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RISMEDIA, August 22, 2009-While the current real estate market has everyone thinking outside the box in order to come up with ways to remain successful, one thing that hasn’t changed is the fact that effective leadership paves the way for a company’s success. Here, Stephen E. Summer, Regional Director, Realty Executives Mid-American Region discusses the keys to being an effective leader.

Stephen E. Summers
Regional Director
Realty Executives Mid-America Region

Have you noticed how many people today are looking to you as their broker and asking what they should do? Have you seen the difference you can make with your agents when you offer a meaningful plan and strategy to change the direction in which their businesses are headed? Agents today want real answers in real time to the challenges they’re facing in their own businesses and with buyers and sellers. As managers and brokers, we owe it to our agents to be ahead of the curve. We must look in every direction possible for new ideas, new information, new modes of communication for the right tools, the right systems and the right programs that will guide our agents’ futures. It has been made painfully clear at all levels in our industry today that the old model has changed and, as leaders, we are obligated to look at new ways of doing business in order to grow our own businesses and lead our agents effectively.

When you offer real value in your meetings, training, seminars and conferences, people participate. It’s paramount that, as leaders, we drive communication to every level within our organizations so that our mission and purpose clearly resonate. The more time we spend effectively communicating with our agents, our staff, our clients and the people who matter, the more leadership we demonstrate and the more followers we will acquire. Effective leadership is contagious.

It’s interesting to note how easy it is to fall into the trap that because we are involved in an industry comprised of independent contractors, we somehow may think that effective leadership has less relevance compared to a more corporate environment. It has been my experience that almost the opposite is true. The less structure and the more freedom independent contractors have, the more they really need effective leadership. Strong leadership actually lends itself to more structure and a highly proactive environment, making success possible for everyone. Effective leadership is about being proactive with your people. It’s about going to them and not waiting for them to come to you. It is looking for ways to drive more business within your business so that everyone in your organization wins.

We have all heard the expression, “If it’s not broke don’t fix it.” This is where effective leadership makes a difference. Effective leadership means constantly evaluating your business and looking for ways to improve it. It may mean better expense management, creating new top-line revenue; it may be tweaking your business in such a way that it significantly improves performance or, many times, it is simply staying well-read and current on issues.

We are operating in a time where we have more information coming at us than any other period in history. Effective leadership is sorting through the maze of information that’s out there and focusing on what’s important to our businesses and our agents. Effective leadership makes a difference. Without it, you won’t ever see a difference.