What to Know Before You Hire a Real Estate Coach
9 out of 10 respondents said their business climbed by 10% or more during their first year with a coach, and more than half said the increase was 25%+ according to an Inman News study of agents using coaches.
Hitting a plateau in your growth? Struggling to structure your business? Facing burnout? Failing to grow your database and build better relationships?
Whether you’re new to the real estate game, or a seasoned expert, there are myriad reasons to seek a mentor or some objective expertise. Although some remain skeptical of real estate’s heavy hitting “personal trainers” and their often evangelical following, A whopping percentage of real estate agents report using a coach. So…
What can a Real Estate Coach do for you?
Ideally, the right real estate coach will be someone who has dealt with everything you’re going through right now and can advise you on things that will be coming in the future and making sure you’re headed in the right direction. Top coaches are typically experienced industry veterans who understand what it takes to get in the game and be successful.
Hiring a coach means you put that experience on your side and receive personal consultations, support, and someone to keep you motivated and hold you accountable.
Coaches often have different specialties too. With the shaman-like status and cult-like following so many of the industry’s top coaches receive, it’s hard not to get swept up into the hype. But is a real estate coach right for you? The answer lies in aligning your business needs with the right expertise.
While it can be tempting to jump into a program because “agent Joe in Atlanta tripled their business after one year of coaching,” or “Agent Jane took the stage at our company conference to say how one coaches program has literally changed her life,” like so many important decisions, this one requires doing some homework.
What to look for in a real estate coach
Make sure the coach or company has a proven track record of successfully helping other agents to reach their goals. The best coaches are often the ones who have been in your shoes, so dig a little deeper to find what their background is, what they specialize in, and if you think they’d be able to have a deep understanding of your business, your problems, and offer insight and advice.
Usually, ample information should be available on their website to see who they’ve worked with before, testimonials, and success stories. These are great ways to find folks in similar situations to yours and see how coaching helped them overcome their obstacles.
While you want to check off “industry and coaching experience” first, the immediate next concern is how up-to-date their practice is in this digital age. We know technology and marketing are changing every day, but are the methods and teaching of this coach? They understand the marketing needs of modern real estate agents. Make sure you’re working with someone who can help you leverage technology to boost your marketing, streamline your work, and grow your business.
A passion for problem solving
One-size-fits none. While many businesses can benefit from the same advice, most likely you’ll maximize your return from a coach if they are well versed in your unique business and able to identify potential pitfalls to avoid, problems to overcome, and strengths to play up. Like a soccer coach should know the talents and weaknesses of his players, and build success strategies around them, a real estate coach should do the same for your business.
When you’re researching coaches, many will offer a consultation to evaluate your business. Take advantage of this! Fill them in on what you’re doing for lead generation, relationship building, and team systems. Take their feedback and see if they “get it” and can target areas for improvement immediately.
Different coaches and coaching companies offer a wide variety of on-demand support and availability. Depending on your business needs and your own personality, you may need someone who is on-call for questions and issues as they arise, or you may prefer to take it slow, with routine scheduled sessions on a weekly basis.
Sometimes simply attending a training course, workshop, or seminar might suffice for a certain amount of time. Either way, make sure you’ve looked into what is offered and make sure you’re comfortable with the level of support they offer.
As we all know, sometimes “fire drills” happen, and you want to know you’ll have help if you need it.
Some coaching can even take the form of attending seminars and training courses, or something as simple as subscribing to a marketing podcast and implementing the strategies of seasoned vets like Gary Vaynerchuk. Be sure to investigate all possible offerings that might meet your needs.
It’s also worth noting that with the larger coaching companies, you’re signing up for a “program” developed by a famous coach, but you’re ultimately working with a coach that’s under the head honcho, and effectiveness can vary.
Expertise and on-demand help aren’t free, and agents can shell out quite a bit of cash for coaching support (but if you’ve chosen well, the ROI should more than make up for it). On average, agents using a coach spend between $300-$1000 a month
If you’re just starting out, and trying to keep a very tight budget, consider a more affordable, local coach who can help you start to grow your business before jumping to the industry “coaching franchises” with their hefty fees.
Beware of anything that sounds too good to be true or a “get rich quick scheme.” Some parasitic companies are out there to sucker agents into long-term contracts for programs that don’t deliver, so always do your homework and verify the company or person you’re looking to work with.
Is a Coach Right For You?
Many real estate agents gravitate towards coaches to seek accountability, motivation, and expert consulting. It’s a second set of eyes on their business, an expert opinion, or a kick in the pants when they need it. Although many remain skeptical of the effectiveness of most coaching practices, most who use the, seem to agree that the effectiveness of their advice also depends on the receptiveness and commitment level of the one being coached.