Here’s how Nicole Lopez, founder of True Houston Real Estate, motivates her team by giving them what matters most and has a little fun in the process.

Every year since my team’s inception, we’ve grown, some years more than others, but growth is always there. People often ask me how I keep our team so motivated in terms of meeting our production goals.

How do we do it? We use a little gamification theory to make our mundane prospecting activities fun.

We turn our revenue-boosting activities into a contest, and it all culminates with a huge celebration of our success in the form of a big mid-year vacation for team veterans.

This approach creates a fun, enviable culture where my agents kick some major boo-tay and appreciate belonging to our tribe. It also helps avoid the “I need a better split” conversation because we have found ways to increase individual production, which ultimately makes them far more money than a few percentage points would have.

Here’s how we’ve been successful in gaming the system:

Use their annual resolutions as motivation

Every year in the beginning of January, we write down our big, hairy, audacious goals for the New Year on Post-It notes that we tape onto our bathroom mirrors for personal accountability. Five of those are professional and five personal.

Affirming the personal goals in addition to the professional ones is something I believe in because it gives us leaders better insight into what makes each individual tick.

From those, I see what each person is aiming for and set up private production goals with each person.

Is going to Inman Connect on the list? Great! Let’s set up a production goal, and if you meet it, I’ll pay for your conference ticket, meals and hotel. (I put meals before hotel because we all know eating in NYC cost more than sleeping in NYC.)

Incentivize them with what they need

Last year, I had one agent who’s laptop was on the fringe of burnout. I set a big goal of $1.5 million in production within 60 days. If she met it, I’d take her shopping for a new MacBook.

We’re in Houston, Texas, y’all, so that’s about six contracts at our average sales price. It was something small that meant she would be able to work more efficiently without fear of missing out on business because her computer was down.

Create pop-up incentives

We also do smaller group “surprise” contests.

Each day, our agents are to send in a log of their prospecting activities, and on occasion, when the log is tallied, I’ll send the person with the highest score a small bonus of usually no more than $50 to $100.

This keeps them on their toes because they never know when the incentive will happen!

Hold quarterly team contests

These vary based on the quarter. The first quarter is usually listings, the third quarter total sides, and the others will vary based on what we need. For these, we do a big-ticket item.

Right now the prize is a Gucci Marmont handbag for the agent who brings in the most listings through March 31. (Hey, we’re an all-female team and many a millennial female is motivated by Gucci — myself included!)

If we’re able to capture two to three extra listings due to this incentive, that handbag has more than paid for itself.

Plan a team trip

We reward our agents, who have been with us at least one calendar year, by being eligible to attend the team trip. The first year we did this, we started small. I took my agents (and admin because my life would collapse without her) to The Golden Nugget in Lake Charles, Louisiana for a weekend of sun and fun.

The following year, we all went to Cancun for three nights and four days together. Is it a big expense? Yes. Roughly one closing’s worth of earnings.

But is it worth it to celebrate our victories, enhance team culture and make our new agents who are home and hard at work motivated to make it on the trip the following year? A resounding yes.

My annual budget for contests and trips runs close to $10,000 now. However, when I started it, was much less than this.

Incorporating a few perks here and there can prove to be beneficial when you take the time to know your team, know your agents individually and reward their performance accordingly.

Nicole is the founder and team leader at True Houston Real Estate– a Side partner. Nicole’s team has obtained monumental success and growth in the Houston Market with their trendy marketing techniques. And enviable team/office culture. Connect with Nicole on Facebook or Instagram.

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