From online showings to all-digital signings and closings, the digital transaction has fully come into its own. All month, Inman examines the companies and technologies driving this new world of digital transaction.
Last month, we talked about how my leadership team has been goal planning with our agents and what we’ve done to modify our previous yearly planning. While we were doing these interviews, we noticed that John McCarthy had increased his production from about $6 million to $10.5 million without leaving the house to meet any clients.
Let me explain even further. McCarthy has a young family. When the COVID lockdown occurred in March, his daughter had previously been in the hospital for issues that could be considered pre-existing conditions, which was especially scary for a parent.
And his wife had recently started an excellent psychologist job, something she’d been working toward for the past decade. This job brought not only financial security but also a great family insurance plan.
So McCarthy took the role of primary caregiver during the day for most of the pandemic. COVID-19 obviously put McCarthy in a very compromising position. He’s also the sales manager for our company. He provides training and support to our agents and helps me with our sales meetings and training.
Here’s how McCarthy tapped into our existing systems and increased his production while hardly leaving the house and caring for two small children.
Lean into virtual meetings
He used technology to take buyer and seller meetings. This fix is an obvious one, but it’s all about the delivery. McCarthy is a master salesperson, so asking both buyers and sellers an either/or question (slot close) about when they can meet makes a big difference.
For example: “When’s a good time for you to meet for our strategy session, mornings or afternoons?”
He uses the term “strategy session,” which has a great ring to it.
Mentor up-and-coming agents
He created relationships with some of our newer agents and included them in the Zoom meetings. We are very picky about who we hire, and we only hire a handful of newly licensed agents per year. And the ones we do hire are very eager to learn and succeed.
So McCarthy took advantage of this by offering to mentor them in the first few deals, and he offered them a small piece of the commission to show properties, help with contracts and work leads.
He was the main point of contact with the clients, but the agents he worked with were involved in many of the conversations — and they loved the experience.
Take control of your time
He was very diligent with his time-blocking. Having to be a primary caregiver to the kids, he made sure that he was organized with his calls, strategy sessions and other vital tasks. When his wife would come home from work, he had slots of time to get things done, and then when the kids would go to bed, he would complete other administrative tasks.
Embrace the mess
He didn’t worry about kids and chaos with clients (especially our Spyglass team) when he was on Zoom meetings. It’s freaking COVID, so people understand that life isn’t going to be a total quiet zone right now.
Obviously, he tried to control kid chaos in the background, but his kids adapted to him having Zoom meetings as well.
Tap into existing systems
He leaned on the brokerage’s systems for helping agents. McCarthy has always been one of the best at keeping his CRM organized, so that wasn’t much of a stretch, but he did take full advantage of our transaction coordination and tapped into our ISAs if he needed them to follow up on a lead.
One side effect that we encountered was that the newer agents who helped him out each came out with a level of confidence that would usually take years to build. Because they were involved with so many different transaction types, it was a game-changer for their next clients and leads.
After seeing what he accomplished during this time, we had lengthy discussions on how to model this for other agents. We are attempting to systemize this method for top-producing agents who want to work with more buyers without giving up the client.
McCarthy is now coaching our other agents on how to accomplish this. This model is for someone who eventually wants to start a team with our brokerage but isn’t sure if they’re ready for a full-time buyer’s agent. With this system, they can dip their toe in the water before making that commitment. To say that we’re incredibly proud of his accomplishments would be an understatement.