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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 systems

bus-plan-10

Do you have systems needs built into your business plan?

In December, I’m doing business planning in this blog and my blog for agents, Up and Running in 30 Days. Check back for free processes, checklists, and guidance.

From training, coaching, and teaching for many years, I’ve discovered the importance of systems and processes to back up what’s taught. It’s the difference between having the music for a 30-page Beethoven sonata–and trying to learn it by ear! (you musicians know what I mean….)

I know you have the same concerns as a broker. So, you need a systems plan in your business plan, just as I put a technology and social media planner in my 4th edition of Up and Running in 30 Days  and in Up and Running in Real Estate, my online training/coaching/accountability program.

People Systems are as Important as Software Systems

One of the mistakes we brokers make is to think all our problems will be solved if we just get everything ‘automated’ with technology. Well, let me tell you, it’s hard to automate people! Yet, we need  people systems so we can be sure no one falls through the cracks. We need to assess our systems to assure each agent, at each stage of his/her development, is worked with. Otherwise, we fail to meet our segmented agents’ needs.

For example: We may have wonderful seasoned agent training. But, we hire new agents with no orientation and no detailed, high accountability training and coaching. So, we have a huge failure rate with our new agents. Sound familiar?

Click here to get your copy of my systems survey and planner.

Use the planner to access your needs and then create an action plan for those needs in your 2012 business plan. Now, you’re on your way to saving time, money, and having systems you can delegate to free up your time.

Watch my Complimentary Business Planning Webinar

During this fast-paced webinar you’ll see:

  • Why your plan probably didn’t work for you—and what to do about it
  • How to definitely find out what will work for YOU (not someone else’s plan!)
  • How to anticipate market shifts (!)
  • What to STOP doing in 2017
  • What one thing will assure your business plan works
  • Bonus: 10 Creative Marketing Ideas for your plan

Included handouts:

  1. The strategic planning process created exclusively for real estate professionals by Carla Cross
  2. Review: Your best sources of business

Click here to see the webinar and grab the handouts.

Here’s to a great 2017 with your polished business plan!

Plan_Act_Celebrate

Comprehensive Online Business Planning Program for Managers

Do you find it difficult to get your agents to plan? Do you put off doing your office plan? Here’s your solution. This all-new program does several things for you:

2 webinars teach your agents how to plan using Carla’s strategic planning system

14 planning documents are included to guide your agents right through the planning process

3 webinars for you:

1. How to Create a Great Office Plan

Included: 22 office planning documents to make it easy for you to stay on track and create a great plan

2. How to Convince your Agents to Plan

3. How to Integrate your Office and Agents’ Plans

Check out Beyond the Basics of Business Planning: A planning system exclusively for real estate managers.

bus-plan-11Need strategies to get your agents to create great business plans? Here they are!

In November and December, I’m focusing on business planning, to help you and your agents get a great business plan for next year. Look for  checklists, processes, and systems ready to use, too.

I know it’s a lot of work to get your agents to commit to paper on anything. And, from working with thousands of agents on business planning over the years, I know the challenges. But, for us managers, the huge pay-off comes not from what’s on paper, what, what’s in the head. When we use a good business planning process we literally teach agents how to think through their businesses.

Three Huge Stealth Strategies

1. Take Away Commitment Phobia

It’s estimated we are told ‘no’ 148,000 times prior to age eighteen. No wonder we don’t want to commit to try anything! I know from teaching adults to play the piano, that adults are conditioned not to try anything new for fear of not being perfect. To many, writing a business plan means planning to fail—and then getting punished for it.

So, the first time you introduce business planning, take away the old downside of goal setting (not reaching it and getting punished),  and help your agents move in incremental steps forward—a step at a time, with lots of positive reinforcement along the way. You have to create a safe haven for first-time planners.

2. Eat the Elephant a Bite at a Time

One of the agents in an office where I just did a small group coaching series told me he put a picture of an elephant on the wall, and then literally divided the elephant into bite-sized pieces, with an action step listed on each bite. What a wonderful visual! For many of your agents, planning is just the most overwhelming process they could envision. So, simply start with one or two areas. Personally, I start with 2-3 areas in the Review. See my next blog for an example of this.

3. Make it Really Easy to Start

Have a great business planning system to provide your agents. (Never just ask them to make a business plan without a system to follow, because you’ll get all kinds of formats). Don’t overwhelm your agents with too many planning pages to start. Customize your package with each agent. If you can get each agent to look at 1-3 areas of his business, and plan change strategies for a better year in that area, you’ll have started the process—a process that will continue, grow, and reap big benefits by year three.

We Do What We See, Not What We are Told

Do you have a business plan? If not, why should your agents be interested ? Making your ‘stealth’ approach work means you must lead by example. Doing so creates a synergy between your plan and all the agents’ plans, and builds a strength that perseveres even in the toughest market.

What should be in an agent’s business planning system? Click here to see a ‘flow chart’.

Watch my Recorded Complimentary Business Planning Webinar

During this fast-paced webinar you’ll see:

  • Why your plan probably didn’t work for you—and what to do about it
  • How to definitely find out what will work for YOU (not someone else’s plan!)
  • How to anticipate market shifts (!)
  • What to STOP doing in 2017
  • What one thing will assure your business plan works
  • Bonus: 10 Creative Marketing Ideas for your plan

Included handouts:

  1. The strategic planning process created exclusively for real estate professionals by Carla Cross
  2. Review: Your best sources of business

Click here to see the webinar and grab the handouts.

Here’s to a great 2017 with your polished business plan!

Plan_Act_CelebrateHow Good is Your Business Planning System?

Need a comprehensive business planning system that is designed ONLY for leadership? Most planning systems don’t cover the specific areas you need to address.

Check out Beyond the Basics of Business Planning.

 

 

man ponderingBusiness planning: Are you making these 5 planning mistakes?

During November and December, I’m writing business planning blogs to help you create great plans with your agents. Check these blogs, too, for checklists, processes, and systems ready to use.  For your agents: Check out Up and Running in 30 Days, my blog for your associates.

As you make your business plan, avoid the common mistakes that many real estate professionals make. Here they are:

MISTAKE #1

Betting on a business plan that’s only about 1/4 of a plan. Many of us write down our goals. Yet, that’s not a business plan. That’s just one part of the business plan. There are six parts to a real business plan:

a. Your vision-what do you have as an “end in mind”?
b. Your review-what happened last year?
c. Your mission-what are you about?
d. Your goals-expressed in the best terms for profitability today
e. Your action plan in each of 6 areas.
f. A method to measure your results.

Which parts do you include? What would your outcomes be if you thought through your business, covering all the bases?

Click here to see and grab my chart’ of a manager’s business planning system (excerpted from Beyond the Basics of Business Planning–one program for agents, one program for leadership.)

MISTAKE #2

Ignoring the importance of ‘revenue units’ (sales and listings sold). Unfortunately, when we write our goals, we like to use those great million dollar numbers and measurements like market share. Yet, setting goals for revenue units assures that you keep your eye “on the ball”-homes sold, which make you money. There’s another huge benefit to focusing on revenue units: You can then integrate your agents’ plans with your office plan.

MISTAKE #3

Not doing a thorough review (or not doing a review at all). Looking back on your last year is so important, because it gives you the “hints” you need to write your best action plan for the next year. I think it also solves the problem of the manager trying to figure out what to do next.

For example: It’s amazing that brokers don’t know one of their most important numbers for profitability: percent of listings taken to listings sold. You may be wasting many dollars in marketing homes that won’t sell-no matter what you do. Also, your agents become unmotivated and depressed when their listings don’t sell. Knowing this ratio gives you direction for your training and coaching for the coming year. Create a higher ratio and you’ll be able to use it to recruit, too.

MISTAKE #4

Writing the plan ‘in a vacuum.’ Almost always, brokers sit down to torture themselves by writing a business plan in a room with the doors shut and no windows. But, they don’t know yet what their agents want to accomplish for the next year. The right way to plan is this: First, help each of your agents create a business plan. The sum of your agents’ goals should form the foundation for your goals. After all, your agents’ efforts should be reflected in your revenue unit goals, shouldn’t they? Yet, very few brokers even help their agents write business plans. So, they can’t really get good projections of what they think their agents will produce in the next year.

If you do assist your agents in their planning processes, you will have a much better foundation for a realistic business plan of your own. (That also means you should be consulting your agents on their business plans in November, so you’ll have all their plans together as you start creating your office plan).

MISTAKE #5

Not creating specific action plans in each of the action plan areas. Michael Gerber, a spectacular “guru” for small businesses, says “the integration of your systems is your business plan.”

In other words, if you have a real business plan, I should be able to read it, come into your office on any day, and see how you’re carrying out your business plan in recruiting, selecting, training, coaching, and marketing. You would be able to delegate many of your duties, too, because you had specific action plans for each of these areas. You would be able to measure your progress at any given point. Further, if you have created action plans that are systems, someone would be willing to buy your company from you, giving you a very attractive price! (That’s what Gerber terms “franchising.”)

Get Ahead of the Curve

If you don’t have a business plan, there’s still time to get one done. Just by thinking through your business, you’ll be ahead of 95% of your competing brokers!  If you want to make more money, gain time, delegate more to others, open another office, or create an office that’s saleable, it all starts with thinking through your business, getting it down on paper, and attaching systems to each of your action plan areas. Now, you’ve got something you can run, you can delegate, and you can sell.

Plan_Act_CelebrateMissed my complimentary business planning webinar?

Watch it here, and get all the handouts AND slides.

And, don’t forget to check out my comprehensive business planning program, all online: Beyond the Basics of Business Planning.

It’s much more than just a business planning process. I train your agents and consult with you and your agents to make great plans!

finger wantWe’ve discussed the importance of systematizing your recruiting. I’ve given you information about the contents of a pre-first visit folder. Now, let’s take a look at the folder you need to create for that all-important interview process. First: Do you have a firm system for your process? What percent of interviewers do you think use a planned method? What percent ‘wing it’?

Note: Although we know recruits are the lifeblood of our offices, it’s amazing how we continue to try to ‘wing it’ during the interview process. Assembling these materials will assure that you never are flying by the seat of your pants–or look like it to the candidate!

Keeping Track of Candidates is Tougher than it Seems When You’re in the Recruit Mode 

How are you going to keep track of each candidate? If you’re interviewing five to ten candidates per week (the number necessary to build your office at a rate of 4-5 people per month), you will need a method to keep these candidates in mind. (It’s really embarrassing to wrong recall something about a candidate in an interview—and find out you have the wrong ‘Barry’….)

Here’s what should go in the candidate selection folder:

  •        Phone interview questions and candidate notes from phone interview
  • Candidate needs assessment questions
  • Candidate’s application (be sure your attorney reviews this for legalities)
  • Candidate behavioral predicting questions See The Complete Recruiter and Your Blueprint for Selecting Winners–information on these resources is below)
  • Post-interview checklist

Of course, prior to the interview, you’ll want to gather your presentation and a notepad to keep notes.

Armed with these tools, you’ll not only appear to be organized, you WILL be organized. Your good candidates will appreciate your professionalism, and will be drawn to you. The poor candidates probably won’t care (and neither should you…).

For a checklist of recruiting processes and systems needed, click here.

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

Here’s the only comprehensive interviewing process I’ve ever seen in real estate. Why not be better than those other interviewers with the best professional system you can use?

Check out Your Blueprint for Selecting Winners. 

http://www.dreamstime.com/royalty-free-stock-photography-leadership-elements-qualities-image25801327Recruiting: Here’s what you need in your pre-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 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

 We believe what we see, not what we hear

and

 Do as I do, not as I say

are true, as we know ‘in real life’.

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’re 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.

For a checklist of recruiting processes and systems needed, click here.

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

man with hair in airRecruiting: Do you have systems, or do you ‘wing it?’ At the end of this blog, I’m providing you a checklist of the systems you need. See how prepared you are!

When you look at all the organization required to systematize your recruiting, it can be daunting. So, why not start with the packages?  Here are the packages you need: 

  •  Folders to hold all selection materials/processes for each agent interviewed
  • Pre-first visit package (sent prior to the interview)
  • Your interview process (application, your analysis forms, interview format, questions, etc.)
  • Visual recruiting presentation
  •  After first visit recruiting package

Why are these packages important? It takes six to eight times of meeting someone before you remember that person. In some sense, recruiting is like what one of my old bosses called the Chinese water torture: You must just keep dripping, dripping, and dripping on the candidate so you are

  •  memorable
  •  perceived as more professional than others the candidate will be interviewing

Savvier Candidates Require Savvier Recruiting Organization

Assembling and using these packages shows your candidate that you are organized, interested, and dedicated—both as a manager, and in helping that person create a viable career. A few months ago Charles Dahlheimer wrote an excellent article in The Real Estate Professional– an analysis of 2010. In it, he noted that more college-educated people are coming into real estate today. You can read the whole article here.  Because these candidates are more educated than before, it’s important to present yourself in the same light as other professionals in other fields the candidate may interview. And, it’s important that you create polished, well-thought-out packages that appeal to these candidates.

Start the Process: Just Throw ‘Possibilities’ in a Folder

The best way, I’ve found, to create packages, is to first simply create a folder (either hard copy or on your computer), and start throwing possible inclusions for that package into the folder. Don’t judge them! Judging them prematurely will not get you anywhere. As a musician, I know creativity is messy. In fact, the most inhibiting action to creativity, I think, is that we energetically critique every possibility when we try to construct something. So, too many times, we end up with not starting! Instead, squelch your impulse to judge anything until you have all your possibilities. After that, you can prune and prioritize. In my view, ANY prepared package is better than none!

Note: Because most recruiters don’t have systems, any organization and system you have created with stand out.

Communicating your ‘Memorability Factor’

In the next blogs, I’ll go more deeply into what can go into some of these packages. I’m going to give you my recommendations for three packages. More importantly, though, you decide the overall messages you want to convey through these packages. As the candidate reads the package, what do you want them to think about you? What values and culture do you want to communicate? What objections do you want to anticipate via each package? What misconceptions do you want to correct?

For a checklist of recruiting processes and systems needed, click here.

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

small CompleteRecruiterStart Here with Creating a true Recruiting ‘System’ (and save over $100)

If you don’t have the systems you need, here’s your chance to get them–at a terrific price. The Complete Recruiter is a self-training and resource manual on recruiting. Your Blueprint for Selecting Winners is the only step-by-step interviewing resource available for real estate interviewers today. And, another bonus, Objection Busters for Recruiters. This package is regularly $220. Now, it’s only $129.95–the price regularly of just The Complete Recruiter.  Why not save thousands of hours of time and build your systems with confidence–and recruit more winners? Click here to get the special offer.
Blueprint_Ebook_Cover(4)

 

Man-Walking-Up-Stairs-to-GlobeRecruiting and selecting: Are you systematized or scattered? I”m focusing on selecting and interviewing in this series of blogs. Why? Because most managers just ‘wing it’!

Most managers are surprised, when they start managing–with the demands of their new job. Many times, they didn’t
know they would be expected to recruit! One manager I was coaching in a group, told me his owner assured him he wouldn’t have to recruit. Then, a couple of years into the job, the owner hired me to teach the managers recruiting skills. Boy, that was an interesting situation….As you can imagine, the manager felt betrayed. At least he learned to trust me enough to confide in his quandary.

In fact, managers typically thought they could stop lead generating when they became managers. Not so fast. Recruiting is job # 1 in a manager’s job description.

 Where are the Recruiting Systems?

Some managers expect to walk right into an office and put those recruiting systems in place to work. You can imagine how surprised they are when they find out there are no systems to aid in recruiting. And, without systems, recruiting becomes way too daunting a task. Especially, too, if you’re a new manager and have no clue how to recruit!

How Managers Cope

In fact, many managers push it further ‘down the day’, until exhausted and beaten down by the demands of their job, they say they just don’t have time to recruit.

Systems Solve All Those Problems

You know that systems gain us time. They allow us to prepare prior to a crisis situation. Systems are also teaching tools. We follow systems to learn how to do something. Systems create great habits. For our discussion today, I’m going to divide recruiting systems into external and internal.

 External Recruiting Systems

Perhaps you’ve used recruiting lead generating companies in the past. Those companies either supply you leads, or supply you cards to send to your recruits. That’s great. Those are systems. But, I’m not talking about those ‘external’ systems. I’m talking about a whole other group of systems—internal systems—those systems you develop to ‘run’ your recruiting plan.

 A Day in the Life

You’ve seen agents in constant upheaval without systems. They get a listing appointment, and they run around attempting to put together a package or presentation. You’re constantly telling them to prepare, systematize, and package their presentations so they’re ready at the drop of a hat.

Okay. How systematized are you in your recruiting? It’s just like the agents’ lead generating, right? Are you always ready when that recruit shows up? Do you have the packages in place to show that recruit that you are really professional. Or, like the agent, do you run around trying at the last minute to get your act together?

 A Successful Recruiter’s Tools and Systems

 Successful recruiters organize their recruiting and selecting processes just like successful agents do. You need:

1. A database and contact management software

2. Folders for each candidate (enough pre-set up files for one month’s interviewing)

3. A system to pre-screen, interview, and choose the right candidates

4. The recruiting packages to support your efforts

You can delegate the packaging and systematization to an assistant, so you can do the important activities to build your company: Recruiting, face to face interviewing and selection!

In my next few blogs, I’ll break down what goes into each package and system.

Question: What percent of managers interviewing do you think have these systems?

small CompleteRecruiterStart Here with Creating a true Recruiting ‘System’ (and save over $100)

If you don’t have the systems you need, here’s your chance to get them–at a terrific price. The Complete Recruiter is a self-training and resource manual on recruiting. Your Blueprint for Selecting Winners is the only step-by-step interviewing resource available for real estate interviewers today. And, another bonus, Objection Busters for Recruiters. This package is regularly $220. Now, it’s only $129.95–the price regularly of just The Complete Recruiter.  Why not save thousands of hours of time and build your systems with confidence–and recruit more winners? Click here to get the special offer.
Blueprint_Ebook_Cover(4)

 

man ponderingThis month, I’m focusing on helping you retain your new people.

Managers: What’s your retention rate for new agents under 6 months in the business? Do you know? Do you have a goal for it? Now, I don’t mean how many agents you hire who stay in the business no matter what they do! That’s not profitable to you! If you don’t know your retention rate now, figure it out. But, drop out those who are staying in your office without production–just because you don’t ask them to leave!

How Much Money Is Low Retention Costing You?

Do you know how much money it’s costing you if you have too low a rate? What rate do you think is reasonable to expect? In another blog, we’ll discuss the line items that you should use to figure your retention rates.

I’ll bet 90% of managers can’t answer all the questions above. Although no manager would ever tell me he/she hires just to see what sticks to the wall, in reality, that’s what much of the hiring still looks like today.

One View: Hiring Everyone Is Just OK

If you think that’s true, then, what’s it costing you in management and training time? Management and training turnover? It doesn’t take too many agent failures to make a manager give up. I know. I’ve coached many of them. Managers need to feel that the agents they hire are going to work, so that the manager’s time and expertise is respected and rewarded. Is your hiring expectation supporting your manager, or not?

What’s it costing you in your ability to recruit winners? Agents know the ‘aura’ and culture of an office. Don’t kid yourself. If you load your office with non-producers, you’ll get to be known, as an office was known when I started managing there–as the office that ‘you go to if you don’t want to work’. What are agents saying about your office? What do you want to do about it?

Three Things You Have to Have in Place to Get your Good Hires a Sale Fast

Obviously, you have to have a great screening/interview process. But, for now, I’m going to assume you have just that. So, here are the three things you have to have in place to get those agents a sale NOW:*

(My study, that I show in my ebook for would-be agents, What They Don’t Teach You in Pre-License School, revealed that over half the new agents (under 3 months in the business), expected a sale in their first 30 (yes, 30!) days in the business!). So, your 3-step system has to have that as a goal. Why? Because your agents, whether you know it or not, are mentally out of the business in 3 months if they haven’t gotten a sale.

1. A thorough on-boarding system

Take a look at your first 3 weeks in the business for your new agent. What is that agent doing every day? Do you have checklists? Processes? Someone dedicated to coaching them through those first 3 weeks? In my next blog, I’m focus in on that on-boarding system you need. Studies show that ‘workers’ success and loyalty, plus their retention, is cemented–or not–in the first few weeks they’re in your office. Is your on-boarding system a ‘loyalty-glue’ maker?

2. Someone completely dedicated to guiding them through the onboarding and business-start up systems

Do you have a coach specifically dedicated to assuring your new agents get on track and stay on track? That coach may be you–but someone has to do it. You’d be amazed the number of times I hear newer agents tell me that there’s no one dedicated to coaching them to a start-up plan? Why? Isn’t each new agent hired worthy of that dedication? Or, if not, why were they hired? (remember that ‘throw them up against the wall’ approach?)

3. A specific, accountability-anchored business-start-up plan supported with training modules

Imagine your new agent sitting at her desk. How does she know what to do each day to get that sale quickly? Does she have a specific business start-up plan supported with training so she knows how to do the work? If not, she is just floundering, trying to pick up ideas from those agents who stay in the office–because they’re not working with clients! How would you rate your start-up plan?

How did you rate yourself on the 3 systems above? What do you want to work on first?

logoDon’t Reinvent the Wheel: The Start-up Plan, Training, Coaching, and Accountability is Here

It literally took me years to put together this unique online program, Up and Running in Real Estate. Why not let me take a huge burden off your shoulders and provide you 2 of the three things you need to jump-start your agents? Take a look at Up and Running in Real Estate and the companion Coaches’ Corner. You’ll reap many more rewards for a small investment, and find it easier to recruit winners.

many peole standing recruitingThis month, I’m focusing on recruiting and selecting. And, I have some blazing ‘deals’ on my recruiting resources to help you get a great plan and implement it right away!

Isn’t it amazing the number of things a new manager is supposed to be able to do—from day one—even though he or she isn’t trained to do those tasks? Take recruiting, for example.  As a new manager, I was expected to prospect, get appointments, ask great questions, and select agents who would be successful. But, did I have the skills to perform those tasks with competence? You can bet not!

Even though I was a top-producing agent, I didn’t take the time to think through, and didn’t know how to, apply the sales skills I had used to attain high sales volume to the recruiting tasks at hand. So, I, like thousands of other new managers, just did it ‘by ear’. Along the way, I had some ‘wins’ and lots of ‘losses’. Through my observations of myself and others, I’ve created a list of ten top mistakes, so that you can avoid the pitfalls I—and others without training—have fallen into.

In this blog, we’ll look at the first five. Also, I’ll add some advice I learned from all those mistakes!

1. Charge ahead to hire

It should occur to us that we need to sit in a quiet place and think about the kind of people we want to hire—before we dive in. But, we are so thrilled that someone is in front of us that it doesn’t occur to us that they bring with them their values and ethics. So, if we haven’t thought out our values, our beliefs, and our perspectives first, we run the risk of hiring people who will then dictate what the company values become. Before you start interviewing, decide what you will and what you won’t stand for. Write out your values and your beliefs. Then, when you interview, check to be sure that agent carries those same values and beliefs into your office. Someone’s got to be the leader, and it better be you!

2. Recruiting to old-style management strategies

I know, I know. Just go make those calls and you will get some recruits. Yes, that’s true. But, wouldn’t it be better if you built a company that stood apart from the others because of its ‘attractors’? The greatest attractors today to a company are twofold:

a.  Does the company have values and beliefs that the agent can live by—and agree with?

b. Does the company focus its energy on the success of the agent—or on itself/

If you are still trying to recruit to an old-style dictatorship, or, if you’ve given up leadership—get a clue. Find out what participative management is all about. Find out how to build a team. Figure out how to help each agent reach his/her goals. Now, you’re on the right track. Re-tool your business structure so you’re attractive to the entrepreneur of today and tomorrow.

3. Trying to recruit on the company features

“Our company is the largest around.” Well, guess what? If you’re a branch manager, and all your branch managers say the same thing, you’re not going to differentiate yourself that way! You must make yourself a magnet. What about your background provides a benefit to a new agent? To an experienced agent? For example, I was a musical performer and teacher. That taught me performance skills, and how to teach others performance skills. You can see the benefits to agents. I’m able to help an agent reach his goals through greater skills.

4. Not differentiating the feature from all the other companies that have the same thing

“We have a great training program.” So says every company out there. What’s so great about your program? You’d better be able to tell ‘em and show ‘em. “Our training program has a 90% rate in our agents making a sale in the first thirty days they’re with us.” No one else in the area has success figures like that. Here’s the brochure about our program. It spells out the comprehensive five-step program for new agents. Do you want a program that assures you make money fast?”

5. Trying to attract agents through ‘price wars’   

We in the real estate industry just love to hire agents through the bidding wars. We either provide a lower desk fee, better commission splits, or more trinkets and trash. Guess what? That’s the chicken’s way out. In reality, price is never the best recruiter. But, if you don’t have a great company organization, if you don’t help agents meet their goals, you’re going to have to compete on price. It’s all you’ve got. Now, work hard to provide real value. After all, consumers pay 10% more for products and services they believe are of quality.

Recommendation: Read Drive–The Surprising Truth about What Motivates Us, by Daniel Pink. The motivators have changed, but no one has told real estate professionals!

So far, what have I left out?

Blazing ‘Deal’ On My Complete Recruiting Systems this Month

How’s your recruiting strategy? Have a complete system? Here it is, half price– at $120 off this month. Purchase The Complete Recruiter AND get Your Blueprint for Selecting Winners–a unique step-by-step interview process–PLUS Recruiting Objection Busters–for $120 off (Regularly $250 now $129.95 ONLY this month). This is the cost of just The Complete Recruiter!

The Complete Recruiter provides you the scripts and dialogues you need, the recruiting planner you don’t have (!), and dozens of tips to recruit the winners you want. Your Blueprint for Selecting Winners gives you an 11-step interview process to assure you interview those you want–without unpleasant surprises.  Recruiting Objection Busters shows you scripts and dialogues to counter any recruiting objection with grace, logic, and attractiveness.

Click here for more information and to order.

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interview with clip boardSelection: If you’re a great talker, your cooked! 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.

Instead of muscling a sale or a ‘yes’ from a recruit….ask questions. Lots of questions. 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 ‘deal’ means? Don’t. You may be surprised. Instead, ask questions at what ‘deal’ means to that recruit. When you know exactly what the recruit means, you can proceed to find what the 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 the complete process.

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’ 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:  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’?

 

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