Is real estate ready for the ‘great resignation’?

By December 2, 2021 No Comments

With post Pandemic resignation levels predicted to jump to 48%, real estate principals need to adjust their leadership style.

The booming property market and record sales levels are masking the reality that real estate principals are facing unprecedented challenges in managing their teams and new skills are required to navigate the landscape successfully, according to industry leader, Chris Hanley. 

Chris, who is principal of First National Byron and founder of the Rise Initiative, said Covid created stress was expected to trigger resignation levels higher than the industry has ever seen before. But many principals and team managers are too busy focusing on the frantic market.  

“Within real estate businesses, we are seeing agents and property managers suffering from lockdown related stress, high anxiety on behalf of buyers, and extraordinary workloads,” Chris said. “These are creating extraordinary stresses upon our people which need to be managed differently to how we’ve always done it in the past, or we will pay the price.” 

However, Chris said the record activity of the post lockdown property market meant many agents were doing so much business, they felt they did not have the time, or see the need to change. 

“The crazy performance of the market makes it easy for us to justify pushing all that messy human stuff to one side and just focus on getting things back to normal,” Chris said. “What we need to realise is that this won’t go away and that the longer we leave it, the harder it will come back to bite us. The old ways of motivating and driving our teams don’t work in the current environment and are actually part of the problem.”

According to research by Microsoft, more than 40% of the global workforce are considering leaving their employers this year. In Australia, insights from HR company Employment Hero indicate the number could be as high as 48%. With the cost of replacing staff estimated at about 33% of their annual salary plus the time lost in productivity and the time spent filling the role and training new people, the burden of high levels of staff turnover will tip a growing number of real estate businesses over.  

The research shows that the pandemic and lockdowns have created an unprecedented period of reflection amongst employees. Of those who said they were looking to leave their current employer, 31% said it was because of the lack of career opportunities while 26% it was because of a lack of appreciation or recognition from their boss. 

“What would happen to your business if nearly half your sales team or property management team resigned in the next few months? For most it would be catastrophic,” Chris said. “As principals, we have to be aware of these possibilities and adjust our leadership style to get ahead of these issues.” 

The Rise Initiative is holding the Rise Leadership Retreat from February 9-11, an exclusive, invite-only event for 100 of real estate’s top-performing leaders and principals. The retreat is designed to support leaders to embrace the new reality of leading real estate and property management teams. 

The Rise Leadership Retreat will feature a leadership masterclass with top mindset and performance coach Ben Crowe, a workshop on culture from Ros Coffey from Macquarie, plus collaborative sessions that allow a no-holds-barred conversation about our experiences leading in real estate today. The retreat will be held at the luxurious W Hotel with networking on the first night and dinner at the acclaimed Chin Chin restaurant on the Thursday. More speakers will be announced shortly. 

“The real attraction of the retreat is the calibre of the leaders in the room,” Chris said. “It will be an unprecedented opportunity for leaders to engage with their peers, share their experiences and together work out a new way for challenges in real estate to be addressed.”  

Those already attending are a who’s who of real estate leaders including Nick Dowling from Jellis Craig, John Cunningham from Cunningham’s Real Estate, Megan Jaffe from Ray White Remuera, Jason Pellegrino from Domain, Dean Mackie from DiJones, Dan White from and Mark McLeod from Ray White, Sarah Bell from AIRE, and Nigel O’Neil from Barry Plant plus many more.  

To find out more about the conference, contact Chris Hanley.

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