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How to Foster Better Communication with Agents – Part V

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RISMEDIA, July 26, 2008- “I believe the best way to increase communication is to make our agents true partners in our businesses, plain and simple,” says Mark Willis, CEO of Keller Williams Realty, Inc. “When we make our agents our partners, “my” or “your” business becomes “our” business.” In the fifth part of this six-part Viewpoints series, learn his perspective on opening the door to more-and better-communication.

willis_mark.jpgMark Willis
Keller Williams Realty, Inc.

As the entire real estate industry continues to tackle today’s market, we, as brokers, can’t lose sight of the fundamental principles that keep us in touch with our agents. I believe the best way to increase communication is to make our agents true partners in our businesses, plain and simple. When we make our agents our partners, “my” or “your” business becomes “our” business.

To make our agents partners, first, we have to open our books. Sharing the financials of our brokerages sets a standard of trust that puts us on the same side of the table with our agents-working toward increased productivity and profit. When we communicate about how to move the business forward, especially in today’s market, we are saying to our agents, “I respect and value your opinion about how this business should be run.” Incredible trust and loyalty can be built through these conversations.

Next, share the profits. Profit sharing allows our agents to build wealth beyond their commission checks and builds a more secure financial future for them and their families.

Once the books are open and we are sharing profits, we have to give our agents a say in how the business is run. At Keller Williams Realty, we do this through our Associate Leadership Councils (ALCs). Regardless of the type of steering group you may have, it should be empowered to analyze the financials of the brokerage and have authority to make decisions that positively impact the bottom line and therefore, their profit sharing potential.

Finally, never underestimate the impact that a face-to-face coaching session or a supportive phone call can have on our relationships with our agents. The more we can come out from behind ourselves and into the conversations we have with them, the more real our relationships will be.

Especially in today’s market, constant communication and support for our agents means the difference between marginal success and powering through the shift.

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