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Role clarity occurs when everyone on your team knows what is expected of them and how to get there, as well as the desired result. Their tasks, processes and priorities are all clear, and they know how they will be held accountable. Does this sound like the stuff of fairy tales? It isn’t.

Follow these five steps to define roles and bring clarity to your team.

1. Define Responsibilities. What are team members supposed to do? This is where most job descriptions often stop.

2. Wants vs. Needs for the Job. Go deeper. Define what skills are needed to do the job. License? Experience? Ideal DISC? After every need is identified, ask if it can be a want instead. If you find yourself trying to make the role fit a specific person instead of making it fit a need in your organization, take a step back and focus on the role.

3. Future Pace the Role and Path. One year from now, what does the role look like? If someone excels in the role, what is the growth path in that role, and what does it develop into? You may hire someone to be a transaction coordinator with the expectation that the role will grow into office manager, and they need to be the right hire for both roles if that is the path. Considering the future is critical when developing roles.

4. Defining the Behavior Matters as Much as Defining the Job. Often, when envisioning a hire, we don’t consider how we want them to do their job. Should they be a self-starter that creates it all, or do we want someone that works side-by-side with us, protecting the culture of the team? How we expect a role to be done matters just as much as what the role is.

5. Accountability Equals Love. Inspect what you expect. When people fail in roles, it is usually for one of a few reasons: they aren’t capable of the role (can’t), they don’t buy into the how (won’t), or they were undertrained (didn’t know how). Leaders are often quick to fire, and that’s okay when appropriate, but before letting someone go, be sure the challenge was with the candidate. If a leader never takes the time to teach someone how to do their job and what is expected of them, how can they expect them to succeed? While accountability helps expose the reason for why a person failed, if we don’t inspect what we expect, we will never know why. And if we don’t understand the reason, we’re destined to repeat the same mistakes.

Getting clarity on roles is one of the best exercises you can complete to build a strong foundation for a scalable real estate team.

Sara Guldi has been a licensed REALTOR® since 2004. She lives in Florida, and for the past 15 years, co-owned a real estate team in Maryland that consistently exceeded $20 million in production annually. Guldi loves helping others build amazing business using the performance coaching systems developed by Workman Success Systems. Contact her at