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The world can never have enough great leaders, I say. That applies to our teams and our local real estate brokerages, as well. What better way to help grow agent leaders and the future leaders of our real estate brokerages, our teams and our state regulatory bodies than by creating an in-house leadership council?
Although I wish I had created the agent leadership council concept, it’s something that I learned from Keller Williams Realty. Keller Williams has had agent leadership councils for years and continues to refine their purpose and impact year over year. Yet this concept is not exclusive to KW.
EXp Realty also has an agent advisory council, and I’m sure many other firms have similar leadership groups. My team liked the idea so much that we have adopted a similar model for our expansion team, called HergLC (Herg Leadership Council).
Ready to create your own agent leadership council? Here are three things to consider:
1. What is the purpose of your agent leadership council?
Generally, a leadership council’s primary responsibility is to weigh in on decisions that could affect all agents on your team and proactively come up with ideas to serve the company as a whole better. This might include initiatives such as wellness challenges, additional administrative services, community outreach, financial restructuring, new contracts, recruiting and more.
But maybe you want your leadership council to be more focused on regulatory real estate issues, technology or culture. That’s your call! But getting clear on the purpose of the agent leadership council is paramount to bringing the right agent leaders on board who will get behind the mission and vision with passion and purpose.
Many agent leadership councils have committees as well. Maybe you have one overarching vision and then create committees to carry out specific missions across your team. Do what works for you and your team.
The key here is being clear on why you have created an agent leadership council in the first place. Yes, it’s to guide the team’s leaders from an on-the-ground perspective, but it’s also for you to help develop talent. See who shows up and takes the lead on committees or initiative. Those are your future leaders at a larger level.
2. Who will be a part of your agent leadership council?
You can answer this question in a lot of different ways.
- Will anyone from your company staff your agent leadership council?
- Will it be completely agent-run?
- How many people will be allowed to join the leadership council?
- How long is their term?
- What are the criteria to join the council?
- Is it based purely on numbers (top producers)? Or do council members need to be nominated?
- Can members come from anywhere in the organization?
- Are real estate associates and team operational staff members allowed to join?
- Who will be making these decisions and overseeing the agent leadership council to update bylaws, make nominations, cast the vision, etc.?
I would recommend about 10-15 people be a part of your agent leadership council, depending on your organization’s size. Some brokerages consider eligible agents those who are in the top 20 percent of the organization.
From there, the agents must agree to the covenants and then would be inducted into the council for the following year. On our team, we have the company’s leadership staff make nominations throughout our organization’s ranks. And we strive to have a mix of CEOs, top-producing agents, and operations coordinators serving on the council to represent our organization as a whole best.
Again, the key here is clarifying who will make up your agent leadership council and making sure those who join are entirely bought into the council’s purpose and agree to abide by the covenants.
3. What are the convents of your agent leadership council?
Serving on an agent leadership council is an honor and a privilege. Those who join must be willing to make decisions that benefit the entire organization. They must be growth-minded and ready to commit the time and energy required to serve.
Your covenants might include meeting attendance requirements, training, teaching, recruiting, engaging other agents in the company culture and more.
Our HergLC covenants focus on:
- Leading by example with personal production and mentorship of other team members
- Providing local and national leadership in training, masterminds and other events
- Attending and hosting specific training
- Attending HergLC meetings
- Regular engagement with team members across our organization
Clarity is power. Get clear on what you will require of your agent leadership council, and make sure your council members agree.
In turn, it is your responsibility as the leadership council leader to provide value to those who are taking the time to serve. Perhaps there are private leadership masterminds, discounts on national training events, an Audible membership, etc.
In the covenants you create, make sure you include your promises to your council in return for their service to the organization. If your leadership council is committed to bettering the organization and growing their leadership skills, then you, too, should be committed to helping them achieve that.
Whatever you call your agent leadership council, one thing is for sure: It’s a valuable addition to your team or brokerage if they have a strong mission and vision, clear standards and expectations, and the right leaders and leaders-in-training. After all, these are the next leaders of your company and the real estate industry.
Adam Hergenrother is the founder and CEO of Adam Hergenrother Companies