Joining a real estate office......a few thoughts.

The Process: Beware of the broker that does not have a process or is winging it. You will want to meet at least 2 or 3 times before you make a hiring decision. Keep in mind that you are hiring the broker just as much as they are hiring you.

Size of the office:
First off let me define size from my perspective.
Less than 15 agents is a small office. (a high percentage of offices in this country fall into this category)
16-30 is a medium small office.
31-60 is a medium office
61- 80 is a medium large office
81+ in my opinion is a large office
125+ is a Mega office

Size is not as important as energy, synergy or momentum. I’ve seen offices that have 75 agents and feel dead. I’ve also been with offices that have 20 agents that feels totally energized and driven. What you want to see is a balanced office. One that has a few new agents as will as some old timers. Within that group you want to see even earnings. An office in which you have a few big hitters and a bunch of low producers will not work for the long term. Even though our industry has 10% of the agents making 90% of the money you want to try to find a balanced office.

Market Share:
Having a strong market share means momentum for the office. It means business is rolling through the office and that you have a better chance of getting into that business stream. The make up of the office is more important then market share it holds. I know of several offices that are number one in their market place but they are no fun to work in. An office may hold market share only because they have more agents. What is more important is the success per agent. If an office you like has the energy, an enthusiastic manager, the tools to help you ramp up your business but is only ranked #2 or #3 in the market, go for it. If an office is full of energy and growing, market share will take care of it self. I’ve always prided my office in being number 2 in market share, but number one in individual agent production.


New agent training:
Understand one thing going in……It is always up to you. A good broker will give you the tools, teach you the concepts and offer support, but they will not do it for you. You are in business for your self, start thinking that way.

The worst of the brokers will welcome you aboard, shake your hand and say here is your desk, here is your phone, here is the phone book, now get busy. What you are looking for is a company that will offer real tangible support ie:
Post licensing classes
Weekly training
Personal time with the broker
Staff advisor or mentor program
Other agents you can model that are successful

Business Models:
Boutique or single office: This model represents one end of the office spectrum. Can be cozy and friendly though may lack support that a larger office might be able to afford. May be better for an experienced agent.

Franchises:
The true sense of this model means the core company is no longer interested in selling real estate on a day to day business. Not unlike McDonalds, their goal is to sell and open new restaurants, then sell all of the products to support the new franchise. It becomes the mission of your local McDonalds owner to sell burgers. This model seems to maximize the best of the two extremes. (OK so I’m biased. I co-own three offices that fall into this category) Offices in this category are usually owned by local owners. They often own their own buildings, they are the decision makers and can implement changes a lot easier then the corporate model.

Corporations:
We are talking the mentality here not the necessarily the business type. This represents the other end of the spectrum. There is one main office with one owner for a group of offices. Managers in each of the offices must get corporate permission to make decisions or implement new ideas. Top down management with new ideas starting at the top and filtering their way down. Though your image may be enhanced by a consistent marketing message and you will tend to have more tools and services available, you give up flexibility and ability to change.

Attractions:
Be aware that different business models seem to attack different agent types. Get an idea what type of agent is being attracted to the office or company you are interviewing with.

Tip:
Talk with local escrow officers to get an idea what agents seem to be the most prepared, most professional and seem to do the best job. This may lead you to a company that matches your ideals.

Click here for a list of 10 questions to ask a potential Broker.

2 comments:

TheGeekUnderground.com said...

Any chance you might have some advice for approaching brokers to sell them space on a website? I'll refrain from posting the website to avoid this looking like spam, but essentially, I have started a website to advertise local properties (on the Western Slope of Colorado).

My target market is anyone who has a house to list in the area, including individials, and of course, brokers. If you would like to know more about the site, drop me a line at thegeek@thegeekunderground.com and I'll send the link to you. I would most certainly appreciate any advice you might have to share.

Finally, I was looking over some of your posts, and was wondering if you might allow use of some of your articles (with a link to your blog, of course) on the site.

Thanks,
TheGeek

Sellrealest8 said...

People would be crazy not to consider working in your office!