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Archive for course writing

Teaching adults effectively: How are you doing it?

This month, I’m writing a blog series to help trainers write great courses or take those courses and make them ‘live’. From writing courses for most of the major real estate franchises, and training thousands of real estate instructors, I’ve found some undeniable truisms. Here’s one:

 So, let’s look at these truisms and write our courses to reach the adult learner effectively. This is one of the areas we address in my resource on how to write a course (click here to see it).

How Adults Learn and Retain: How to Weave These Principles into your Course

Benefits to teaching to these principles in your course:

  • Adults aren’t bored (!)
  • Adults feel important
  • Adults pay attention
  • Adults retain more
  • Adults feel protected; low risk environment
  • Adults like you better
  • Easier for you to teach!

The Big Principles to Keep in Mind

Adults learn through association:

We learn what we already knowa Two fellows teaching community colleges instructors how to teach shared that one with me. How insightful!

How do skilled presenters accomplish this in a course environment?

Do you relate what you’re teaching to the adult’s prior experience? Or, do you jump right into a complex theory and expect your students to keep up…..

Adults learn by doing

Life is truly ‘do it yourself’. Do you have your students doing an action in class? What happens in your course to assure the students are doing? How do you know they can do whatever it is you are teaching them to do? Observe it in class, of course!

Retention soars when adults do and say something at the same time. How are you using this principle in your course?

How much doing of significance do you have planned in your class?

To live by my own principle, I just increased the amount of ‘student’ teaching I have during my Instructor Development Workshop. The students loved it and showed me I can get them into action faster and more often than I thought!

Big principle: How we retain information is directly related to how we acquire that information.

Would you say that instructors are most concerned with short-term, or long-term student learning?

Adults learn from each other

Use teaching methods to encourage information exchange.

How do you assure students are exchanging information? Are you using various alternative delivery methods (not lecture) to assure students are learning not only from you, but from one another?

Adults learn through repetition

Use several approaches to the same concept/process. Does your course offer review and repetition to assure students are really learning?

Adults learn through rapid recall

What rapid recall methods have you seen used in the classroom? Do you do this so you ‘tie up’ each section before you move on?

Adults seek to satisfy individual needs

Experience levels vary greatly. How would an instructor find out each student’s individual experience levels prior to getting into the classroom? When I’m teaching my Instructor Development Workshop, I provide each attendee a ‘pre-conference survey’ at registration, so I can see the needs and level of learning of that person. Even the words used give me some powerful hints about each attendee’s priorities and beliefs!

Adults learn practical information.

They want information and skills to directly apply to their lives–right away.

How have you seen instructors assure that the information is not only applicable, but that the student applies the information to their challenges, while in the classroom? Are you assuring that each of your attendee translates the course information/skills into action plans?

Go back to the course your teaching or writing and see if you are adequately addressing how adults learn. Doing so is one of the attributes of a real course, not just an ‘information overload!

Honestly: Are the Courses You Teach Boring? (Even to YOU?)

Come join me to put these creative, fun teaching methods into your course. Attend Beyond the Basics: Advanced Skills to Make that Course Come Alive, coming up April 23-24 (approved for 7.5 clock hours in Washington state).

We’ll be working with parts of a course you bring. We’ll put in some great methods and then practice to see how they work–a unique opportunity!

There’s no other course like this–and your chance to get some individual and small group coaching to make your teaching and your course a huge success! Click here to see the course and register.

Creating a course? Here are the 6 ‘ws’ you need to answer to assure you have a course–a good course!

Trainers: Here are some tips on how to gain focus on that great course you want to create–that course that’s been bouncing around in your head for years! In my next few blogs, I’m going to give you some specific tips to make your course truly ‘teachable’. Why? From teaching for over 2 decades, I’ve found many courses are not actually very ‘teachable’. In fact, they are either

1) Streams of consciousness

or

2) Information dump

If you’ve picked up someone else’s course’, and tried to teach it, I’ll bet you know what I mean. Unfortunately, too many times, courses are written from an ‘information organization’ perspective, not a teaching perspective. In fact, because so many instructors have expressed frustration, I’ve just finished a resource on how to write a course (see below).

Gaining Focus for your Course

Let’s look at the 6 W’s that you should answer before starting to create your course: The What, Why, Who, When, Where, What Next of your course, so you can clarify what you want to accomplish and gain focus. As I give you these, take time to answer each of these questions.

What course do you want to create?

That’s certainly okay in a course, but not as a whole course. Instead, you have a ‘persuasive presentation’. Sometimes we want to impart our beliefs to people or make them ‘be’ in some way, but that’s not a course. (Be responsible, be customer-service oriented, etc.) Now, it’s true that can be one of the objectives of a course, but, just getting in front of people and telling them how they should be won’t make it as a course!

Do you see this course as an overview? An introduction? Comprehensive? A series?

Why? What are your compelling reason(s) to create this course? Be sure it’s not just all about you….

Who is this course for? What segment of the population do you want to address? One of the mistakes we make is not narrowing our focus to the level of expertise of our desired target audience.

What is their level of learning in your topic right now?

Who would not benefit from your course?

Do you need to narrow your scope for this course?

Where (type of delivery)

Is this course ‘live’? Is it distance learning? Will it be given as a webinar? Your decisions will direct you to the delivery methods (how you will teach).

Note: If you haven’t taken my Instructor Development Workshop, this would be your first step. Or, you can take the distance learning version, Train the Trainer.

Armed with the answers to the 6 W’s, you can gain a laser focus for your course, and go to the next step of course creation.

Expert Guidance to Write that Great Course!

SSS_coverIf you’re serious about writing that great course, this is the resource for you. Step by step, Carla Cross, who has written courses for Re/Max, Better Homes and Gardens, Keller Williams Realty, GMAC, Royal LePage, and CRB, shows you exactly how to create your course and your outline. And, for those Washington state instructors, she shares tips on how to get your course approved for clock hours.

Check out How to Write Your Course with Substance, Sizzle, and ‘Sell’.

This resource is digital. You will get access immediately.

Bonus: Keys to a Killer Introduction. Most introductions are boring! Find out how to make yours sparkle AND inform. Plus, your introduction should make people enthusiastic about hearing you and adopting your ideas. This eBook and videos will show you how to make your introduction really work for you.

Includes:

2 instructional videos

Teaching: Here are 3 principles to make those small groups work right.

This month, I’m doing blogs on teaching–specifically, how to change it up and quit lecturing your way through the day. I know we have thousands of dedicated real estate instructors. But, we seem to have thousands of bored students! Why? Because most of our courses don’t have a variety of teaching methods built in. So, in this series, I’ll help you build in ‘relief’ from that awful, boring lecture and change it up to keep your audience interested and learning.

The Alternative: Divide and Conquer

In the previous blog, we explored the ‘divide and conquer’ method of teaching. One of the configurations of the ‘divide and conquer’ is the task force: Small groups of people working on a common problem. In this blog, I’ll show you a few things to do with that task force to assure it goes right. Most of these principles would also apply to dividing people into groups, too, for role play and other small groups (I’ll write a blog on this later).

Three Principles for Great Task Forces

  1. The task must be something the attendees can do without further information. For example: If you’re teaching Instructor Development, you’ll probably have a section on ‘how adults learn’. You can easily subdivide this topic into 3 or 4 sections. For example, you could have ‘obstacles to adult learning’. You already know that your attendees can come up with several obstacles to adult learning–they have either experienced them or observed them.

What wouldn’t work in a task force: To ask your attendees to tackle something that they need additional information or training to accomplish. For example–if I were teaching a group of would-be instructors how to facilitate a task force, I couldn’t ask them to write down all the steps to facilitate until I’d taught them the steps.

2. One task per group: If you have several groups, assign only one task per group.

What wouldn’t work in a task force exercises: Assigning all the tasks to all the groups, or assigning the same task to every group. Why? Because the first group to report will report pretty much everything the other groups have come up with–an exercise in frustration! (There is a way to do this, which I’ll discuss in a later blog).

3. Put no more than 5 people in a group, so people have a chance to interact easily with each other, and everyone gets to have input.

What wouldn’t work: Putting more than 5 people in a group. The ‘outliers’ can’t communicate and only 2-3 people will end up contributing.

When To Use a Task Force

Task forces work really well at the beginning of a session, to break up your lecture in the middle of the section, and to summarize learning at the end.

Where will you employ a task force in your teaching? Let me know!

Come join me to put these creative, fun teaching methods into your course. Attend Beyond the Basics: Advanced Skills to Make that Course Come Alive, coming up April 23-24 (approved for 7.5 clock hours in Washington state). We’ll be working with parts of a course you bring. We’ll put in some great methods and then practice to see how they work–a unique opportunity!

Challenge: How would you teach this? Without lecturing!!!

In a month from now, I’ll be doing a training on how to make your courses come alive. Why? Because, unfortunately, most real estate courses consist of someone at the front of the room droning on…..and on….and on. Now, I don’t think that’s the instructor’s fault, to an extent. I think it’s the fault of the course writer.

The Challenge: Few Courses Written for the Instructor to Teach

You innocently pick up the course outline (it’s big and heavy, of course), and you start talking. How long does it take for your audience to quit listening and play with their phones? 3 minutes? 10 minutes? Probably no longer than that.

It Doesn’t Matter if You’re an Expert–or an Expert Lecturer

In truth, our attention spans have shrunken–and continue to shrink. So, we instructors just can’t talk through that outline and expect to keep the audience’s attention. But, what do we do instead? In this series of blogs, I’ll show you how to take part of that outline and make it more interesting.

In Most Cases, YOU Have to Also Put in the Teaching Methods

Since few courses have these teaching methods written in, you’ll have to develop the skills to take that boring outline and put in various and varied teaching methods. Find out how to do that in my upcoming course: Beyond the Basics: Advanced Skills to Make that Course Come Alive, coming up April 23-24 (approved for 7.5 clock hours in Washington state).

Divide and Conquer: Using the Task Force

One of the reasons our real estate audiences get antsy is that they don’t like to sit quietly. But, you’ve probably seen the room get out of control if you encourage wild, unabated discussion! So, how do you help them talk and still control the situation? Divide and Conquer. Instead of having them all talk in open discussion, use the small group method. That’s called ‘task force’, because you’re literally putting them into small groups to work on a task they can accomplish.

Here’s an example of how to take the facts in that outline and throw them to the audience to reveal. Think of it this way: Instead of you–standing up in front of everyone and telling, and telling, and telling, you ask small groups to tackle parts of your topic and come up with solutions.

The Example of a Task Force

I teach Instructor Development Workshop, (coming April 9-10 in Bellevue, Wa), which certifies instructors in the state of Washinton to teach clock-hour approved courses. In one part of the outline, the topic is How Adults Learn. I have 3 pages in that outline that innumerate all the ways adults learn, including obstacles to adult learning.

Your turn: If I were to give you that outline and ask you to teach it, how would you proceed? You might just talk through those 3 pages, reading what I’d written. Hate to tell you, but that would be so boring! (And you wouldn’t learn what your audience does and does not know!) Instead, here’s how I do it.

Using the Task Force to Explore ‘How Adults Learn’

Here’s how I teach this section. I divide that topic into 4 areas: How adults learn, the obstacles to adult learning, the attributes of the real estate adult learner, and effective retention techniques.

See the slide from my Insructor Development Workshop I use that gives instructions to the task forces here.

Here are 2 Keys to doing Task Forces:

  1. The tasks must be something that the attendees can accomplish from information they already have
  2. The tasks must be meaningful to what you’re teaching

Task Forces Must be Meaningful: And a Springboard

Look at the last sentence in the slide. That’s my ‘springboard’. I’m asking the attendees to figure out ‘what does it mean to me?” That’s the relevance of the exercise.

In later blogs, I’ll give you tips on using this and other ‘divide and conquer’ methods to make your teaching–and their learning–much more enjoyable! You’ll get great reviews and return customers!

Let me Help your Instructors Put Pizazzz into those Courses

There are 2 ways I can help you: If you’re in Washington state, come to my class April 23-24. Or, invite me to your company anywhere in the US or Canada and I’ll customize a special session for you. I use YOUR outlines and we actually put in the methods and teach them. You’ll get much better attendance at your courses, have excited, enthusiastic instructors, and find it easier to get return business!

Contact me to find out how I can help. Let’s make your courses shine!

Here are secrets to fill your classroom with enthusiastic attendees–and gain raving fans!

Having trouble getting them to training? Authored by one of our Senior Career Coaches, Jodi Sipes, M. A., this blog shows you how to market your training to attract your agents and get them excited as students! Jodia��s advanced education in adult learning, plus her years of experience creating and implementing exceptional training for new agents, gives her a unique perspective. Here are invaluable tips as you take action to control your income in these shifting markets. Youa��ll make your training an awesome recruiting tool, while making it effortless to implement training week after week.

Dona��t be Dull! Set up Themes to Pique the Curiosity and Up the Attendance

Dona��t just list the topics you are going to present. Create themes. For example: Listing month! New Year Planning! Spotlight on Buyers! Now that you have the over view of training and components put together, make sure that they compliment and support each other. For instance, when you are coachingA�new agents with the Up and Running in Real Estate program, you should have supplementary training/practice days in your office. This is also a great place for experienced agents to grow as trainersa��plus, their time will be saved, as they will teach everyone at once, instead of having a bunch of new agents knocking on their door with questions all the time.

Get Creative! Give it a Provocative Title

Dona��t just list the topic. (How exciting is ‘All about Listing’…..) Instead, get creative. Make the topic interesting, even provocative. Put a new a�?spina�� on the topic. For ideas, read the names of programs given at your state and national conventions. Some of the topic names are really creative!

Give it a Double Punch for Double Learning

Dona��t just teach the curriculum. Find ways to expand that subject from all the angles. For example: When you have a new agent training section on listing presentations you should have a top Realtor from your office give a demonstration on an effective listing presentation or an effective CMA. When you work with Buyera��s presentations, have a lender come explain the issues and requirements Buyera��s face. Lead follow up and business planning create a good time for software vendors to show their programs. Marketing sections offer an opportunity for affiliates to show how they can support agents, and for vendors to show how their products can support agents. These supplementary classes are great for all agents of all levels.

Alternate Formal with Casual for the Unexpected

Ita��s also great to incorporate casual (brown-bag luncha��agent a�?Rapa�? session) support groups to encourage agents to share their ideas and frustrations. This creates a a�?teamworka�? feel to your office, and helps agents through current challenges. When the manager shows up at these for the first part, agents can get their questions answered in a format that answers these for many agentsa��saving the manager time!

One of your Biggest Problems Solved: Getting them to Attend Enthusiastically

Here are 3 surefire ways to get your agents to attenda��and get recruits to attend, too!

1)A�Leverage Affiliates
Title representatives, mortgage brokers, escrow companies, home inspectors, and others can support your training calendar by adding lunches and other incentives to improve attendance. The best benefit is that this is a win for everyone, and forges bonds between agents and affiliates. The benefit for the affiliate: they get in front of your agents and get to know thema��building trust. The benefit for the agents: they get hands-on training from people who are a�?out there doing it now,a�? and they get to know a variety of affiliates so they can decide if they would like to do business with them.

2)A�Create Positive Expectations for their Accomplishments
For new agents, create a booklet that details all the classes you expect them to attend in their first year. You can use this to set mutual expectations at the time of hiring. Check off each class as they complete it, and celebrate their growth! Everyone should celebrate when they get their first listings and sales, too. The booklet helps them keep it all straight, and is a tool for you to keep track of their progress, as well.

3)A�Be Lavish in your Recognition/Improved Performance
Have drawings or special prizes and recognition at meetings for the agents who grow to a new level through the office training. Use their testimonials when you market the classes to your agents. When an agent admires the performance of another, they will want to model what they do.

Remember that putting together world-class training is a process, and will not be all you want it to be right away. It takes planning, support from your agents and affiliates, and time to catch on and develop. You can grow and improve each year!

Support for your Training

We are here to support your agent development systems. Talk to us about coaching you in developing world class training. Youa��ll go further faster, and have time to do all the other management duties you know you should be doing!

Can You Join Me for my Innovative Instructor Development Workshop?

Why not polish your presentation, teaching, and facilitation skills, gain 15 clock hours, and have a great time at it? I’d love to work with you to do all these things. Click here for more information and registration. See you May 22!

P. S. New–We also put creative teaching methods into YOUR course–while you’re in class.

If you teach: Do you know the process to break people into small groups and run a successful small group exercise?

In less than 2 weeks, I’ll be doing my unique version of Instructor Development Workshop. * (May 22-23 in Bellevue, Washington). One of the most challenging, yet most effective teaching method, is using small groups. These can be task force, case study, and role play. I say ‘most challenging’, because these small groups frequently go wrong. Why? Because the facilitators don’t know how to organize, run, and summarize them correctly. So, recently, I added this 12-point checklist to use to assure your small group exercise will go as you want it to go!A� Grab the 12-point checklist at the end of this blog.

*This course fulfills a qualification for you to teach clock-hour approved courses in Washington state, and it includes 15 real estate clock hours.A�

Why Not Just Talk Your Way Through your Class?

In a word–because it’s boring!

In my Instructor Development Workshop, I demonstrate several creative methods. We try them out, and then you try them out in a sample teaching situation. Rather than ‘winging it’ by trying out these methods on ‘real people’, you have a chance to watch me and then take part in several teaching situations.

Application to Your Course

Another new feature I’ve added to my Instructor Development Course is more application of these teaching methods to your course. Unfortunately, most courses aren’t written with instructor direction. In fact, they’re not even written as courses. Instead, they’re ‘streams of consciousness’. It’s very hard to take all those words and make them into a teaching course!

So, I now have you bring a module of the course you want to teach–or are teaching–to our Instructor Development class. We spend some time deciding which teaching methods would fit into that section of your course. You walk away with a much better grasp–and concrete skills–to make that course come alive!

Join Me for a Unique Instructor Experience

Even if you’ve taken other instructor development courses, I promise you’ll get new strategies–for teaching, for presenting, and for course creativity. Plus, we have a lot of fun doing the course, too.

Grab my 12-point checklist for running those small group exercises here.

Join Me for Instructor Development in May!

Why not polish your presentation, teaching, and facilitation skills, gain 15 clock hours, and have a great time at it? I’d love to work with you to do all these things. Click here for more information and registration. See you May 22!

audience sleepingHere’s how to know if you’re wasting your time training. Really!!!!A� Just because you ‘have training’ doesn’t mean it’s effective.

Every company says they ‘have training’. Yet, whether you’ve been in business 2 days or 20 years, you’ve probably felt frustrated that those hours spent in class–listening to someone at the front (the ‘expert)–didn’t do you any good. There are reasons training doesna��t worka��and herea��s how to make it work for you, so you dona��t waste precious hours in training rooms–either as an instructor or as a student.

Dona��t forget: Get the Analysis of your Sales Performance Skills worksheet at the end of this blog. This is great for managers to use to plan training needs and for agents to use to assure theya��re refining the skills that make a difference.

Training: Taught Right or Not?

Training doesn’t work because it’s not taught right–and the people in the class aren’t doing what needs to be done for training to make a difference in their lives.

A�Herea��s what training needs to help you every time youa��re in class:

A�Training must have action inside class to be effective for you. If you’re the instructor, you must use ‘alternative delivery methods’ to get those students into action in class. What are alternative delivery methods? All those methods used to train that aren’t lecture. (see below).

A�What do I mean?

A�I mean we have to look at real estate as a a�?performance arta��, not a a�?knowledge pursuita��!

Big question for you: Think of your last 3 trainings. What were you doing in class? Listening to the a�?experta��? Or, were you putting to work what you were learninga��while in class, so you could get valuable feedback before you a�?practiceda�� on real peoplea��your clients?

Here’s Effective Training

What you need to be doing in class to assure you can do it a�?for reala��: (these are alternative delivery methods)

If ita��s appropriate, you need to role play (like answering objections, giving a listing presentation, etc.)

If appropriate, you need to differentiate (like finding mistakes in a purchase and sale agreement).

If appropriate, you need to practice the actions in class and then go out and do it with a a�?real persona��a��the clienta��and come back and tell how it went (practice a listing presentation, do it a�?for reala��, and come back to class and refine it).

None of these things happening in class? Make it work anyway. Take the a�?actionablea�� items you learned in class and go do thema��for reala��within 3 days of going to class (otherwise we only remember 10% of what we heard!!!!!). Now youa��ve made your own action plan.

Trainers: I did a series of 5 videos showing how to make your training work. See them on my uTube channel.

Note: I’m a bit shocked when I hear that those who took a ‘Train the Trainer’ course didn’t learn any of these methods. Just learning how to drone on (in lecture) just doesn’t cut it with today’s audiences–or with assuring your students actually can apply skills!

A�Real Estate: Performance Art or Knowledge Pursuit?

A�Leta��s be honest: Do you know someone in your office who seems to know everythinga��but doesna��t sell a stick of real estate? Sure. Thata��s the problem with treating real estate as a a�?knowledge pursuita��. It has little to do with results.A� Our profession is a performance art. How you perform in the fielda��with real clientsa��determines your success.

Big question for you: Which kind ofA�real estate professional are you? A a�?performance arta�� agent or a a�?knowledge pursuita�� agent? A�Which is easier to become?

Your Training Should Resemble a Piano Lesson

As a long-time pianist and teacher, I know intimately that, if you dona��t practice, you cana��t play (or you play badly)! Think of effective training like a piano lesson. You practice outside class. You come prepared. You get tips and modeling from your teacher. Then you practice in class with your a�?coacha�� watching and listening. Then, you a�?go out in the fielda�� and practice. You come back ready to perform for your coach again. Thata��s effective training.

Here are 3 things that dona��t work in training (and things for you to avoid):

  1. A�Listening for a long period of time and thinking you can do it (you already know that, from your experiences, right?)
  2. Thinking most company training will a�?do ita�� for you
  3. Relying on a�?on demanda�� video. Many large franchises are providing video on demand training. Brokers may be relieved that this is going to take training off their plates. I wish.

Unfortunately, video training can provide very limited production results. Why? Because people dona��t learn much by watching video. Yes, they learn a little. They observe someone else doing something; they get information. But, they dona��t have to take action.

When youa��re ready to get results from your training, youa��ll be ready to treat your training like the power tool it really can be.

Want to see an effective training program? Check out Up and Running in Real Estate.

A�Dona��t forget to grab that Analysis of your Sales Performance Skills here.A�A�A�

And, be sure to check out my uTube channel for those 5 videos on alternative training methods.

Want to Be Approved as a Clock-Hour Instructor in Washington–and Learn from Carla?

IDW_coverGet approved for teaching real estate clock-hour approved courses. Receive 15 clock hours of continuing education credits. Learn from the only Washington’s only National Realtor Educator of the Year. Gain invaluable strategies; worth so much more than just clock hours or certification!

New! Bring the course you want to teach and we’ll apply new teaching methods for you. Get strategies to be the engaging, creative instructor you know you are!

2018 scheduled courses:

May 22-23, 2018 in Bellevue, Wa.. A� A�A� Click here for more information and registration.

Fall course: Oct. 23-24, 2018 in Bellevue, WA. (registration link to be included later).

Need to get approved as an instructor right away? Order our distance learning courseA� Train the Trainer. Fulfills the same requirements, has the same curriculum, has 15 clock hours. Take this course at your own speed and fulfill the requirements to become a Wa. state approved clock-hour instructor.

Your knowledge of my part of the business helped me to recognize ideas I can use in title insurance and escrow. Judy Williams, Chicago Title

Carla is fantastic! I will always be appreciative. Kim Emmons, manager, John L Scott, Maple Valley, Wa.

Instructor is 100% competent. Her passion, professionalism, and knowledge of the subject is passed on to her class. Mike Kerwin, Keller Williams Realty

Bonus: 30% discount on 3 of Carla’s training resources to attendees.

Space is limited. Don’t miss this opportunity!A�Click hereA�for more information and registration.

 

training signTrainers: Is your training really a ‘hot mess’?

This month, we’re focusing on training. Why? Because you can recruit your heart out, but, if you’re not developing each agent to his/her potential, you’re not retaining! (and you have a revolving door……)

Doing Everything Wrong? Or Right?

a�?Oh, no. Ia��ve been doing EVERYTHING wrong!a�? Thata��s what one of my attendees groaned after I explained the training calendar evaluation tool I created to help trainers assess their training programs. Too often, I see training programs thrown together from various cobbled (and ripped offa��.) sources. Sure. You can do that and call it your training program. But, it makes for a disjointed, shattered a�?picturea�� of your company and culture. And, it doesna��t work to get what you wanta��more production and profits.

Here, I want to share an analysis tool I created that will help you see the good and challenging parts of your training program and tune it up to really make a difference in your company.

Do You Really Have a Training Program?

When asked this question in a National Association of Realtorsa�� survey, the majority of the brokers said they did have a training program. But, what does that mean? What does it encompass? How would I know you had a real program? Here are the three questions to ask yourself to see if you really have any type of cohesive, coherent training program focused on the results you want:

1. Is your training program a part of your business plan?
2. Have you created a training calendar so you know what youa��re doing and when youa��re doing it?
3. Could I look at your calendar and see exactly why you had scheduled those eventsa��and that they had cohesiveness to your a�?big picturea��?

Evaluate your Training Program Now

The training calendar evaluation tool I mentioned above is invaluable to see how effective your training program really isa��and to target the changes you want to make so youa��re training with purpose.

At the end of this blog, Ia��ll share it with you. First, leta��s walk through it.

What Kind of Training Are You Offering?

Look at your training calendar. If you dona��t have one, simply take a 3-month calendar and write in the training youa��re providing.
Whata��s the ratio of business-producing vs. business supporting training modules? When I see some training calendars, I can see why their training is not increasing productivity. All their modules are concerned with business supporting subjects (technical knowledge): home inspections, the law of agency, websites, social media, etc. Thata��s all nice, but what does it directly do with creating productivity? Herea��s the path to a sale:

Lead generation

Interviews/qualifying buyers and sellers

Listing homes/showing homes

Selling a home/listing sellsA�A�A�A�A�A�A� $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

If you want to increase productivity and profits, your training calendar needs to reflect your training in these business-producing areas.

What are you training to that will make a real difference in your productivity and profits next year? Put that in your business plan.

What Does Your Profit and Loss Statement Tell You to Train To?

Take a look at your P and L. Whata��s your ratio of listings sold to sales? Do you like that ratio? Would you like it to be different? Do you want more sold listings? If so, start training to that. When I took over a failing office, I saw the ratio of listings taken to listings sold was a miserable 30%! So, I started action-focused training on the whole listing process. I had them role-playing their hearts out. I did a listing presentation play-offsA� In short, I trained them specifically to change that ratio for the better. By the end of three years, our a�?conversiona�� ratios were 85%–the highest in the area.
What is your training accomplishing? What do you need it to accomplish? Want can you measure?

Who Are You Training?

We segment our markets when we design our marketing plans. We need to segment our a�?marketa�� for our training plan, too. In this case, our a�?marketa�� is our agents. When I ask seasoned agents about whether there is a training program in their company, they say a�?yesa��. Ita��s for the new agent. What? Are those seasoned agents in the office chopped liver?

Click hereA�to grab the training calendar evaluator.

Tell me: How would you rate your training, on a scale of 1-10, 10 being fantastic? What can you do to improve it?

Tip: See my resources on training and writing courses at www.carlacross.com.A�

A for objection busterThis month, I’m spotlighting training.

What grade would you give your new agent training? An A–or a D? How valuable is your new agent training to your agents’ success ? I dona��t mean, did they like it, or did they like the instructor…. Youa��ve been in the business awhile. I want to know how valuable you think your agents found it to launching their real estate careers.

Ia��ve done surveys to managers and to newer agents about the value of their new agent training. I found a great disparity between what the managers thought, and what the new agents thoughta��six months after the training. So, Ia��m gathering information from the sourcea��you and newer agentsa��to find out what you found valuable, and what you wish you had included in training.

Here are some things to think about and answer–as an agent (you can survey your agents, too):

  1. How well did your training prepare you to give effective listing and buyer presentations?
  2. How could it have prepared you better?
  3. How well did your training prepare you to answer buyer and seller objections?
  4. How well did your training prepare you with visual buyer and seller systems so you appeared to be a a�?seasoned agenta�� to compete with the best?
  5. How well did your training prepare you with the self-confidence to work with difficult buyers and sellers?
  6. What did you want your training to do for youa��before you entered that training?
  7. After having been in the business awhile, what do you wish you had experienced during the training?
  8. Did your training lay out a business start-up plan, and did it train and hold you accountable to that plan until you got results?
  9. Did your training require you to demonstrate enough competency that you could effectively work with buyers and sellers?
  10. How well did your training prepare you to write and negotiate purchase and sale agreements?
  11. How well did your training prepare you to gain loyalty and buyer agency agreements?

What Else?

Please comment on the positives and negatives of your training, so I can better help managers and trainers prepare newer agents for the ever challenging markets and sophisticated buyers and sellers. Thank you!

Do You Do Evaluations After Each Day of the Course–and at the End of the Course?

If you don’t, you’re not learning the truth about your training. Do good evaluations and find out what’s going on. Don’t settle for doing training just to have training!

cropped UltimateREtrainersGuide_front(3)Is Your Training as Good as It Could Be?

If your training isn’t turning out winners, you need a new approach. Get dozens of training ideas and strategies in this unique guide. Learn more here.

blue ribbonsHow many of these 10 high pay-off tips do you have in your training now?

I’ve designated June my ‘Trainer Appreciation Month’, so all my blogs spotlight training. Thanks, trainers!

Too many times we provide training because it helps us attract people to our company. Thata��s getting only a partial benefit! If you apply the 10 tips for training below, you will see your training pay off in increased productivity, lessened expenses, and much higher customer satisfaction and retention levels.A�

1. Clarify what you want the student to doa��during class, and after class. (These are your training objectives. They help you create focus and stay on track–and not to go over your desired time frames! See more in The Ultimate Real Estate Trainer’s Guide).

2. How well do you expect the student to do that activity? Establish competency levels. (Do you want them to be able to limp through a listing presentation, or do a masterful job?)

3. Make training a process, not an event. It takes 6-8 times of hearing something to begin to retain it! (Do you ‘dump the whole load’ because it’s faster and easier, or are you concerned with real learning?)

4. Space your training for a�?spaced repetitiona�?. Skills cana��t be learned in one marathon session. If your objective is to develop skills, you must create layered, spaced, repetitious workshops.

5. There must be rest and reflection between practices. Scientists have proven that skills are not retained unless there is at least 4 hours between skill-developing sessions. (Do you provide time for this within your training sessions?)

6. If ita��s skills training, three quarters of the time in class should be practicea��not teacher lecture.

7. Culturize as you train. The training should be from your point of view, your method of action, and your opportunity to create a strong culture within your training modules. (Is your culture built in, or have you copied trainings from other ‘training gurus’?)

8. Get feedback from the skills training in your meetings. It reinforces the skills and encourages others to take part. Take your skills to a higher level with additional masterminding.

9. Use a facilitation approach, not a lecture approach. Instead of delivering the information via lecture during class, have the students read articles, interview beforehand, listen to audios, etc. (Are you using other ‘delivery methods’ instead of just old boring lecture?”

10. Build in accountability. The student should be highly accountable for practicing the skills and for competency learning. (Do you have accountability as part of your training sessions?”

How many of these 10 high pay-off training tips are you already using? What do you need to change or incorporate to make your training pay off in real, measurable results?

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A�A Free Resource to Help You

I’ve just finished a 5-part series on using other teaching methods instead of that old, boring lecture too many of us have relied upon.A� Take a look at my uTube channel and watch your training results soar!