Many high performing real estate professionals are on the secret side, reluctant to share how they got successful. This is not the case with Jeff Cook of Jeff Cook Real Estate in South Carolina.
Cook has been in business for over 16 years. His team consists of 150 agents in nine locations across the state. And just last year they completed 1,635 transactions.
“Our difference is simple: we know how to make a formula for success and we repeat it,” he said. Because of this, CINC CEO Alvaro asked Erize Cook to join him on another episode of CEO Unscripted to talk about how he started and grew the high performing teams.
“Success is a catch 22,” explained Cook. A top producer may actually have more deals than she can handle. “You say, ‘I want to list all of these houses! ‘But then all these sellers want to buy houses too. And it’s really difficult to accept all of these contracts, especially in today’s climate for multiple offers in most of the country. And so it is natural to say here. “Well how can I get help?”
This help should start with administrative support. However, then you have to find another agent who can, and do, what you do. But here, Cook said to Erize, many agents are stumbled upon.
“If you are going to replace yourself, you are not replacing yourself with just one person. Because they’re not as skilled as you are. You need to bring in two people to do the job of the one person you are. “
“Right, not only can you work harder, you have to work smarter,” agreed Erize. “And now you make your employees successful – which is also a full-time job.”
Growing a team isn’t just about increasing the number of employees and watching the money come in. For Cook, it starts with recruiting, which includes everything from a simple email signature link to honest videos.
“We call them Day in the Life videos,” he said. “We’re going to find a top producer on our team and follow them for an hour or two, work with a client in the conference room, or make their calls, or what their family life is like. We’re going to create a 45-second video from this. Many people think it has to be very perfect, but the more imperfect it is, the better! “
Cook has also created a custom onboarding training program so that agents hired on the team are best positioned to be successful.
“It’s called 100 Days to 100K, and it’s a fully online course,” he said. “We have found the ideal schedule for a brand new real estate agent for the first 100 days of his real estate career.” This course covers everything from accessing the database to scripting practice to actual lead conversations and contracts. “Through this 100-day program, the agent will close 15 to 20 contracts and then be on track to make $ 100,000 in that first year.”
“It’s the same thing that top management consultancies like Bain and McKinsey do,” noted Erize. “They are proactively recruiting and training. So what happens three years later when an agent wants to grow its own wings?” he asked.
Cook agreed that team leaders fear their top producers will move on. But it’s not a problem he has because his team offers options for growth.
“I would challenge people to think outside the box. What else could you offer them? “he asked.” Just because you’re a team or a team leader, don’t think you have nothing to offer them. Let’s find a way they can get extra help. Don’t be afraid of their growth. In fact, drift they advance their growth, because that will really keep the top producers in the long term. “
“I think the nice thing about your system is that you get the production out of them for the first year and then you feel confident that it’s a healthy relationship which in turn results in many of them either staying or when they go, then they go. Come back, ”said Erize.
Check out the full interview to learn more about success in starting and building your own team.