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What strategies are most effective for you in terms of training?
We believe in training our agents at every level. For those that are new to the industry, or the company, we focus on getting them comfortable with all the tools we provide. Additionally, we offer a Professional Development Program (PDP), which offers training at various levels and covers a wide range of topics. We also offer our agents a two-week-long tech boot camp, a very progressive training program that deals with all aspects of technology from how to get into all the new media to taking your social media activities to the next level. When it comes to training, it’s important to constantly have opportunities available because you never know where or when you’ll catch an agent that may need a refresher or is finally ready to take advantage of the training you offer.

How do you effectively communicate with your agents?
When it comes to communication, my motto is: Say it. Say it again. And go ahead and repeat yourself. Since there are so many different ways of communicating, we use a multi-tiered approach so that we catch our agents when they’re listening. Our daily news blast ensures that a handful of articles that are important to our agents’ business are seen each day. This is a great way for them to learn about new laws, economic news that will impact our market, etc., without having to look through every paper or magazine on their own. We also have a daily bulletin board—Jump Start—a program that delivers a little nugget of information to our agents as soon as they turn their computer on. These are quick, subtle reads that deal with events, training or legal questions, regulations or even simple reminders.

What are some of your technology best practices?
When it comes to best practices, we try to create them instead of simply following what other companies are doing. As far as our website, it’s important that we keep the site sticky so that we have strong user engagement, keeping people on the site. To that end, we have made sure the front page of our site is very transparent for the consumer. By incorporating large pictures, video and social media links, we have created a professional website that makes it easy for visitors to engage with the information—and our agents—on their terms.