Many real estate agents enter their practice with exuberance and great expectations. They’ve been promised a rose laden path to success with assurance of a brighter tomorrow. Unfortunately, many agents are not told the truth up front. This is a numbers game, and when leadership fails, it’s usually because leadership has its head in the wrong game.
I’ve witnessed agents with lots of potential hang their license with a brokerage, only to find them disillusioned within a short time, and they either change offices or get out of the business. The high attrition rate of first-year agents can be, in part, a result of what happens when leadership fails. If leadership recruits agents with only numbers in mind, leadership is a sham. It doesn’t take long for agents to realize they’ve been duped.
I remember years ago being in management. I had a recruiting goal to reach each month, and my broker expected me to recruit, recruit, recruit. Years later, as Director of Training and Recruiting for a large independent brokerage, my functions were stated in my title. Somewhere there should be a title “Director of Agent Retention,” who devotes 100% of time to helping agents. When leadership fails, agents fail.
Believe me, I do not blame leadership for every agent who quits; but I do not blame every agent who quits without placing some of the blame on failed leadership. Leadership cannot recruit, recruit, recruit without paying attention to training these agents, being up front with these agents, making sure agents understand bottom line figures and facts, and calling it what it is. Too many leaders recruit and then either drop the ball or pass the recruits on to unqualified agents for training. Recruiting is all about numbers, but retention is all about people. Just recently I saw an example of what I believe was failed leadership, and unfortunately, agents pay the price and the leader moves on to bigger and better green pastures. This is not the way our industry should be!
If you want to grow your business with good agents, you need to put yourself in their shoes. Sure it’s about training, but it’s also about you being there when they need you, not passing them on to staff who knows nothing of their plight. If you are a leader who has practiced real estate, you should understand some of the needs that arise with a new licensee. If you are a leader who has never practiced real estate, it may be difficult for you to understand new agent problems.
When leadership fails, newer agents suffer, staff suffers, and seasoned agents lose accountability as they are allowed to do their own thing. If your company doesn’t show signs of your failures, you are one lucky leader! TEAM Hughes is here to help teach agents what to look for when they get their license. Let us know if we can help your business retain those you recruit.