It’s time to reevaluate the skills and tools that team members need to be successful in today’s marketplace. Consultant Chris Pollinger outlines the new necessities for leaders.

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In today’s constantly evolving work landscape, the definition of a high-functioning team has shifted significantly. Remote work has become increasingly popular, with almost 26 percent of U.S. employees working from home.

With this shift, businesses need to re-evaluate the skills their teams require to be successful in 2023. Here are seven essential skills that business owners need to prioritize to ensure their teams remain productive and effective.


Collaboration is key to building successful teams in 2023. By fostering a collaborative environment, businesses can encourage employees to share ideas, communicate effectively and work towards a common goal. In my experience as a luxury real estate broker, I’ve seen firsthand the benefits of collaboration within teams. This is especially true when you mix the generational viewpoints

One of my clients had a team of agents who worked independently, which often led to miscommunication and a lack of cohesive strategy. To address this issue, I recommended that they start having weekly team meetings to discuss their progress, share ideas and identify areas for improvement. During these meetings, they developed a stronger sense of team cohesion and agents began to leverage each other’s expertise to close deals more efficiently. By fostering collaboration, this team was able to achieve greater success and exceed their sales targets by 18 percent.


Communication skills have become more critical than ever, especially in remote workplaces. Team bonding, small talk and developing strong communication skills can foster cohesiveness and improve the team’s overall functioning. Investing in professional development opportunities for employees to improve their communication skills can have a significant impact on the quality of service offered to customers.

As a sales coach for real estate brokers, I worked with a mega-agent who struggled with communicating effectively with clients. This often led to misunderstandings and missed opportunities. To help her improve her communication skills, we worked on active listening and identifying nonverbal cues.

We also practiced role-playing scenarios to help her feel more confident in her interactions with clients. After several sessions, she was able to communicate more effectively, leading to improved customer satisfaction and a 34 percent increase in sales.


Resilience is an essential yet undervalued skill for employees to possess in 2023. It can significantly impact job satisfaction, engagement and happiness in the workplace. Building resilience can be taught and employers can create a workplace culture that encourages and rewards resilience. During the hiring process, companies can ask questions about resiliency to ensure that candidates possess this critical trait.

As a leadership advisor, I worked with a multi-office brokerage that had experienced significant setbacks due to market conditions. Morale was low and many associates were struggling to stay motivated.

To help them build resilience, we focused on reframing their mindset and developing a growth mindset. We also identified areas where they could take ownership of their work and encouraged them to seek out opportunities for professional development. As a result, the agents became more resilient and better able to adapt to changing market conditions, leading to improved 22 percent better results and improved satisfaction.

Digital marketing

Digital marketing has become increasingly important in 2023. Tech-savvy marketers who are creative and innovative can help businesses reach their target audiences quickly and effectively. HubSpot’s 2023 Marketing Strategy & Trends Report suggests that influencer marketing is expected to rise this year, making it even more crucial to have key folks on your team who are experts in this field.

Data security

Data security is a critical skill for employees to develop, especially as cybercriminals become more intelligent and efficient. Companies must establish strong security measures such as virtual private networks (VPNs) and multi-factor authentication tools. Employees should also be trained to identify and report phishing attempts, use secure sites for online purchases and be mindful of suspicious emails. This is going to be amplified by the proliferation of AI and a future risk management nightmare. 


Empathy has become a crucial aspect of emotional intelligence and can enhance leadership and management skills. Encouraging compassionate conversations in the workplace can provide employees with a sense of self and encourage genuine engagement with clients when problem-solving or remediating situations.

As a team consultant for a real estate brokerage, I worked with a team that struggled with interpersonal conflicts. Team members often felt misunderstood or neglected by the team leader, leading to resentment and a lack of productivity. To address this issue, we worked on developing empathy skills, such as active listening and understanding different perspectives. By doing so, the team developed a stronger sense of cohesion and worked together more effectively to achieve their goals. It also reduced turnover by 43 percent.


Accountability is an essential skill for employees to possess in 2023. By taking ownership of their work and holding themselves accountable, employees can improve their performance and contribute to the team’s success. It’s essential for managers to provide clear expectations and guidelines and establish a culture of accountability.

As a sales coach for real estate brokers, I worked with a manager who struggled with holding their team accountable. They often made excuses for poor performance and didn’t follow through on consequences. To help them improve, we developed a plan for setting clear expectations and establishing a system of accountability. By doing so, the team became more focused and productive, resulting in a 50 percent increase in transactions and happier clients.

Building successful teams in 2023 requires a focus on developing critical skills like data security, collaboration, communication, resilience, digital marketing, empathy and accountability. Business owners must invest in professional development opportunities to help their employees grow and develop these skills. By doing so, they can create a workplace culture that fosters innovation, creativity and productivity, leading to greater success and profitability.

Chris Pollinger, founder and managing partner of RE Luxe Leaders, is the profit whisperer to the leadership elite in the business of luxury real estate. He is a national speaker, consultant and leadership coach.  Learn more about his broker, manager and team leader growth programs at

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