Got a minute? If you're a busy manager, that's about all you have. That's why Carla Cross, management coach, speaker, and author, has created this blog just for you, with ready-to-use tips to master management through people.

Archive for Speakers

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.

Here’s why your small group exercises don’t work–and what to do about it.

(See my 12-point checklist to use every time you’re going to launch a group exercise. You’ll find this invaluable!)

You’re teaching, and you’ve decided to change it up and add a small group exercise–instead of that boring lecturing. So, you blithely put people into small groups. But, things go wrong:

  1. They wander around without knowing where to go to get into their groups
  2. They cluster together in groups of 10-15 so no one gets anything done
  3. They don’t know how to proceed as they as supposed to start the exercise
  4. They don’t know what the exercise is
  5. They don’t know what to do when the exercise is over

And on and on…..

This month, I’m doing blogs on teaching–specifically, how to change it up and quit lecturing your way through the day.

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.

The Checklist for Assuring Every Small Group Goes the Way You Want 

See my 12-point checklist to use every time you’re going to launch a group exercise. You’ll find this invaluable! How do I know? I’ve made every mistake you can make on these, and have learned how to avoid mistakes and make the small group go well.

Gain Advanced Teaching Skills Now!

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!

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!

If you teach: tips to stop them from being bored!

Let’s get honest. Do your students get bored when you present? As a student, you know those 71/2 clock hour courses can be killers! The presenter goes on and on. It may be great information, but, after _____ minutes (you fill in your blank), you just zone out (usually about 10-15 minutes!). And, sellers and buyers feel the same way about boring presentations.

Here are 2 quick tips to rev up your presentations, increase your effectiveness, and keep your a�?audiencea�� riveted.

  1. Ask more questions

Dona��t go over 3 minutes in a listing or buyer presentation without asking a question. How about your presentations? Do you drone on for A? hour or an hour without involving your audience? Quit right now. Thata��s where your audience a�?controla�� problems starta��when ita��s all about you.

Action: Write down a question you can ask during your normal a�?lecturea�� period. Or, as a listing or buyera��s agent, write down a question you can ask instead of droning on over 3-4 minutes.

  1. Quit lecturing your way through all that time!

Instead, break up that lecture with some questions. Better yet, use a�?alternative delivery methodsa�� (all those methods to teach besides lecture!). Those would include breaking students into task forces, or giving small groups a case study to tackle, or role play.

You can even do some of this with your sellers and buyers. Involve them in the process!

Action: If youa��ve taken an instructor development course, go back and see where the instructor used a�?alternative delivery methodsa��. Then, find a place in your presentation where you could use one of these methods. Keep expanding your horizons!

The result: Youa��ll have more enthusiastic a�?receiversa��. Youa��ll have more fun teaching, and youa��ll greatly reduce any audience a�?controla�� challenges.

Click here to grab my ‘workshop cheat sheet’, which shows you how to put alternative delivery methods into any workshop–and in which order so they ‘flow’ right.

Is the Course You Teach Just a Lecture (read ‘boring’ to students!)?

Is the class youa��re teaching (or supposed to teach) full of facts and figures? And, therea��s no instructor manual or guidance in how to teach it? Are you finding yourself talking through ita��talking for hours? (Even boring yourselfa��) Are you struggling to make that course come alive?

If you want to energize your course, keep your audience interested, and change their outcomes for the better, you need this unique course!

Bottom line: Youa��ll walk out of this course with the skills to take any boring class and make it highly participative, useful, and fun to teach. Youa��ll get the 3 best methods to use, how to use them, and when to use them to a�?plug them intoa�� any course at the right time. Youa��ll even have time to try out your new methods in your own course and get feedbacka��and watch others, too.A� Why not energize your course, have a better time teaching, and gain business all at the same time?

When: Sept. 12 and 14 (2 half days, so you can polish your course)

Time: 9:30 am to 1:30 pm each day

Where: Bellevue, Wa.

Investment: $149

Accredited for 7.5 clock hours in Washington state

Not in Washington? Contact Carla to bring her to your company or association and invigorate your courses so your students clamor to come back! (and they learn a lot!)

Click here to register.

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!

Polish your presentation skills: three quick, effective tips to make all the difference in your impact.

Managers, trainers, salespeople, and even a�?real peoplea�� present frequently in front of one–to hundreds of people. Unfortunately, most presenters (yes, you become a presenter when youa��re selling!), arena��t trained with the best presentation tools. Instead, they just a�?wing ita��. So, we in the audience (or your clients) are frequently bored silly. It doesna��t have to be that way. Take a look at the three tipsa��tips Ia��ve learned first as a musician, then as a speaker, in front of hundreds of people. These tips will make your next time in front of a few a��or manya��enjoyable, memorable, and equally enjoyable for your audience or client.

Three Powerful Presentera��s Tips

Death by Lecture

  1. Don’t lecture for more than 10 minutes. Adults just don’t have that long an attention span (too much on our minds!). Change it up. Use various “alternative delivery methods”–methods to teach other than lecture. In myA�Instructor Development WorkshopA�course, I help students learn these teaching methods by modeling them so they can observe me teaching. Then, we de-brief on what we did. Finally, each student teaches a short module using creative methods, and the rest of the students provide feedback. (We really only learn when we do something).A�DoingA�greatly increases confidence–and competence.

Question: If youa��re in sales or management: Are you talking through your listing or recruiting presentation because you know a lot? How long will it take until the person in front of you gets a�?glassy eyesa��?

Do Something Else Before You Talk too Much

2. When you want to change adults’ perceptions, beliefs, or knowledge, don’t just start talking to them.A�You may be setting up an adversarial relationshipa��and youa��re too predictable! You may just cause them to shrink more into their beliefs, and to defend those beliefs (have you observed students who live to argue with the instructor?)

How to tackle the ‘old belief’ challenge:

Prepare students or your clients to learn something new. For example: Use a ‘true-false’ or ‘multiple choice’ to start the presentation, or to check learning. I do this in myA�Instructor Development Workshop courseA�in the middle, and ask students how they would have answered at the beginning of the course–and then contrast that with their new perceptions and learning. It creates lots of ‘ahas’ with them, and further cements their learning experience.

Tip: If youa��re in sales: Use a fun true-false survey for sellers to use prior to meeting you. It can have lots of fallacies and misinformation, and will set up your presentation to help sellers get the real facts and make the best decision for them.

Quit Relying on the ‘Screen’ to Talk for YOU!!!

3. Don’t just read from the PowerPoint on the screenA�(and, just as onerous, provide the student with the PowerPoint as the “outline”.) If an instructor does that, I feel I want to just take that outline and leave. I can read, thank you! Too many presenters/trainers rely on PowerPoint to do the teaching. Instead, invest in a a�?pointera�� that allows you to make the screen blank. Remember: YOU are the presenter, not your Powerpoint!

Tip: If youa��re in sales or management: Dona��t just drone on from your presentation manual. (thata��s your Powerpoint in this instance.) Instead, Use questions, handouts, pauses, and summaries to give your presentation contour and interest.

Use that Right Brain of Yours

Effective presenting is much more than just talking. It should be creative. Use all the “attention strategies” at your disposal (that means to get them into your repertoire).

Suggestions to get creative:

Use props, stories, various audio-visual aids, and handouts to control the audience “contour”. I learned this as a musician playing for dancing. You direct how you want the audience to dance by the music you pick, and you ‘contour’ the whole experience (slower to faster, then back to slow). As a great instructor/ facilitator/presenter, you can direct your audience (clients) in an awesome learning experience. It just depends on the skills you bring to the table.

Tip: Adapt your creativity to your presentation to clients. They’ll appreciate your innovative approach and you’ll become memorable–not just another voice!

Ita��s Worth the Effort

A�Most presenters/trainers arena��t in it for the big bucks (where are those big bucks, again?). Theya��re in it to assist others. Gaining and practicing presentation skills helps us give back better. The bonus: Deep appreciation from our audience or your client. Wea��ve even been known to change lives for the better! No amount of money can provide that sense of accomplishment.

Carla’s next innovativeA�Instructor Development WorkshopA�is coming up May 22-23, 2018 in Bellevue. Washington.A�Click hereA�for specifics.

Resources to Present More EffectivelyA�

Take a look at Carla’s comprehensive training resource,A�The Ultimate Real Estate Trainera��s Guide,A�and her presentation resource,A�Knock Their Socks Off: Skills to Make Your Best Presentation Ever.A�A�See all her coaching and training resources atA�www.carlacross.com.

 

 

 

 

 

 

coaching teaching skills

Make your training pay off: four great principles.

This month we’re focusing on training.

How badly do you really want your training to pay off? Recently, I A�reviewed a training program to see if the attributes for effectiveness were there. Most of them weren’t. And, frankly, I think they weren’t there because no one cared enough to assure they WERE there. Why? Because it’s regarded as just too much trouble! That’s the sad truth. But, why do we bother to train if we can’t expect a measurable outcome? What if I could absolutely guarantee you, that, if you put these 4 principles in place, you will see results in your training, turn out productive agents, and have a great recruiting tool. How much would that be worth to you? (I don’t mean how much would you pay for this, but how much effort would you be willing to put into it?)

Here are the four principles/attributes that need to be in place:

1.A�Expectations/Accountability

How will you hold agents accountable to work to be done in the program? What are the ‘rules’? When do you explain the rules? Do you have a commitment letter?

2.A�Work during the course

Do you have the agents completing work during the course? Lead generation, packaging, presentations, etc. If not, how do you know they can do what you taught?

3. Measurable results

Are you having the agents measure their results? If not, how are you going to use the program to recruit? How will you know the program worked?

4.A�Fixed curriculum and highly trained instructors

Do you have a written curriculum with course objectives? If not, are you just wandering around in a wasteland of information?

Are your instructors trained in participative teaching methods? Are you monitoring your instructors so you know they are teaching skills, not just talking or providing war stories?

Grade yourself on each of the attributes above. What did you excel at? What do you need to improve?

How awesome could your training be if it had these 4 principles/attributes in place?

logoHere’s a Program with the Principles Written Into the Training

It’s deceptively challenging to include those 4 principles/attributes above in a training program. Yet, if they aren’t there, your training can’t be effective. Why not look at the unique UP and Running in Real Estate, written by National Realtor Educator of the Year Carla Cross.

This online program is terrific for those hiring 1-4 agents a month, because the agent can start the program at any time, and work through the program, while jumping ahead to needed topics–and going back.

Check it outA�here.

Also: There’s a coaching component, so you can fully support your agent’s success.

 

training your successHere’s how to fill your classroom with enthusiastic attendees.

This month, we’re focusing on training. Why? Because it should be a huge part of your value proposition. After all, you can’t just recruit them–can you? You need also to have a complete development system. Coaching and training ARE your development system.

Having trouble getting them to training? Authored by one of our Senior Career Coaches, Jodi Sipes, M. A., this second article of our series 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

We see lots of training calendars in our training consulting. Most of them are dull as old brick! Dona��t just list the topic. 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!

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!

LM CoverAre You RecruitingA�Winners–or Bodies?

Let us help you create a recruiting plan that works. Then, we’ll help you career complete Career Development Systems for both new and seasoned agents. Now, you have systems. You can expand. you can relax a little. Why not check outA�Leadership Mastery CoachingA�with aA�complimentary consultation?

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�