The Benefits and Burdens of Policies

General Real Estate

Randy Cooney 2015 - Oct

P.R. ‘Randy’ Cooney
President, Success Institute
Arizona School of Real Estate & Business


At this year’s Broker Summit hosted by the Arizona School of Real Estate & Businesses some Brokers were asking about the pluses and minuses of company policies. In the overseeing of several real estate companies I was often challenged between: the allocation of staff time in the regulation of policies versus staff time devoted to activities that drive productivity. The focus of this article is to share seven things learned or observed regarding the creation, implementation and enforcement of policies.

  1. Policies are necessary for all companies for the protection of its employer and employees. Within a real estate brokerage there is additional oversight necessary with regards to the practice and professionalism of the agents working on behalf of the public. It is actually required by the Arizona Department of Real Estate that every real estate company have a policy manual. It should be required reading for all.
  2. In an effort to run a successful real estate company there is a delicate balance between:
    – The time, resources and persons needed for the implementation & enforcement of policies & procedures.
    – The time, resources and persons needed to focus on performance, productivity, results, and revenue.
  3. Keep in mind that every policy adds to administrative time devoted to monitoring & enforcement of policies and subtracts from administrative time devoted to revenue producing activities. Recognize the necessity of policies, just choose your policies wisely.
  4. Once a policy is adopted someone will need to ensure compliance. When creating a policy, ask yourself two questions: How will it be implemented? How will it be continued to be enforced? A policy that’s in place and isn’t used can make a company more liable than if it didn’t have one at all.
  5. Some agents who are creative, out-going associates feel they may excel in an environment with limited policies. Given freedom to be creative, they may generate significant results and revenue. Be prepared to reign these agents in if they stretch beyond the boundaries, but handle them with care. You may be torn between the stress they create versus the results they generate.
  6. Using the DISC profile personality analysis can be helpful for a brokerage. I have experienced that high “D” and “I” behavioral types are more likely to stretch the boundaries policies – while they can produce a high level of results and revenue. The high “S” & “C” behavioral types are more likely to adhere to policies while skillfully monitoring results, tracking revenue and managing details. Every brokerage needs all four personality types to achieve balance and success. There are many DISC assessment options available that can provide a high level analysis or a more detailed view of your employees. If you aren’t using DISC, it can be a helpful tool when implementing your policies.
  7. So when contemplating the benefits and bonuses of policies for your real estate company consider this:

Pursuing results with no policies can be reckless.
Pursuing results with too many policies can be restrictive.