have no doubt that of the thousands of women who listen to this podcast, someone’s going through this right now. So be encouraged that you’re listening to two of your sisters who have gone through it. And we’re on the other side. Just hold tight. fast to the Lord.
Know that call me anytime. I mean ladies really and I bet you Rondo be the same way I will be here for you, you have an ear in me. So, all right, there’s one more thing and I want to move on from this. But I do want to give the ladies like some tips even just real quick like, logistically, as you said, you had your two kids and your mom that were relying on you. So all of a sudden, when you hadn’t worked, you’ve got to go find something to do. How did you handle that? Like, what were the ages of your kids? And logistically, how did that work?
So at that time, my daughter was a senior in high school. And you know, we joke now, but she’s like, you know, we totally ruined her senior year in high school, but it worked out she’s fine now. Um, and my son was nine. And so he hard to remember right? I mean, like, details and so many things happen, you know, and I’m, just, I’m just figuring it out. We did. Yeah, we just figured it out. And, you know, looking back, you know, it’s always hindsight. And you could tell that every step of the way guys he had was totally upon us and over us and in the mix. But you don’t feel that way when you’re when you’re going through it?
Yeah, yeah. Yeah. Because you’re grieving. So you’re not seeing things. Right. Right. All right. So tell us about how you entered real estate.
So I got a full time job. And then, um, I was in a cubicle, I worked customer service, I won’t tell you where but I worked customer service. And I was always It was a commission base. So you know, you based on your production, you made your, your commission, so and I loved it. And I was always a top producer. But I was in a cubicle all day. And it was the type of customer service where you would get if things weren’t, you know, you couldn’t make the customer happy. You were getting yelled at, cuz that hung up on, on. So it was it was stressful. And so I literally one morning, I remember it clearly, I drove to work. I’m sitting in the parking lot. And I just cried because I did not want to go in. I couldn’t even imagine myself getting out of my car one more day and walking through that door. It was that bad. Wow. So I started. Of course I did. Um, and I started asking around friends, you know, what do you know, who’s hiring? What can I do? I needed benefits. You know, I mean, medical, I needed to have insurance for the kids.
So a couple of people actually said, you don’t want it. You know, so many people, you know, you’re so friendly. Why don’t you become a realtor. And when when one person said it, I was like, Yeah, whatever. And when the second person said it, I started listening, and then probably three, or maybe even four, the fourth person said it. And so I looked into it. And then one thing led to another I took the class, which I did in person. So I think it took maybe two months to take the class here in Tampa Bay area, Florida. And then I started real estate part time because I had so many fears and hesitations. And I didn’t want to take the leap. And I still needed that insurance. So I was lucky enough but unlucky. And I’ll tell you that in just a moment. And I was able to meet this gentleman who was a broker and he told me about fathom Realty and he had a team and he wanted me to be on his team. Well, it started out that he would just pay me since I was going to be part time, he would just pay me kind of like as a transaction coordinator.
And but I was doing the whole deal from start to finish. But I was only making a certain amount per transaction will say $500 per transaction. So he was getting a lot of Zillow leads and he was busy and he just needed me to be an arm for him. Well, I did that I did that for about nine months. really didn’t make any money because I was only making like we said $500 per transaction but I was busy enough to where I couldn’t do both anymore. So I had to make the leap of faith right so I left my full time job and now I was a full time realtor Still only making $500 per transaction? Oh my god, me and myself and my fears because I could I couldn’t let go. I can’t.
Right. So So do I understand you right Rhonda that you were under this team leader and you said you were doing it all Does that mean you were you were going to listing appointments and getting the best contract and then taking buyers out, you know, showing houses $500 Okay.
Um, so and I would have probably, for a deal, I was closing four deals a month. I mean, he spent a lot of money on Zillow, let me tell you, I mean, Zillow is expensive as we as we know, as it is, but, um, so you know, $2,000, for me was okay to keep going. And I felt like I had a safety net, because I knew that I could continue $2,000 a month. And so he ended up not being a very good person, let’s just say, um, so, what I learned from that is a lot though, look, I got these four transactions a month, which is more than I would say 99% of new realtors would get in their first year. And finding out that, that he had done some, some not ethical things.
So I stayed with Adam wood, who is their totally ethical company, and but I got away from him, took a leave, doing it on my own. And it has just been so rewarding. And I learned so much in the last year doing it on my own. And every now and then I get a little jealous, you know, I see all the teams, you know, doing that. You know, the things that they do together? Yeah, I don’t I don’t have that. But then I look at what I’ve done in the past year being solo and, and I’m really happy with what I’ve accomplished. And now I can always make a lunch date with whoever and do my trainings with our local.
Yeah. So I mean, ladies, if you’re listening, and you have no idea about the real estate industry, what Rhonda said is so true four transactions in a month, people would kill for that, like that’s, that’s quite a lot of activity. And even if the home value is only 200,000, I mean, we’re talking about 10s of thousands, not 2000. So, so understand kind of just to give you a perspective, but Okay, so you leave that back team. And by the way, you could start your own team. We’ve talked about that. Right. So yeah, let’s let’s chat and see because it camaraderie is huge. Yes. So nice. And your, your, you would be a great servant, leader, team leader, who, you know, you and all your peeps would thrive because of your leadership. So, Alright, so let’s talk to the ladies.
The top thing, realtors, and every business owner that I’ve ever worked with, or that I’ve ever spoken with, that they’re concerned about is lead gen. How do I find qualified people who need what it is that I offer? Whether it’s a service or product? So I want I want, I want you to speak to that. Like, tell me number one, what training you got in that regard, if any? And second of all, what’s your approach to finding clients?
Okay, so I totally believe it is so with fathom their servant leadership, right? So it’s there, in fact, on there, and I told you this before on on my email signature, I have Matthew 2026, whoever wants to be great, must first be a servant. So I totally believe in that, like, if you put yourself out, you have to put yourself out there and you have to be totally, unapologetically unashamed at inserting yourself everywhere, possibly organically, and I really believe in that. So I am on Instagram, I’m on Twitter, I’m on Facebook. I’m always you know, every other day, I’d say, you know, putting things out there. I started out by asking friends, I literally just sent a text or an email to every friend I can think of, Hey, I’m on my own now. Do you know of anybody? Everything I do, is whether it’s I feel is right. But I was gonna say whether it’s right or wrong. Is is organic. You know, I do things for the community.
I’ve always been that way too. I’ve always been a helper, I guess you could say where I wanted to, you know, if your kid was having a you know, selling cookies or Girl Scouts, I did Cub Scouts, and I always want to help With that, and you just continue to seek out friends and, um, and people want to help. Um, all I can say is I’m just I’m just me, I’m kind of speechless. Like when I think about the last year, it’s kind of crazy.
And so neat. So let’s fast forward to like right now here we are in 2020. Do you mind sharing your production, whether it’s GCI, or number of transactions, just so the listeners have an idea of who the heck we’re talking to here, you’re a woman who you do big things.
So when we talk the other day, and you would ask me about production, I, I really didn’t have a number for you. And I remember thinking that you know, if you ever want to, you can’t measure success, or there’s some kind of quote about that, that you really need to track it in order to keep succeeding and keep adding on to that. So I thought, well, let me go and look at what I have done this year. So this is my very first year by myself. And I will tell you the year before, um, I had, well, my income was only $27,000. But my very first year solo, I did $120,000. Wow. Wow. This year I’m on track for I’ve already done 136. And I think I’m on track to do 200.
I’m sales side, I’ve had 26. This year, I have completed, I’ve got five under contract right now. And I potentially have 10 people right now who will sell or purchase by the end of the year. So we’re looking at 40 to 45 transactions by the end of the year, which is about three to four a month. But we did have that that COVID and I did take some time out because I moved.
I bought a new house this year. Yay. $2 million months this year. Wow. That is amazing. Yeah. So I’m like seeing that written down. Because
I can’t even believe it.
I mean, here, the ladies, you know, on the podcast, can’t see your smiling face. But you’re looking at those numbers, and you almost seem amazed at your own success. Yeah, no, it’s by God’s grace. So it’s so funny for me as I sit here, you know, sometimes I sitting here could see something that you maybe can’t see. So what I’m, what I’m sitting here thinking about is, you’re an amazing Rainmaker. And when I asked you, you know, how do you find leads? It’s almost like, I don’t know, I just do, right. I think that that is really neat. And see, I think that is a really great lesson. For so many women who are listening, Rhonda, because we overthink it, we say, Oh, I can’t send that text, because I’ll be pushy, or Oh, I can’t make that phone call. Because I don’t want to bother people. So let’s start right there. What would you say to that woman who’s holding back on the follow up and not sending that text or making that phone call? Because of those reasons? I stated What would you say to her?
Well, and I have to say that on that point. I feel kind of stupid sitting here. Like I don’t know, how do I get the leads? I really, but you know, I? One thing I do know about myself is I am the follow up queen. Like if I write everything this this is my list for today. Oh, wow. I know. So ancient. And it’s so like, but this is if I can’t, I have to see it. Right it touch it, feel it right now post it notes. If I showed you around my desk right now there’s at least 25 post it notes staring at me. So these are just little reminders as I go about my day. And I will check off I’ve already done probably half of these things on this list. But everything will be done. By the end of the day.
We don’t we don’t carry over to the next day. And it’s, I’m the follow up Queen, so I will write it down. And if you say we’re going to talk, you know, at seven o’clock tomorrow, I’ll have my reminder on
here. Um, and people appreciate that and they, you know, and if you’re thinking about things before they’ve even thought about it, and it says a lot you know, it says that you’re organized you’re on on their on the top of your mind. Um, what I’m going to implement next year that you know, it’s been you know, this the business it’s a labor of love, right? You learn a little bit every day. I’m sitting here talking about myself is like the most horrible thing to me, right?
You’re benefiting so many so look at it that way you’re serving even now.
It’s so horrible and I You know, I didn’t even have it, I just now started my CRM, I just now realize how important that is to send out, you know, a text and email to, to my database. I hired my little, my little goddaughter, I guess you could say, to, you know, I paid her, you know, an hourly rate to put in all these, I my post it notes everywhere, right? Then I now have a database CRM, I’m going to start using that the time blocking, I never even I felt like my whole day was a big time block. But now I see the importance of doing things out, you know, in scheduling it. Um, I’ve done everything myself, I don’t have a trained transaction coordinator.
But I’ve learned at one point this year, I did have nine transactions at once. And I think that that was my maximum. And I panicked, you know, what am I going to do? If I get one more person? I don’t think I can handle it. So what would I do? So I definitely have things to work on. And I realized that and in fact, it was only to your podcast, you said you don’t have to do everything at once. I don’t have to be this, you know, I’ve been doing it for three years. But I don’t have it all down for sure. You know, so I don’t have to do it. I don’t even have to do it next year. You know, I can do if I do one thing next year. That’s fine. Yeah.
Um, I love that Rhonda, because there’s so many things I just want to highlight here. Number one, when we improve our business, even by like 1% a day, then your business improves by 100% in 100 days. So even if you do 1% a week, then in a year, you’re improving by 50%. So I love that incremental, getting better. And the fact that we’re never, we’re always a work in progress, we’ve never arrived. Because there’s always that next level. I also am smiling, because I am always adamant with my clients, make sure your time blocking, watch my training until you get it, I want you to implement it, because it’s going to make your life easier.
And I firmly believe that’s true. But ladies, you’re listening to a woman who has more than thrived in her business, and hasn’t yet really mastered time blocking. So again, we need to stop these thought patterns of Ooh, I won’t be able to make it until or you know, there’s one way to succeed. Look, if you’re organized and you’re motivated, and you really, really, really want it and you work, you’re gonna make it easy. Is that? Right? I mean, have you agree with that, Rhonda?
Yeah, and it’s hard. It’s so hard. Sometimes I might. Every morning, I’m definitely up at 6am. If I have an early morning appointment, I’m a bit five because I know I’ve got that, you know, I’ve lost an hour. It’s hard. It is so worth it. So fun. Exciting.
Day, there you go to you said it’s hard work that they do with a smile said it’s fun. So I’m curious, do you have goals set? As far as number of connections you want to make per day or number of appointments per week? Like how do you approach your business in that regard? Yeah,
I’m not organized yet. I’m not. And I know, I have a list, right? I have a list of things that I know that I have to do. And then I do have a list of things that I need.
I have folders here that are you know, my things that I could be doing and should be doing. And then so if I get this list done today, then I go to that folder, and I pick something okay, well, I’ve got two hours left in my workday. What else can I do today? And then I try. So right
now I’m working on YouTube.
So I know I hate it. I hate to hear myself talk. And I’m trying to get over myself basically
say that’s excellent. So you just started your own YouTube channel. That’s amazing. Okay, so why don’t we pause here before we go to the next question. Where can the ladies find you? You said that you’re pretty much everywhere. So what’s your handle? Or is it very good on the platform?
Oh, geez. So well, Facebook is Rhonda riles, realtor and Instagram I believe is Rhonda ryles realtor and my youtube channel I guess it’s
okay. well organized Rhino, you know, I don’t know. I think you just Google me. You know?
Whatever. Beautiful, beautiful. Okay. So, so for someone listening and they’re in real estate, and maybe they’ve been trying they’re doing the things they feel like they’re doing what they need to do, but they’re not getting this kind of traction. What advice would you have for her?
I would say if you say you’re doing the things, write it down. What what things are you doing? Because when I went back to fathom solo, I really had Had to I felt I had that moment, right? Oh, well, I I’m doing all this. But what was I doing? And when you go to write it down, I, there wasn’t very much that I could write down that I was doing.
So then I had to make a list of what could I be doing? And oh my gosh, that list is so very long.
And they’re like, what, like what hon like, like, like for, like going to events, networking, joining groups and being active in the groups. My. So I had just moved in March for COVID during COVID. And, you know, people weren’t, you know, socializing. So, but there was this next door, I don’t know if you got it here next door. So I went on that. And we also have a Facebook community, or neighborhood neighborhood page. And you know, when people needed vendors, well, of course, I knew who all the vendors were, you know, their AC broke, oh, well, this is this person. And so just inserting yourself everywhere. And then I had to bring all those long, long lists. And I’m trying to pull over that to now. The other side, right, what am I doing?
So this list of what I’m doing, hopefully one day will be longer than what I could be doing, because I’ll be doing all the things. Yeah,
yeah. I love that. Insert yourself everywhere. And you said earlier, unapologetically, you’re in business. So don’t be come that secret. And then we’ll scratch your head and say, Well, why aren’t I getting business because you’re not putting it out there. So it starts with the basics there. And also, I love what you just said about, hey, you need a contractor. You need an electrician, you need to know, you know, a resource in the community. I’m the one you ask. And so ladies in real estate, you should know everybody, that should be a goal, you should be time blocking time in your week, to reach out and get to know everybody so that every business owner in your community knows you. That’s awesome. All right. So let’s bring it back to one more topic.
And that is self care. That’s busy. I mean, real estate life, you know, HGTV makes it seem like it’s so glamorous. But those of us you know, I’ve had my license since Oh, wait, although I’m not in production. Now. It is hard work. It is a lot of time. So how do you take care of yourself and make sure you don’t burn out?
Hmm. Sometimes. Sometimes it’s really hard, especially when you’re a one woman show. So I think that my number one goal, like I said for next year is to prevent the burnout. What am I going to do when I have so many trains, I have to give up some of my my chores, or I guess, my control? Maybe so and enlist others to help me and I need to know who that is.
But that’s not what I do now.
So now for self care. I would say it’s more of you know, travel booking, booking a trip. I do get my toes done every other week without fail. That’s a must. That’s a must do. I wake up extra early. I do try to go to bed early as well. I do wake up extra early so that that first hour of the day, I’m drinking my coffee. I’m having me time prayer time. I’m making my list. First thing of the day, I think that’s super important. It makes me feel better. Like I have control of my day.
Oh, self care.
Well, even what you said is good. I mean, that’s like your guilty pleasure, quote, unquote, the fact that every other week I’m getting my nails done my child. Yeah, so that’s like your thing for me. I mean, it’s like just getting outside. And I hate the cold. That’s why I’m moving to South Carolina early next year, but I love getting outside. And the older I get the more I love being outside. I love digging in the dirt. You know, I don’t mind dirt under my nails. I am not a nails kind of girl. Um, you know, so Oh, my guilty pleasure is watching some old sitcoms on Hulu, or Netflix. Like I just love to escape. No.
Girls, I’m a Golden Girls freak. Let me tell you. Oh, yeah.
Well, I’ve been going through lots of different shows wings right now. I’m hot on The Bob Newhart Show because I just have a simple time when I was like, I don’t know, nine or 10 years old and now so anywho All right. Well, this has been great. So anything on your heart to tell you know your sisters in Christ who may be listening, any advice just generally anything you you care to share before we wrap up?
I would just say that you know, always when you’re going through a tough Time, it really feels like you’re alone and that it’s never going to work out. I’ve had that, that, you know, hurt in the depths of your stomach because you can’t pay a bill. And I’ve had literally I’ve been negative in my bank account. And I’m if you I would just say that you just consistently trust and always pray. Never give up on that, you know, God, God never gives up on you don’t give up on him.
There, there’s always a way out. I’m just keep believing and especially believing in yourself. Because a lot of times when I look back, it was me. I was always afraid I wouldn’t let go. You know, there’s that mean that I love. It’s a picture of Jesus holding the teddy bear behind his back, right? It’s like this huge teddy bear. And this little girl’s in front of Jesus. And she’s holding this little tiny teddy bear. Right? And she doesn’t want to let the tiny teddy bear go. And Jesus is going to give her this big giant teddy bear. So I always envision that, you know, just just let it go.
Move on, have trust. Yeah, because God’s got bigger and better for you. That’s excellent. All right. Last question. This is called the sheet is extraordinary podcast. So I always end each episode asking my guests to share about an extraordinary woman in your life. And what makes her extraordinary.
Oh, an extraordinary woman in my life. I would say, you know, right now, I’m really missing. As I shared earlier, my mom is mentally handicapped. So I always felt like I was the mom in our relationship. And my grandparents, my grandmother’s, I was super close to and they’re deceased.
I really don’t have ladies, unfortunately, in my life that that I’m close to and that empower me that way. And I would say in my life, it was my who I call my Nana, who was the mother figure to me and she was really everything she was now I’m Italian. She was at Italian. Good, great stature of a lady. Just mushy. And she just really kept me in check in you know, taught me to cook and taught me everything he taught me about giving really she was everybody was always coming to her looking for advice. And she was always giving and that was my my lady for sure.
Wow, that’s beautiful. That’s beautiful. Well thank you Rhonda this has been a powerful episode. Believe me and when you look at when you listen back to this, you’re going to be like oh my gosh, Is that me? Amazing advice that I have no doubt will impact so many. So thank you so much for coming on the show.
Thank you for having me.
Oh, absolutely. Ladies, listen, thank you for listening. And if you enjoyed this episode, please make it a point to pause right now. And leave us a rating and a review your feedback means so much to me. Also feel free to find me on social I’m at at Judy Weber live I want to know what kind of topics you would like me to talk about in future episodes.
And if you know of an amazing lady and extraordinary lady that I need to interview make sure you tell me a better Alright ladies, we will see you next time. Wow Take good care.