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Wayne Bennett’s advice for leaders in real estate

Leadership equals responsibility.  

Learning is vital to growth, and at UrbanX we take every opportunity to provide training from both within and outside the real estate industry. As we say here, “success leaves clues” and we were thrilled to learn from some of the most successful leaders at our recent leadership retreat.  

Super coach Wayne Bennett kicked off the 2 day event, and his ideas on leadership are summarised below. 

Takeaway #1. “It ain’t for everyone”. 

Leadership is not easy, nor does it come naturally to most.  

You must be honest with yourself about your desire and ability to lead. As Wayne so honestly stated, we all lie to ourselves more than we lie to anyone else so really dig deep before considering a leadership role.   

If you take the responsibility of leadership within your real estate agency, be prepared for a challenging but rewarding road ahead. 

Takeaway #2: You must be clear with your team. 

Communication is vital in leadership (and in all real estate interactions). You must: 

  • be able to adapt your communication to suit your team. To get the best out of each individual, you must be the one to change your approach. 
  • set a clear vision and clear goals. Let everyone know where they stand and the role they play 
  • be direct with people when they are not meeting your expectations. If they don’t know they’re doing something wrong, they won’t know how to improve.  

Wayne also had some great phrases about clarity of leadership: 

  • Be authentic. Be original. Be honest with yourself. 
  • Speak less. Have more impact.
  • When you truly know you, you’re at your best. 
  • Never lose credibility. 
  • Leaders inspire others to become better leaders. 
  • Meetings take minutes but waste hours.  

Takeaway #3: Wayne’s top 8 traits of leadership: 

  1.  Trust: Can you trust yourself to lead the team?
  2. Have a vision: Know what you want for yourself & for your team 
  3. Have a focus: don’t get distracted from your vision
  4. Commitment: Commitments are better than promises. Commitments have no fall backs, but promises can be broken (and are another set of lies)
  5. Responsibility 
  6. Respect 
  7. Be selective on what you say.
    • No mixed messages 
    • No double standards 
    • Say ‘No’ often. It gives you time to consider the situation then make a decision.
  8. Have courage (the most important trait): Stand for something or fall for everything. Let people know where they stand and have difficult conversations when they need to be had.  

As the real estate market faces tougher conditions and your stress rises, it’s easy to get reactive. In these times, referring to the above will keep you on track. 

Takeaway #4. Lead by example. 

Similarly to above, how you react and respond to outside factors and tougher market conditions will be seen and felt by your team.

You can’t build a good team without standards. Be reflective. Break down your interactions and behaviours, then change what you have to change. Learn from your mistakes and encourage your team to do the same. 

 Fail points happen when:  

  • You put your needs before the team 
  • You don’t live up to your values 
  • Personal arrogance appears 
  • You act too fast 
  • You’re not consistent or authentic 

Takeaway #5. Own the position. 

Great leadership is displayed through the quality of your actions and your honesty of intent. You have to take risks (but don’t gamble) and own your choices. 

Always play “above the line” and call out those who play below it:  

Finally, you can’t lead without empathy. Get to know your team, spend time with them individually and support them to be their best.  Like you, they will need support to get through the downturn in the real estate market and the more you lead them, the more you’ll thrive together.

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