ICC coaching client Eric Craig speaks on real estate team leadership and how leveraging team members allowed him to grow his business exponentially and sustainably.
Real estate team leadership is a hot topic. At ICC, we coach the top-producing real estate teams in North America. We have a lot of training materials relating to real estate teams. In fact, I wrote the book The High-Performing Real Estate Team, which is the real estate team instruction manual.
In today’s video, I have the pleasure of interviewing one of our long-time coaching clients, Eric Craig, of the Eric Craig Team in Kansas City, Missouri. This particular discussion took place at the ICC Real Estate Conference in May 2022, in the beautiful Florida Keys. If you missed this conference, you can enroll in our FREE online course, the ICC Real Estate Conference 2022 Summary Replay, and gain access to several of the powerful mastermind sessions and videos.
Eric and I sat down to discuss real estate team leadership, and what makes a good leader. Success follows clues, so let’s see what Eric did to become the real estate team leader he is today.
VIDEO: Real Estate Team Leadership: Brian Icenhower & Eric Craig Speak on What Makes a Good Leader
Meet Eric Craig: real estate team leadership, and how it began
We’ve been working with Eric Craig for around 8 years. His team is on track to close 550 units in 2022. This is a high-producing team — and everyone on this real estate team has specific roles that they play. But this isn’t how things started for Eric.
It wasn’t quick. And as Eric says, “It was quite painful.” Eric worked as a solo agent for 14 years. He was over-worked and did not have a sustainable workload, working 7 days a week. He was selling over 100 homes per year as a solo agent. At that time, he was the #1 real estate agent in the state of Missouri. But — his lifestyle was horrible.
It became apparent that something needed to change. When Eric began coaching with us at ICC, I told him that he needed to hire someone and leverage them ASAP to get a better work/life balance.
So, Eric started a team. The recruiting began. He started with someone he already knew and trusted, and built from there.
Real estate team leadership 101
What good leaders know and low producers don’t know is that you can only do so much yourself. You need people. Good people.
Find talented people and give them the work that needs to be done. Not only will you be able to lighten your own load, but you will often find someone who can do the job better than you were doing it. Not only because they may be more talented or suited to the task, but also because they can focus on it. This frees you up to do what you do best.
Real estate team leadership: seeing growth
In Eric’s situation, when he was able to begin leveraging his team members to lighten his own load, he began to see more growth over time. First, it was painful. Once he was able to secure very talented individuals to join his team, it became less painful.
Eric was able to find team members that could then train other new members of his team. This is essential! Leaders must train their team members in leadership roles in order to leverage their strengths to further grow the team.
If Eric was responsible for training each of his team members and on-boarding them to the team, it would be a disaster. Not because Eric isn’t capable, but because it isn’t a task best suited to him. Instead, he leveraged his high-level admin staff, with complimentary DISC behavioral profiles, to train and onboard his team members.
Year over year, Eric saw a 22% increase in production over the 8 years that he coached with us here at ICC. This growth is steady. Despite the market’s ups and downs, it has remained consistent.
A good team leader cares about their people
When you are able to grow your team in a way that fosters team growth and personal growth, relationships form. A good team leader cares about their people, because they come to realize how much they rely on them. Once the team leader sees the value of their team members, they appreciate them. And through that appreciation, comes caring.
Real estate team leadership: self-awareness and humility
Real estate team leaders aren’t necessarily known for being the most humble people. That said, the humility comes when a team leader becomes self-aware and realizes the value of their team members. A good team leader comes to realize that they simply can’t do it themselves. This is vital to successful real estate team leadership.
Create a positive culture and increase your retention
This is a big deal when it comes to real estate team leadership. Retention can be tough. But Eric Craig’s team has one of the best retention rates of any real estate team we have coached. (And that’s saying a lot, because we coach the top-producing real estate teams across North America.) So, obviously, Eric is doing something right.
One thing that helps tremendously when it comes to retention is team culture. If you have a positive team culture, your team members become more loyal. They will feel the value of being on your team, and they will stay.
Eric’s team is always hosting community events. They’re running fundraisers. They’re making their community a better place, and they are seen as a pillar of their hometown.
FREE DOWNLOAD: Leader Vs. Manager Chart
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Want to learn more?
- Read The High-Performing Real Estate Team. You can buy Brian Icenhower’s best-selling book on Amazon.
- Subscribe to The Real Estate Trainer Podcast. You can find it on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Podbean, and anywhere you listen to your favorite podcasts.
- Join the Real Estate Agent Round Table. We are always posting fresh content — everything from market updates to free templates — and host dynamic discussions with the industry’s top producers.
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- Reach out and talk to an ICC coach. Not sure which of our coaching programs is right for you? Let us help you.