‘I went too hard too early’: Top principal

After transitioning from top sales agent to principal, one of Queensland’s best admits his biggest mistake was trying to build his empire in a day.

According to former top agent and current principal of Ray White New Farm Matt Lancashire, taking over the business he worked for was a big step for him.

“The first month was really difficult, going from only caring about being a sales agent myself to running a team of 20,” Mr Lancashire told Kevin Turner in the latest Domain Insights to Success video.

“I was very driven and … ran a team that was very high energy, constantly prospecting, making calls and very determined. Going into buying the business from [former owner Haesley Cush] I never had a vested interest in what everyone else was doing.”

But his biggest mistake was trying to change too much too quickly.

“When I bought the business at the start I wanted to build a massive empire and have massive growth … I looked at the cash flow and my break-evens and started getting stressed about that, so I went out and listed 20 properties in two weeks and was running 26 open houses on a Saturday while managing 16 salespeople," he said.

“I went too hard too early and got my head in a spin and couldn’t really manage everything.”

With Mr Cush still working at the office in a more hands-off position, Mr Lancashire claims it was his mentoring and guidance that helped steer him in the right direction.

“The best advice he gave me was to not build the empire overnight, but brick by brick," said Mr Lancashire. "I’ve really pulled myself back and am now focused on individually growing each of the agents in my office.”

One his proudest achievements was turning the culture of the office into a results and goals-driven environment through the use of attractive incentives.

“I've started a program for all my agents in the office called ‘Zero to Hero’. It’s a three-month program where we have a new speaker come into the office every Wednesday morning. We put five training sessions aside and it’s all KPI driven," he explained.

“After the first month, whoever got the best results won a ticket to AREC, the second month the winner gets an iPad, and the winner over the full three months gets an all-expenses trip to Bali.

“Off the back of the first month of this program we wrote $25 million for the month, we had seven agents in the office on a Thursday night, the culture just really changed. Just from doing this program, the culture has been the best it’s ever been.”

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