By Dolores Esanu
When I was 17, I walked into an up-and-coming real estate firm and asked for an internship. The firm consisted of a mother/daughter team. Initially, the mother hesitated at the thought of hiring a teenager with no work experience, however, the daughter gave me a chance. She went against the grain and the hesitations of her business partner and allowed me to step in. Her faith in me helped me flourish as a young adult and young professional, ultimately shaping who I am today.
My point? All it took was one person to stand up and take a risk. I didn’t ask her to be my mentor — she became one. From day one, her guidance and input influenced my decisions about my career, coworkers, and outside resources. After a year of interning, I was hired as an assistant. Her mentoring morphed into a whole different genre. She started helping influence my assertiveness, people management skills, and taught me the importance of multitasking in real estate. Eight years later, I am now licensed and her mentoring still comes into play. I find myself marching into her office asking for her advice on advertising, guidance on handling difficult clients, and even everyday things such as closing gift ideas.
Do you have a mentor you can rely on in real estate? That solid rock of foundation in your life who can give you an answer — and not just any answer — but an answer full of experience, knowledge, and consideration? They may not always say what you want to hear, but at the end of the day, what you need to hear will benefit you more. I firmly believe that as a new agent or a new assistant, a mentor is a necessity. They keep us motivated, grounded, and most of all, on the right track to success.
By Dave Robison
All the top producers have something in common. Yes, they all have something other agents want, such as higher sales, more disposable income, and more free time. But how do they achieve this? It’s not by buying an iPad or iPhone. Can you guess what it is they have in common?
NAR reports 87 percent of agents don’t have assistants.
An agent recently asked how I came to the decision to hired an assistant. This agent is excited to grow their business and take the next step into creating a sales team. After thinking about it, I realized how my business expanded due to having assistants, and how my lifestyle is more enjoyable. Here is my advice for agents who are considering hiring an assistant:
When do you hire an assistant? There are two main, simple steps. Whenever I hire a new assistant, I do it after analyzing what I’m doing with my time. My first step is figuring out how much time I’m spending in each area of my business. My second step is deciding if there is a certain area I could focus more time, and whether that time would produce a large enough return for my bottom line while paying a new assistant.
For example, recently I realized I’m spending a ton of time on e-mails, answering simple questions from my clients and other agents. I have a transaction coordinator who I keep busy with 20 to 30 deals under contract at one time. She is already very busy, so I couldn’t add more to her plate. I figured if I can have a licensed assistant take care of all the routine e-mail and simple calls all day for me, then I could spend more time getting more listings. Now it’s time to do it. I hired my second assistant so I could focus on increasing sales.
How do you hire your assistant? Continue reading »
By Alex Milshteyn
I am writing this 30,000 feet in the air as I fly to St. Louis, Mo., where I’ll be participating in a “30 Under 30” panel discussion during the St. Louis Association of REALTORS®’ YPN second anniversary celebration. As I’m writing this, I feel very little stress, which is a giant contrast from just a few years ago when I’d travel out of town.
During the early years of my real estate practice, I hated leaving town. Just the thought of leaving town would put me in a foul mood. The reason was I couldn’t stop working or stressing about my business even though I’d be somewhere else. I lost count of how many times I returned from a vacation several days early because my business was just too overwhelming. If you’d like to know how to take a vacation to Thailand in three business days, ask me.
At this point, you may be wondering what’s wrong with me. Well, let’s face it, I’m a control freak and a perfectionist. The thought of someone else taking control of my business was impossible – no one could do it better than I could. I shied away from all vacations, all day trips, and a lot of family time because I didn’t know how to handle the stress of being away and continuing to provide the same level of service as I do when I am in town.
Eventually it got to a point where I began to feel like a slave to my practice. I realized that I couldn’t make it much longer unless I got help. I needed someone who I could trust and train. The only way I was going to take a vacation and ease my workload was to hire an assistant. Continue reading »