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Why Every Day Should be ‘Retention Day’ – Part III

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RISMEDIA, March 29, 2008-This week, in conclusion of our three-part recruiting and retention series, Gary Longobardo, president & COO, and Bonnie Mays, senior vice president of Realty World share what works best while being selective when it comes to looking for new recruits.

Gary Longobardo
President & COO
Bonnie Mays
Senior Vice President
Realty World

Brokers today should use a keen sense of selectivity when recruiting agents. The real estate industry is not for everyone, and misidentifying agents’ strengths and weaknesses can be extremely costly for brokers.

gary-longobardo.jpgI believe that the traits a broker must look for in an agent are those that describe a successful person-one who is self-directed and motivated to reach written goals, committed to building a team and sharing in partnership projects and compensation, who fits into a culture of contribution without concern for who gets the credit, and who has shown success in other areas of his or her life.

Most importantly, agents should be teachable, which means that they will be adaptable to change and will be prepared for new paradigms. Being teachable means the agent has a passion for real estate and the belief that he or she will succeed. Responsibility, open-mindedness, attitude, and image are key traits of successful agents.

The lifeline of any viable brokerage company is a strategic recruiting plan. Brokers must show up to their offices and care about the success of their agents by creating the environment to succeed and by offering their support.

Recruiting is all about relationships, building new ones and deepening existing ones. Recruiting is a process, not an event. Consistent contact and follow up with a database of prospective agents will keep the broker’s pipeline full of people who share common values and enjoy working as a team. Real estate sales is work and requires more discipline than is often found in many agents, so the broker must coach agents as to the job description, giving them systems to be productive. The agent’s commitment to follow these systems will be a key to his or her success.

Going hand-in-hand with a sound recruiting plan is a retention plan, which, of course, means to do what is necessary to keep agents that are adding value to the company, while removing agents who do not meet the minimum requirements. Retention is easier when a broker hires good agents who have great skills and a great attitude. The absence of accountability systems erodes retention success by driving good agents away. Poor agent accountability also sabotages future recruiting efforts. The broker’s leadership skills are reflected in the agents that he or she attracts to the company. Positive, effective brokers will attract positive, productive agents.

To read Part I, featuring Sherry Chris, President & CEO, Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate LLC click here.

To read Part II, featuring Sharon Michnay, director of Corporate Business Development, Halstead Property, click here.

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