How to Turn Millennials into Money-MakersBy Mike Alder Filed in: Best Practices
Tagged: , Company Culture, Leadership, Millennials, Real Estate Technology
By 2025 millennials (the generation born between 1980 and 2000) will make up 75% of the world’s working population (forbes.com). The median age of Realtors is now much younger than in the past as more (young) people are entering the real estate profession.
What does this mean for your brokerage?
Continually attracting fresh blood and cultivating a strong team is important when it comes to building a profitable brokerage. There are a few things to consider when managing the millennial workforce in order to maximize their potential as top producers.
Young agents expect to be in an environment that embraces technology. Raised with smartphones in their hands and the Internet at their fingertips, millennials live comfortably with technology and make efficient use of all the platforms at their disposal.
Their tech savvy nature allows them to be highly mobile, connecting from the car or between appointments. Make sure you can equip them with the tools they need to stay connected and you’ll be pleased with the level of productivity that results. On the flip side, millennials will become frustrated with antiquated or out-of-date processes and systems.
Figure out what kind of technology you use and what you might be missing. Consider offering virtual meetings and paperless operations. Tap into their ability to network online by encouraging the development of social media profiles as sales tools.
Don’t Manage – Lead
Millennials infamously lack respect for traditional structures of authority. They respond to mutual respect and look for mentorship. This group is highly entrepreneurial and often the line between work and personal time is an artificial boundary for them. They are more motivated by a flexible schedule and working environment than a traditional 9 to 5 desk job, which makes them a natural fit for real estate.
They are driven, but they do need guidance. While flexibility is highly valued so are feedback and clear expectations. Millennials do well when goals are clearly stated and progress is assessed regularly so be prepared to invest a fair amount of mentorship time with them.
Recognition is also extremely motivational for this group, making a point of acknowledging their accomplishments is a particularly effective leadership strategy with this demographic.
Cultivate Company Culture
Millennial employees are attracted to companies with a strong culture and values that are in line with their own ideals and lifestyle. They want to feel like they are making a difference in their company and their community. Fostering a culture that supports these values will pay dividends in the form of highly motivated and loyal team members.
Create a collaborative work environment through common goals, brainstorming and co-working spaces. Meetings should be focused on team problem solving, not a forum where leadership delegates work based on pre-determined solutions.
Continual learning is also highly valuable to millennials. In fact, a recent study stated 65% of millennials said that one of the most influential factors in accepting their current job was the opportunity for development. Tap into their desire for knowledge by offering ongoing training programs and development opportunities.
While attracting millennials can bring fresh perspectives and the potential for innovation, it is crucial to keep their needs in balance with those of your established agents. Integrating millennials with your existing team is important; you don’t want your seasoned team members to feel any less valued than their novice counter-parts. Find ways to create incentives for teamwork and promote the mutual benefits of mentorship.
Why Millennials Matter
Everyone is talking about managing millennials because frankly, they are the future. They are exceptional at multi-tasking and are not afraid of change. They excel working in teams and have a natural affinity for networking. Understanding their characteristics and managing them effectively can be a game changer for growing brokerages.
In a nutshell; providing a collaborative work environment, an entrepreneurial culture, high earning potential, ongoing training, flexible work hours and a degree of autonomy will turn your millennial agents into money makers and net a healthy ROI for your brokerage.
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