The sales manager is the most important driver of sales in your operation. The consistent discipline of connecting with your agents weekly, and even daily, helps them stay ahead of their goals and stay proactive instead of reactive.
Business planning with your agents is not a once-a-year event; however, in the real estate industry, too many managers hold a yearly business planning meeting—usually in November—to talk about the next year.
I have personally used year-round business planning as a very effective way to help agents get refocused, get out of a slump, set higher goals and reach their full potential. Being a coach to your agents is one of the very best ways to add value to their relationship with you and your brokerage. Not doing this is a huge missed opportunity. When you help them increase their business by 20, 50 or even 100 percent, you will create real and amazing value that they will see as a true partnership with you personally, which creates a higher level of loyalty to you and your company.
Here are a few quick methods for conducting year-round business planning that you can do immediately (like, start this week!) that will create and drive more sales to your monthly production and more listings to your office inventory. Your agents will thrive, your team goals will be reached, and both your office and agents will increase their bottom lines.
- Start simple.
Create a simple action plan sheet for how much an agent wants to make and has to make in the business. This is a simple worksheet with average sale price, average commission and their income goals. Work backwards and figure out how many sales they need, based on the average sale price and commission earned, to sell to actually make that income. Now you have some financial goals that are on paper and written down. Next, this needs an action plan.
- Set one-on-one appointments with agents.
Personally invite agents in your office to work on a business plan with you, and ask this all the time—at sales meetings, in the hallway, everywhere. Even send out an email about it. Every agent in your office should know that you do year-round business planning all the time, from January through December, and that you do it on a monthly basis, too. Remind them constantly, and reach out to the agents you think would benefit from your coaching and guidance to help them increase their listing inventory and sales between now and the remaining months of the quarter. You have to say this more than once and repeat it over and over. (If you feel like a broken record, you should!) They all won’t hear you the one time you announce it; they also don’t remember it, and they’re all so crazy busy. Repetition is the key. You can’t overcommunicate this. You will thank me—I promise!
- Hold a group business planning session in your office.
While one-to-one coaching is great with agents because it is a time when you can be confidential and personally talk to each agent about their financial goals, holding a group business planning session in your office is absolutely amazing because it creates huge energy and actually says to everyone in the office, “Hey, we are working on our business and being proactive, and so should you.” It sets the tone that everyone should have a business plan—and if you don’t, well, you need one.
It also is a great way for you to lead the entire effort with a common positive message about increasing your business: how to generate more leads, how to convert the leads into appointments and how to close more sales to hit your goals. It is a great way to lead an entire group with a sales-driven, value-added message that you want every agent to go out and use and be successful with. This way, you are speaking to 20, 40 or 100 people at once, reaching more agents with your message of how to grow their real estate business. You can hold a 60- or 90-minute business planning session that brings everyone together to work on their business. They should all make an “Action Items” list for the activities they need to deploy to attract new business. This will result in more people making more calls and appointments, and ultimately bringing in more listings and sales contracts! You will love the results.
- Hold business building/planning sessions weekly.
Keeping agents focused every day, week and month requires you to constantly be reminding them of the activities they need to be doing to create their success. Holding a weekly coaching session will help your agents stay focused and also hold them accountable. They will thank you for this and you will see amazing results from your sales team.
- Success is contagious.
When others see the success of their teammates with increased listings and sales, and they know they were part of your business planning or coaching sessions, more agents will start attending your weekly sessions. Success is contagious. Talk about your agents’ success stories of how they created their plan of action and how they increased their appointments and the number of listings and sales they secured each week. When your agents see the success of their peers, they will be automatically drawn to your offer to help them grow their business. They will also start attending your coaching and training sessions because they see real value in them.
- Be consistent and build momentum.
You can’t do this one month and then not hold a coaching session the next month. You don’t want the energy of this activity to ever fizzle out. That is not you—you are now a superstar sales manager that drives the energy of your office and sets the tone for everyone on your team. Never cancel a meeting or coaching or training session—you have to keep the momentum going, as it will take on a life of its own and everyone in your office will catch the driving force of energy that you are creating and they are following. The momentum is key to building your entire office, region or organization.
Remember, your biggest and most important job is to help your agents list and sell more homes every month. Create the culture where you are the driver of sales activity—you remind them how great they are, but they also need a plan of action in order to hit their goals every week and every month. Be the coach that pushes and challenges agents to do more and be the best, that’s available to help them with year-round business planning and make a huge difference in their year, that’s their go-to person to create the success plan, that’s their sales manager and that adds real value in helping them build and grow their business. They don’t know this until you tell them consistently. This will be a huge for retaining your agents and a huge value proposition to use for recruiting agents to your team. Build the energy, create the flywheel in your office or operation and make it happen. Your agents will be soaring, and both your office goals and the agent’s goals will all be exceeded monthly and yearly!
For a free copy of my exclusive Agent Weekly/Monthly Goals Worksheet, click here.
Sherri Johnson is CEO and founder of Sherri Johnson Coaching & Consulting. With 20 years of experience in real estate, Johnson offers coaching, consulting and keynotes, and is a national speaker for the Homes.com Secrets of Top Selling Agents tour. For more information, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or 844-989-2600 (toll-free) or visit www.sherrijohnson.com.