Friday, June 15, 2012

Easy Steps to Kick Start Your Career in Commercial Real Estate

walkway to office buildings in city
Career tips in commercial real estate

A career in commercial real estate can be very rewarding and interesting.  That being said, it is like many other sales related jobs in that it is competitive, challenging and complex.  That should not put you off however; rather it should encourage you.  If you are prepared to learn and push yourself to do the hard and difficult sales tasks, the career can open up into great rewards.

At the moment the commercial property market is going through challenges of the global economy.  That brings about more challenges for those that do not have a good database of contacts and a system of prospecting.  

To a great degree your success in the industry is driven by your actions with the people that you know.  If you take better action with a larger list of prospects, you will find more opportunity to act on.
It should be said that the industry is very competitive and will always throw a ‘skewed ball’ for you to handle; but that is like all other sales related industries.

Your knowledge and skill will get you through if you work hard.  Expect the challenges and work through them.  Success in the industry is a personal thing.

So let’s look at what you can do to improve your career chances and commissions.  This list makes up the key processes and decisions that must be handled to build your personal business, listings, and commissions.

  • Property Market: The property market location that you are to work in should be assessed for opportunity and variation.  Look at just how many commercial properties do exist in the area and assess if any changes are occurring.  Look for the threat of market decline or contraction.  Be very careful with this if you are to potentially work in a small town with little growth of business types and population demographic.
  • Sales or Leasing:  Most top agents are very good at both the sales and leasing of property.  A leasing opportunity will one day lead to a sales opportunity (and vice versa).   It is best if you specialise in both and can comprehensively cover the challenges that each requires.
  • Agency to work for:  Now there are good agencies, ordinary ones, and poor ones.  Invariably the poor ones will not provide you with the support or the systems to build your business.  Ask questions about the support systems that you will get from your office administration.
  • Property Type:  Choose a property type to work on that you like and understand.  Over time the top agents will specialise like this in some respect.  That does not mean that they decline any other business that comes their way; they just prefer to work on a particular property type because they understand it and service it very well.  That being said, you should know that there are potentially many listings available over time for the property types that you have chosen.
  • Knowledge:  Your knowledge will always be important when it comes to the local area and the property activity.  This is a constant process requiring personal skills upgrade and monitoring of market changes and recent deals.
  • Sales skills:  As you would expect, sales skills are part of the job. Without the best sales skills you will find things a bit tough.  On that basis your sales skills can and should always be improved and expanded.  Many of your competitors will not be disciplined when it comes to this, so that is an opportunity in itself providing you can get yourself organised and start practicing your sales skills.  Get the right resources and start practicing.
  • Prospecting:  I hope someone has told you that you should prospect for new business in commercial real estate!  Without any doubt, this prospecting issue is the one single thing that can make a major difference in the results that you get from the industry.  Top agents prospect every day regardless of just how much other business they have currently.  When you develop a prospecting habit make sure you refine it and practice it; over time it will help you succeed well beyond your competitors.
  • Goals:  We all know that we have to define some clear goals in business and in life.  The problem is that many people do that without then setting the actions that are required to make the goals happen.  Goals without action are in effect a ‘wish list’.   Wishes are very nice to have, but action is required.  Are you a motivated person?  Can you drive yourself every day?  I hope so.


As you look at this list it is easy to add a few more things, and perhaps you should.  Importantly you should decide what you want and then take the action required to make it happen.  In this industry you can be either a participant or a spectator; you can’t be both.  Make your choice and take action.