This article is the fourth in our “Back to Business Basics” series – one that is aimed at helping you achieve greater success by using models outlined in Gary Keller’s The Millionaire Real Estate Agent. The MREA gives you the “how” to achieve your goals and shows you where to focus your time to achieve the greatest impact. That’s because successful agents have left clues: which of their actions led to their desired results. The MREA is a compilation of those clues.
Since its original publication 17 years ago, the MREA has sold 1.3 million copies – withstanding market conditions and the test of time to help both new agents and seasoned pros alike.
Stop reinventing the wheel. Let the MREA be your guide.
The Organizational Model
The first three models in the MREA taught how, as an individual agent, you could create and build a successful real estate career. The Organizational Model outlines how to exponentially grow your business by leveraging the talents of other people to handle administrative, buyer, and seller duties.
“The Organizational Model of The Millionaire Real Estate Agent,” shows the staffing positions you should add, see Figure 42 on page 197 of the MREA. The basic job descriptions are outlined in Figure 43 on page 200 of the MREA.
Hiring – When do you begin?
The Organizational Model says: When your focus on leads and seller listings has created more business than you can handle alone. If you hire before you need to, it will slow your business’s growth, not accelerate it. Once you’ve established your need for help, be patient and disciplined when it comes to hiring. Focus on hiring the right person for each position you add.
Remember, “Red Light, Green Light”: you must hold every dollar you spend on staffing accountable for results. Staff compensation is a fixed cost that needs to be kept as low as possible to handle unexpected income shifts. The Budget Model identified salaries and compensation as one of the Big Two, consuming about 78% of your operating expenses.
Don’t be discouraged by this number.
The expense is an INVESTMENT in your business future. When you hire the right person for the right job, train them to do that job, and then consult with them properly, your business will grow beyond measure.
“None of the Millionaire Real Estate Agents we have worked with or interviewed claimed to have reached their current level of success alone.” – Gary Keller
Your First Hire: Administrative Assistance
Your administrative assistant will be the first position you should fill – and the next one or two hires might also be administrative. With talented hires, you’ll be able to focus on lead generation, listing, and selling and leave the rest to administrative staff.
Be choosy about your first administrative hire. Don’t hire a real estate agent because their ambitions might run counter to yours. Also, don’t hire a friend or family member who needs a job, thinking of your first administrative hire only as a short-term assistant. Instead, your first administrative hire should have the capacity – desire plus ability – to take on new tasks and responsibilities. Ideally, they should have the potential to run your real estate business.
Talented administrative staff will create and implement systems and identify and employ tools for your business. Through these efficiencies, hiring your first administrative staff should double your sales volume. They help you protect your lead-generation focus time.
Only when you reach the point where you have more clients than you can handle on your own should you add sales staff.
There are two general types of employees described in the MREA:
- Cul-de-sac talent does their current job very well. You can count on them to do what you tell them.
- Capacity talent, on the other hand, do their current task and functions well plus have the desire, ability, and intelligence to take on more. They do what you tell them to do and look for opportunities to do what else needs to be done. Eventually, capacity talent will be able to replace not only your doing but also your thinking responsibilities. They create opportunities for you and your business.
Talent will push to get answers, share your goals, continually raise the bar – and will push you constantly. They’ll also cost you more in compensation, but the trade-off is you can expect substantial returns on the investment you make in them.
“When you surround yourself with talent, your life will never be the same. Hiring a truly talented person can take your business further than an entire busload of less talented ones.” – Gary Keller
Train and Consult – Why and How?
The Organizational Model doesn’t start and stop with hiring the right talent; you must train and consult them too for the highest return on your investment. Begin by training staff to understand their job, as well as develop the necessary skills and systems that allow them to do their job at a high level. Then, consult by meeting them each week to review goals, priorities, and progress – this will also build accountability – an essential for their growth.
Training doesn’t stop here. You will need to provide consistent training to help your hires improve their skills and grow while empowering them to take decisive action. The biggest hindrance to this is micromanagement or “hover mode.” When you do this, your employees will feel obligated to run everything past you for approval and you will feel it necessary to check into everything they do. This isn’t where you want to be. Instead, take up these 10 principles to empower your people!
And, if you get discouraged or feel training and consulting seem too time-consuming, consider the alternative: talented individuals who underperform, become frustrated, and leave instead of trying weekly consultations or mutually agreeable solutions to resolve the issue.
Immediate Next Steps for Success
- Read the book: For in-depth tactics and strategies, purchase a copy of The Millionaire Real Estate Agent. Read it, then re-read it. If you lead a team or market center, save big by purchasing the bundle. Follow the plan and models to create your path to success.
- Explore leverage resources: Login to KWConnect for resources, tools and templates to help you find the best and brightest talent and learn how to set up your hires for success.