You’ve done all the prep work. Processes are in place. Leads are flowing in. Everyone has their role. Reaching the end-of-year goal seems like it isn’t too far away. You just need time and the perseverance to keep plowing through.
But as the months pass by, you notice a little trend. Enthusiasm for the yearly goals fade, and with it motivation. A nagging doubt creeps in … what do you do to get the team excited again? How do you ramp up production and performance? The end of year is closing in.
Preparing for this post, I took a long moment to think about my past conversations with team leads, agents, brokers, etc. When it comes to motivation, we instinctively fall back to: money = happiness.
Now, we all know yes, money can buy things that make you happy. Who doesn’t love a new pair of shoes? I sure do! Haha. But is money really what motivates us these days?
I learned it’s not always the case. Over the next few minutes, I’m going to share 3 easy ways to motivate your agents … besides a higher salary. The key is culture, coaching, and recognition.
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Culture: The Work Psychology Behind It
Think about the Star Wars franchise. Focus on the Jedi. Use the force if you have to. Every single one of those lightsaber-swinging dudes had a guiding premise.
There is no emotion, there is peace.
There is no ignorance, there is knowledge.
There is no passion, there is serenity.
There is no chaos, there is harmony.
There is no death, there is the Force.
With this code, they understood the meaning behind their actions. They could sense the “why.” And they could place a value on their well-being. It’s something they rallied behind … for the greater good of the galaxy.
Does this mean you need a Jedi code? No, not really — but you do need guiding values for the team to fall back on. It helps them justify their actions and helps them choose the right decision in times of doubt.
Real estate isn’t without it’s sticky situations. Problems arise, and sometimes it means the real estate agent has to take the hit. However, not many are willing if they don’t know how their boss will react or think. Your culture — your core values — help them understand what to do in hard situations.
It helps them give more balance to their inner emotions. No joke. Cited by the Harvard Business Review, when employees know the meaning behind their work, their performance skyrockets. In fact they did a study:
Researchers asked almost 2,500 workers to analyze medical images for “objects of interest.” One group was told the work would be discarded. The other group was told the objects were cancerous tumor cells. The workers were paid per image analyzed. The latter group — the “meaning” group — spent more time on each image, earning 10% less than the “discard” group. The quality of their work was higher, resulting in higher performance.
Hence the value of culture. Striking chords with your team’s inner beliefs helps motivate them and drive performance. When you have one-on-one’s with them, or when you have team meetings, make sure to regularly cite your culture’s core values. It reinforces their drive to succeed.
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Coaching: Have Team Goals. Give Them Personal Goals.
Culture sets the attitude and mentality for a business, on a macro-level. Too often do team leaders and brokers forget their staff have personal goals. There is a reason each and every individual is there with you — and it’s your job to help nurture those goals (just like an agent nurturing a homebuyer).
If you want to keep individuals motivated, you need to understand their why.
Are they motivated to provide for their family? Are they trying to pay off debt? Are they planning an anniversary trip? Whatever the goal is, if they feel their work is contributing to it, they’ll be more motivated and perform better.
Meet with your team members on an individual basis. During these chats, talk through their goals. Are they on track? Have they fallen behind? Offer advice and give feedback. These meetings don’t have to be about work. It should be about them. Their motivation will help the business.
Recognition: A Better Form of Celebration
Success should always be acknowledged. It’s the icing on the cake. You did all that hard work … so treat yo self (as Tom Haverford would say in Parks & Rec). Did your agent just close their first million dollar listing? Balllllerrr! Rent a limo, pick up their escrow check, and go celebrate at a brewery.
Let your team know, their successes will be recognized. They’ll secretly have another reason to work harder, close more deals, and perform better. It becomes fiery motivation, as I like to say.
Motivating Real Estate Agents
People work better when there’s meaning behind it. BoomTown itself has gone through this. Our core values are what keep us glued together — even as we expand to 200+ employees. We know when we face issues, whether they’re work related or inter-personal, we have values to fall back to. We’re constantly striving to help the real estate industry, but at the same time, to nurture our own goals, our own skills.
That drive to get better is reflected in our work. And when we see clients succeed, we love to talk about it. It’s an acknowledgement of our own success. So, don’t forget: Culture. Coaching. Recognition. The three keys to motivation.