Michael Sheargold michael

Masterclass accountability

Masterclass: Capitalising on Accountability

Masterclass: Capitalising on accountability

Everyone who owns a business has some sort of accountability in place. The question is – how effective is it and is it producing the kind of results that are holding people to the pathway they want to achieve?

Why accountability?

Accountability in an effective form is a system designed to help people understand if they are on track or if they are off track, what they need to do to get back on track to achieve their goals.

Creating consistency

In real estate, the roller coaster ride is alive and well. Often we experience good months, followed by a challenging one. When times are good, leaders tend to take the brake off when it comes to accountability. However when things are challenging, we start to put the accountability pressure back on.

In real estate, creating consistency in accountability starts at the leads activity. If we get the leads flow in place then the nurture flow will happen, then the listing flow will happen and so forth.

Leadership and accountability:

Accountability and leadership go hand in hand. As a real estate business owner, your business results are more often than not dependant on the results of others. As such it is imperative that you put a framework in place that creates positive energy and encourages your team to perform their best.

Accountability and culture:

If you want to create a culture of accountability, then it starts with you. Model behaviours that you want to see in your business. If you want people to take ownership, then you have to be seen to take ownership, when you make commitments, you have to be seen to meet these commitments. If you don’t, then how can you convince others to be interested in doing so?

How to get your team to perform above the line:

Teams are either operating above or below the line. When people are performing ‘below the line’ they are blaming, using excuses, denying and blaming everyone but themselves. When they are performing ‘above the line’ they take ownership, are accountable, responsible and making choices about where they want to go.

To get your team consistently operating above the line, they will need an understanding of what their responsibilities are and what they are accountable for.

Results productivity platform

This is a great platform to apply accountability. Go through each success pillar with your team members and understand how accountability in each area will set up the organisation for success.

  1. Prospecting – what is the best way to conduct prospects i.e. by phone or face to face
  2. Nurturing – how do you nurture relationships you already have?
  3. Networking – who is best suited for this task?
  4. Marketing – agents in a way that will stand out in marketplace.

Agents and accountability

As a business leader it is important to recognise that as agents start to evolve from new starters to performers, their business goals and accountability may differ. For example, performers will mainly have results-based goals whereas goals for new recruits may be more focused around activity indicators. Ensure you have an understanding of each individual’s business generation activity in light of their career cycle. This will provide you (and them) with validation, clear measurements of progress, and most importantly, that extra support they need when road isn’t smooth.

For further information and accountability-generating tools, please contact the team at RERN.



Strategies for a Successful Spring Campaign

Spring is traditionally the busiest time of year for real estate agents which is why it is surprising so many leave it until the last minute to ‘spring’ (sorry!) into action. This year I want to challenge you to start your Spring capitalisation plan right now.

Feel vs Do

The biggest impediment to us being effective in our planning is this notion of feel vs do. There is a very important distinction between these concepts. Do I feel like getting up in winter and going to the gym? Probably not. But I do it to honour the commitment I have made to myself and as a result I feel great about it. If, in this example, I allowed the feel to override the do in the moment, I wouldn’t go to the gym. I would find something else to do with my time and as a result of not honouring my commitment, I’m not going to get the desired outcome. Do I feel good about that? No I don’t.

From a real estate perspective there are a lot of average agents out there that allow the feel to override the do. Exceptional agents don’t.

 Be an exceptional agent.

 Honour that commitment to prospecting, to connecting, to your listing presentations. Time and energy are the two biggest things you can put in to your business so make sure you honour that time commitment. It will make the single biggest difference to your business this year, I promise you that.

It won’t be easy. As humans it is totally normal for the feel to creep in. There are always going to be things we don’t feel like doing. But when that happens, simply thank it for coming and allow the do to take over and notice how you feel after.

It’s time to head in to this Spring selling season with your game face on. Commit to being the best version of yourself and do those things you know make the biggest difference, even when you don’t feel like it.

This is my challenge to you!

If you are an entrepreneurial agent, already looking ahead for when you become a leader (and want tips on how to succeed) I urge you to look at the amazing speaker line up for The Business of Real Estate 2019. Check it out here.


Building Your Competitive Edge

Building your competitive edge for 2020 – what you can do now to set up for success.

It’s hard to believe we are more than halfway through 2019, where did the time go?

As we gear up for a busy second half, August is a perfect time to sit back and look at what we have achieved so far and, more importantly, what we can put in place to have a great spring. Having a sensational spring will set you up perfectly to kick off 2020.

Four controllables to master:

Make sure you are spending more time and energy on things you can control in your business as opposed to those you can’t. In other words: Control the Controllable.

What’s in your control?

  1. Lead generation: How many connected conversations are you currently having? How can you be more proactive around this?
  2. Nurturing: Are you nurturing opportunities when they are sitting in your CRM? How are you nurturing them so when someone is ready to list, they list with you?
  3. Listing: Do you have a brilliant listing presentation? What’s your point of difference and value?
  4. Selling: What is your sell-through plan? There is no point in having listings unless you have fantastic sell–through.

The ultimate game plan is to put energy and time into these four areas and less time worrying about market driven factors. It will prove far more effective in the longer term.

Perfecting communications:

Another area also within your control within your business is communication. The market is in shifting mode and as such, you need to apply what I term the 3 C’s in all communication – be it a social media post, meeting or phone call.

Confidence – Inject a level of confidence in people you communicate with. If you are telling them: “Now is a good time to buy/sell”, get some clarity around the why?

Clarity – Provide clarity to your client about how you are going to sell their property.

Certainty – Have a level of certainty of information. Do your research and know the facts.

If you bring these three ingredients wrapped into every conversation, people will hear you in a far more positive mode. I promise you, it will change everything in your world.

Implementing the implementable:

The power of an idea is in its implementation – when we can take an idea and put it into action. There are five high performance habits you need to embrace heading into spring. These are all things in your control.

  1. Focus – what is your plan? What are you hoping to achieve? Are you giving the gift of presence i.e your entire focus to something?. It’s so important that you are truly present in your interactions with other people – be it on the phone or face to face. Research has shown when you listen in a focussed way it generates better speaking coming to you from other people.
  2. Energy – number one thing people buy from you is your energy. While you’re on the phone, do an auto recording of how you are sounding on the calls. Are you sounding flat? 84% of believability is not what you say but the way you say it. I think most people will reach the conclusion they can turn energy levels up a notch.
  3. Productivity – power to produce outstanding results. Are you busy or are you in business? There is a difference between the two. Make sure you have a focussed plan of what you are wanting to achieve and utilise your time better to get there!
  4. Influence – are you exceptional at helping people make better decisions around when/what to offer? Now is the time to move from being good to being exceptional.
  5. Courage – need to have more courageous conversations with clients. Most clients think they have a property worth X amount but we need to have courageous conversations to set realistic expectations.

This month I want you to sit down and refocus. Have you got the necessary framework in place to build on your performance in an effective way? Are you controlling the controllable? An exceptional 2020 is within your reach but it’s not going to come on a silver platter. Now is the time to plan, to execute and to deliver.

The team at DRIVE and I are with you all the way.



Unlocking Empowering Beliefs for Success

Beliefs are thoughts in our head that influence our behaviour, attitude and actions. They control how we live our lives. There are two kinds of beliefs; empowering beliefs that allow us to get up in the morning and do what we do and disempowering beliefs which potentially hold us back.

As business coaches, we need to minimise disempowering beliefs that inevitably create roadblocks to achieving success.

Firstly, it is important to instil confidence in our clients that we, as their coach, have the necessary skills and ability to take them to that next level. The confidence ladder is a great tool for this. Every step reinforces your commitment and vision for your client’s future and outlines what they need to do to get there.

The confidence ladder – 5 steps to successStep 1: Your team are committed to utilising the best strategies available.

Step 2: As a business coach, you will ensure they have the best skills to apply those strategies to make it happen.

Step 3: Knowledge – you want them to have a superior knowledge of what they are out to achieve.

Step 4: You want them to have the best scripts and dialogues as to how to communicate that knowledge to achieve amazing results.

Step 5: Mindset – all of the above accounts for 20% of someone’s success and mindset accounts for 80% of success.

The importance of the mind

Step five in the confidence ladder is critical for your clients to appreciate and understand. When the mind travels from the “Can I do it?” state, to an “I can do it!” state, from doubt to purpose, then opportunities will start being seen as possible – and the results will absolutely reflect this.

What can you do to ensure that your clients adopt a positive mindset?

My favourite saying is: A breakthrough almost always follows a break with.

You need to challenge your clients to break with some of their misguided beliefs and open them up to adopting new ways. You can achieve this through a simple 7 step belief change process:

  1. Old belief. When did you decide it?
  2. What are the benefits? There must be benefits if you are hanging on to it.
  3. What are the costs?
  4. Are you prepared to pay the costs?
  5. What is a new empowering belief that will allow you to be effective in this area?
  6. What are the Daily doable actions that will allow us to lock this in?
  7. Conditioning in to habit – how can we achieve this? (aim to achieve one habit/month)

One of your greatest coaching challenges will be to master the internal marketplace of your client’s mind. Tools such as the confidence ladder and 7 step belief change method enhance your ability to shift any negative beliefs and create a more positive mindset, laying the perfect foundation for success.

For further tips and information about our coaching framework, please look at driveperformance.com.au


Planning for Success

Planning for Success

As we near the end of the financial year, you can almost feel the stress and anticipation in the air as businesses struggle with juggling business priorities with tax time. What I would like to see is a scenario whereby your business is using this opportunity in a more positive way, focusing on what opportunities lie ahead in addition to what has been. In other words, I want you to complete a business review and preview for how the last 6 months have gone and where the next are going.

Given you will invest 1250 hours into your real estate career over the next 6 months, why not get a better return on investment and put some planning in to it?!

A Business Review:

This requires a deep level of self-analysis about how your business is doing and what upgrades you need to take it further. Feedback from your team can be really helpful but remember this is your own review so it is important you can stand back and constructively analyse yourself and your business.

Ask yourself:

  • How am I doing me? How would I shift, change or modify anything to get the best results?
  • What were the highlights?
  • What went well and what were the successes from a career point of view?
  • What was on the clunky side or what were you disappointed with? What areas didn’t go well and what areas need to be upgraded?

Remember, upgrades don’t need to be constricted to areas of your business that aren’t doing well. You might be able to make improvements in an area that is going well, allowing you to capitalise even more! Alternatively of course, it might be an opportunity to focus on something that hasn’t gone well but if strengthened will take your business further.

A Business Preview:

Spring is a fantastic selling season and by the time it comes around you want to be in a position whereby you have done this review work and have a framework in place to truly capitalise on a brilliant run to the end of the year.

Ask yourself: What does success look like at the end of the year?

  • Remember to take in to account both a business and personal point of view of success
  • Create 3-5 benchmarks that would mean an exceptional last 6 months to the end of year
  • Based on these benchmarks, what are the key wins/projects that you can grab hold of and put in place to start to build some momentum?

Now is the time to act and react to your business for the year ahead. Not only will it set you up for the next 6 months, it will propel you into the best preparation for 2020.

For more informaiton please check out driveperformance.com.au




Building even Greater Momentum


We hear the phrase ‘momentum’ associated with some of the most successful business brands in the world and for good reason. When a business gains momentum everything seems to roll forward, stuff gets done, things happen, employees are proactive, customers are happy and extraordinary results are produced.

As a business coach, creating momentum in your team should be your ultimate goal.

Here are some top tips to create and retain momentum in your team:

Recognition – the more you catch people doing things right, the more momentum someone will achieve. When giving recognition, try to acknowledge efforts in a public way. That will inspire others to exceed expectations as well. Make sure you look beyond your top performers and equally recognise the efforts of the newer or more inexperienced team members.

  • Review process – performance reviews are a fantastic tool to identify staff who are on/off track to achieving their goals. Depending who the client is will determine how often you need to have these review conversations. New starters, for example, may require more touch points early on in their role. For those clients who are on track, these meetings provide the perfect opportunity to offer that positive feedback and reinforcement. Similarly, for clients who are off-track, reviews provide a chance to get them back on the path to achieving what they set out to achieve.
  • Wow results – celebrate victories! Your clients rely on you as their business coach to recognise and celebrate when they are consistently kicking goals. Celebrations can be big or small, anything to let them know you’ve noticed.
  • Where to from here? It is so important to continually push your clients and challenge them to do greater things. Once they have achieved their goals, set new ones. Inspire and motivate them to go to greater highs.

A highly motivated, inspired and performing team is going to drive your business momentum and allow individuals to accomplish amazing goals. Don’t underestimate the importance of your role as a business coach and mentor in making this happen.

For further information including tools such as weekly Sales and Property Management productivity checklists, check out driveperformance.com.au


Gaining Permission for Accountability

Accountability and team engagement are important pieces of a productive workplace. Accountability is linked to higher performance as well as increases in commitment to work and employee morale. So as a business coach and mentor, it is imperative that you spend time on developing individual accountability.

Without it, standards and performance will start to crumble because when one practice is compromised, then other practices begin to decline in quality!

Be aware that a lot of people view accountability in a negative light. They see it as a way of checking up on them or micro-managing. Generally speaking people don’t want accountability they need accountability.

Putting a positive spin on accountability

In essence, accountability is simply finding out what someone is committed to and providing the supportive framework to enhance that commitment. It’s important to reinforce this concept with your employees. You may be engaged in reminding them of the commitment they are making but it’s still their commitment!

Driving accountability in your workplace:

Below are some simple guidelines to fostering accountability and keeping employees productive and focused within the workplace:

● Book in a meeting with your employee as soon as you notice commitment starting to waiver. Don’t allow the situation to deteriorate to a point of no return.

● Permission – if we are going to hold someone accountable, we need their permission. Ask them directly: “Do I have your permission to hold you accountable for this? Remember you asked me to hold you accountable? Are you on track? If you are off-track what are you going to do to change that?”

● Agreement – accountability manifests itself in so many ways there has to be agreement with your employee about what that looks like. For example; “Are you sending me a text at the end of each day? Let’s agree at the end of the week you’re going to send me how many people you added to your pipeline”. Make sure the agreement runs both ways.

● Rewards when employees do meet their commitments. Often once someone has a hold on an area, we sometimes focus on something else without truly recognising the achievement. Make sure you have a rewards conversation so that you can actively reward performance; “When you do this how are you going to reward yourself?”

Tough love

Occasionally as business coaches we need to have those tough conversations with our employees to ensure they are meeting their commitment to themselves, to you and to the organisation itself.

With accountability discussions, it makes it easier knowing that it is essential to the healthy and successful functioning of your company. Let your employees know from the start that these conversations are all coming from support.

Yes it may be tough love but it’s coming from the point of view that; “I believe in you now let’s translate that to performance!”

For further information about how you can drive accountability in your workplace, contact Drive Performance at www.driveperformance.com.au


Simplified Success

Business owners often ask me how they can simplify their operations and achieve results. I get excited when this happens because it means they are putting serious thought in to how to do things better. One of my favourite quotes is: “The power of an idea is in the implementation”. To me this is the most powerful thing business owners can take on board. You can have the best business idea in the world but unless you have figured out how you will put this in to action, you might as well pass it on to someone who will!

How to initiate action:

Most businesses’ are trying to work out the same things:

  • How do we deal with our customers?
  • How do we work effectively as a team?
  • How to we market our business?

When you ask yourselves these questions all at once it can feel overwhelming and exhausting. Instead, I propose you strip things right back and task yourself and your team three things this year:

  • Themes: designate a theme and pinpoint something your business can focus on every month. What can you as a group get better at? It might be connecting with existing clients, making improvements to technology or upgrading marketing materials. Whatever the theme is for the month, get the whole team focused on that one area with the view to create lasting change.
  • Key projects: I’m a firm believer that most people in business attempt to implement too many things all at the one time. Why not slow things down? Implement less things well than a lot of things poorly. Novel idea I know! A good example that I see time and time again is around the use of CRM’s and other technology. Sure, it’s great to have all of these whiz bang technologies…but only if you’re using them to their full capabilities. Why not make that a focus for your team and finally get the return on your investment?! Remember with projects the ‘key’ is to ensure every project has a beginning/middle and an end.
  • Quick wins: are small changes that can be implemented straight away. The beauty of small business is that decisions can be made very quickly. Use that competitive edge and work out one quick win per week that would make a difference to your operation. A good example might be changing the way you answer the phone.

Ultimately the aim of the themes, key projects and quick wins strategy is to create clarity, make some changes and simplify your business for success. I’ve always said ‘a confused mind stalls’. As a business owner it is important to put in place a framework that creates a clear, simple vision for your team. The results will shout for themselves.

For more information about how you can achieve simplified success in your business, contact the team on 1300 273 785.

To check out Australasia’s premier leadership event for Principals, Owners, Sales Managers and Heads of Departments: The Business of Real, click this link now.


Five ways to make 2019 YOUR year

If I get a dollar every time I hear someone characterise the current market as “challenging” or “downturn“ I could retire a wealthy man!

Instead I’m going to share an insight with you, this is an insight that no one seems to be talking about despite the fact that it could take your business to new heights. So, what is this amazing insight I speak of?….drum roll please….BIG plays happen in a changing market! You heard it here first folks! But in all seriousness think about it. If you waste your time and energy worrying about how challenging things are, what’s going to come of it? I predict not much! Instead, what you need to do is focus on the things you can control. Change your thinking, create a clear and achievable business plan for 2019 and find that breakthrough you need to get real momentum back in to your business.

Here are my tops tips to take on 2019:

  1.  New Real Estate Market – It’s time to start viewing our current market conditions as the New Real Estate Market. We need to fit in to the market that is here now. There’s no point in waiting around for a market change – adapt and respond to current market needs. How are you going to help your clients capitalise on this market?


  1.   Performance culture – Benchmark what your team’s performance looks like. This will differ for everyone depending on their career cycle (rising stars, performers, new recruits). Brainstorm with your team in the process of setting the standards of the company. These benchmarks will form the foundation of your performance culture.


  1.   Brilliant team work – Now more than ever is the year to work together as a team to achieve real estate success. None of us are as smart as all of us. We need to play a team game in 2019.


  1.   Clarity of your plan – What are five initiatives you can put in place to take the team forward and achieve great results? Instead of trying to implement too many initiatives poorly, I suggest you focus on just five and do them well.
  2.    Powerful processes – In a business you have people and processes. I see 2019 as being an opportunity to implement powerful processes that will assist your team. How do you get group buy in? Make them relevant and meaningful. Your team will want to know the purpose of why you are putting processes in place so make sure you are clear on what you are trying to achieve before you roll out the process to the rest of the team.

Good luck with the year ahead. As always, the team at Real Estate Results Network are here to help make this YOUR year.



Coaching Framework 6 – Building a results plan of action

In my 30 years of business coaching I have always found the biggest problems arise when my clients get too bogged down in the detail. As such, my mantra has become: Keep It Simple Stupid…but I use the acronym KISS to keep it friendly!

Simple is clear, simple is clarity and simple is, well, simple.

This concept will serve you well when working with your clients to design a results plan of action. My advice? Stick to a one page document that gives your client clear guidance around their goals, projects and any quick wins that could be put in place to help them to move forward at an accelerated pace. Anything more than will end up being just words on a page.

Navigating with GPS: Goals, Plans and Support

From a coaching standpoint a GPS stands for goals, plans and support. Like a regular GPS, a business GPS is designed to help plan your clients journey and get them to their final destination.  It’s a good idea to have two GPS meetings with your clients every year to ensure they are travelling on the right path and to keep them accountable.


It is important that your client understands that simply listing goals is not the end of their plan! Goals should also answer the questions: what do I want to achieve and why?  Remember to include a challenge frame (up or down) in these conversations to push your clients to their full potential.


Ask your clients: how will you get there?  What do you need to do to reach these goals? Remember this is their individual plan so you need to identify the separation between ‘we’ and ‘you’.


The language you use here is key to enforcing accountability. What support would you like from me in order for you to achieve this? As business coaches, it is our role to put the framework and support in place to enable our clients to thrive. But ultimately our clients need to be accountable for what they have committed to.
For further tips and ideas for building results plans of action, contact RERN.