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Matt Lahood: Are you a true leader or just a boss?

When Matt Lahood talks leadership, those in the real estate industry listen. The Agency Chief Executive Officer is clear on what type of leader he is and aspires to be and what he's not. Matt says his team doesn't need him to teach them how to sell homes, it's his role to mentor and look after them as a whole person. That way they have the power to reach their full potential, and that's when top results are achieved.

Power can do two things: it can lift people up, or it can crush them. It’s up to you, as a leader, which philosophy you want to adhere to. 

I subscribe to the first one and truly believe it’s my role as the chief executive officer of real estate at The Agency to lift everyone around me.

I know many leaders like to throw their authority around, but that’s not me.

That’s yesterday’s leadership style.

Today, the modern real estate team member needs a leader that can lead in a way that’s about much more than just a fancy title.

You need to use your power for good.

Think of it like this – if an agent is, metaphorically, a 747 plane sitting on the runway about to take off, they can only do so if the runway is clear.

My role as the leader is to clear the runway for my team members so they can reach their full potential.

And that doesn’t mean helping them generate more leads, listings, sales and a higher GCI.

The agents don’t need me to teach them how to stand before an owner and sign a new listing. 

That’s not the job.

My job, as a leader, is to support them as a whole person.

Of course, if a team member comes to me needing coaching on how to build their team, I will help and put them in touch with our sales leaders. 

And if they need training on what to say in a listing presentation or how to boost their appraisal to list ratios, I point them in the direction of industry-leading coaches such as Claudio Encina.

But what I’m interested in is my team members as people.

Everyone will tell you my favourite question is, ‘How’s life?’.

I’m not interested in how the market is going or how many sales you’ve made. All of those things will fall in line if your life is good.

Leadership is about a holistic approach and supporting my team in life, with their finances, their physical health, their mental health and even their marriage or parenting.

It’s my job to be their mentor, and if there’s a question or a need they have that I can’t answer, I have a trusted network of experts I can call on.

I’ve got accountants, lawyers, health experts, counsellors and more, that I can connect team members with.

Leadership is about the care factor. 

You need to care about the person, and if you do, you’ll help create team members that have a good family life, that wake up healthy and happy and come to work because they love the role.

As an agent, that’s when you’ll boost your listing and selling numbers because people will be drawn to you for your good energy and that flows onto great results.

One of the biggest questions I’m often asked is, “How do I get my team to come to me when they have a problem?”

The three cornerstones that enable me to support my team are accessibility, visibility and approachability.

I don’t have a desk or even an office, and I don’t hide away as the ‘untouchable boss’ (I actually hate the word boss).

Instead, you’ll find me in team meetings, dropping into training sessions and swinging past an open home or attending an auction.

If someone has a challenge and needs a chat, I’ll take them for a coffee or book a private meeting.

I go to my team members, and they know if they need me, they only have to ask. 

I’ll be there.

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Matt Lahood

Matt Lahood is CEO of The Agency Australia. Visit theagency.com.au