If you follow this blog you know that we are dogged in our belief that the pathway to earning great money in real estate is by being a listing agent.
If you agree with our philosophy and have added Vulcan7 to your prospecting and business development arsenal, there’s a good chance that realizing the kind of results that you had hoped for. If so, congratulations.
But, in this post, we’re going to speak to those agents who, in fact, might be successful, but might also feel like they are overwhelmed by their growing to-do list of responsibilities.
Another important theme of this blog is the importance of investing in your career. Whether that’s through hiring a coach or attending seminars or using technology to your advantage (like Vulcan7). But another, often-overlooked aspect of investing in your career is building a support team around you. In this regard, there are two types of support:
- Vendors, which can include your title rep, your lender, your home inspector, your professional photographer. In short, anybody in your orbit who is responsible for helping you execute the details flawlessly so that you can focus on producing revenue.
- Direct reports, meaning those individuals who you hire to work with you on a daily basis and help you keep things organized and moving in the right direction.
Obviously, if your transaction count is still low (let’s say, less than 20 per year), you may not have the cash flow that allows you to hire direct support. This means you’ll have to be extra diligent about communicating with your vendors so they know your expectations.
But for today’s post, we’re going to focus on the importance of hiring an assistant, or team of assistants to help run your business.
The number of transactions you’ll need to achieve before hiring someone out-of-pocket will vary depending on the market you’re in. It could be 30 per year or 50 per year. Regardless, you’ll know when you get to the point where you’re not able to focus on the details. When you do, it’s time to hire your first assistant.
Your first assistant MUST BE a jack of all trades, your go-to person who ensures that everything is running smoothly. To that end, your first assistant could handle:
- All paperwork associated with listings, offers, addenda, signatures, escrow, etc.
- Coordinating marketing for your listings, including, but not limited to getting photos, handling signage, calls to set up showings.
- Customer service and complaints. You never want a prospect or current client to wait more than a few hours if they’ve called with a complaint or a problem. In effect, your first assistant serves as the voice and face of your business on an on-going basis.
As you continue to grow (and we know you will), your next level of paid support will likely be a TRANSACTION COORDINATOR. This is the person who might handle:
- Incoming offers and negotiating counter-offers
- Any addenda for transactions
- Details such as home inspections, title coordination, and ensuring a smooth closing.
Finally, at some point (maybe 100 transactions per year), it may be time to hire an OFFICE MANAGER. This is the person to whom you delegate responsibility for keeping the machine running smoothly. Everyone reports to the Office Manager who is responsible for:
- Ensuring that leads aren’t falling through the cracks.
- Make sure that all client needs are being met.
- Holding the other team members accountable for agreed-upon performance metrics
Remember, the top performing agents in this business always focus on maximizing production (i.e. generating transactions). The less they focus on many of the details outlined above, the more they can focus on generating revenue. Which means, they need to embrace investing in the right support and, most importantly, learning how to DELEGATE effectively.
In the words of Helen Keller:
“Alone we can do so little; together we can so much.”