Choosing the right BDM is essential for any Real Estate Office that wants to achieve fast and consistent growth. Before you even advertise for the position, it is important that you understand what being a BDM entails so that you can develop a proper job description. From my experience, this is something that principals often overlook then wonder why the department is going backwards instead of growing.
Remember, the energy you put out into the universe for a new BDM is what you will get back in the way of a potential applicant. If you put no effort into the job title and description, how can you expect to attract a quality staff member? The role of a Property Manager and BDM are very different, and yet I often see advertising for a BDM position with a Property Manager’s description.
You need to open and close your BDM advertisement by catching the eye of the best potential candidate with the most suited personality and skill level for the role.
For Example: This is an opportunity not to be missed!
- Are you an individual that can think outside the box?
- Are you highly driven and motivated by success?
- Are your prepared to step outside of your comfort zone and go the extra mile to achieve high results?
- Can you picture yourself as the expert and provide valuable information to investors?
The above questions will get the prospective candidate thinking and wanting to know more. You can then close by saying, ‘If the answer is YES, then you are the type of person we want on our growing team!”
Now for the best part: you have promoted your vacant position and had a glowing response by receiving 20 resumes! Do you interview all of the applicants or choose a select five and hope that one is suitable? I say neither. I suggest giving each applicant a chance, but don’t go to the extreme of interviewing everyone. Have a list of direct questions to send the applicant once you have received their resume. Put an end date for when they need to be returned and, based on the response, you will have plenty of information to start calling the suitable applicants for an interview.
Don’t be afraid to ask another staff member to get involved in the interview process. They may see something you don’t, and it gives you a second opinion rather than making the decision on your own. It is important that the new BDM works well with the current team environment. It only takes one sour grape to destroy a happy and established team.
During the interview process, ask open-ended questions so that the applicant is doing most of the talking. So many times I have seen Principals do all the talking during the interview and thinking ‘Gee that went well’, before hiring the applicant and realising they are not suitable. The interview process should give the applicants a detailed description of what the job involves, otherwise they are likely to leave soon after starting. This is why it is important to have a detailed job description, which is clearly explained and acknowledged during the interview process.
Keep in mind that many people will come across as an excellent applicant and have the skills you are looking for. The questions you have to ask yourself are:
“Are they willing to go the extra mile?”
“Will they fulfil the requirements expected of them?”
“Do they have the salesperson skills needed for the BDM position?”
Understand that the person best suited for the position may not bring in high numbers straight away. It may take at least 3 to 6 months to build solid relationships with referral networks.
Finally, don’t be afraid to start your new BDM on a probation period, as this gives you the chance to further test the commitment and skills expressed during the interview process. Probation periods can vary in time but are usually around 3 months. As a BDM looking to secure a position, you must make sure to do your research and choose wisely. Find the agency that is within your network area that has a team dedicated to department growth. You want to work with, and be a part of, a group that has the same passion as you do for the industry, who shares the same vision for growth.
BDMs, before going for the interview, make sure you know and understand the position. The BDM must understand the role of a Property Manager and be involved with the team.
- A BDM must be a confident networker, build strong relationships and love meeting new people.
- A BDM must be passionate about the department’s vision and believe in the product they are selling
- A BDM must understand that the position is not a 9 to 5 role and be prepared to do deals after hours or on weekends.
- A BDM must have a competitive nature, killer instinct and be goal orientated.
- A BDM must have the ability to build and manage a large database.
- A BDM must be a team player and good communicator.
- A BDM must understand “no” doesn’t mean “no”; it means “not right now”.
- A BDM must be prepared to always think ahead of ways they can go the extra mile for themselves, the business and the client.
A BDM should be out of the office 80% of the time networking, building relationships, meeting with new landlords, promoting the office by doing presentations, completing rental appraisals and presenting management agreements. The other 20% should be spent handling paperwork, adding new contacts to the database and following up prospective landlords.
The best way to check that your BDM is on track is to ask them to provide you with a detailed plan. Make sure the tasks and appointments are income-producing activities. You also need to follow up with them the next day to see how successful they were.