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Archive for training calendar

Jan
22

Got Your Training Calendar Done?

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Why do you need a training calendar? 

I’m going to focus on training, presenting, and facilitation for these blogs. Why? Because I see a real need for us to become masters of these areas, to help our agents and affiliates succeed at a higher level.

No Training Calendar…..

–with little rhyme nor reason as to why those events are put on the calendar. Don’t let that be you!  Without a training calendar, you don’t know if your training is working to help you meet your goals. You don’t know if your training is getting results. And, your associates certainly don’t know if you have a busines plan with a training component.

What That Training Calendar Will Do for You

It will:

1. Organize your training as part of your business plan for next year

2. Have a time-saving guide to implement the training you need for your company to move forward

3. Use the training calendar to recruit (internal AND external)

What percentage of real estate trainer/managers organize their training events on a calendar? From my experience, less than 20%. In fact, I doubt most managers make training a part of their business plan! Yet, training is the second-most important component to move our productivity and profitability up (recruiting the right people is #1).

Problems with Most Training Calendars

Before you read this paragraph, if you don’t have a training calendar, grab a calendar and write down the training events you intend to do next year. Now, let’s take a look at the 3 biggest problems with training calendars:

1. They don’t focus on the training events that can change the profitability and productivity of the office (too many ‘technical’ courses, and not enough sales courses)

2. They don’t focus on training events to meet the needs of each of your career life cycles (new, growth, and maturity)--they are skewed to one group of agents–usually new)

3. They don’t consist of measurable training, so you know what works

Take a look now at my analysis tool, to help you figure out if your training calendar is doing the job:

Your Training Calendar.

Affiliates: Share this blog and training calendar analysis with your brokers. They will thank you, because they’ll save time, effort, and get more agents into those training programs.

Question for You

What did you learn from your analysis?

trainer

Let Me Help Your Trainers Refine Their Skills

I help associations and companies help their trainers become masters, try new methods, keep their audiences, awake, and become more creative. Contact me and we’ll talk about how I can help you. 

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?

trainer at board

Why don’t you have a training calendar? Here’s how to get one now.

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……)

Guest Author, by Senior Coach Jodi Sipes

Authored by one of our Senior Career Coaches, Jodi Sipes, M. A., this blog shows you how to create a training calendar youa��re proud of. 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.

Why bother to create your yeara��s training calendar? With managers running in 50 directions at once, time management is a huge issue. Designing a training calendar allows managers to get their systems under control. It allows managers to delegate some training duties. Outcomes: More production, more profits, and better retention!

Your First Step in Creating that Calendar: Get the Rhythm

Before you try to create that calendar, consider the rhythm of your year. When do you hire the most agents, when is the market busiest, what seasonal issues do you want to address? For example, youa��ll want to decide when is a good time to focus on listings, what issues come up at tax time, etc? This will give you a good over-view of how to plan your education and training.

Your Second Step: Decide the Major Issues You want to Train To

Now, ita��s time to decide this:

If there were one thing my agents could do better that would raise productivity more than any other single thing, what would that be?

Answer that question, and youa��ll get the major issues handled in that calendar. For example: If you have an office with many new people, you probably have fewer listings than youa��d like. Or, your listings may be sitting in your shifting market. So, a major part of your calendar will be high-activity training to the listing process, focusing on getting marketable listings. A major mistake managers make in creating calendars is to merely drop in whatever they think agents would like! Dona��t do that. Youa��re in control, and you need to train to the outcomes you needa��and should expect.

Your Third Step: Make a System for New Agents

If you are hiring brand-new agents you will then need to schedule for them:

a�? Recruiting/hiring group informational events
a�? Orientation (Office equipment, your brokerage procedures, meet affiliates, etc.)
a�? New agent education (how to fill in forms, how to complete quarterly taxes, etc.–this should be in sync with MLS and Realtor Association training) At Carla Cross Seminars, Inc., we call this a�?Technical Traininga�?.
a�? New agent start-up plan/coaching sequence so they go to work the first week. Our start-up plan and coaching companion is Up and Running in 30 Days.
a�? New agent skills training and practice/support sessions (how to answer objections, qualify buyers and sellers, etc.) Our complete training/coaching high accountability system for this is Advantage 2.0.

To assure youa��ve covered the right bases, ask yourself about your desired outcome: What do you want your new agents to know, and be able to do in their first year?

Your Fourth Step: Make a System for your Experienced Agents

Here are some of the training issues you will want to consider:

a�? Sequence of business-building training (taking them to the next level)
a�? Yearly planning and Goals (this should be done in November of the prior year)
a�? Keeping them up-to-date on the law and technical issues (required classes, new forms, legal issues, new developments like more condos in the area or re-zoning)
a�? Life-style enhancement (time management, hiring an assistant, etc.)
a�? Train the Trainer class and opportunities to teach if they enjoy giving back to others (this is a great retention tool)

I know–it’s a big commitment. But, when you have your training systems fully in place, and you start measuring results, you’ll see the fruits of this labor.

Click here to grab my sample new agent training calendar.

 

logoWhy Not Make It Easy On Yourself: Up and Running is Done for You!

It takes me a year+ to write a training program, and I’ve done it several times! How long will it take you to write a program? Why reinvent the wheel? It’s enough to expect you to coach those in a program, not write it, and teach it in addition! Check out my comprehensive, high accountability,A�training/coaching programA�for agents under 2 years in the business. If you want to get them started fast, and are willing to coach them to the program, you’ll love the results. See itA�here.

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�

trainer hand in airThis 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……)

By the way, check out my website for a free coaching product ($100 value) as my thanks to all you trainer/coaches.

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 here 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?

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 forA� checklists, processes, and systems ready to use, too.Suggest to your agents they check out Up and Running in 30 Days, my blog for achieving agents. I’ll provide lots of planning tips and free documents.

Youa��re putting together your business plan. How do you know what training to provide your agents? One method is to look at your profit and loss. More about that in my next blog. Herea��s the other way to do it. Simply provide your agents an a�?internal review a��of their sales performance mastery (or not) as part of their business planning process.

Click here to see the internal sales performance review, excerpted from The Business Planning System for the Real Estate Professional .

What Youa��ll Find When They Rate Themselves

Have your agents rate themselves on their performance skills. You will see that they rate themselves lower than you would rate them. Why? Because we’re harder on ourselves than we are on others.

Commonalities

What do you think the agents rate themselves lowest in? Youa��re right. Prospecting/lead generation. So, youa��ll want to create a�� with thema��a dynamic lead generating plan for next yeara��and coach them to it.A� See the lead generating plans inA�Beyond the Basics of Business Planning,A�and, for new agents, in Up and Running in 30 Days.

Planning your Training Calendar

Your training plan should be a part of your business plan. Your training plan should tackle the challenges you have noted as a part of your own business reviewa��and of the agentsa�� business review. By the way, be sure those challenges you noted can be handled through training.

For example: Youa��ve noted an ethics problem in your office. You want your agents to a�?be more ethicala��. Thata��s not a training problem. It is a selection problem. You cana��t train your way out of the ethics we grasped when we were 5! But, you certainly can solve a listings sold problem with training. Be careful when youa��re creating your training, and tackle the problems that you can solve with training.

Put That Training on a Calendar

You’ve done your own analysis of your profit and loss statement. You’ve done your analysis with your agents. You’ve made your training plan. Now, you’re going to put it on a training calendar–and use it to guide your agents, your staff–and to recruit. Not only that, you have an integrated training system that you can delegate. Good work.

Recruiting tip: Include your training calendar in your recruiting handout, in your faxes, in your emails, and in your social media. Let prospective agents know you are organized, and you are committed to their success

Want to see more on business planning? Check out my online programA�Beyond the Basics of Business Planning. All the instructional webinars and documents are online, and very easy to complete and implement. This is a program created exclusively for real estate owners and managers. And, when you purchase the manager’s package, you also get access to all the agent’s planning videos and documents.

Complimentary Business Planning Webinars

I’ve recorded 2 webinars for you to help you get inspired to plan for next year–and to give you information on what I believe are the biggest success strategies for the coming year. One webinar is for agents and one is for leadership.

Click here to view them.