Brokerage today has become so complex that the stereotype of the lone broker who knows everyone and does everything has largely been relegated to the past.
Top brokers now rely on a team to serve their clients. They realize that they need team members with varied skills to get the job done. People who excel at managing the listings, or are technically skilled at underwriting, or that can manage building tours and communication.
What I would like to focus on here though, is the value that a skilled administrative support person can bring to a high performing brokerage team.
Administrative support and productivity
Administrative support is vital today. Simple economics says to specialize to reach full productive capability – do what is most productive with your time, and “outsource” those tasks which can and should be to maximize time spent doing your most productive work. A skilled admin team member enables this in the most remarkable way.
Booking meetings, coordinating schedules, updating your CRM, these are all vital tasks that can be done at extremes – either poorly (or not at all) or with exceptional skill. The person who does these tasks well though is rarely the lead broker. Their skillset is not in organizing – but in business development. Realizing this and leaning on admin to take on this type of task is enormously freeing.
On my own team of five, we are fortunate to have a highly capable deal administrator – Bee Munawar. Talking to her, it’s clear that the value of the cohesion and organization she brings to our team is not lost on her.
The admin role has changed
Bee described to me how the nature of a administrative role on a CRE team has changed in the last few years, with greater emphasis being placed on the team as a whole – not just the lead “rainmaker” broker.
The reality is that clients who are listing high value assets are intrusting huge responsibility to brokers. Therefore, what you can provide as a broker must be unique. Offering an entire team to potential and current clients for their specific needs is just such an example of something that lets you stand different from the rest.
My team values our admininistrative support enormously – we know how lost we would be without the numerous ways in which they help us. We make a point to make sure our clients know how involved our administrative members will be in their deal – because the reality is that they are as integral to the deal as any other team member.
How to introduce the team approach
The question becomes, how do you evolve your CRE business to this team based approach which uses administrative team members to their fullest?
Perhaps you are a solo broker with only partial administrative support, or already work in a team but are disappointed by its performance. In both cases, getting results will take leadership. Every great CRE team ultimately relies on a team leader – someone who will not just bring in deals, but also promote a culture of respect that allows for team member’s contributions to be recognized and valued. If this sort of culture can’t be cultivated, all you will see is poor performance, high turnover, and low moral from the failed team you have created.
Embracing teams can be narrative changing decision for your business if done right. It is worth striving towards a team based approach to brokerage in an increasingly competitive and complex CRE environment. Your clients deserve it, and if they are not already demanding it soon will be, and fostering high performing administrative staff can be the vital first step towards creating your successful brokerage team.