By Melanie Robitaille, Sr. Staff Writer and Graphic Designer

In the beginning Sheryll White was like many other real estate agents; hopeful and looking for a star to which she could hitch her wagon. But she wouldn’t settle for just any star because her wagon included three mentored agents and she wasn’t willing to risk their future.

“I didn’t feel like I had anything to offer them because I was an independent agent at the time,” Sheryll recalled of her feelings in 2005 while searching for something better. “I was looking for a brokerage that offered loyalty and commitment because I was so invested in them. When we happened upon EXIT, and their whole philosophy of starting with the agent in mind, it clicked. It was a perfect match in a company to work for.”

Only three short years later, Sheryll and her husband, Marc had doubled their operation with their strong leadership; a trait that would have professionals flocking to them after the 2008 recession. By 2014 they opened their third successful franchise location, and in 2019 they were honored as the third largest grossing office (multiple) in North America at EXIT’s Annual Convention.

Being such hands-on owners who believe strongly in mentorship, they found the growth a blessing, but it also spawned the challenge of being present in a multi-office operation. “Lack of support from their existing brokerage is the biggest complaint I hear when agents are considering making the switch to join us, so that’s our focus,” she said of their success approach which is a trifecta of high-impact training, community involvement, and a family-like office culture that invests in people.

A systems woman to the core, Sheryll knew immediately that they would have to replicate the successful structure of their first office and to accomplish this, they hired managing brokers at every location so they could toggle between each brokerage and provide a leadership presence. They onboard agents with a one-on-one business plan meeting where they encourage professionals to include community engagement practices, with an agent orientation based on EXIT’s Success Plan that’s customized with local market elements, and with a marketing appointment to demonstrate EXIT’s robust technology and online resources.

They even cover after hours with their 20-minute call back rule between leadership, to ensure their agents always know someone is available, because as Sheryll says, “You can’t find all your answers in a video or a book; you need to have a conversation and a relationship between broker and agent, just as the agent needs to have a relationship with their client. It’s all about that relationship and helping to grow their business.”

When the trying times of 2020 began to unfold, Sheryll and Marc recognized that real estate was changing and that this was drastically different than 2008. Firmly believing in the EXIT business model and their system, they doggedly followed both, never straying from their commitment to their agents. They took a triage approach to identifying the vital areas where they needed to focus their efforts, the safety of their agents and clients, and business continuity.

“In Colorado you couldn’t show any houses, but once you were under contract you were essential to work the transaction through to close, so we knew we needed virtual showings and Matterport tours and we put out a system for ensuring every agent knew how to provide the sparkle and story in their listings,” she said. “On the buying side we concentrated on virtual contracts and letting buyers know it was okay to buy a house, so we set up a virtual homebuyer program. We spent every waking hour during those first seven days to make sure everyone was taken care of. Everybody got a phone call.”

But just as they learned and benefited from the trying times of the past, they continue to do so today, realizing that their future looks brighter than ever before. “There’s opportunity whenever there’s huge change,” Sheryll mused as she looked ahead to the future of her offices. “Many of the agents here with other companies have just gone back to their old ways now that you can show houses, whereas we’ve evolved. I think some of the marketing we did – that different, heavy exposure of our listings – is going to be a great opportunity. Now we have more tools in our toolbox that are going to get our homes more exposure, and we can sell homes more effectively than other agents. That terrible time has turned into such a great benefit for how things are going to work in the future.”

Read more about Sheryll’s growth here.  EXIT Realty Associates can learn more about Sheryll’s leadership style on Bob McKinnon’s Leader’s Path podcast.  Find out how to subscribe to Leader’s Path in the Resource Center. 

 

 

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