Laugh and the world laughs with you; close transactions and everyone wants to buy you a cup of coffee. Not too long ago I was a newbie (well, 7 years ago). Not only was I a newbie, but to make matters worse, I was new to town also. At the time real estate was booming, and there was no time for coffee much less a few moments to encourage an out of town, fresh out of class, full of hope Realtor. Similar to walking into church late, it seemed everyone already had a seat and no one was budging.
I remember interviewing with several companies, and waiting for call backs from just as many. No one seemed impressed with my goal of, well, basically taking over the world. Less of them seemed impressed with me in general. They already had true Top Producers, you know...the wife of a builder, the son of a banker, and the heralded leader of the PTA (Parent Teacher Association).
Advice was freely given as most half heartedly encouraged me to seek out an assistant position. I was told countless times about the impossibility of breaking into the local market, the uphill battle of competing with those who had strong community roots, and the importance of friends in high places.
I didn't know squat about the local market because no one would teach me, I couldn't grow strong community roots with no one willing to sit still long enough to speak with me, my only friends in high places were the pelicans that I saw on my dock at sunset.
Finally Everett Ballenger of Ballenger Realty (at the time, a small but powerhouse realty group) welcomed me with no judgment, no snub, no outrageous requirements. I actually thought he was kidding.
7 years, 4783 stories, and over 40 million in closed transactions I get all the broker coffee invitations I can handle.
Now that I am no longer a newbie, I find myself wondering what on earth some of these recruiters are thinking. I am certainly no expert nor do I envy the responsibility of hiring quality agents; however, the following may give a few pointers from an agent who has been on both sides of the desk.
1. If you have never attended one of my open houses, business events, seminars, etc..Don't act like we are friends.
2. If you never had the time to return my phone calls when I had a question or a difficult transaction with someone in your office, don't expect me to call you back, not this week anyway.
3. If you didn't take the time to even learn my name when I was struggling to learn my way, don't tell me how much you value building relationships.
All the coffee in the world won't replace the sincerity, the support, and the encouragement I have received both in times of success and times of struggle.
So Brokers-In-Charge, remember there is far more to recruiting than coffee and stats.