By Sue Styles

Your administrative assistants want to be admired and appreciated for the work they do.

When you (as their employer) make the effort to give praise for work well done, in turn, your support staff will seek out ways to increase and improve their performance for you.



In my experience, working in real estate offices for over a decade, I can confirm that when you give appreciation for the jobs done, you raise the bar for maximum results in your office.

You should appreciate support staff for:

  • The way they are flexible when you interrupt their paperwork;
  • When they stay late to finish up a deal or come in early to get a listing on fast;
  • How they juggle the schedule so photos are taken quickly or measurements are done on time.

Most real estate professionals have declared that hiring support staff was one of their best business decisions, enabling them to get to the next level. So how can amazing administrative staff add more value to their role?

I have 10 actions that will propel assistants from being ordinary to extraordinary. Pass this article along and reap the rewards!


The Extraordinary Assistant

1. Think for your boss.

Anticipate what they need next and try to stay a step ahead of them.

2. Over-communicate rather than under-communicate.

Do not leave room for doubt by remaining silent. Talk about what you are doing, ask questions, clarify instructions if you are not 100 per cent sure. This will pay off time and time again.

3. Care for the clients, take an interest, become involved.

When you treat the clients like your own, you make the boss look good and that helps the boss attract more clients. Your job becomes more and more secure, and soon you are an invaluable part of the team who will be rewarded for the value that you bring.

4. Use the systems that help to run the business smoothly.

Every business needs systems and processes to support its standards. If you are just flying by the seat of your pants, outline the routines in a manual and streamline your work.

5. Question procedures.

Don’t be afraid to question the systems you are using now. Look with fresh eyes; what worked in the past may not be on the cutting edge of what is happening now.

6. Keep the chit-chat down.

No personal social media or long phone calls on company time and be careful about “water-cooler” chatting too!

7. Educate yourself.

Take ownership of the business. (For example, when I heard my boss might want to go solo with his own brokerage, I found two courses about business plans and running one’s own business at the library and attended them just in case there was any value I could pass along to him).

8. Save the business money.

Set a goal of reducing costs and monitor if you are successful. Perhaps there are fewer costs charged with different suppliers. Look into discounts on bulk items. By just paying attention to reducing costs, you are half way there.

9. Refocus your boss’s attention.

Remind the boss of the strategy/vision for his or her company. Sometimes solopreneurs forget their motivation. Once in a while they might feel down or like a failure if they don’t get a listing or bring a deal together. It can be very hard to stay positive when you run your business alone. So, let them know they have a cheerleader in you and remind them of their goals and vision; hearing their ideas mirrored back can do a world of good.

10. Keep yourself positive.

Stress causes a bad attitude. Learn not to keep the stress, but release it and love your life. Your attitude can affect the whole office; it’s easier to be a grump and join in with negative gossip, but it’s better to be a positive ray of sunshine.


If support staff posts this list and makes the effort to implement it, before you know it these actions will become second nature and everyone will tell you that “you have the most extraordinary support staff in the industry!”

Sue Styles has been in the real estate industry for more than a decade. She has managed a brokerage, teaches at the Calgary Real Estate Board and is a certified business coach, professional speaker and author. Her first book, Be Extraordinary - Right Where You Are! encourages administrative assistants and support staff to excel by following her practical and motivational tips. Her new book, The Little Red Stick - What Gets Measured Gets Done reveals all the secrets of high producing agents. Contact Sue by email or call 403-805-7710.

SIMILAR ARTICLES