If you want to get your new sales recruits off to a flying start, first teach them the essential actions – those necessary to succeed – and then help them formulate a plan loaded with those essential actions. Then follow up and ensure they are being done.
Essential actions are non-negotiable. Do the actions, or leave. Never allow your salesperson to negotiate the actions downwards. MORE
This is exactly what happened with one of our leaders recently. She believed her recruit showed promise. But I wondered if he was just making the ‘right noises’. Until you see the essential actions being performed regularly, you can’t say the recruit is showing promise.
The leader had taken shortcuts with the recruit’s induction. I advised going back to square one, beginning with six essential actions to be carried out in the coming six weeks.
Those actions were:
You might think those actions are tough. Paying for mediocrity is tougher.
But the leader compromised, allowing the recruit to fall short of the prospecting numbers. The highest he got was 68 prospecting calls in one day.
The recruit told the leader it was too hard. He wanted to go into Sales where he ‘guaranteed’ that he would do well.
I told this recruit and the leader that under no circumstances should he be trusted with live leads. If he quit making calls because it was too hard, he would do the same at listing presentations, when the client told him that his fee was too high. He’d lower the fee immediately.
My reasoning? If you fold once when the going is tough, you’ll fold again and again.
This guy didn’t have what it took to be a salesperson, yet. Perhaps further down the track, but not today.
His leader was worried about being on her own. This was the only person coming onto her sales team. I told her this: Financially and for peace of mind…
No people is better than the wrong people.
The moment you compromise on the essential action with your salespeople, you doom them to failure.
You need to answer both questions if you want to build a great team.
There is a difference between threatening team members with dismissal for poor performance and applying positive pressure to perform. In this short leadership session, real estate agency profit consultant, Gary Pittard, says that winners thrive on positive pressure, while mediocre performers detest it. But do you want mediocrity on your team?
In an age where people can be quick to assert their rights but slow to live up to their responsibilities, we at Pittard advise our leaders to hold their people accountable. That is, accountable for doing winning actions, in large quantities, on a regular basis.
In Sales, there are right actions and wrong actions. The right actions lead to a listing, a sale, or a price reduction, and eventually to properties sold and fees received. The wrong actions are a waste of time and don’t lead to results. MORE
In my 25 years as a real estate agency profit consultant, I have had the privilege of working with many winners and I have seen that they share many qualities.
One of these qualities is that a great salesperson never waits for their boss to put pressure on them. They put pressure on themselves to do the right actions. They hold themselvesaccountable.
They apply pressure to themselves so that their leaders never have to.
Canadian trainer Brian Tracy says, “If it’s to be, it’s up to me”. Nobody is going to make you successful. Many people can help but ultimately you and nobody else is responsible for your success.
You have the choice to:
It all boils down to this: you can do, or you can be a person who doesn’t do. If you don’t, it’s nobody else’s fault.
Hold yourself accountable. Your success is in your hands.
It always has been.
Every time clients ask salespeople a question, they are trying to answer the big question they have in their minds, which is, “Why should I list with you?” They are testing you, and you have better pass or lose the business.
In this short real estate sales session, real estate agency profit consultant, Gary Pittard, says that most salesperson never reach a professional standard because they either shun training, or they do not study for understanding. The difference is success or failure.
Take a minute and look around your agency. Everybody looks busy, don’t they? But are you making money? Are they making money? If you’re not careful, you may mistake busyness with production. Remember – not all activity is created equal!
In all jobs, including yours, there are only two types of activity:
ACTIVITIES THAT LEAD TO RESULTS AND ACTIVITIES THAT DON’T. MORE
Leaders must be vigilant to ensure that time is devoted to productive activity. The art is to do so without micromanaging.
Activity designed to make people look busy is what we call PTBB – Pretending To Be Busy. To limit PTBB activities, leaders must ask questions like “What are you working on right now?”
If the question is met with a pause, or an “Um”, you have probably just caught out a PTBB. When you identify that a person is working on a PTBB activity, give them a productive task to do immediately, like prospecting.
Whether it’s your receptionist, a secretary, a BDM, a property manager or a salesperson, there are activities that will lead you closer to results, those that are routine, and those that waste time.
Results-linked activities are priority number one. Get these done first. Routine is second on the queue, but never at the expense of doing a results-linked activity.
Waste-of-time activities should not be done by anyone!
Often our offices are called ‘work’ – “I’m going to work” is a statement people use to describe where they are going – the office – but ‘work’ in this context is not a noun – it’s a verb. You don’t GO to work, you DO work.
Activities that waste time are not work. They are an indulgence that comes from unclear job descriptions and a warped sense of priority. Leaders, we must look out for such activities and stamp them out. We must get our people focused on results-producing actions.
That is, if we want to make a good profit.
One of the top three greatest real estate excuses of all time is: “You can’t find good people!” In this leadership session, real estate agency profit consultant, Gary Pittard gives a compelling reason why most real estate agencies fail to build winning teams: they are unattractive companies.
Never utter those profit-killing words, “You can’t find good people”. The first step in building a winning team is to believe that you can find winners. The second step is to make your company more attractive to potential recruits.
To people of integrity, their word is their bond. They do what they say, when they said they’d do it, how they said they’d do it. People of integrity realise that those who promise are in debt.
When I say that our word should be our bond, I mean in matters large and small.
If we say we will do something, we must do it, even if we don’t specifically use the word “promise”. If leaders and salespeople forget this, their reputations suffer. MORE
Leaders in particular should follow through and be seen by their people as doing what they said they would do. If you want your people do be consistent with their words and actions, lead the way. Then, and only then, you have the right to insist that everyone else on your team does the same.
I have never seen a winning team where there is even so much as one team-member who fails to do what they said they would do. If team members break their word to their leader, you can bet that they are letting clients down too.
Deliver on promises
Seeing as many clients as they do, salespeople can say they will do many things, but often don’t deliver. Some salespeople don’t see these statements as promises, but if you tell a client you will do something, you’ve made a promise. And if you don’t deliver, a client’s faith in you erodes.
It is a good habit to set a deadline for the delivery of each promise at the time you make it, and then enter the promise in your diary. If work must be done prior to delivering the promise, enter a date for that work to be done so you are ready by the deadline.
Be a hero
It’s better to say, “I’ll get back to you about that by 3 pm tomorrow. Does that work for you?” than it is to say, “I’ll get back to you about that”. Giving the client a time and asking if that time is suitable means that the client will not be expecting to hear from you until 3 pm the next day. Get back to them before then and you’re a hero. Get back later and they are disappointed in you.
Provided you enter the promise into your diary immediately upon making the promise, you won’t forget, you’ll deliver your promise and you will impress the client.
Customer service can so bad these days that it doesn’t take much to impress clients. One of the best ways to impress is to be consistent with your word.
A promise is a promise. Deliver on what you say you will do, and you will be regarded as a reliable and dependable professional – the kind of professional that gets plenty of referrals throughout their career.
People who are successful in their chosen fields do more of the right actions every day, over the long term. In this short real estate sales session, real estate agency profit consultant Gary Pittard says that, while most people know what the right actions are, many seem incapable of performing the right actions for a sustained period. It appears that long term is the killer.
Instead of trying to focus on the right actions over a long period, Gary suggests focusing on the right actions for just one day.
In my experience as a real estate agency profit consultant, I’ve seen many real estate businesses in grave financial trouble, and many spend themselves into oblivion. For businesses to survive and thrive, they must be built on solid financial foundations.
This is explained in depth in our four-day presentation of the Agency Profit System®, but here are some important foundations that all leaders should strive to have in place. MORE
Individuals and households that spend all they earn are just one pay-day from bankruptcy. Businesses are no different. If you aren’t saving, you have no buffer for lean months.
Expenses under control
One office spent $112,000 in a single month on premium advertising. That’s what we call “Double-D” – Dumb and Dangerous. This money was spent because the agency’s salespeople did not know how to list properties without committing the agency to massive advertising spending. If you think the agency recouped the expense through Vendor Paid Advertising, you’d be wrong.
If a fraction of that money was spent on training the team, they would list properties without the requirement for massive advertising or fee discounting. This agency’s expenses were out of control – but they are not alone.
Borrowing to buy investments is perfectly fine, provided you don’t extend yourself too far. I personally do not feel comfortable with more than 30% debt-to-equity, excluding the family home.
‘Dumb Debt’ is the worst debt. Dumb Debt is borrowing to buy anything that goes down in value – car leases, equipment leases, credit card spending where the debt is not paid out at the end of each month. Spend too much on Dumb Debt and saving will suffer.
Family home fully paid
When you go to bed, owning the roof under which you sleep is an essential goal. Pay out your home, and don’t use it as a gambling chip by securing it against business spending.
The sooner you start investing, the sooner you become wealthy. Save and invest in quality real estate and blue chip shares.
Businesses haemorrhage huge amounts through team incompetence. Every time salespeople lose listings to the opposition, it costs the agency dearly. It would be the biggest financial loss in most real estate offices, in addition to the damage caused to the company’s reputation by having incompetent representatives.
Training is a bargain by comparison to losses through incompetence of the team and the leader.
Income is not profit. If you want to maximise your profit, you need to take your focus off turnover and put it onto profit. You need profit systems to ensure that this happens. This is why so many agency leaders use Pittard’s Agency Profit System®: profit does not happen without systems!
Profit is not a dirty word!
Buildings without solid foundations crack over time. The same is true for businesses. Profit is not a dirty word. There is nothing wrong with making a profit, provided you do so honestly.
In fact, if you are a business owner, it’s your duty. Why else did you go into business?
Have you ever noticed how some people say five sentences when a ‘Yes’ or ‘No’ would have sufficed? Some people speak a lot but say little. Real estate agencies cannot afford to have team members like that.
In this short leadership session, real estate agency profit consultant, Gary Pittard, says that salespeople who waffle confuse clients and lose business. Salespeople who waffle to their colleagues lose respect. Cut to the chase – every team will benefit from some straight talk.
Some people say you must love your work. I agree that this is desirable, but it’s not always realistic. Pursuing this ideal could cost you a great career.
Author Larry Winget says you don’t have to love what you do, but if you accept payment to do a job, whether you love it or not, you have a moral obligation to do it well.
Let’s face it, a sales job is tough. When you first start this career, chances are high you’re not going to like it, or at least not every aspect – prospecting for example. But this is irrelevant. Like the task or not, some tasks are essential to success and longevity – prospecting for example! MORE
When you start, you make a lot of mistakes. Failure is a necessary step in the learning process, and a necessary step in the success journey. I often say, “It’s hard to love something you suck at”. So it can be in the early days of a sales career.
But don’t quit too early because you don’t love it. Given time, study, practice and a high level of the right actions, success will come. And with success, love for the career will blossom.
I don’t want to sound like an incurable romantic, but I do love Sales. But I didn’t when I first started.
How did I turn doubt and distress into love?
Do these things and success is assured. You will begin to see successes – firstly small ones, then larger successes as your skill builds.
And from these successes you may come to love your work. Sure, you won’t like every aspect of your work. Who does, honestly? But just as it’s hard to love something you suck at, once you stop ‘sucking’, it’s hard not to love a career that gives you so much opportunity to help people and earn a high income. Remember, good things take time.
It all begins with not sucking!
Written and video reviews are essential. To quote one winning salesperson: “These days, clients go online and do research on you. At the listing presentation, they verify what they already know”. She’s right. Real estate agents who pay little heed to client reviews will lose many listings to their opposition.
And those reviews must be genuine – never ‘fake happiness’. In this short sales session, real estate agency profit consultant, Gary Pittard, says that there is no need to ‘fake happiness’. Obtaining reviews from happy clients is not at all difficult.