Since the property industry was largely allowed out of “lockdown” at the end of May, my diary has become progressively busier, with a number of new projects underway as well as recommencing ongoing work that had been “put on ice” during “lockdown”.
I have worked with several clients setting up new agency models and/or new service propositions and have been advising on regulatory requirements as well as business and commercial propositions. Terms of business, regulatory registrations, insurance, processes and systems have all featured strongly and, in a couple of situations, I have been able to help prevent people pursuing a path that, admirable for its entrepreneurial spirit, would have put them firmly on a collision course with authority!
It is undoubtedly easier to set up an agency business today than it was ten or twenty years ago as many are doing so without premises or staff but there is a worrying lack of knowledge about what is required, particularly where the individual setting up the business has never been involved in these aspects, perhaps having been sheltered from them whilst working for an established employer previously.
I have, as a result now produced a 1:1 online mentoring session entitled “Setting up your own business” which anyone thinking of doing so might be well advised to invest in!
During the “lockdown” period, I have also taken all of my various sales, management and compliance training courses and rewritten them, creating easily digestible modules for online delivery. A full list of open programmes for the remainder of 2020 and first quarter of 2021 can be seen, booked and securely paid for here:
All of these programmes can be run exclusively for individual businesses and I’d welcome the opportunity to discuss your training and development requirements with you.
The last few weeks have seen me recommence face to face mentoring sessions with a couple of agency clients. I am working with all of the management and negotiating staff in small groups and 1:1 sessions and building up their sales and management skills. The sessions take place monthly which is close enough together to maintain momentum and far enough apart to put ideas and learnings into action.
I have carried out two compliance audits for businesses in the last month. This has involved visiting their offices and running through existing processes and systems, auditing files and reporting on any areas for improvement.
In September I have a Lettings Health Check booked with an agent in London. This is a detailed two-day project that looks at both compliance and commerciality. Feedback on the Lettings Health Check has been very positive and you can find out more and read the client feedback here:
As always, I have continued to keep my head above the parapet in the industry by taking part in various webinars, podcasts and by writing articles for the trade press.
Looking ahead, I will taking part in a podcast video with Sam Hunter of Homesearch on Tuesday 8th September and also taking part, together with Rob Hailstone of the Bold Legal Group in a web broadcast on 23rd September for TM:TV. This one hour broadcast looking at the property market will be chaired by Nick Ball and will be the fourth that Rob and I have participated in since April. Recordings of the first three can be seen here:
You can register to attend the 23rd September (1pm) session here:
My involvement as a Non-Executive Director at teclet is both interesting and exciting and we will be launching several new platforms in the coming weeks to add to our existing award-winning automated lettings platform. Innovative sales and conveyancing, CRM and lettings client accounting platforms will all be going live by the autumn.
Finally, I am also a Founder Member of the charitable foundation Agents Together and, as well as providing input into the running and direction of the organisation, I am directly mentoring three individual mentees and sharing the benefits of my knowledge and experience whilst also holding them to account as they seek to grow and develop.