The silver bullet…, the Holy Grail…, the lifeblood of any real estate brokerage is the ability to recruit the agents you want, when you want them…, right? Well, maybe. Actually, it’s much less costly to keep the good agents you have already and make them poach-proof. Once you have a proven strategy for this, then recruiting more of the agents you want now can be a very profitable endeavor. After more than 20 years in this industry helping brokerages recruit and retain agents, this is my very brief list of three reasons your recruiting is mediocre.
1. Dare To Prepare: Most brokerages have a recruit by lowest hanging fruit mentality, meaning they rarely ever strategize for exactly who they want to recruit and put in the time to do it right. Most brokerages do not prepare for a longer sales-cycle and rely on the “easy” agents. This recruiting strategy is kind of like sitting on your couch and praying that a good agent kicks down your door and begs you to hire them. It happens, but you’re not going to build a thriving business on that happenstance.
To be serious about recruiting requires the forethought and willingness to prepare a plan, create a strategy and then execute against it at a high level until you achieve your expected outcome. Dare to prepare for recruiting agents by delivering value, resulting in more value to your brokerage as well.
2. Know Your Reputation: Many brokers have no idea what the local community really thinks about them or they’re in denial and/or are so insulated that they have no clue how they’re perceived by potential recruits. Agents don’t want to work with insecure brokers so do yourself a favor and hire an outsider to investigate what others think of you and do your best not to take it too personal…, whether the feedback is good or bad. Instead, identify where there may be gaps in your perception and fix or improve areas of your public persona that are preventing good agents from wanting to affiliate with you. It’s not hard to do, it’s just often tough to swallow.
3. Be More Skilled: Learn how to be more effective with persuasion, influence, negotiating, reading and displaying body language and generally being more likable. Over the past two decades helping brokers, I’m still stunned by how poor many are at sitting down one-on-one with a new recruit and attempting to build rapport, have intellectual honesty and engage in a fair exchange of value. Many brokers and recruiters simply cannot sell! They just don’t know how. Recruiting agents is selling! It’s a transference of enthusiasm. Selling is about identifying needs and uncovering business challenges and determining if your product or service or opportunity can solve those challenges.
If your brokerage is suffering from delusions of mediocrity regarding your recruiting and retention strategies, get some help. Invest some time and learn how to become a more effective salesperson, recruiter, leader and brokerage where agents want to kick down your door and ask you to hire them.