The continual push for productivity and efficiency – is there a downside?

When it comes to maximising the productivity of our team it’s easy to think that more is better.

More systems, more processes, more efficiencies, lowered cost.

But is this really true at a time when change is happening more rapidly than ever before?

And it’s an important point for real estate leaders to consider, according to best-selling author and motivation design expert Dr Jason Fox.

Dr Fox notes too often businesses get caught up in what they’ve always done, looking for more efficient ways to do more of the same, when the path they’re headed down may not actually lead to the place they need to go.

Instead, he argues business leaders, including those in real estate, should get crystal clear on their future relevance.

“They’re not actually moving towards future relevance and I think it’s something we all need to be thinking about,” he explains.

“The trouble is that most of us are so busy these days. No-one has time to think and the result is, because we’re busy, we tend to feel we’re time-poor.

“And when we’re time-poor we naturally favour quick fixes, familiar solutions and default ways of doing.”

The trouble with the default

Dr Fox argues the trouble with the default is it stifles creativity and new ways of thinking, preventing both leaders and their teams from truly innovating and finding better ways to serve their customer.

And that can have dangerous repercussions down the track.

“Our world is changing faster than most of us can keep up with,” he says.

“There are massive shifts that are changing and it requires us to be nimble, to have a curiosity for what’s going on.”

Now is the time to pioneer

As the real estate industry and indeed the world emerges from the changed playing field that was the pandemic, Dr Fox says now is the time to pioneer.

He notes 2022 offers the opportunity to shake off the events of the past couple of years, look beyond the horizon and consider what a real estate business could do better to alleviate the struggle of their customer.

“When we think about the pandemic and there in amongst all the woes, was the gift of the disruption of momentum,” he says.

“The opportunity here is that we have the chance to reflect on what we’re doing.

“I would say there are heaps of things that we’re doing today that will make no sense in the next few years and probably don’t make any sense today.

“We potentially have the chance to not simply scramble to the way that things were, but to actually think ‘what can we do differently this time, if we’re going forward?’.

“Because now, if ever is the time to pioneer.”

Time to change the game

Dr Fox concedes for many real estate agencies, the last few years have been good, and there might also be a sense there’s little threat that technology will take over the role of the agent.

But with this comfort, comes complacency, he warns.

“You know you work away doing the same old thing you’ve been doing for the past few years, past few decades, and then one day you wake up to realise, you are no longer relevant.”

But how exactly do you hone in on the future relevance of your business?

Dr Fox notes often it’s about stepping away from the day-to-day running of the operation in order to gain a big picture perspective of the future landscape.

And that’s where he says time away from your business with other like-minded individuals can be invaluable.

This big-picture thinking is what Dr Fox intends to facilitate at the upcoming Elite Retreat from July 31 to August 3.

He explains the advantage of a retreat is that it attracts people who are keen to really delve into what the future may involve.

“Things have been good, but they also know that there might be some things that were missing or that this might be an opportunity for us to go deeper or a little bit further, or at the very latest catch up with some wonderful, like-minded, curious, warm people that are also exploring what is emerging.”

Dr Fox says the event will also provide the opportunity for attendees to immerse themselves in provocative conversations along with case studies, while tapping into the knowledge of some of the brightest minds in the real estate industry.

 “You get the provocations, you get the immersion and questions that don’t have obvious or immediate answers that you can play with,” he says.

And ultimately that allows for real change and innovation moving forward.

“What we’re cultivating here is a chance to actually get immersed, to ask ourselves the questions that have us orientating towards future relevance.

“We can actually do the work without getting distracted, so that when we leave, we’re leaving changed.

“We’re not the same person that we went to the retreat as and the trajectory for the year has altered as a result.”


Dr Jason Fox will be headlining the upcoming Elite Retreat where he will delve into how you can define your future and motivate your team for success.

You can find out more about Elite Retreat and the lineup of speakers and experts attending here.

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Cassandra Charlesworth

Cassandra Charlesworth is a features writer for Elite Agent Magazine with over 15 years’ journalism experience in metropolitan and regional newsrooms. She has a specialist interest in real estate, tech disruption and a good old-fashioned “yarn”.