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.

The Clues: How to Teamify your Office for More Profits


You’ve decided you want to move into the world of participative management, and create a real team. How do you start? Here are some great resources.

Start reading books on visionary leadership and team building. One the best is Built to Last: Successful Habits of Visionary Companies, Porras and Collins, Harper Business. For a quick read, choose Ken Blancharda��s High Five: The Magic of Working Together. Author Jon R. Katzenbach has several recent books on teams, too. Pay attention when successful leaders in other industries talk about how they a�?teamifieda�? their associates using vision, values, participation through advisory groups and rewards for common focusing such as profit sharing.

Lots of Clues on the Sports Pages

Read the sports pages. Ask yourself, a�?Why is that person considered a good coach? Why did that person fail? How did that person get a bunch of highly gifted, undisciplined athletes to stop playing as individual stars and start playing like a team? Why do some a�?teamsa�? fail with more gifted athletes than the team who wins with less individual gifts and more team play?

Leaders Build True Teams

I dona��t believe that teams fail. I believe that leaders fail to build true teams. The main reason leaders fail is because they dona��t know how to be team leaders. They have never experienced being on an effective team of any kind or being led by an effective leader. So when they call it a a�?team,a�? ita��s merely a group. They say they want team play, but instead they reward individual play. They ask for cooperation and fair play, but when a dispute arises, those values fly out the door so that the higher producer is a�?protecteda�? by management. They say they manage by a value system, but what is ita��and where is it? In reality, they manage by expediency.

How to Recognize a Team

To recognize a real estate team, you will see evidence that:

  • Individuals give up some self-interest for the good of everyone, e.g., no one steals leads or bad-mouths team members to sales associates or the community to get the upper hand.
  • Your leadership council makes win-win decisions, not win-lose ones. An example of win-lose would be a decision in which sales associates win, management loses.
  • Team members are accountable to a common goal, e.g., each team member agrees to sell a certain number of homes to support team goals.
  • New team members are highly supported and encouraged to set goals and achieve them. For example, no team member joins an office where they must a�?prove themselvesa�? alone to get any attention.
  • Systems exist that support teamwork such as advisory councils, task forces, and a business plan that mirrors the vision and values of the team.
  • Team rewards exist such as like profit sharing.

Why Bother?

Why bother to learn the leadership skills required to create a team? Because, ita��s more rewardinga��both financially and emotionally. Ia��m a flutist, and I can tell you therea��s a much greater synergy in playing a flute concerto with an orchestra than in playing a flute soloa��alonea��or even with a piano accompaniment. Learn the skills of teamwork, for, in the next decade, trend watchers tell us that teamwork in the workplace is critical to profitability. Ita��s even true in real estate.

Want to get specific strategies, that you can immediately implement, to build your team with confidence, take a look at 365 Leadership. It’s a small-group coaching program ONLY for owners and managers. Each month, you’ll get a new leadership strategy to recruit, coach, train, and motivate your associates. You’ll build new structures to get out of that old ‘top down’ management that agents hate! Take a look at 365 Leadership and see what others think of the first program. Our next program starts in September.

You deserve the kind of coaching and support to take your management career to the next level!

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