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Agent Dynamics, specialising in team performance coaching, and a business development pathway for Property Managers, Sales People and Principals. Agent Dynamics looks at what you and your team are good at and suggests ways to improve teamwork and increase productivity.
00:00 Introduction by Samantha McLean
01:30 Recognising Innate Talent
Neil: Probably the catalyst, how we kick this off in the first place was that we looked it over at both of our collective real estate careers, and there have been so many really good people that have come into the industry that never really got to start. They came in, they started to work, and then the principal then said “If they don’t fit in, it’s not working, let’s move them on.” A lot of that, in some instances, have been the fault of the principals that they’ve tried to recruit always the same type of person.
We particularly see this with one of the profile types. Once they become principals, they tend to look for clones of themselves. So what they end up with is a team of opening batsmen; people that are exactly the same as they are. Although that works well and will bring fast income quick results, it doesn’t give you longevity to the team.
What we did was we looked at different psychometric profiling platforms, and worked with a company in the UK to develop one specifically for real estate agents with the view of having everybody working within their flow. What we mean by their flow is to their innate talent. Now I’ve put a slide up there on the board. [These are] European soccer teams. You don’t need to like football to know who they are, but these were voted. These guys up on the screen were voted, all of eight of them, the top best performers within their teams last year. They were voted by the other players in the team, they’re also voted by the spectators.
From that point of view if you had all these guys in your team, do you believe that you could win a league championship? Well in reality probably not, because each and everyone of these guys is a goal keeper. That’s the point, that we can end up with a team full of goal keepers and it’s not necessarily going to win us the match.
Over the history of real estate we’ve tended to recruit, particularly on the sales side, from a particular profile type. As I said earlier, it’s brought us some fairly quick results, but the end results from a business point of view haven’t necessarily worked out what we were looking for. From a property management point of view, because the tasks are more task specific in property management then what they are in the sales side of it, the businesses that we work with now they’re looking at the team that they currently got.
03:47 Recruitment Challenges
Julie: Typically, when we recruit people, we do it through resumes and references. That’s going to attract two types of people. The first type of people that you will get will have a really great resume, come up really well with the references, and about three months down the track you start uncovering errors, inefficiencies, that sort of that. By that point they’ve either exited themselves or you will need to exit it.
The other type of person that you will get will be somebody who, skill-wise, is excellent in that job. You think that this is just absolutely fantastic, we’ve got this person with a great skill level, but what happens on their end is that, in competency and skill, they’re exceptionally well. But it’s like full pockets, empty heart, and they will move on to find something that’s more fulfilling because even though they can do it, it’s not in their flow and they’ll be seeking something that is going to fulfill them more. That’s the biggest challenge that we have in terms of when you’re recruiting a new team member.
04:55 Psychometric Profiling
Neil: This is based on psychometric profiling that you’ve probably been exposed to at some time in your careers or in your lives. There’s Myer Briggs, there’s Caliper. There’s DiSC, there’s a number of those. They’ve all originated in the same place. What psychometric profiling does is identify those natural talents that people have, that often sit there under the surface that people don’t even realise until they’ve been in a job for 30 or 40 years.
There’s two elements to it. There is this ‘innate talent’ that we focus on, and there’s also ‘learned skill’, so that people will be in jobs doing the job that they’ve learned how to do, and they often do it really, really well. It’s just that they’re not totally 100% happy in it, and would much rather be doing something else.
Julie: As a principal you get that it’s a really good management tool for you to know your team innately, to know and identify when they’re getting off track, or what’s the best value that they bring to the team. With the profiling it’s all focused holistically on the team.
05:57 The Four Energies / Frequencies
Neil: At the top there we talk about people that have ‘Dynamo’ energy, and each of the profiles will do in the report that comes back to you it will have your percentage of what these energies are, what these frequencies are in your individual profile types. People with a lot of Dynamo: Dynamo energy is all about innovation. The big picture thinkers, people say they’ve got their head in the clouds, very much looking to the future, not overly interested in what’s happening in the now.
The second one over on the right-hand side there, the one that we call ‘Blaze’ energy or ‘Blaze’ frequency. People with a lot of Blaze energy are all about people. They love to connect with people, don’t like to get bogged down in processes, and datas, and systems, but very much it’s all about the people and connecting with people.
The bottom one there is ‘Tempo’ energy. As the people at the top, as Dynamo frequencies have their head in the clouds, people with a lot of Tempo energy have their ear to the ground. They’re very much in the now, they would much rather work with an existing client than go out and find new ones. Really, really good at client services, which is particularly relevant in our industry.
Over on the left hand side there we have people that have a lot of ‘Steel’ energy, ‘Steel’ frequency. People with a lot of Steel energy – it’s all about data process and systems. That’s the way that they think.
None of these, as I said, are a pass or fail, but it’s where people naturally gravitate to, particularly under stress, and where they like to spend more of their time, and where they’re a whole lot happier.
Julie: Each profile has different frequencies, and it is the most dominant frequency that will identify your particular profile.
07:37 Performance Profiles
Neil: Creators there at the top. I’m a creator profile. Creators are all about strategy, big picture thinking, they move and talk fast. Don’t like to get bogged down in what’s happening in the now. Things they have to be careful of is that normally their follow-up client services stuff is terrible.
Julie: Yeah, because a very quick disconnect. Will just move on to the next thing.
Neil: Yeah. They just want to keep moving it ahead, and then keep rolling it ahead.
On the top right hand corner there we’ve now moved to Star profile. Star profile you’re starting to come down into Blaze, so they’re starting to pick up the people as well as the creativity, and innovation, and strategic thinking of Dynamo. Star profiles make the best sales people, they’re the best performers, they love to be out in the front. They’re really, really good at shining the light on other people’s products. In a real estate context they have to be really careful, because like creators they have a quick disconnect with the now. To them it’s very much about the hunt and the kill. Getting the buzz, and moving in. Something new all the time.
Once again, in a real estate context, if they’re in a role, business development’s a good role for them out there in the front drumming up new business all the time. But, as far as looking after existing clients, it will happen but it’s not something that they particularly enjoy. You’ll start to pick up on where you could have different people in different roles to be able to get the maximum benefit.
Supporters are the next profile type. They’re right in the middle of Blaze energy, so to Supporters, it’s all about the people. They make the best leaders of smaller groups within an agency. They’re very much about the people. They’re great cheerleaders. These are the guys within the office that when the wheels are falling off for everybody, they go around and rally the troops, and say, “Come on it’ll be all right, it’s not so bad, let’s keep moving on ahead.” They’re always on the phone. If they’re not talking with people, and communicating with other people, it’s like having the life sucked out of them. They almost get depressed, because they can’t. Julie’s a Supporter profile. You’ll notice in our business that even today, they way that we’re presenting today, I’m a million miles an hour thinking ahead. Then when Julie talks she slows it down. It’s all about communicating with people, and mine’s more about delivering this. That’s not by design. It’s just the way that we naturally are.
The right hand corner now we get to Deal Makers. Deal Makers are the best peace makers. Deal Makers love to connect the dots. They’re always thinking of connecting people with other people and to get results. They’re great networkers.
Julie: Yeah. They do a lot of business over lunch, or the golf course, or just turn up with the deal.
Neil: It’s naturally the way that they think. They’re easy to identify. If you’re out there having morning tea and you say, “I was a little bit late today because my car’s playing up,” a Deal Maker says, “You need to speak to this guy.” They’ll pull a number straight out of their phone and say that you got to have a chat with this bloke. Now you hear about it, you probably know somebody who is a Deal Maker, because that’s one of the really good indicators. It can save you a lot of time in business.
Julie: They do need to have a lot of structure though to operate, because they can get very de-focused.
Neil: At the bottom there in the middle, right of Tempo energy, you’ve got Trader with a ‘d’, not ‘traitor’. Traders are all about being fair, about being equal. They are really good in middle management roles where they can walk the fine line between the shop floor and management, so they can soften the messages up and soften the messages down. Once again they’re also very good networkers, but they’re very much about keeping the peace.
They do a lot of note-taking. At a meeting they always turn up with a pad, because they want to make sure that they get everything right, and they want to make sure that they record everything. Particularly good in client services roles as well, because they would much rather work with existing clients than go out and find new ones. We’re seeing more and more in real estate now from the sales side come from this bottom Tempo energy, because client services is such a big thing nowadays. Particularly more so than what it was 20 or 30 years ago.
We’re now moving over from client services, or from Tempo energy up into Steel. We’ve got Accumulators now on the bottom left hand side. Accumulators are starting to move into the process side of it, but they might get the best ambassadors. They are really quite cautious, and they’re very much researchers. They seem to never have enough information. If you have an Accumulator in your team they always want more, because they don’t want to hurry into a decision.
Guys with a lot of Dynamo energy at the top are very optimistic, and they’ll run out and they’ll go, “Yeah it’ll be right, it’ll be fine, let’s go, let’s go, let’s go,” but having an Accumulator in your team is good because they keep that balance with them. Particularly in a management team, they’ll go, “Hang on that’s great, but have you thought of this?”
Julie: Yeah. They can identify particularly around timing, so where and when somethings got to happen and they tend to be a bit more grounded.
Neil: They can frustrate the hell out of people with a lot of Dynamo energy, because it does take them a long time to make a decision. Blaze and Dynamo people say, “Why can’t they make a decision,? How long is it going to take? Are they incapable?” They’re not, they’re just making sure that they’ve got all the information there.
Lords, now moving up. Lords bang in the middle of Steel energy. They bring all of the elements of data processing and systems to play. You see a lot of CEO’s of big businesses are Lord profiles, because they have this obligation to their shareholders. Once again, a bit like Accumulators, they need to always be returning a profit. They can be a little bit frustrating to some in management positions in real estate agencies. Because they turn everything into a process, they can forget about the human element of it. It’s not that they don’t care.
When we talk about ‘they’re quite controlling’, they’re not control freaks. They don’t control because they want to control everything. It’s just to them that things are a process. They know that if I do this, and I do this, this should could come out the other end.
Julie: They’re very black and white, I think. There’s no grey in the middle, it’s just either black or white. They have great value in terms of your financials, and your data control, and everything like that. That’s where they come into their own, and will add great value to your business.
Neil: The final one there as we go up into the top left hand corner is Mechanics. Mechanics, now moving from Steel, so the data and the processing into the creative side of it. Whereas Creators love to start new projects, Mechanics love to fix existing ones. They love to tinker, and they love to play with something and make it a whole lot better. They put that process part of it over the social niceties. They’d much rather fix something then sit down and talk about fixing it.
We see quite a few in property management, and normally quite successful in property management as well, because they’re really good at streamlining your systems. Sometimes you’ll get a grumpy old boss that’ll go, “No, that’s the way I’ve always done it. Don’t play with it, everything’s working, let’s just leave it,” but if you’ve got a Mechanic in your team and they come and suggest a way to do something better, they are worth listening to. From the point of, you wouldn’t say, “No, it’s the way we’ve always done it.” I would be grabbing them saying, “How do think this could work?”
15:13 The 4 Energies Represent Your Business Structure
Julie: If you have a look at the square there, it actually represents a business. If you look in Dynamo energy that’s about startup, that’s about your marketing, and new beginnings, and starting of your business. Blaze is around your customers, clients, and the relationships that you have. Then from there you move down into the service area of your business, which is Tempo energy. Up into Steel energy is around your process, accounting, databasing, and all of that sort of thing.
It just makes sense if you bring those people who are going to be in their flow in those particular areas to put them into those particular jobs, because that’s where they’ll bring the most value naturally to your business.
15:56 Utilising Profiling for Recruitment
Neil: Just quickly I just want to give you one last example. This is how it can benefit in recruiting when you’re advertising. We worked with an agency that every candidate they got didn’t turn out the way that they wanted, because their ads were too generic. I haven’t used their ad, but I picked one up that was similar, worded in a similar way on the left hand side that I got off Seek.
The typos aren’t mine, this is a cut-and-paste straight from the ad. Now in this ad itself you would be looking for somebody who, if you read the ad, it almost says I want someone who is lazy. It says that you don’t have to do this, you don’t have to do that, you get great money, you get a car, you get all this other stuff, and you don’t even have to work Saturdays and Sundays. That’s fine, but you’ll be inundated with candidates that aren’t necessarily the right one that you want. Everybody would be after the job, you don’t have to work.
We rewrote the ad to the one on the right hand side, because what they needed was somebody who had a lot of Steel energy. We wrote the ad so that only people with Steel energy would like it. The high-flyers, and the Stars, and the Creators would skip over it, because it had stuff in there that they naturally didn’t like. They got the right person. There were five people that applied for the job, it filtered through. We then profiled them, each one of them was almost rusting with Steel energy, and all they wanted to do was do the backend stuff.
They had somebody driving the business in anyway. They just wanted to look after all the backend part of the property management. Small agency, small rent roll. It’s worked out really good for them, because this is where you can put the filters in early so that you don’t have to find things out six and seven months down track. Most of the folks who work will now profile their whole team at some stage, and then when they get to a short list of candidates, profile them just to make sure it’s reinforcing what they’ve picked up in that interview process.