Learn the ins and outs of recruiting and retention from master of scale and Livian CEO Adam Hergenrother, who has 35 teams in 22 states.

Adam Hergenrother is the founder and CEO of Livian. He believes that business is nothing but a conduit for personal growth and embraces the company’s vision to Love How You Live. When he’s not leading and growing his organizations, you can find Adam either in the mountains or out in nature with his wife and three children.

Recruiting. Does that word scare you? Does it hit you in the gut when you hear it and make your heart start pounding?

Does growth sound better? In either case, growing or recruiting does not have to be done by cold calling. In fact, many great recruiters or growth leaders never cold call.

Recruiting and retaining agents (and real estate support staff) has been the name of the game since real estate first became a viable career option in the early to mid-1900s.

Homes needed to be sold. Brokers needed sales agents. And thus began the practice (and art) of recruiting and retaining agents. Recruiting and retention activities are actually quite simple. But for some reason, we tend to overcomplicate it.

Perhaps because that word and what we think it means (i.e. cold calling) keeps us up at night. But if you keep it simple and keep it consistent,  you will build a recruiting and retention machine over time — no cold calling required. 

Whether you want to add one high-producing agent to your team, add hundreds of agents to your brokerage, or partner with existing successful teams, the process looks the same and can be adjusted based on recruiting volume. At Livian, we believe in growing through people (recruiting) and pendings (retention). Next week, we’ll tackle retention, but today, let’s dive into the winning formula for recruiting agents. 

Build your brand and become a thought leader

If your company’s reputation is really good, you’ll have candidates breaking down the door to get in, regardless of the labor market, Do you think Cisco, Salesforce, Hilton, American Express, Intuit or any of the other companies on Fortune’s 100 Best Companies to Work For have trouble getting applicants? Probably not.

Why? Because they have figured out how to share their company’s culture, vision, mission and values widely and often enough that it automatically attracts the right people.

How clear is your vision? What does your culture look like? How often are you sharing that outside of your team and brokerage?

Once you are clear on who you are and who your team is, it’s time to spread the message. Becoming a thought leader has never been easier than it is today. And no, it doesn’t mean you have to join Tik Tok (though you can!).

Whether it’s hosting online training, writing a blog, being a guest podcaster or creating your own, being an expert resource for reporters, or writing LinkedIn articles, there are many ways to showcase what your team stands for, how you serve your clients and the community, and what your team’s vision is.

Building a brand and becoming a thought leader in your market and beyond is a foundational move towards recruiting agents.

Highlight your agent’s successes

In order to attract new and experienced agents to your company, it’s imperative that you show them that there are already highly successful agents on the team. Even better if you can point to how your training, culture and company vision helped them reach their income or lifestyle goals.

Your current agents are your best marketing tool. Talented individuals want to hang out with other talented individuals. Make sure you highlight the success of your agents in order to attract more like-hearted and driven individuals.

Follow a recruiting model

You are only as strong as your weakest system. To ensure you have a predictable, streamlined, and scalable recruiting model, you will have to spend some time creating a solid system. A solid recruiting model will save you time and increase the probability that you are bringing team members into your company who are culturally aligned.

Our recruiting model at Livian is slightly different depending on if we are recruiting teams or if we are recruiting agents to those teams. However, the fact remains the same, that they each include a several-step process to ensure we understand the team or individuals’ goals and vision for their life, that we align on culture, that they are a behavioral match, and that they are committed to growing through our partnership.

Your steps may look different than ours, but make sure you write them down and follow them. Skipping just one step in your process increases the likelihood that you may miss something about the candidate and make a less than desirable hire.

Conduct business and career consultations

During our recruiting process, one of the most impactful steps we have is the business/career consultation. During this meeting, we do not sell, we let go of the outcome and we truly serve whoever we are having a conversation with.

Maybe they join our team. Maybe we suggest they meet with another broker. Sometimes we determine they may be a better fit for an operational support staff position. And still other times we encourage them to follow their true goals and dreams which have nothing to do with real estate.

Regardless of where the conversation goes, we are there to learn about the individual, their business, and their income and lifestyle goals and then consult with them about their next best career or business move.

This step really helps ensure that you are recruiting the right people and teams to your organization. Furthermore, if done right, it can be a really wonderful experience for the candidate, whether or not you get into business with them.

They tell their friends and colleagues, you solidify your reputation and brand in the market, and you may get even more business opportunities and recruits coming your way.

Always be recruiting

This part of the formula is always the easiest to ignore. If you don’t have an open position for a buyer’s agent or listing manager on your team right now, then why waste your time recruiting and interviewing people, right? Wrong!

In order to win at the recruiting game, then, you always need to be meeting new people, adding potential agents to your database, and conducting career and business consultations.

It’s not that much different that lead generating for buyer and seller clients. You want to keep your database full and follow up consistently. You never know when someone is going to want to buy, sell or invest. The same goes for lead generating for talent.

Keep your agent database full and follow up consistently. You never know when someone will decide to start a career in real estate, change brokerages or join a team. If you are always recruiting, while consistently following your model, you’ll be ready. 

The underlying theme for each of these pieces is systematization. Without a system, you will not be able to perform these activities consistently. Consistency is everything with recruiting. Brand building through thought leadership + highlighting your agents’ success + following a recruiting model + conducting consultations + always recruiting = the winning formula for recruiting agents. Keep it simple. Execute. Repeat. 

Next week: We’ll take on the winning formula for retaining agents once you’ve brought them onto your team or into your brokerage.

Adam Hergenrother is the founder and CEO of Livian, the author of The Founder & The Force Multiplier, and the host of the podcast, Business Meets Spirituality. Learn more about Adam’s companies and culture here.

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