If you’ve been paying attention, you know the importance of team building in today’s real estate environment. Where you’re going is always largely determined by who you’re going with, so no matter what role you’re hiring for, the people you choose matter.
Whether you’re currently a team leader or looking to make those first hires, I want to help. Here are five qualities that you want to look for in each and every person you hire, regardless of the position.
By this, I mean receptivity. It’s been said that a lot of geniuses fail in business because they simply aren’t open to criticism or adapting to new systems. There are three things to look for in order to determine this:
- Their motivation for applying
- An open mindset
- A sense of appreciation
Motivation for Joining Your Team
Start your questions off with asking, “Why are you interested in joining our team?” or “What got you into real estate?” The biggest red flag someone can give you is, “Someone told me I should.”
I’ve learned that it doesn’t matter how good of a coach you are if someone doesn’t come to you for the right reasons. It only works if they really want it.
An Open Mindset
How can you test someone’s coachability in an interview? Try roleplaying. Even if it’s a roleplay other than something sales related, try catching them off guard and see how they respond. Remind them that this is just play, run some scenarios with them, offer your honest feedback and see how they respond. Do they respond with questions or defenses?
You can tell when someone appreciates an opportunity. If they approach every interaction with an air of gratitude instead of entitlement, they’ll be grateful for the wisdom you have to offer instead of indignant to the suggestions.
This actually isn’t that much different than coachability, because it’s all about an open mindset. To further establish an open mindset, you can look for two things:
- Empathy – the ability to emotionally understand an experience from another person’s point of view
- Passion – the desire and energy to turn productive curiosity into action
A curious person will be interested in how others are relating to a situation, whether they are a client, a team member, or a superior. You want someone who is able to access this part of themselves so that they can improve all their interactions. This is especially important for sales roles, as it will boost your reviews, repeat clients, and overall reputation. Remember, a curious person is interested in more than their own gain.
This is the ability to act on your curiosity. Steve Jobs was constantly tinkering with little objects, rubik’s cubes, puzzles, and pieces of technology because he wanted to understand how things worked. He had a passion for understanding systems so that he could improve them.
In the interview, ask about problems that they’ve solved creatively, but also ask what they do in their free time. A curious person will likely be passionate about art, cultivating skills, or developing their mind. It’s about having a thirst for knowledge and an inclination towards creative thinking. Because curious people aren’t stuck in their ways.
This doesn’t have to mean success in real estate; what you’re looking for is a competitive edge. Often, one skill translates to another for an individual because of an internal drive to succeed.
Why is it that athletes often go into other fields such as television, comedy, or business, and have just as much success? It’s not because of fame or money; it’s because they set their eyes on what they want, and they go for it. So don’t write off an applicant just because they’re fresh out of high school or college and haven’t been able to find a job yet. Look at what they did in their youth.
On the Flipside…
Now that we’ve talked about past success, I do need to bring up past failures. We all have them, and if you’re reading this now it probably means you overcame them. We often don’t acknowledge that the best minds of all time failed a thousand times before they finally succeeded. I’d rather hire the person who has kept trying and failing than the person who never tried at all – if they’re coachable, that is…
All skills can be taught, but not all people can be taught all skills, especially creative ones. It helps if you have someone who is comfortable thinking outside the box.
One of the biggest factors of intelligence is self-awareness. Start by asking them their learning style. Are they visual, auditory, reading, or kinesthetic? Ask them about their favorite way to get the news or develop a skill. There isn’t a right or wrong answer here; what’s important is that they know. A red flag to this question is, “All of them!”
Of course, you want a hard worker. But work ethic comes down to two things:
- How hard a person is able to work in the moment or over a period of time
- The systems they have for maintaining that level of quality output
Let’s go back to that question, “What do you do in your time off?” Let’s imagine they say, “I’m a painter. I really enjoy painting because it relieves stress and helps me recharge creatively.”
This is a great answer, but now ask, “When your workload gets heavy or you’re stressed, do you still find time to keep painting?”
If the answer is no, they might not have found the right systems, which is okay! What you don’t want is someone who never feels like they have enough time to do anything. Balance is what creates work ethic that lasts. You want your people to have a fulfilling, prosperous life outside of work so that they come in focused instead of burned out.
Ask them what their stress tells are. A person who knows their tells is a person with the awareness to effectively manage their own stress.
Your Biggest Question
I’ve just covered the top things you want to be looking for in your team members. But now let’s ask what they are looking for in you as a leader? I’d be willing to bet all those same qualities!
We lead by example, whether we want to or not, so the most important thing we can do is dial in our own best qualities, let them shine, and use them to attract the best people to us.
So… How’s your…
- System for handling stress?
I hope this has helped. Always remember that we’re here to keep on helping, so never hesitate to reach out!