If an agent has proven that he or she is a good fit for your culture and has worked successfully for your office, you’re far better off keeping them versus trying to find someone new with the same positive attributes.
You can find plenty of studies about the true cost of worker turnover. There are hard costs like recruiting, training, and equipping them, as well as soft costs like the risk of replacing them with the wrong person or lower morale among their remaining co-workers. While experts may debate the exact figure, all agree that replacing an employee runs into the tens of thousands of dollars. Even though agents are independent contractors, the principle is the same.
Any effort spent to keep good people is worth many times the cost of finding new ones.
Here are three retention strategies that you as a team leader or brokerage owner can employ.
Before launching an initiative to keep your agents, it’s important to know exactly why you’re losing them in the first place. You want to patch the hole in your boat before you bring in a bigger pump.
Even the most loyal members of your team will have breaking points that will make them want to look for a new job. Some of the common ones might be:
For your team or brokerage, find out the reasons why your last few agents left and start by shoring up those areas.
Even more important than money, having a purpose is the biggest reason people choose to stay at a particular job. They simply want to grow professionally at an organization that’s aiming at some sort of bigger goal.
It’s important to have a clearly stated mission for your team or brokerage and then clearly and frequently communicate that to your agents. (At dotloop we have our values painted in giant letters on the walls, but you don’t have to be that extreme.)
Once you know your unique mission, you must be able to describe how each of your individual team members fit into that larger plan. And make sure they know about it.
Ideally, your agents–who were recruited to fit your culture and are working toward a common goal–will become friends as well. A workplace that shares all this kind of bond is a place where agents will want to stay.
This might seem like odd advice to put in a post about retaining people, but there are some people you are better off without.
Agents leave real estate offices all the time. That’s just part of the business. Even with training and support, some people are just not cut out for real estate. These will leave to find other work.
Then there are those who are effective agents when measured in sales but are corrosive to your team. For whatever reason, they can’t get along with other members or they’re not happy with your structure.
These are the people you are better off without because they will eventually cause you to lose your ideal agents. If they say they’re going to leave, let them go. Or you may need to ask them to go.
It’s vital that you spend your time engaging the right people on your team and you can’t do that if the “wrong” people are taking up your time and resources.
Retaining your best people should be one of your top priorities. Since an organization can’t be effective until it has the right people onboard, agent retention is something you should be thinking about and planning for every day.