One of the biggest trends in real estate over the past few years is the rise of the team. With the right people working the right system, a team allows agents and admins to handle more business, maintain a better work/life balance, and offer more complete customer service.
However, it’s not always easy to find the talented real estate agents you need to build a successful team. Hiring the wrong people just to meet your headcount can present a big mistake. Here are six ways that top-producing teams are getting it right and when to know if it’s the right time for you to start your own team.
The best real estate agents want to join a brokerage where they can grow and learn with your organization. Your team should be a place where they feel it’s safe to learn, even when that means sometimes making mistakes.
The Five Doors Network has used this philosophy to become one of the top teams in Keller Williams’ expansion network.
According to Jennifer Schiff, VP of Operations, a main reason they’ve been so successful is their ability to move quickly and try new ideas and processes.
In his bestseller Moneyball, Michael Lewis chronicled how in the early 2000s the Oakland Athletics pro baseball team consistently beat franchises who had triple their payroll budget. The A’s secret was hiring players with narrowly defined skillsets. These players were not highly paid nor highly sought after stars but, rather, those who had proven they could consistently fill a niche. When playing as a team, the A’s won far more games than conventional wisdom would have predicted.
The same principle applies when considering agents and support staff for your team. It’s important to have your structure and roles narrowly defined first, before looking for the people best suited for those particular roles.
One agent — usually the team leader — may concentrate on generating leads. Another will assist only buyers, while another works only with sellers. Administrative roles are just as specialized.
Nicole Solari, a team leader and managing broker of Northern California’s high-producing brokerage The Solari Group, says:
Demonstrate how your brokerage is a thought leader in the industry by sharing useful information with posted site and blog content that covers a range of topics, from lead generation to deal closing tips.
Jeff Cohn, a coach and team leader of Omaha’s Elite Real Estate Group, does a great job by posting hours of video training each month through his site and via YouTube. Because Cohn freely shares the strategies that have made his team successful, the agents he attracts as prospective new members already have an affinity for the way he works.
Surveys have shown that money is important to people making career moves, but it’s not the most important factor. People want to be part of something special and invest their career where they can develop their full potential.
Vija Williams, leader of The Vija Group in Seattle, WA, which brought in more than $80 million in sales last year, has structured her team so that her agents are constantly developing their skills.
Having the right digital tools can make the difference in your team’s performance. In their transaction platform alone, Five Doors offers more than 200 templates and 300 documented workflows. With so many moving parts, using dotloop for Teams as their transaction management solution has been integral to keeping hundreds of agents and admins working in sync.
Cohn also has found that using the best technology is a great way to attract new agents:
Effective team leaders know that members need to support each other through success and failure, which also means caring enough to hold each other accountable.
Real estate coach Tim Harris says that a great team leader keeps a transparent scoreboard, highlighting goals and opportunities for growth. It’s the leader’s job to have the uncomfortable conversations with members who aren’t meeting their measurable goals.
Recruiting the right people for your team will always pose one of the greatest challenges to your brokerage, but it also presents the biggest benefit if done right. Concentrate on building the right culture, tools and processes, and the right talent will naturally fall into place.