I like to think I have a way to determine if anyone—be it a coach, team leader, broker, advisor, guru, you name it—actually has the ability to help you (or anyone) grow their real estate business.
Anyone who claims they can help you grow your business will take ONE first step. And they will always take this step. They will help you start tracking your core numbers and KPIs.
How can they help you grow your business if they don’t know what's going on in your business?
With that out of the way, let's move on to the main topic. I LOVE spreadsheets. They are dynamic. You can do almost anything with a spreadsheet. If you go study for an MBA, you’ll really be getting a masters degree in Microsoft Excel. They’re that powerful.
But, you and I both know spreadsheets are clunky. They’re inefficient.
They’re also cheap, and it’s incredibly tempting to put the hours in on sheets.google.com and save yourself a few bucks every month. I know how it goes.
Here’s why that’s selfish and will end up costing you the long run in real estate.
Take An Agent First Perspective
I’ve spoken with thousands of real estate team leaders, brokers, and coaches over the last two years working at Sisu. There is a stark contrast between the rockstars and the wannabes. The rockstars actually think about their agents. They think deeply about the value they are creating for them. They look at how they can serve their team, rather than just growing the bottom line. In so doing, their bottom line grows exponentially.
Back to spreadsheets. Have you ever tried to read someone else’s spreadsheet?
So, when you are asking your agents to track their core KPI’s on a spreadsheet, or submit a google form, or (I hate to even mention it) fill out a PIECE OF PAPER to submit to the admin every week, who are you really thinking about?
That’s right. Yourself. Because those numbers are going to be swallowed up in a spreadsheet, never to be seen again by your agents except for the occasional bits of information that you drip down through 1-on-1 trainings or team meetings. Your agent will probably never log in to see that spreadsheet. If they do, they’re gonna have a hay-day trying to understand what’s going on inside. In reality, you’re holding them accountable to YOUR goals. Their personal progress has nothing to do with it. They’re not even getting value out of tracking their numbers. What kind of a culture is that?
Getting With The Times
Not trying to get too dramatic here, but I’m just trying to explain, in a very pointed matter, why 90% of real estate accountability programs (outside of expensive coaching) fail and why the culture on most real estate teams is, frankly, sub-par.
There is a solution. Here are the steps:
- Make tracking simple. What do your agents have on them, 24/7? Their phone. They can use it to track MEANINGFUL conversations whilst prospecting. You could even buy them an iPad to go at their desk to be used while tracking. We have teams do that. No one wants to log in to your spreadsheet at the end of the day. Even better: pull data automatically from the systems they already use so that they don’t even have to track it. We also have teams doing that.
- Blast insights into their brains all day, every day. Take the data they are tracking. Get a program to make it look beautiful. Show it off on 80-inch monitors around your office. Make that data MEANINGFUL! Put it in context of THEIR goals. Show them their conversion ratios. Point out areas where they can improve. Try to make all of your advice and coaching data-driven. This is how you improve efficiency.
- Incentivize. It’s basic psychology. Desired performance, when rewarded, will be replicated. So run contests. Offer prizes. Give your highest performing agents more leads. Do this in a way that is fun, engaging, and enticing. When a deal goes under contract, push notifications to everyone’s phone shouting out the agent. This is how you build momentum and create an inspiring culture.
Doing all of this won’t just make things less of a headache for your admin staff—it will create incredible value for your agents. They won’t leave when they get offered a higher split at a different brokerage because you have created a culture and a sustainable competitive advantage. You don’t have to offer higher splits. They know where they’re going to perform and where they’re going to build the most business.
Even better, you can offer them opportunities to recruit, coach, and build their own team underneath you. They’ll never stagnate. And they’ll be able to use your agent-first systems to coach the next wave.
I haven’t even gotten into operational efficiency, places where data leaks through the cracks, and ways you can save your transaction coordinators days of effort. That will be for another post, where I will attack google FORMS :-)