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You Don’t Whistle For Winners

I couldn’t begin to estimate how many times real estate agency leaders have commented about another team saying something along the lines of, “She is lucky – she’s got a great team”.

It’s almost as though they think that all you need do is stick your head out the window and whistle, and winners will come running. You don’t whistle for winners, and luck has nothing to do with building a winning team.

The first step to building a great team is to commit to doing so. It requires hard work over several years to develop a team of peak performers.

After commitment come systems. Your recruitment program must be systemised, methodical, and stringent.

It’s crucial you get this right. You can lose a lot of money very quickly by paying salaries to salespeople who don’t make it. Your recruitment process must help you identify likely winners and reduce the risk of hiring those who won’t make it.

And if you think that commission-only is the best option, let me ask you one question: “How has this worked for you so far?

Attracting commission-only people is no easy task. Unless they are competent, write great figures (most don’t), and are paid a fair split on the commission – a split that allows you to cover expenses and still make a profit – you will lose money on them, too.

If you want to build a winning team, don’t think hiring, think RECRUITMENT.

The Business Dictionary defines hiring as:

The act of giving someone a job; an employer taking on a new employee.

Building a team of competent winners requires more than that.

Here’s the definition of Recruitment:

The process of finding and hiring the best-qualified candidate for a job, from within or outside the organisation, in a timely and cost-effective manner. It includes analysing the requirements of a job, attracting candidates to that job, screening and selecting applicants, hiring, and integrating the new employee to the organisation.

Recruitment is a systemised process that weeds out unsuitable applicants and assists in selecting those who are most likely to make it.

Here are the elements of a successful recruitment system for real estate salespeople:

  • Attraction – you need to fill your recruitment pipeline with candidates looking for a career in Sales. There is far more to this than just advertising on Seek.
  • Sorting systems – you need systems to help you sort those who won’t succeed from those who possibly could. Nothing is definite but sorting systems will help you identify the best candidates.
  • Pre-start testing – don’t leave it to ‘gut instinct’ – test candidates to see if they have the temperament and aptitude for Sales.
  • Selection systems – you must be decisive and offer employment once your systems identify a potential winner. Winners won’t wait for procrastinating leaders.
  • Induction systems – bring recruits onboard with clear guidelines on what you expect from them in actions, study, and responsibilities.
  • Ongoing training and coaching – after inducting your recruit properly, training and coaching is an ongoing responsibility for all leaders. Neglect this and your promising recruit will likely become a mediocre experienced salesperson. And our industry has too many of those!

If you are too busy selling real estate, you will ignore recruiting, recruiting systems, and leading the team. This is sure way to build a mediocre team, if indeed you build a team at all.

Would you take on a seller and not nurture that relationship, consciously moving the listing toward a sale?

Then why would you take on a recruit and not nurture that person, working him or her toward greatness?

You don’t whistle for winners. But they are out there, waiting for you to attract them.

Gary Pittard

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