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Being One Step ...

Being One Step Ahead in Real Estate

By Star Report 4 min read

By Mike Fujihira, Sales Leader - New Home Star // 

Training and developing leaders is one of the highest priorities of any organization but is especially so within ours as we continue to grow at a record pace. At the last Quarterly Director’s Training New Home Star hosted in Chicago, all of our sales leaders from across the country discussed our organization’s three-year goal and vision. During which, we acknowledged that we must find the leaders of that future and begin training them now, so they are ready to take on new clients and backfill for those who are promoted into higher roles.

This discussion stuck with me and reminded me of the training style of the Military in relation to leadership. Throughout my entire Military career, my comrades and I we were constantly being trained for our next promotion, well before we could even be promoted! As a Junior Enlisted member, there were only certain job positions that could be worked towards within my unit; a vehicle driver or a dismount responsible for foot patrols and vehicle rides when necessary.

Until being promoted to an E-4 or a Senior E-3, becoming a gunner or a patrol leader was simply out of the question. During my time as an E-1 and E-2, the very beginning of any active duty soldier’s career, I was trained on what to expect when the time came for a promotion to a higher ranking. This training began well before I even had the time-in-service or time-in-grade requirements that must be fulfilled prior to promotion.

Drivers and dismounts are responsible for their equipment and for prepping the vehicle for departure (maintenance, fuel, water, etc.). As a gunner, you are responsible for the weapon system of the vehicle, the radios, and anything else in the turret. As a driver, you are constantly learning the radio and weapon systems so that, when the time comes to advance to the role of a gunner, you will already know a vast majority of the job. Doing training in such a fashion serves two main purposes:

  1. It ensures that you are adequately prepared if your promotion comes earlier than expected. It’s unrealistic to believe that once you get promoted, you start learning all of the responsibilities surrounding that position. It's more likely that you will already know a majority of them if you are continuously striving for that next step. Being fully prepared as so drastically shortens the learning curve. If you’re already proficient in a position before starting it, you can learn the rest of the job and dig deeper into certain skills that will allow you to start learning the job responsibilities for that next promotion! Constantly staying ahead of the curve and being prepared for that next job position will enable you to become more ambitious and even more tactical within your professional journey. Imagine one of your sales agents who you know will be a leader someday. If you start including them in your builder one-on-one meetings, teach them to fill out monthly reports, and ask them to come along for other agents’ Triangle Offense visits, it will allow them to be much more proficient in their next role. If they’ve already been exposed to the responsibilities that come along with a higher position, they’ll be much more confident and prepared to take on the new challenges that come with their promotion!
  2. It provides prospective internal candidates to step up and fill in for a higher position if need be. There were times when I was a driver, and my gunner was tied up with something while we were getting ready for a patrol. I had to step up in his place. Unable to be there as expected, I was willing and able to get the truck or track fully ready in his absence because of the preparation style training I took part in. Time sensitive instances like this can often be detrimental to any organization, but they can be minuscule if approached from this standpoint.

Whether you’re in the Military or the homebuilding industry, training for the future is a must! As we start molding our future leaders now by getting them involved and pushing them to learn those next positions sooner, it will not only benefit them individually but our entire organization collectively. Once they are promoted and can take on their own division, they can craft a better relationship with their new builder partner and really earn their trust. The benefits that come along with such training and leadership practices are incomparable. Whatever battlefield you find yourself fighting on, make sure you are prepared for that next step!

Originally published Jul 13, 2017 under Explore the latest topics, updated February 5, 2024

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