Raftbuilders Overcoming Fear

We hear the battle cries: agents sinking weeks into showings, losing bidding wars by a stinging $10k, promising prospects slipping through your grip into the hands of another agent, the eerie quiet months where tumbleweeds roll by instead of leads.

“Where is my next sale going to come from?” you scream out into the void.

But in the echo, you’re mocked with images of other agents doubling sales production, winning awards at their brokerages, and even expanding their businesses. You’re constantly reminded, no matter how hard you try to attribute their success to luck, popularity or worse – nepotism – these agents are simply doing something differently. 

But what is it? 

Put simply, it comes down to our relationship with uncertainty. Having worked with thousands of agents and entrepreneurs from diverse backgrounds, industries, and experience levels, we’ve come to recognize a pattern in those who achieve top 1% level success. 

We call them “Raft Builders”

Raft-builders understand there will never be perfect conditions for business. In fact, the limitation is embedded in the language. High-level success is not conditional – it’s stable, predictable, and independent from merciless economic waves.

When business is slow raft builders do not panic – they prepare. Shifting into a creative headspace they strategically implement systems to build a foundation that supports higher volume. 

In other words, raft builders don’t scale back when business luls; they prepare to scale up. 

On paper this sounds reasonable. In reality, it requires an unshakable belief that your potential is greater than your fear. It means taking risks when it’s extremely uncomfortable. It means not knowing whether you’ll sink or float, but building the raft anyway and setting off in the direction of your goals. 

This is the big hidden secret. If you want high-level success with a saleable business and passive income, you have to be willing to confront fear and shift into your peripherals to gain sight of the resources you can use to defeat it. 

In the March and April issues of Buzz Digital Magazine, we awarded 22 agents for their exceptional year-over-year production and growth. Every single one of them overcame unique obstacles to move towards their very different goals.

The stories below are examples of what it means to be a raft builder, but more importantly, that there’s no one size fits all. 

Phylicia Walsh Century 21 Leading Edge Realty Inc 

163.33 % Year over Year Increase in GCI

KBCC Relentless to Rise MVP Award Winner 

Phylicia Walsh is a woman with a dream and a mother of three. For her, the most important thing is being able to run her business, build her dream and also have the time and energy to be present in raising her family. It’s a lot for anyone to juggle, yet, the year she welcomed her third baby, she also saw over 2.5x growth in her business.

“It was an intense year for me, because I just had my third baby and I was limited in time and energy. I learned that I didn’t have to stop dead in my tracks and choose one path over the other. I just had to adjust. I have power over my business. It really came down to building the right mindset, having systems in place and surrounding myself with innovative people to help me grow.” 

BOBBY OATES, Century 21 Infinity Realty 

+65% Increase in Homes Sold Year over Year 

KBCC Relentless to Rise MVP Award Winner 

Licensed in 2021, Bobby joined the industry just in time for a major market dip. Instead, he sold 65% more homes in only his second year as an agent. Some of Bobby’s top priorities are being able to cheer on his hyperathletic daughter at all of her games and conquer his own challenging fitness regimes.

This is what raft building looks like for Bobby. He’s focused on increasing his capacity, and as a result is becoming a stronger and more abundant version of himself. It’s reflected in his growth as an agent.

“I’m still fairly new to the industry with just under 2 years experience, yet coach Sandra along with the other coaches have allowed me to grow my business and improve my work/life balance. I never miss any of my daughter’s sporting events, and I’m becoming a healthier and more mindful individual. For me it’s not just unit sales and GCI.  KBCC has helped me build a better life.”

GARY HIBBERT, Our Neighborhood Realty Inc. 


Gary and Darlene Hibbert started their business off the tails of the 2008 recession. 

“Our decision to build a business back in 2010 was born out of a desire for a better life and to leave the golden handcuffs of the corporate world. The question was how do we build a recession-proof business? The answer at the time was to work with investors – they buy when the markets are up, down or sideways.  

When the tides turned and fast-moving upward interest rates shook the market in 2022, our business model took a massive hit and it was a wake-up call for us. We realized we had neglected to plan for contingencies and it allowed us time to reflect on what to do next.

It was at Kathleen Black’s event, late in 2022, that we stumbled upon a concept that would change how we did business moving forward – the simple concept of an Inside Sales Agent. Without hesitation, we embraced this foreign but well-known concept, and hired a highly skilled ISA and embarked on the process of hiring new agents. No longer confined to primarily assisting investors, we are in the process of training our team to help home buyers realize their dreams of owning a home as well.

I am immensely proud of my teams’ openness to evolve and adapt in the face of difficulty. It hasn’t been an easy road but we’ll continue to move forward and be open to old proven ideas that are new to us.

I want to express my appreciation for the systems and processes Kathleen and her team have created. It has been instrumental in helping myself and my team adapt to the fast-changing market. Thank you for your invaluable support and guidance.”

Jeremy Van Calaurt, Real Broker

150% Year over Year Increase in GCI

KBCC Relentless to Rise Award Winner

Jeremy’s business dived after experiencing year-over-year success, and he knew that sinking or swimming depended on how willing he was to take a risk. It wasn’t an easy one. He went deeper into the water and bet on himself to rise.

“I had 150% gain last year in my GCI. That 150% gain has enabled me to move into a new house and build my studio. It’s enabled me to hire an assistant and participate in lead gen programs that are bringing me consistent results every month. It even enabled me to get married to my wife.

I looked back and thought to myself, wow. I was in a rough spot before I took that risk, and I took that risk because I knew that I needed to align myself with people that made sense for who I am. I cut the old coach and I got Kathleen Black. I couldn’t pay for her – but I still did it. It was a huge risk. I listened to my intuition and it was right – and man did it pay off.”

1 Minute Takeaway: 

The struggle is not unique. Your vision, your purpose and your reason to overcome it is. You have to embrace uncertainty and recognize that for every obstacle, curve ball, or shift in the market, there are also proven systems and resources sitting in your peripherals waiting for you to claim them. 

Start training your Raft Builder mind with Kathleen’s video series on The 6 Principles of Raft Builders. These 6 principles are the foundation to create a thriving life and business as a conscious, empowered leader. 

You can access tips to streamline your success here and tap into Kathleen’s top 5 pieces of advice for aspiring entrepreneurs, here

If you’re ready to take a leap of faith into award-winning growth, jump on a complimentary strategy call with us. Let’s look for ways to grow your business.

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