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Real estate agents and team leaders epitomize entrepreneurs. They pursue opportunities by taking risks to start a business. Most do so because they don’t want to follow someone else’s ambitions and they honestly believe they provide something unique in the marketplace. They are typically visionary and constantly dream of creative ways to attract new clients, solve problems, transact business and increase profit. Unfortunately, these entrepreneurial characteristics also have a downside, which can often lead to lackluster leadership skills.

Here’s why entrepreneurs often make poor leaders. The team leader is highly motivated and very creative. When they encounter obstacles, they quickly develop creative solutions to hurdle the problem before launching the solution and saving the day.

Not everyone can do this. In fact, a typical team member might fret over a problem for several days before actually doing anything about it. When the team leader sees a team member being shut down by an easily surmountable obstacle, they have no patience for it. They step all over others’ roles and responsibilities, and their philosophy is that everyone should just “handle it.” While this might work for an individual agent, it won’t work when trying to scale a productive team.

A team leader has to do the opposite of what comes naturally. They need to create distinct roles and responsibilities for everyone on the team. The specific outcomes, and the activities that lead to those outcomes, should be explained clearly. This might seem like a waste of time, but it isn’t. It’s the key to creating the vital framework of a team.

If you’re reading this and thinking, “I don’t even know where to start,” I believe I can help. We have created sample roles and responsibilities for nearly every position on a real estate team. Just shoot a quick email to and I’ll send you a copy.

Here are the steps you need to take:
1. Request a copy of the roles and responsibilities
2. Customize it for your team
3. Have one-on-one meetings with everyone on your team to clarify the activities that fall within their responsibilities and the outcomes that are expected
4. Use these roles and responsibilities on a regular basis moving forward

Avoid asking team members to handle things that don’t fall within their roles and responsibilities. Once you clarify each team member’s role, keep them in that role and insist that they do what’s necessary to deliver the desired outcome. If the person can’t do the job or produce the results, then maybe they are in the wrong role or on the wrong team.

We must create 100-percent accountability for each position on our team and then provide training and support to help each person be successful.

Cleve Gaddis is a master coach, speaker and trainer with Workman Success Systems. He works with some of America’s most profitable teams and specializes in helping family-owned brokerages and teams successfully navigate their unique challenges. Gaddis hosts the Your Move Atlanta weekly radio show on 640 AM, a Fox News station on iHeartRadio. He learned sales the hard way, by selling vacuum cleaners door-to-door. To have Gaddis speak live to your company, team or group, connect with him at For more information about real estate teams, or real estate coaching, please visit