By Alex Mont-Ros and Amanda Creter
Typically, when a Real Estate Agent working towards building a team starts to expand because of growth in the business, we see challenges presented as they hire help to relieve some of the transactional and administrative pressures. The real estate agent or team lead should not want to operate as a jack of all trades, and master of none as they find their business growing, but refusing to delegate tasks and hire on new team members will stunt growth and keep this agent doing many roles within the business. Action needs to be taken to accomplish growth objectives so they can continue to focus on mastering what Real Estate Agents do well. The first position they hire for usually is an Administrative or Executive Assistant (EA). This individual serves as an all-in-one role for the Agent, handling not only the Administrative tasks of the business, but also taking on roles such as Marketing Coordinator, Transaction Coordinator, Listing Manager and anything else the Agent needs.
For a Real Estate Agent or Team’s first hire, this “jack of all trades” role on the surface makes sense, and is seen as an asset to his/her team. At first, this is true. The Agent needs help around all aspects of their business and this Executive Assistant provides that help. What most Agents do not realize, is that having one person focus on so many different roles all at once can actually hurt the business more than help it. In the long run to keep the business growing and meeting the demands of the market, something will have to give or breakage in the business will occur.
Hiring someone that can tackle any obstacle seems like the perfect addition to your business. But as the old adage goes “jack of all trades, master of none”, an agent who hires an EA to do all will quickly find their team structure become fractured and overworked. Though your Executive Assistant may be competent with many skills to perform many roles, you are preventing them from delivering quality service as the business begins to scale and the role becomes more time consuming. Not to mention, the cost and time of training someone in each role an EA operates from can quickly add up becoming a sunk cost to the business.
Having an EA split their focus and energy among so many different roles prevents them from harnessing and mastering any one skill. It limits them to how much they can grow in their role, and prevents them from specializing in any one thing. To be the best you can be and set yourself apart in a market saturated with competition, you need to offer your clients the best service possible. Having your EA not focusing on where they can add true value with laser focus on mastering their craft isn’t offering your clients the best, it’s offering them substandard services as the EA begins to be overworked, less productive, unhappy, and may end up potentially quitting, causing the business to suffer a massive blow that will be tough to recover from. We have seen this play out countless of times and the feedback provided from Executive Assistants who left very successful teams was that they were overworked and had too much to do with little clarity on what was truly priority for the agent or team.
Traditional Executive Assistant Workload
This becomes especially true when an EA handles all the business operations, administrative, transaction coordination, and marketing; putting the business in serious risk and causing brand degradation when service levels drop. A Real Estate Agent will find themselves having to recruit, hire, and retrain someone to do it all over again when an EA decides to stop working for the Real Estate Agent. This is not a good use of time and can impact revenue negatively.
To help meet these challenges head on, Real Estate Agents or Teams will hire on a transaction coordinator first to take on the most time consuming tasks, which is managing the transaction from start to finish. Some teams may not have an EA, but they have learned how to delegate the marketing and administrative tasks well enough to get them by through outsourced service offerings. Even so, we recommend what is optimal and at a minimum; hire an Executive Assistant and a Transaction Coordinator until growth has reached a point where an EA will now need to delegate the marketing tasks to a Marketing Coordinator.
If a team already has an EA, the second hire is typically a Transaction Coordinator. This is a critical hire, whether first or second to join the team. A TC will focus their energy solely on the most time consuming part of the business which is the coordination of transactions, as this entails all communication and monitoring of the deal(s) to see them to closure. When you have many deals all going on at once, the time needed multiplies to manage these transactions. This is one of the main reasons why the Transaction Coordinator needs to also be a master of this craft of transaction coordination, and not be a jack of all trades. A Transaction Coordinator will now be able to provide specialized care of the Real Estate Transaction(s) from start to finish. They will also provide the right attention needed to service your clients, giving your EA hours back each week to focus on other critical tasks to help the Real Estate Agent grow and scale their business.
By having Executive Assistants and Transaction Coordinators who are masters of their domain, Real Estate Agents increase their odds of delivering high quality services to ensure the best experience for their clients. Through this appropriate delegation and hiring of critical team members, it also helps the Real Estate Agent become a master of their craft, and not just a jack of all trades.
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