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Jama_FontaineIn the following interview, Jama Fontaine, team leader at Keller Williams Realty Santa Fe in Santa Fe, N.M., discusses educating, leading and training her agents.

Years in Real Estate: Since 1991
Region Served: North Texas and New Mexico
Team Members: 500

Jama, you’re a Keller Williams team leader. What exactly does this role entail?
The team keader is the CEO, so I’m in charge of agent productivity and culture in Santa Fe, N.M. In other words, I lead the entire Keller Williams agent population here. Our ultimate belief is that no one is successful alone. It takes an entire team to succeed in real estate. To be clear, there are agents at Keller Williams who aren’t part of anything like a real estate team in the classic sense, but nonetheless, they’re still part of the broader Keller team. The person who sits at the front desk and handles the phones for the agents is on their team. The person who assembles their marketing materials is likewise part of that agent’s team and vice versa. There are also classic agent teams here, and the reason I’m in the role that I’m in is because I ran such a strong team. Anything is possible here.

What’s your belief regarding training and education?
I believe that the awesome training and education provided by Keller Williams are the top reasons people come to the firm and are so successful. The No. 1 thing I try to teach our team members is mindset. If you go into each transaction believing that you’re powerful, strong and unshakeable, that you’re the right person for the job, you can’t lose. If I can teach this mindset, that’s it. All the rest are just activities. The other important part of training is to remember that knowledge is power; therefore, if you stay engaged and continue to learn, your business will grow. Another important “Kellerism” that we try to teach is to move from being entrepreneurial to being purposeful. This means we’re constantly teaching our team members to set up and implement systems—to stick with a set schedule. One of my first coaches told me, “Freedom without discipline is really just bondage in disguise.”

Talk about the benefits of being part of the Keller Williams team versus being on a team with any other area brokerage.
Keller Williams was founded in 1983, built on a rock-solid foundation. I think what sets us apart from the competition is the constant and never-ending opportunity for being around big thinkers. We offer every level of training. Whatever you want to learn, or whatever you want to do, we have a model, coach, trainer or top producer to help you. Everybody at this company is so valid. Also, one little known—but very important—element is that we have a profit sharing system. It’s really like a retirement plan for REALTORS®. Profit sharing is admittedly not what we sell, but it’s the icing on the cake. I also think our top agents are more willing than agents at most other brokerages to share what they’ve done to be successful.

What’s the best part about being a team leader at Keller Williams?
I love being a team leader. Through my teaching and coaching, I’m making a difference in other people’s lives.

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