Collaborative or Directive Management Style?

Having toured the Real Estate Brilliance seminar across the country multiple times now, I’ve met and spoken to a lot of agents and I’m constantly reminded of why some people leave organizations.

Salespeople do not leave organizations because of lack of money or resources, in fact, and this might be surprising to some of you, agents are only motivated by money for a very short time. No, they leave organisations because of lack of leadership. Agents will stay in their jobs if they feel they are respected, valued, and most of all made to feel like they are a part of, and have a say in what goes on in the office. This exact reason is what has led me to create this blog.

Firstly, we need to understand the different types of management styles. While there are arguably a few different management styles, I am going to break them down into two: Directive Style and Collaborative Style

Directive Style

This is an old fashioned and quite traditional style of management where the owner or manager directs the employees on how to do the job. In this style, the leader sets out clear direction and objectives to the agent and ensures that they are clearly understood. They also set KPI`s and assist the employee in achieving those goals. This style of management is fine for unskilled or new staff who need a lot of direction and leadership, however it’s not so impactful for those more skilled and experienced staff members and can backfire quite badly.

Collaborative Style

This is a more contemporary style of management where the owner or manager consults with sales staff and builds relationships with them, encouraging them to offer their opinion and point of view to the goings on in the office. They also allow the staff to be creative with their approach and have input into whatever they do. Owners and managers still have some control, but decisions are made after collaborating with the individual or team. This helps gain many different points of view and can be very powerful when done correctly.

However, this collaborative style also has its disadvantages. Some sales people will disagree with others, causing animosity. Agents can also begin to believe that they are the leaders, making them difficult to manage.

As with most things, there are advantages and disadvantages for both. Depending on the level of skill and experience the agents have, it is of my opinion that teams and individuals need to be managed differently according to the level they are on. With the new award it is very important that new agents or rookies be managed in a directive style with training, mentoring, clear KPI`s, and accountability. More advanced reps and intermediates should be managed in a more collaborative style, giving them a say in what marketing and promotion goes on in the agency which ultimately effects how they are perceived by clients within the business. More like associates than sales reps.

One thing is for sure, agents, no matter their level of skill or years in the business, need leadership. Whether this leadership is directive or collaborative, they need to be managed and the leader needs to be present. When you have Selling Principals, there needs to be a Sales Manager or Coach appointed to assist in leading the agents and helping them on their journey, ensuring they take the next step up the mountain.

If you’d like to learn more about how to Manage Yourself/Your Team, make sure you register now for my upcoming FREE half-day Real Estate Brilliance webinar.  I’ll be covering how to run effective meetings, how to apply the 3 D’s, I’ll introduce you to my dashboard system, and one of my most powerful creations, my stock grading system. Simply click the button below!

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