Are you starting to get more leads than you can handle? Or are you burning out from wearing too many hats running your business? Although being busy may be a good problem to have, it could quickly lead to disaster if not handled in the right way. You probably already know that the next step is to grow a team, but what is the best way to do this? Where do you even start?
BoomTown advocate Ben Kinney built his own successful team from the ground up, and learned to adjust it as his business grew. Based on his experience and insights, we’ve put together a step-by-step hiring guide on how to build the real estate team of the future.
Evaluate Your Needs and Set Goals
First ask yourself, what is the driving need or goal for building your team? Are you trying to increase your revenue? Do you want to free up more time to spend away from the office? Whatever the reason, determine your goals from the beginning so that your hiring decisions are aligned with your needs.
First Hire: Admin or Assistant
Once you start to feel the load getting too heavy to carry on your own, your first hire should be an admin or assistant. This will free up your time so you can focus on money-making activities like setting more appointments instead of being bogged down by all the small nitty-gritty details.
If you aren’t sure you have the resources to maintain a full-time in-house admin, another option is to hire a virtual assistant. Many BoomTown users, including Ben Kinney, use MyOutDesk for their virtual assistants who handle Craigslist posting, paperwork, and other small tasks.
Ben suggests waiting until you are consistently closing 25-35 deals a year before hiring an assistant. If you aren’t yet hitting his mark, you may not be able to comfortably afford this hire, and may need to take a step back until you (and your numbers) are ready.
Second Hire: Buyer Specialist
Are you letting buyer leads fall through the cracks? The main reason you need to build a team is so that you can refer and give leads to others once you can no longer handle all of them on your own.
Buyers usually require more time and attention than sellers. The main reason to hire buyer agents is so you can focus more of your energy on acquiring listings.
Ben advises that for every 30 leads, you can afford one buyer specialist, who typically handles 2-4 transactions a month.
“Systems make the ordinary extraordinary.” – John Maxwell
Make sure you have a good system in place to keep your agents accountable and your business on track to meet your goals. Spend time training your agents on team processes so your clients receive amazing service and nothing slips through the cracks.
Get Some Digital Help: Technology Tools You Need To Start A Real Estate Team
Third Hire: Listing Specialist or Lead Generation Support
Once you have enough buyer agents and you get tired of going on listing presentations, the next step is to hire a listing specialist, who can typically handle 100-150 transactions. Ben says he starts by paying them a base salary, plus a bonus for every transaction.
Another important piece of the real estate team building puzzle is what Ben refers to as “lead generation support.” When agents start to get too many leads, they start focusing on the “hot” leads and may neglect those who are further out in the buying cycle.
Sometimes referred to as a “lead scrubber,” this person makes initial contact with leads to qualify and nurture them, and sets appointments once they are ready to speak to an agent. While several different lead distribution models, most of our clients have had success using the Inside Sales Agent (ISA) Model.
What is an ISA: Everything You Need to Know About Inside Sales Agents
Last Hire: Your Replacement
Your last hire is your replacement so you can enjoy life. If your situation is that you wouldn’t get paid if something were to happen to you, then you have a “job”. You have a “business” when it can keep going regardless of whether you’re there or not. This is why building a team is important to the success of your business.
Take Your Time, Hire Right
41% of companies said that a bad hire in the last year has cost them at least $25,000. – CareerBuilder
You can’t build a solid team around the wrong people. A bad hire can not only ruin your team environment, it can end up costing you more money in the long run. Avoid this costly mistake but taking your time and hiring the right candidate the first time.
While skill set is an important factor to consider when hiring, dig deeper to learn about the candidate’s motivation and worth ethic. Share your business goals and see if their goals align with yours.
How To Be a Good Leader
Don’t forget that building a team means that you’re in charge of everyone. Before you embark on building your team, set some time to realize your company’s mission and set core values. Steve Harney stresses the importance of communicating your “why” to your team, so everyone understands what their role is and how it aligns with your mission statement.
What Does Good Leadership Mean to You? Increase Your Team’s Efficiency with Inspiring Leadership
The thought of going from being a solo agent to managing an entire team may be a daunting task. However, no matter what stage of your business, everyone will hit a point where they need to grow in order to break glass ceilings and thrive. Taking it step by step will make the process of growing your team manageable and less overwhelming.