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Whether you are looking to expand an existing team or form a new one this year, here is a basic blueprint that team leaders can follow, along with some other important considerations.

Step 1: Identify Your ‘Why’
This is especially important for new teams, but it matters for existing teams, too. Why are you considering adding a partner, a team agent or an administrative team member? Is it a business decision driven by the opportunity for more profit, is it a lifestyle decision so that you have more free time, or is it for some other reason? Typical reasons may include:

  • You have too many client opportunities to service yourself.
  • There are certain client types that you’d rather not work with personally but that a team member could.
  • You can offer a financial and administrative situation for team member agents that is mutually advantageous.
  • You have administrative and/or marketing work that would best be done by someone else.

All of these are legitimate reasons for real estate teams and are pivotal to know upfront. Your “why” matters because it clarifies your hiring process to ensure that your team makes sense and is not being formed without a specific purpose.

Step 2: Define Roles, Expectations and Compensation
By “define,” I mean get it in writing. Be sure to have complete transparency about what is expected, both of you and of any new team members. If specific hours or meeting attendance is required, agree to that upfront. Establish roles, make sure that they understand any other team member’s role, and set goals for the new team member’s production (for agents) or other activities (support staff). Perhaps most importantly, make sure that you firmly establish your compensation agreement. In the commission-based world of real estate sales, you must clearly define how team members will be paid, especially in situations of agent “overlap” or other scenarios.

Step 3: Commit to Reviews and Establish Conflict Resolution Procedures
I highly recommend setting up a review schedule, with the first occurring 30, 60 or 90 days after they join your team. This will make sure that everything is staying on track and that you make any necessary adjustments. You must also make sure that you are fulfilling your role for your team member, too; you don’t want to invest time and effort on-boarding someone, then have them (avoidably) leave out of dissatisfaction. Lastly, as team leader, it is usually wise to affirm in writing that you have the final say in the case of any conflict. Hopefully that will not be necessary, but you might as well make it clear upfront.

Successful team arrangements will have many more elements, opportunities and issues depending on their individual circumstances, but these three steps are the groundwork for establishing and growing a team that will thrive in 2020!

For a free copy of my exclusive GoldMine Pipeline™ 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 and the Official Real Estate Coach for McKissock Learning and Real Estate Express. She is also an RISMedia 2020 Real Estate Newsmaker as an industry Influencer. Sign up for a free 30-minute coaching strategy session or visit www.sherrijohnson.com for more information.

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