CEO to CEO: Tami’s Top 10 Tips

by Tami Bonnell, CEO, EXIT Realty Corp. International

Let’s talk CEO to CEO.  As the owner of your own real estate company, you’re a CEO and it’s up to you to pay attention and execute from every angle in order to build a bulletproof business. Following are my Top 10 Tips to help you succeed.

#1 Know what you want

What do you want for an agent count? Who is on your target hit list? What are you targeting for per-person productivity? What’s your goal for transaction count? What do you personally want to earn for income?  Where might there be holes in your current business you can fill with opportunities in your specific market?  When you’ve determined what you want, it’s important to learn the power of Yes and No.  Say Yes to all the things that make sense for your goals and say No to the things that won’t take you there, including agents in your office who may not be a good fit for what you’re trying to build.

#2 Focus on people

How well do you know your agents? How well do you know their dreams and goals, both personal and professional? How well do you know the agents you hope to recruit into your brokerage and the people whose companies you hope to merge with or acquire?  How well do you know your Dirty Dozen? Personalize your interactions as much as possible.  When you focus on people, you can remind them of their dreams when they get tired or they’re feeling overwhelmed.  You can help boost them when you know what makes them passionate about going to work. They have a dream and a vision of where they want to go, and it’s your job to help them get there.

#3 Rate yourself on your relationships

Rate yourself out of 10 on all the relationships in your life – agents, friends, family, outside business peers, leaders in the communities you serve – all of them. If you’ve rated a relationship as a 5 out of 10, ask yourself how you could raise that to a 6.  Reflect on how you could improve every relationship so they feel tied to you, valued, heard and understood. People want to be part of something better.  What could you do to let them know you care?

#4 Set and share goals regularly

After you’ve set your goals and developed your business plan, share them with everyone.  How can your agents be involved? When you share your goals with them and with the agents out in the marketplace or with someone whose company you’d like to acquire, there may be ways they can help you achieve them.

#5 Personalization

One size does not fit all. According to a 2018 study, 74% of Americans prioritize experiences over products or things. When you personalize an experience and you really put yourself in the other person’s shoes – whether a potential client or prospective recruit – they feel like they matter and they’re valued.

#6 Value = Income

The more value you provide to everybody who gets in front of you, the more income you’re going to generate. When you provide value, the law of attraction sets to work bringing people, income and opportunities in your favor.

#7 Use the system

Utilize everything provided by the system with which you’ve chosen to associate. For us here at EXIT Realty, that means utilizing all the tools, technology, resources and training at our disposal, and of course, the EXIT Formula.  If everyone in your brokerage focused on sponsoring three agents this year, how much better and more successful would your company be? If your agents utilized our Smart Sign™ technology, Mobile Business Card™, the Expert Marketing Suite™, the EXIT Realty Connect App, and attended all of the webinars and other training opportunities we offer, how much would that strengthen their business?  The goal is to help people achieve true financial freedom.  My description of true financial freedom is that all my bills are covered before I get out of bed in the morning. So, for example if your bills or overhead total $50,000 a year, then sponsor enough people into the company so you earn $50,000 in residual income. Then you can focus on leading with pure passion, you’re going to work with less pressure and you’re going to be so much more successful when you don’t have that pressure on your back.

#8 Keep growing personally and professionally

As leaders, we must continue to grow or people won’t follow us. Personal and professional growth is how you stay happy and passionate. We have a Miracle Morning™ Facebook group at EXIT that encourages members to read along with the other activities prescribed in Hal Elrod’s routine.  The Miracle Morning helps members take control of their day and grow as individuals. As leaders grow, they begin to attract like-minded people to their cause.

#9 Grow everyone, even in the community you serve

Keep a look out for ways to add value and grow, not only your colleagues, family and friends, but the people in the communities you serve.  A suggestion of a way to improve a process or approach or a nudge towards an opportunity could benefit someone’s quality of life. Just like compound interest in your bank account, you could have a compound interest in everyone around you. Know the pulse of your community and pour yourself into what’s really important.

#10 Find peer groups that keep you passionate and bringing new ideas

I’m involved in a couple of CEO groups where I’m the only person representing real estate.  It’s so awesome to hear people from another world and adapt their successes into your business.  If you’re around the same people all the time and you don’t trigger new conversations, you’re not going to continue to grow. Get involved in a charity, civic events or a spiritual community and breathe some fresh life into your thinking.

… and bonus #11 If you lead people, profits will follow. If you lead for profit, people will leave.

People grow in an environment where they feel safe to grow. I’m a firm believer that the fact that EXIT’s Executive team has been with the company on average for more than 16 years is a testament to what our Founder and Chairman, Steve Morris has built: a company based on human potential.

None of our major competitors has such longevity in their leadership team.  In fact, most have a revolving door of people who join because they’re going to get a stock package and a golden parachute when they leave.  I believe that when a company has a people-first mindset and leads from that perspective, profit will follow.  If it leads for profit people will leave.

We have a depth of relationship with one another, our regional owners, broker/owners, associates and administrative team at EXIT that’s uncommon in most industries. And it all started with Steve who believes in the power of the subconscious mind pushing you to stretch beyond your comfort zone and making you feel safe enough to grow.

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