Create lasting mentor/ mentee relationships
Agent buy-in leads to better collaboration and increased productivity
EDITOR'S NOTE: Ron Feir, ABR, CRS, e-PRO, GRI, MRP, RSPS, SFR, SRES, SRS, is a REALTOR® with Century 21 Gavish Real Estate (offices in Pahrump & Las Vegas), Pahrump, Nev.
Talk to any notable businessperson, and they probably have a mentor. In fact, aside from your family, it may become one of the most important relationships in your life.
Mentors not only help you define your professional philosophies and develop skills and abilities, they provide counsel as you lay out your plans. Since professional development is ongoing, finding a mentor to shepherd us to the next level in our career should be considered.
An effective mentor should be an inspirational role model whose guidance adheres to office policy and the highest standards of the company/brokerage. Mentors must be willing to show you the ropes, help you to understand your goals and assist you in developing the plans to achieve those goals. Let’s be honest: The more you know, the higher your earning potential.
Training agents can’t be just theoretical; it should be a performance-oriented,hands-on experience. We learn from doing, right? Here are a few guiding principles that should be considered when training new agents:
  • Focus training on REALTOR® values and ethics.
  • Use the 80/20 rule to focus on the most common aspects of the role (at first), not the uncommon tasks, documents, and procedures.
  • Coach new agents on how to acquire and retain clients on both the listing and selling side. Real estate symmetry is vital. Deal with the micro-niche specialties later.
  • Provide a list of world-class resources for independent study periods.
  • Accompany new agents to their first few listing and buying appointments to help them learn in real-life settings.

Selecting a mentor

Selecting or accepting a mentor should be a deliberate process that takes into account that person’s success, character and common ground with you. What’s more, you want to learn from someone who is not only the best at what they do, but who has succeeded with intelligence and integrity. You also need to have a personal connection to act as the glue to the relationship.
A true mentor will take satisfaction from seeing you achieve your potential.
The mentee has a role
Understand that mentoring is a two-way relationship where there are interests and aspirations you share. You benefit from the mentor’s counsel, ideas, and life experiences; they benefit from the process of teaching and sharing. A true mentor will take satisfaction from seeing you achieve your potential. A caring and skilled mentor doesn’t look at you for what you are now, but sees what you will be and understands the role they can play in helping you realize your goals.
But understand that a mentor’s time is valuable, their attention is sought after, and their interest is not to be taken lightly. Don’t waste their time. Mentors became successful by exercising good judgment, and it’s up to you to make sure their investment in you is worthwhile. They are looking to help people who are driven to succeed. They are looking for passion, commitment and willingness to learn.
Let the relationship evolve
Don’t force the mentoring relationship. Let it evolve. Keep your expectations in check. Like other relationships, it must grow over time, based on mutual trust and respect. Forcing it risks ruining a potential mentoring relationship before it can become established. Take the time to nurture it.
By Ron Feir
The benefits...

The benefits of a meaningful mentor/mentee program are numerous. They vary from organization to organization and participant to participant. Here are a few to consider:
Don’t go when the going gets tough
At some point, you’re going to get some critical feedback from your mentor. This is a good thing because it means the relationship has become comfortable enough for the mentor to call you out. Your reaction when this happens is crucial to your growth. Do your best to accept the criticism gracefully and heed your mentor’s advice. After all, getting better at real estate is your goal.

Commit to the mentor/mentee relationship
Mentoring takes real time and real work, so once you make the commitment, stick with it. You and your mentor should both be in it for the long haul. Finding a real estate mentor, cultivating a strong mentor relationship and adding it to your career strategy will help ensure that your real estate career is a success.
Allows the mentor to give back
Encourages the mentor to share knowledge, which helps increase the mentor's sense of self-worth
Strengthens the mentor's interpersonal relationship skills
Helps re-energize the mentor's career
Increases the mentee’s self-confidence
Educates the mentee on how to accept feedback in important areas, such as communications, technical abilities, change management and leadership skills
Improves the mentee's interpersonal relationship skills
Provides an important networking contact for the mentee
For the mentor
Collaborative and productive relationships for all
By developing a mentor program at your company, broker-owners and managers are able to mold the ideal agent from the start and during periods of transition. Once you have agents in the office lining up to be the next mentor, you’ve built a scalable and self-sustaining practice that will encourage collaboration and productivity.
For the mentee
Helps the mentee better understand the organization's culture and unspoken rules, both of which can be critical for success
Get more tips on choosing a mentor
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