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Adding experienced, already productive agents to your office brings a variety of obvious benefits, but recruiting newer agents—those with more potential than experience—can help your firm, as well, especially as these up-and-comers develop over time.

You need to approach adding new agents strategically, though. Opening your door to just anyone can hurt your culture. Finding and hiring the right sort of newer agent (regardless of experience level) can protect and improve your brokerage’s long-term health.

It’s true that newer agents often require more work up front, but these agents are also blank slates, with open minds that can be trained and molded for success.

Here are four things to keep in mind:

  1. Look for Attitude

All of us started from a point of inexperience. The key for brokers is to determine whether a prospect has the drive and personality to grow and thrive. Often, it isn’t that hard to figure out. Try this: Ask prospects about their significant accomplishments in and outside of work. What initiatives have they managed or spearheaded? What big ideas have they put into action?

When they respond, don’t just listen to the words; consider how they answer. Do they express passion and excitement? Do they show a spark? Does their reply suggest they have the commitment, drive and determination inherent in an entrepreneur?

  1. Help Them Succeed

As a broker, it’s your responsibility to not only find talent, but also to nurture it. This is particularly true with newer agents. You need programs in place that develop good habits, essential skills and a solid real estate foundation. There are many training resources out there, so do your research, find one you believe in and then make it your own. A strategy of bringing newer agents on board without instruction and support will fail in the long run.

  1. Have Them Invest in Themselves

It’s one thing for you to invest in a newcomer’s success; it’s another for them to invest in their own. There can be a big difference in motivation between an agent on a free ride and an agent who has skin in the game. Agents who invest in their own training often take their education, and their careers, more seriously than those who don’t. Paying the bill themselves is a powerful incentive for them to work as hard as they can.

  1. Protect Your Culture

Resist the urge to recruit any warm body that comes through the door. A come-one-come-all approach will quickly dilute your culture, or—even worse—define it. Quality agents are out there—prospects who may not be top producers yet, but who certainly aspire to be. And here’s a great tip: Allocate a certain number of newer agent slots based on your office size (adding one newer agent for every 10 experienced agents is a good place to start). You’ll maintain your productive culture while adding fresh, new blood to your group.

High-potential candidates without long real estate resumes are anxious to start their careers strong—or are languishing at offices that don’t provide the support and competitive advantages they need. Consider giving them a place to grow. You can ensure that your future—and theirs—is one of prosperity and greater success.

Geoff Lewis is president of RE/MAX, LLC.

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