How Elizabeth Golden Set Her Brokerage up for Blazing Growth

In 2015, Elizabeth Golden, broker-owner of @Homes Realty Group in Huntsville, Alabama, was stuck. While business was great, her 16-agent firm’s growth had stagnated and she knew she needed tools, perspective and guidance to move her business forward.

Golden, like many leaders of smaller, independent brokerages, didn’t have the skills, tools or knowledge to lead her 6-year-old brokerage in aggressive, efficient growth with more agents and larger sales volumes. So, she enrolled, and last month graduated from the year-long T3 Fellows brokerage accelerator program.

The program includes a detailed curriculum broken down into monthly modules, monthly Web conferences, one-on-one executive guidance, financial tracking, goal-setting, management training, a mastermind group and more. Learn more about T3 Fellows here.

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Since joining the program, @Homes Realty Group:

  • Added a net of eight agents (an increase of 45 percent)
  • Doubled its lead-conversion rate (from approximately 2.5 percent to 5 percent)
  • And increased per-agent productivity (sales volume) by 20 percent

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The firm achieved the above without purchasing any new technology.

Before T3 Fellows, 40 percent of Golden’s time went to running her brokerage, as she was split between being a broker and sales activity. After restructuring her business and mindset while in the program, the brokerage now gets 80 percent of her time and attention. In addition, she has a five-year growth plan and knows, clearly, what she needs to do each day to reach her goals.

Golden’s also more strategic about resources now, which facilitates quick decisions and execution. She measures every choice for the firm around the question, “What will it do for my company?”

A sample of what Golden accomplished during T3 Fellows:

  • Production of a brand book that includes all the information agents need to work within the firm: detailed checklists for everything from listing presentation how-tos to the contingencies they need to include on offers to suggested vendors and processes. This has helped the firm recruit agents.
  • An upgraded agent-onboarding system with a systematized training and continuing education course. New agents go through 155 hours of training -- going over contracts, field trips to listings, role-playing. In addition, all agents receive two high-quality trainings each month now.
  • Solidifying her firm’s brand story. The firm’s tagline has always been “Where the heart is,” but, soon, it will be more clearly integrated into its website and print materials. The story was understated before. Now, she’s not afraid to share it, to let the community know who the firm is.
  • High-quality content for homebuyers and sellers, including a step-by-step buyer’s packet and marketing package for sellers.
  • A branded “Welcome Home” box for the firm’s buyers that includes the essentials they need in the first night in their house: toilet paper, paper towels, coffee. In the past, she would have hemmed and hawed over the decision to invest in it. It’s warm and fuzzy, but it makes agents and clients happy and reinforces the brand, she said, so it’s a clear win.
  • A website revamp (coming later this year) that will include:
    • A stronger, clearer presentation of the firm’s brand
    • More information on neighborhoods and communities
    • A more central role for agents

Beyond the clear business improvements, the program gave Golden confidence and clarity as a leader. “T3 Fellows empowered me to make difficult choices and big financial investments,” she said. “It inspired me to put my money where my mouth is.”

Golden calls T3 Fellows the best business investment she’s ever made. Given the results, you can see why. It’s been a year of massive change, Golden said. She’s tired, but extremely excited.

Questions and answers from Elizabeth Golden:

Why did you join T3 Fellows?

I felt I needed guidance in bettering myself in the leadership role and to assist me in growth. Being a great agent and a great broker are different roles. I struggled with finding an advisor in the brokerage industry for independent companies. T3 Fellows’ mentors and advisors were all accomplished and shared my vision. Each one is very experienced and mirrored what I wanted to accomplish within my brokerage.

What did you get out of it?

The best thing I got from the T3 Fellows programs is the confidence I now have. I know my numbers, I've perfected my systems and have completed projects that are helping my company grow.

What has it done for your business?

I've gained the knowledge and confidence needed to grow my company. I have firm goals and the tools to accomplish them. Since joining T3, my business has grown 45 percent.

Learn more about T3 Fellows here.