“Grow when your hair’s on fire,” Keller Williams broker Sarita Dua said at Inman Connect New York on a panel focused on knowing when and how to grow teams.

Getting more business than you can handle and toying with the idea of bringing in a few more agents to your brokerage? As discussed at the Inman Connect New York 2020 panel “Teams in 2020: Living the Team Dream” at the Marriott Marquis hotel, the perfect real estate doesn’t just fall from the sky — you need to take specific steps to ensure you’re bringing the best people on board.

Sarita Dua, the principal broker at the AskSarita Team at Keller Williams, is currently in the process of expanding her team while Debra Beagle, managing broker of The Ashton Real Estate Group of RE/MAX Advantage, grew her team to a team of over 160 agents based in Nashville since switching companies in 2012.

Two brokers share their tips for building the perfect real estate team here:

Sarita Dua

To wait or not to wait?

Bringing in staff is always a tough decision. Maybe you’re getting a lot of business now but you’re worried that it won’t last long enough to justify the expense of a full-time staff.

Dua said that there’s no one-stop answer to deciding when to bring in a new sales member —  only you know your brokerage and what is right for you. That said, you also shouldn’t let fear justify not expanding your team. Picking the right people will allow you to specialize and, ultimately, bring in more sales.

“You may take an initial hit on quality but you’re going to find the processes to grow and expand and improve,” she said.

Set goals, and track metrics

To truly know whether someone fits your company, you need to set clear goals for what you’re trying to accomplish.

Before you bring people on, track specifics such as the number of sales, open houses or even leads you hope to achieve and then, once people start working, follow progress. That way, you won’t have to guess and go by gut feelings to see if specific team members are performing well or whether someone’s the right fit.

“They’re either heavy on listings and want to partner with agents who will help them with open houses or buyer leads,” said Debra Beagle the managing broker and owner of thee The Ashton Real Estate Group of Re/Max Advantage.

Consider an inside sales agent

If you find that your agents torn between showings and a thousand other things that’s part of running a real estate business, consider bringing in an inside sales agent (ISA) or a person focused specifically on finding and cultivating leads.

That said, do not expect the ISA to do all your work for you, says Dua. The most effective leads work because the other agents also know the client well and are able to provide them with the service they need.

debra beagle

Debra Beagle

“We were starting to get a little sloppy and relying on getting a lead and putting a ribbon on it,” Dua said.

Lead by example

To have a successful team, it is extremely important for the broker to lead by example and display strong leadership capabilities.

Set high goals but also foster a sense of teamwork and collaboration by caring about your agents, understanding their strengths and weaknesses and creating an environment in which everyone can do their best work.

“A lot of agents are specifically attracted to the community spirit” Beagle said.

Email Veronika Bondarenko

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