Top agents tailor training

The head of an award-winning boutique agency believes that bringing in different trainers for different agents is the key to rapid growth.

According to top agent and winner of the Australian Real Estate Awards for Best Boutique Network Matthew Bourn, from Sydney-based mconnellbourn, tailor-made training is one of the secrets to his success.

“We hired a COO which has freed up my time and allowed me to focus more on the growth and development of the team. We’ve also introduced agent coach Darren Saunderson to come in and work with our agent’s one on one.

“He’s working with our junior agents to bring them up to the level we require at a faster pace, while we have Michael Sheargold who works with me on the business as well as with some of our top performers,” Mr Bourn said.

And the results show. In the 2013 calendar year, mconnellbourn's results grew by 37 per cent from the year before.

“We even surprised ourselves to be honest,” Mr Bourn admitted.

According to the latest Real Estate Business straw poll, there is an even spread of training types among agents. A total of 28.1 per cent of respondents said internal training was their main focus, while bringing in an external trainer and attending events received 17.4 per cent and 16.1 per cent, respectively.

The favoured option was ‘other’ training types.

“Ninety per cent of our training is bringing in trainers,” said Mr Bourn. “We do some events, the odd AREC, Ideas Exchange or Sales Summit, but ultimately a majority of training is done with coaches.”

However this year’s Australian Real Estate Awards' Top Office, Harber Real Estate, has taken a different approach with a strong focus on internal training.

“We find that one-on-one training is the best course of action for us,” sales manager for Harber Real Estate Kirrily Macri said.

“Because we’re a single office with a number of top agents here, we work in a buddy-style system to help share the experience from our gun performers.

“One of our top agents is terrible at organisation, but he can talk the leaves off a tree. So we team him up with someone who has their time management and workflows in order and get them to learn from each other.”

But the best way to grow your business is not to tailor your training to each individual agent, but to each individual aspect of the business, according to industry coach and CEO of the Real Estate Results Network Michael Sheargold.

“There are a lot of people in the industry who are looking for the silver bullet. Their focus is ‘let me go to one event, or one workshop’ and hope that there’s going to be enough in there to turn the business around'.

“You can’t use just one avenue to better your business, you need a combination,” Mr Sheargold told Real Estate Business.

“Principals need to look at each individual aspect of their business and decide what the best type of training is for that. What is the best type of training to improve our listing win rate? What’s the best training you can get to improve negotiation skills? What’s the best training you can get to improve auctioning skills?

“Each of these might have a completely different answer depending on your business,” said Mr Sheargold.

Are you one of the industry’s top performers? Ensure you’re in the running to achieve the industry’s top accolade by entering your submissions for the 2014 Real Estate Business Awards NOW! ENTER HERE

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