SAN FRANCISCO — Brokers should get to know their agents and their needs instead of constantly recruiting, said new-agent expert Alyssa Hellman at ICSF this week.

“If you just stop and focus on who you have there, then the back door will stop spinning,” said Hellman, director of the Go School.

The key to training and motivating should be about focusing on particular agents and caring about what is going on in their life, she added.

“It allows you to connect; you feel that you are invested in their lives,” said Hellman, whose school runs its onboarding program for groups of new agents.

“It can get lonely out there. As a group we find  that they support each other, and 90 percent are doing a deal in the first 90 days,” she said.

“Each week they are taught by a different office leader at Go Realty. They go to different rotating offices, talking to all agents in the company.”

Meanwhile, one of the biggest misconceptions out there is that new millennial agents should be mentored by a veteran agent who has been in the market for 20 years, said Jay O’Brien, managing partner at Re/Max Prestige Los Angeles.

“They got there in a way I would argue you do not do now,” he said. “For instance when they started, email open rates were higher because email was new — now it’s the wrong approach. I’d rather see them go deeper, doing something significantly different.”

O’Brien runs a mentoring program at Re/Max Prestige.  “We are very selective with who we bring on,” he said.

“We do a lot of hand-holding. I tell them, ‘I will be answering your calls for the next year, but you have to have some skin in the game,'” he said.

“It’s hands-on training, on-the-job training — it’s not theoretical. It is how to get the client, how to build up your business without spending your money. We will coach you step by step.

While lead generation is a big focus, he said agents should not be chasing “cold, shitty internet leads.”

At the end of the day, you want “hot referral business.”

And think up ways to add value with a difference, he said.

“For instance, we take care of the transfer of utilities, we send them to dinner — things that make them feel they have had the best, ritzy experience.”

So many training programs are not detailed enough, said Candy Miles-Crocker, founder of Real-Life Real Estate Training and training director for Long & Foster.

“No one tells you how to do it. They know they should be prospecting but they don’t know what to say when they make a phone call.”

She doesn’t provide a script, but more conceptual thinking.

“My program goes deeply into the how — for instance, how to leave a voice message or attend a networking event.”

Miles -Crocker is a firm believer in relationship marketing.

“You can spend thousands of dollars that you don’t have. Just work your sphere.

“Look at your Facebook friends and see what they are doing. If they have a new job or a baby, suggest meeting up.  Then you are marrying technology with the old school.”

Email Gill South

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