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Archive for interviewing

Want to go into management? Try ‘perfect practice’ to get the skills you need BEFORE you jump into the job.

This month, I’m taking what I’ve learned as a musical performer from age 4 to the world of leadership and sales. (And, read my musical quotes at the end of each blog. I hope you’ll get a chuckle!)

Are You Prepared–or Just Hopeful?

My son owns a real estate company, and I help him initially screen candidates for manager and assistant manager. He has created a very detailed job description for any of those applying. Yet, we see two problems:

  1. Most of the candidates do not meet the qualifications the job requires
  2. Even the borrderline candidates have done nothing to prepare themselves for the job

For several years, I was a regional director of now the largest real estate company in the world. One of my jobs was finding and screening leadership. Boy, did I learn a lot! So, with that experience, I’m writing some tips here for those of you who want to step from sales into management (and for those looking for leadership). I’m not going to address the first problem. For example, some candidates just haven’t had job experience of any type in real estate. Although I know there are exceptions, generally, if you haven’t successfully sold real estate, you won’t understand, emphasize and be able to ‘develop’ agents successfully.

The Principle to Prepare: Perfect Practice Makes Perfect

Of course, this principle comes from my world of music. I learned this from my college piano professor.

. That means hundreds or thousands of hours in the practice room, not in performing! (In other words, you have to practice your little heart out before they’ll let you loose in front of discerning people!) It’s drudgery and you wonder what you’re accomplishing. But, this perfect practice pays off when you have to perform in front of thousands and put to use your ‘muscle memory’. When you’re performing all those notes so quickly, you don’t have time to consciously figure out where your fingers should go (just like you do’t have time in an interview to figure out a good interview process!!!!)

What This Means to Your Preparation for Management

Here’s a straightforward job description for a successful leadership-manager:

Find and develop people

Skills you need to effectively develop individuals:

  • Lead generation/recruiting/presentation skills
  •  Interviewing/selection skills (both for agents and staff)
  • Coaching skills (along with a proven coaching approach)
  • Training skills
  • Management: Ability to create and implement a business plan
  • Ability to create and implement a training plan as part of your business plan
  • Ability to create and implement a leadership council, for participative management/ develop that leadership
  • Ability to create meaningful office and staff meetings

How Are You going to Develop Those Skills–Before You Get into Performance?

Go through the checklist/description above. Ask yourself: Have you devleoped those skills? If not, are you going to wait and ‘wing it’ on the job? As a pianist, I wouldn’t dare ever get in front of people to perform without having practiced!

Next blog: Suggestions in how to do that perfect practice in each of these areas.

Managers: Share this blog with those who are interested in going into leadership. In later blogs, I’ll share some analytical tools I’ve developed to help you help others develop their leadership skills.

Just for chuckles:

“I can’t listen to that much Wagner. I start getting the urge to conquer Poland.” — Woody Allen

Do you know the major red flags that can pop up in your interview process?

For the last few blogs, I’ve been blogging about that all-important interview process. We’ve talked about the dangers of ignoring the red flags. We’ve investigated how to discover those red flags.

I just want to hang my license (usually stated over the phone; my response is that I want to hang them…)

What are your commissions? If stated in the first five minutes of the interview (I’ve never interviewed an agent I hired who started the interview that way)

I want a special deal. –also usually stated in the first five minutes of the interview, or even over the phone (what makes them so ‘special’?)

Personally, I have never interviewed a candidate who was a a fit with one of my offices when they led with these questions.

Are these red flags to you? If not, why not?

Other Red Flags

The candidate won’t fill out any paperwork (pre-appointment questionnaire or application)

They drop in and expect me to drop everything to meet with them (they must think we managers just sit around waiting for Their Excellencies to show up)

They’re late to the interview just don’t show up!

They obviously didn’t make an effort to dress in business attire for the interview (I realize this varies greatly by area, but you can tell if the person made an effort).

Specific Red Flags To Notice in the Interview Itself

They won’t answer my questions, or, when they answer, they answer as though it was a question for me to acknowledge

They won’t let me set the structure and tone of the interview (they immediately want to know what I will do for them)

They say they don’t know their production for the past year with any metrics (or, if they do, they won’t share it)

They defend their low production and/or are accepting of a few transactions a year.

They don’t have an idea of how they will change their production for the better.

They seem enamored with the companies that have already hired them in a 15-minute a interview (low self-esteem, anyone?)

They have been sold on the companies that tell them they will provide them leads.

They want to be hired on the spot. They’re not willing to do a 2-interview process, even when I explain the benefits to them.

As you can tell from my red flags, my values and vision drive my judgement about these candidates.

What are your Red Flags?

One broker’s red flags may be another broker’s acceptable standards. What are yours? List five red flags or knock-out factors. What process or system do you have to discover them? Decide whether you would absolutely not hire an agent who demonstrated that behavior, or whether it was a minor flag. Finally, how many of those minor red flags do you need to identify before you rule that candidate not suitable for your team?

Want to streamline your selection process and recruit more winners? Check out Your Blueprint to Selecting Winners. I’ll give you great questions to ask. But, better than that, I’ll show you how to craft questions to discover exactly what YOU”RE looking for.

Think back to the last time you qualified a buyer, a seller, or a recruiting candidate. How much talking did you do? How many questions did you ask? Unfortunately, too many of us go into sales because we’re good talkers. Then, we wonder why we’re not burning up the world selling real estate. It’s because we’re talking too much. The same is true with us managers when we start recruiting/selectingHere are some recommendations on talk vs. listening. You’l make more sales and gain more recruits with these tips.

How Much Talking?

Why? Because you want to gather all the information you can from your client or recruiting candidate. How come? Because you have to have that information do decide

  1. If you want that person as a client or agent recruit
  2. Do you want to do a presentation

Also, if we don’t know their hidden needs and sub-conscious motivations, how are we going to help them make buying decisions?

Here’s what that process should look like, whether you’re an agent or a broker.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

excerpted from The Complete Recruiter.

Why don’t we ask more Questions?

If it’s so important to ask all those questions, why don’t we do it?

  1. We get nervous, so we talk
  2. We don’t have the questions
  3. We don’t understand the significance
  4. We’ve focused on the tell or the sell, thinking that was the way to convince people to work with us

The Significance of the Questions

How do we know when we haven’t been able to sell something to a client? They don’t buy. But, here’s the problem. It’s way too late then. Sure. We can become masters at objection-countering, memorization, and jam it down their throats. But, that’s an awfully old-fashioned way to try to sell, and consumers hate that today.

Closing and then Answering Objections– Not Today’s Best Method

We take all kinds of classes to learn to answer objections and close. We think that we’re supposed to sell, sell–get those objections and answer them so beautifully that the client acquiesces and falls at our feet, buying whatever we want them to buy. Happens once in awhile. But, we don’t gain loyal clients who will refer us to others. Instead, we create lots of buyers with buyers’ remorse.

I hope you’re now convinced to ask questions. In the next blog, I’ll discuss more about this process, and give you some questions you can ask to screen potential new recruits–before you get them into your office (a great time saver).

Before I leave: How many questions do you ask a potential recruit? Are you satisfied with your selection process?

 

Want to streamline your selection process and recruit more winners? Check out Your Blueprint to Selecting Winners. I’ll give you great questions to ask. But, better than that, I’ll show you how to craft questions to discover exactly what YOU”RE looking for.

 

 

 

Recruiting: Here’s what you need in your post-interview package. This month, I’m focusing on recruiting and selecting systems, to help you work faster and better and recruiter winners.

Remember the Chinese water torture? Drip, drip, a drip at a time. That’s the key to recruiting successfully. Here’s another drip you’ll want to provide your candidate after that first interview. This is another package with the information you think the candidate will find useful. Here’s why:

We remember only 10% of what we heard three days later!

Unfortunately, candidates don’t remember much of what we discuss in the interview. Or, they remember it wrongly. It seems easy to us, but, it becomes a muddle to them when they interview five companies in as many days. So, take the time to assemble what I call the after first-visit package or post-interview process. In it, you’ll reiterate important points, and again differentiate yourself and your company.

Systemize Like your Great Agents

Great agents assemble these packages for sellers and buyers. You are modeling the behaviors you want to teach the agent. You can explain the parallels in the interview process. This is a very strong recruiting strategy. The old adages

In Your Post-First Visit (Post-Interview) Package

Here is a sample list of the materials you may include in an after-first visit recruiting package. Note that some of the material is duplicating your pre-first visit package. Also, sometimes you won’t have the opportunity to provide a pre-first visit package. Of course, you’ll always have the ability to customize each package. However, it’s much easier to do this from a prepared package than to start from scratch each time.

Letter from the manager explaining what’s in the package

  •  Training calendar (you do have one, don’t you?)
  • Training brochure
  • Company/office/manager story
  •  Attractive company/office/manager statistics
  •  Articles featuring company/manager
  •  Costs of affiliating  with explanations

Bottom Line: You’ree Proving your Competency to Each Candidate With Every Recruiting Process You Do

Well-assembled packages reflect clear thought processes. Merely putting these together will clarify your recruiting and selection story. It will help you figure out and communicate your culture and values. It will provide you differentiation and memorability. It says to the candidate, I prepared for you. Your time is valuable. I am here to dedicate my skills and talents to help you develop your business.

You will recruit more and better agents, you will save time, and you will be able to delegate or clone yourself by hiring a manager or recruiter when the need arises.

Want to avoid re-inventing the wheel? Check out my recruiting resources here.CompleteRecruiterfor web OBrecuiter

Are you talking too much in the interview?

A lot of recruiters/interviewers think that, if they’re great talkers, they’re great recruiters (same as agents think talking equals selling…..)

You’re a manager who recruits. You want to get winners in that recruiting seat. You pride yourself on being a great talker. (A manager once told me he just talks them to death–until they say they’ll join the company–what a great screening method-not!) But, too much talking is just old-style hard ‘selling’–and that’s certainly not the bulk of an effective selection process.

Ask, Don’t Tell

Probe to find out more. Keep finding out more until you’re really sure you know what they mean. Let me give you an example:

The recruit says, “I want a deal.”

Do you jump to a conclusion because you know what a deal means? Don’t. You may be surprised. Instead, ask questions at what does a deal mean to that recruit? When you know exactly what the recruit means, you can proceed to find what he really wants–instead of what someone else told him he should ask for!

A Pre-Screening Process for New Agent Candidates to Save you Time

Ask these questions before you spend time and money chasing candidates who don’t meet your standards. Click here to get my knockout factors on the phone.

Use In-Depth Questionnaires to Discover Real Needs

Besides using these preliminary questions, always use written in-depth questionnaires so you’ll know

  • The benefits to the features/needs stated
  • Hidden objections you may not discover until too late
  • Motivations to buy that not even the buyers realize they have

Ever heard the term “buyers are liars”? I think that’s not really the case. I think that we don’t ask the right questions to help buyers (our recruits) clarify what they really want. Most ?buyers of services don’t know what they really want. They think they want a better commission split. But, what they’re really looking for is the motivation provided by secrity. That means different things to different people. Find out what’s really motivating your candidate, not just what he says to your basic questions.

Ask the Right Questions in the Right Order and You Won’t Have to Close

Finding the motivators of your buyers (recruit/candidate) is key to helping them make the right buying decisions for themselves. All you have to do to close is to remind them that this product fulfills their needs. And, how do you get there? By creating and using the right questions in the right order.

Don’t forget to grab your pre-screening process–knockout factors to ask on the phone: click here.

Want to streamline your selection process and recruit more winners? Check out Your Blueprint to Selecting Winners. It’s completely digital, so you get all the information right now. Includes an 11-step proven process to interview successfully. Do you have a process or do you just ‘wing it’?