Most real estate companies and sales organizations will have a person on their staff who is in charge of organizing and often running the sales training for the company. Sales training is a vital part of the development of the sales people and is an area which has always been a question mark within the real estate industry. In the real estate industry today, companies will either have a sales trainer or outsource the training to an organization like my own. This means either they bring in The Mike Ferry Organization to do some type of training or send their sales people to a variety of sales seminars that are available.
It is not uncommon for real estate companies to place the sales training as a priority but it is also very common for them not to have any budget for the same event. As a result, you will find two separate thought processes. First, set up and run an in-house sales program. Or second, outsource the entire process. So many companies, due to their size, outsource the training, which made the growth of independent sales organizations explode in the last 10 -20 years.
What’s interesting to me is that majority of the sales trainers have attached the word “coach” to their name. Our industry has accepted the fact that if a person is a sales trainer, then they are automatically also a coach. IN MOST CASES, THIS COULDN’T BE FURTHER FROM THE TRUTH. The two functions are completely different, taking totally different skill sets and their purpose and objectives are not the same. I think you will see that in the next several paragraphs.
Over the last 10 years or so, the cliché to be called a “coach” has become extremely popular. You see the word coach attached to people’s names in all types of businesses; as if it is some kind of badge of honor. If you ever got involved with coaching in any depth whatsoever, you will soon discover that it is not all
the fun and games that people believe it is. Per the dictionary, a “coach” is a person who trains an individual; a private tutor or preparing a person for a particular function. Or to give specific instruction or advice on a particular topic. As you can see, this is totally different than standing in front of a group people and doing a sales training session. I will give you a specific example.
I founded the Mike Ferry Organization in 1975 as a “Real Estate Training Company.” I was hired to speak to various organizations throughout the industry and put on our own seminars and workshops for years. These were training seminars. Groups of people coming together with a purpose of having a trainer teach them various sales practices, sales principles, scripts, dialogues and techniques. You can compare this quite honestly to a school teacher teaching any lesson to any group of people in a classroom.
Whether it be languages, math or science, the teacher is going to share with the class “how to” do anything for the purpose that the students understand and use those ideas. Teaching has always been a vital part of our lives. Don’t confuse this with coaching.
Coaching, on the other hand, is when a sales coach is working specifically with an individual, the individual’s goals and objectives, sales skills and techniques, and most importantly, reshaping the person’s sales mindset. Coaching means getting very involved with the real estate agent in these types of areas that include asking specific questions about the agent’s behaviors and activities. As we do when holding the agents accountable to those things they are trying to accomplish.
As you can see, coaching and training have very little to do with each other in terms of the actual activity. My thought to you as readers of this article: “BEWARE OF THE TRAINERS WHO CALL THEMSELVES COACHES.”
We at MFO started the coaching industry in real estate in October of 1988 and have been doing individual coaching for what is now over 28 years. We have coached tens of thousands of agents at all levels of productivity and I would have to say to you that I have now done hundreds of thousands of coaching calls. Believe me when I tell you, “Our over 100+ coaches who operate in North America and Europe are not Sales Trainers and do not want to become one as their job is to coach.”
I personally have studied professional sport coaches for over 30 years. I’ve read every book I can find on coaching and again, I will state to you, it’s an exciting and difficult job and a completely different one from a Sales Trainer. Go to sales training and classes.
However, if you chose to hire a coach, hire a Sales Coach and not a Sales Trainer.