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— by Felix Hung

How I Recruited 118 People in 2017

In January of 2017, I was hired to be the branch manager to run the Huntington Beach office of one of the large independent brokerages in Orange County, California. When I got hired, the first priorities were to reach out to the top producers in the office to introduce myself, to create a recruiting plan and to schedule training classes. The office had 229 agents in the office and within the first week, I was already losing agents. This is a very common occurrence when the manager changes, but I had to plug the leak of agents. To do this, I scheduled my first office meeting and I started to call the agents in the office to ask them for some patience before deciding to change companies. I remember telling many agents to “give me a chance” and to “wait until after the first office meeting.” The next thing I did was reach out to the agents that I already knew. I asked for their support and to spread the good word about me.

Recruitment

After taking the first week to settle the agents in the office, it was time to turn my attention to recruiting. Many of the local brokerages smelled blood in the water and started to call, email and text my new agents. When this happened, I knew I needed to show them that it wouldn’t be a good decision to recruit my agents. Do you know the best tactic to stop another brokerage from recruiting your agents? You call, and you recruit their agents. YES. You love your agents, give them great training and you give them the transactional support they want then you go on offense and recruit from them. There were five main brokerages recruiting my agents, so I had my office administrator make a spreadsheet of all the agents from all five of the brokerages and I started to send automated voicemails to them at a high volume. I started to add them as friends on my Facebook. I ran a Facebook Ad talking about all the scheduled future training I would be having for the office.

Training

Next, I turned my attention to the training calendar. I loaded it with training to build rapport with my agents, but I also used it for recruiting. For three months, I spent every Saturday morning from 9am to 1pm training agents on how to properly conduct open houses, how to train their sphere of influence to refer them business and on how to generate leads from Facebook. By now, I was into my second week and I started to have agents from my old brokerage contact me to want to join my new office. The first month, I ended with recruiting 12 agents. It shocked the city. Everyone took notice. Title Reps in our area receive reports of agents who change brokerages. When the new report came out in February, there was a buzz around town. Everyone started to ask who I was. Where did the agents from the first month come from? A few were agents from my old brokerage that decided to follow me. A few were brand new agents that had interviews set up already with our company. And the rest and the majority were agents that had been following me on social media that decided to join me at my new brokerage.

Let me give you the plan I implemented:

  1. Protect Home Base – Keep as many agents as possible.
  2. Go on offense and recruit the agents of those companies recruiting your agents.
  3. Have trainings in your office that your agents BRAG about to their colleagues and friends at other companies.
  4. Have a new agent pipeline by sending letters to new licensees.
  5. Ask your agents for referrals every single meeting.
  6. Invite agents from other brokerages to your office meetings and trainings.
  7. Hold a social event once a quarter and invite agents from other brokerages.
  8. Hold a big training event once a quarter and invite agents from other brokerages.
  9. Call coop agents that are working with your agents to check in with them about the transaction.
  10. Join REALTOR® associations and attend events like AREAA (Asian Real Estate Association of America), NAHREP (National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals), WCR (Women’s Council of REALTORS®) or your local board for visibility.
  11. Do free trainings once a week on Facebook LIVE for 20 minutes up to 60 minutes.
  12. Add all the agents in your city/county or area as friends on Facebook.

The momentum continued strong through June. By June, I was already above 60 agents recruited for the year. And I remember breaking 100 agents recruited while I was in San Diego for AREAA’s National Convention at the end of September last year. Unofficially, I recruited 118 agents which included two transfers from another office within my company. Officially the company paid me on 98 recruits. I know I recruited more than 98 recruits. Do you know why? I have all the pictures saved that I took with every single agent I recruited.

Retention

Remember retention is recruiting. You must re-recruit your agents daily or they’ll leave you. Start with retention and protect home base then go on the offense. There is not a perfect company for every agent. Decide what your brokerage will be known for and what your personal reputation will be then recruit the agents that fit your company’s culture. Always focus on being a better leader and your own personal development. I’ve seen too many times where agents will join my brokerage because they outgrew their manager. The old adage still applies, “leaders are readers.” I encourage you to continue to get better and seek constant growth. Make sure the agents in your community know who you are by name and face. Be consistent and genuinely care. You can grow your team or company to whatever size you want. It’s all possible as long as you believe you can and you’re willing to back it up with work.

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