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What are you doing to fill your pipeline? When most hear this question, they translate it to “what are you doing to produce more leads?” After all, if you’re not closing enough business, you must need more leads, right? I think the answer to this question is “no.” Quite often, we don’t need more leads, or even better leads. We need a better system to work the leads we already have.

Let me tell you about John, the leader of a team with five agents who was having a big problem. His team is on the Zillow Flex program, but their conversion rates were falling way below the minimum standards. He was frustrated and worried about losing his Flex account. Most leaders, when faced with this type of dilemma, decide to increase the lead flow, but John decided to restructure his Zillow service areas to decrease the lead flow to nearly zero. Then, he and his team got to work.

John believed that the lead flow received in the past hadn’t been worked properly. He believed that some team members were not adequately following up, and he suspected that this was because they knew they would have more leads coming into the pipeline. His team redoubled their efforts on lead follow-up, and within 30 days, their conversion rates had more than doubled.

Here’s what they did:

– They used a lead tracker. All leads were entered into the lead tracker upon first receipt. They used the lead tracker even though they decided to keep up with the leads in their CRM and use the ABCs of lead management:

A – This is a prospect who is ready to buy or sell immediately, who you also have an appointment with.

B – This is a prospect who is ready to buy or sell in the next 90 days. Communicate with this prospect twice per month during the weeks of the 1st and the 15th.

C – This is a prospect who is ready to buy or sell in more than 90 days. Communicate with this prospect once per month during the week of the 8th.

– The team held one another accountable to their follow-up with all prospects, both new and old.

– As Howard Brinton used to say, they got out of judgment and into curiosity. They knew they couldn’t adequately understand a prospect’s level of interest or motivation initially, so they assumed everyone was guilty of needing help selling or buying until they proved themselves innocent.

John’s problem isn’t unique. Most team leaders wish their conversion rates were much higher and that their agents weren’t so easily dissuaded when following up on leads. John knows he’s not out of the woods yet. His team understands that keeping their focus on the lead tracker and the ABCs of lead management must continue.

If you’d like a copy of John’s lead tracker and the ABCs of lead management, email me at

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 navigate their unique challenges. Gaddis hosts the Your Move Atlanta weekly radio show on 640 AM, a Fox News station on iHeartRadio. To have Cleve speak live to your company, team or group, email