For a lot of agents and administrators out there, an assistant is the first hire. Having a clear structure in place for hiring and managing your team will help you avoid many of the time-wasting and costly mistakes others have made. 

#1 Have a Clear Job Description

The first thing an agent or administrator should do when hiring an assistant is create a clear job description outlining the assistant’s job responsibilities.

This is all part of the “hire slowly” approach to building your team. 

The best place to start is to write a list with two columns: things you want to start doing (or do more of) and things you want to stop doing (or do less of). Everything in the “More Of” list is what you want to do; everything in the “Less Of” list should be in the job description for your assistant.

The key to a clear job description is to have five responsibilities – five things the new hire is responsible for at a very high level – and three KPIs (key performance indicators) for measuring their performance. 

#2 Use Measurable KPIs

Each of the KPIs assigned to your assistant should be tied to math so you can easily measure their performance on each of their assigned responsibilities. 

Here are a few examples: 

  • “How many five-star reviews are coming in?” 
  • “How many deals don’t terminate?”
  • “How many sales are we doing?”

For KPIs, you want to look at lead indicators – things that tell you where your business is going. If you can track and measure, you can make improvements. 

#3 Assign Quarterly OKRs for Everyone

Every member of the team should have three to five quarterly objectives – or OKRs (Objectives & Key Results) – because real estate operates in a 90-day world.

Each of those OKRs should be in line with the key objectives of your company or the key initiatives outlined in your annual business plan. 

An example of a quarterly goal is to make a key hire or roll out a system used by the whole company. At the end of the 90 days, these goals are either met or not met. 

#4 Have a Clear Reporting Structure

Everyone on your team needs to know who reports to whom. Otherwise, you get team members with Bumblebee Syndrome – going from one flower to the next, telling everyone the same thing. 

It doesn’t work. And it’s a huge time-waster. It’s the “got a minute” problem, and it distracts other team members, as well as team leads, from projects they’re working on. 

If a team member goes to the wrong point person to report on something or ask a question, the best thing a team lead, operations manager, or sales manager can do is to tell that team member, “This is a question for so-and-so,” and direct them to the right person. 

You’ve got to have a clear reporting structure that’s outlined and communicated to everyone in the organization. Otherwise, people (especially newbies) aren’t going to know who to talk to, and decisions will be made without looping in the right folks. 

#5 Have a Structured Meeting Cadence 

Every department should be meeting once a week in a Level 10 formatted meeting. 

Here’s what that means:  

  • Use IDS (identify, discuss, solve)
  • Talk about wins for the week
  • Go over projects and assignments (OKRs) completed (or not completed) for the week

On top of these weekly meetings, have daily huddles as needed. 

Having these structures in place is going to help your organization run a lot more efficiently and effectively. The alternative is constantly fighting fires and re-directing people. 

Getting anything done is a struggle when interruptions are the norm, goals are unclear, and meetings don’t cover the right things.