March 31, 2022

The secret to building a world-class real estate team

Ashley Walsh
Ashley Walsh

When you're deciding how to build a real estate team, the first step is to evaluate your current situation and identify some goals and objectives. 

You can use this information to decide on a team structure and organization, whether it's a mentor/mentee, team leader, or lead team model. 

During this time yo may also want to consider supporting your team using end-to-end transaction management technology to help your team be more efficient and to more easily scale your team or brokerage.

How do you know it’s time to build a team?

One way to know when you've reached the point where you need to take formal steps to structure your team and start to use technology to build and support the team is transaction volume. Depending on the size of your office, your threshold could be 25 transactions a quarter, 30 transactions, or more.

If your office has a rainmaker that leads your team, they could be spread too thin. In this case, building a strong team that can take on some of your rainmaker's tasks can free their time so they can focus on leading the team.

If you've been thinking about specific and measurable goals your real estate business can set and achieve in the next six months to a year, it's probably the right time for you to start formally building your team.

Team models, structures, and roles

Some real estate teams are family-oriented, such as married couples or partners, or sometimes multi-generational offices. In addition to these, there are other ways to organize real estate teams, and families in the same office can fit into them, too.

The three main real estate team models are:

  • Mentor/Mentee: This type of RE team is the lowest-risk model, where you as the experienced salesperson or broker mentor new agents for a specific time period, usually one to two years. After the mentorship period, the new salesperson will leave your team and move out on their own. In this model, the brokerage or a transaction coordinator handles the back office operations.
  • Team Leader Model: Focused on a brand, and usually centered in a neighborhood or community, the team leader model is divided into sales and operations-oriented divisions. The lead listing agent leads showing and listing agents, while on the operations side, a business manager oversees marketing personnel and transaction coordinators.
  • Lead Team Model: The lead team model can scale up beyond the team leader model due to the way it's organized. The lead team model is divided between sales and operations, similar to the team lead model. But one key difference is that within sales, agents perform outside sales duties like showing homes. The outside sales part of the team is led by a lead listing agent. The operations division has both a marketing manager and a lead manager.

Which model is right for you?

Each real estate organization model has a different level of turnover for salespeople and other staff. 

The highest level of turnover is built-in to the mentor-mentee model. While it's great that sometimes a salesperson will want to stay with your firm after their 12 to 24 months of mentoring are over, it isn't common. If you're building downline income and using this model overall, it could be a good fit for your RE business. 

But if you can make more money through sales than you will through training several mentees, then one of the other models could be a better choice.

The team leader model and lead team model have similar-sounding names but different approaches. Brokerages that have a goal of taking a major share of their local community market can effectively use the team leader model. If you're thinking about expanding regionally or even into other states, the lead team model supports growth and scaling.

Each team includes back office or operations staff, in addition to listing agents and showing agents. Even in smaller brokerages, a transaction coordinator can be a vital team member, freeing salespeople to focus on the activities that drive listings and close sales.

Making your first hire

When it comes time to make your first hire, most firms choose another buyer agent. But if you know that you're a strong people-person and can get listings and close sales, your first choice of new hire could be an administrative staff member, like a transaction coordinator. 

A good transaction coordinator can manage the contracts, paperwork, and scheduling of services required throughout the selling and buying process.

Once you have your processes down smoothly and are taking advantage of technology and time-saving tools that support your smart team structure and processes, you can start to achieve your growth targets. Getting the right first hire is the first step in scaling your team and your business.

Building a good team culture

Some of the skills that contribute to a great real estate team are common to all businesses, but it's especially important that real estate team members mesh well. To strengthen your team, you need to develop their talent as individuals and also invest in their success. Supporting your team with modern technology can help them achieve success.

Track and measure your team’s success with tech systems

Your team can be the most gifted ever, but if they're not supported by strong underlying processes and technology that supports what they do, they're not going to be able to achieve their potential. And, if you can't see what your team is doing, it's hard to hold them accountable. An end-to-end software system can support your team's work and their processes. It will help you to track your team's activity and manage them as well.

Instead of having your team members spend valuable time on administrative work, you can make their lives easier with automated communication and reminders. A tracking system will support your team and help them to accomplish all they need to do, and also grow in the real estate industry.

When you're looking for technology that meets the needs of today's top-performing real estate businesses, making it not only possible, but easy for you to monitor, mentor, and support your team, Shaker for Teams is the tool that can help you accomplish all of these goals. Learn more about Shaker for Teams and schedule a Demo today.

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