In Episode 34 of the Wandering But Not Lost Podcast, co-hosts Matt Emerson and Jan O’Brien continue their series on Team Building with Strategy #3 – Agent Team Models – Which One is Right For You?  They sit down with Las Vegas’ Real Estate Trainer & Broker of Record, Steve Kitnick to discuss the latest and greatest in Vegas.  Matt continues his 5-part series on Olympic National Park. Today, part 3 – The Olympic Mountains.

Key Points/Takeaways

WBNL 52 – Real Estate Team Building Strategy #3: Define Your Team Model

There are several model variations for real estate agent teams.  In this real estate team building tip, we discuss the differences, pros, and cons for the primary models we have identified at WBNL Coaching and Real Estate Team Builder:

  • Informal Team
  • Partnership
  • Niche or Specialty Team
  • Rainmaker Team
  • Traditional Broker-Style Team
  • Expansion Team

Informal Team

  • Lead Agent gives referrals/leads to other agents
  • Written referral agreement
  • Referred agents conduct own business without sharing commissions with Lead Agent
  • Pros: minimal responsibility for managing a team for the lead agent; less risk and commitment to resources
  • Cons: Less control over lead and priority referred agent gives this business vs. their own


  • Two or more team leaders form a partnership
    • Spouses, family, related in some way
    • Individual agents join forces to build a team
  • Identify strengths and weaknesses – partnerships can balance
  • Leverage time and resources
  • Brings credibility and added value
  • Written partnership agreement
    • Outlines division of tasks/responsibilities
    • Addresses expenses and how covered by partners
      • Marketing LLC?
    • How commission is shared: all business vs. personal SOI
      • Dig into the details here – second and third generation leads?
    • Dissolution clause that addresses database, any intellectual property, websites, software, open escrows, and listings

Niche or Specialty Team

  • In this model, the team leader specializes in a particular market, niche or area (Luxury, Military/Veterans, Seniors, High Rise, etc)
  • A variation could be having a diverse team of agents who specialize in a particular niche or geographic area
  • Yet another variation may be a unique team of specialists with defined duties and a specific sharing of the commission based on duties.  It is imperative to have very clear job descriptions and accompanying fee or commission amount earned per closing.
    • Team Leader may be either the CEO/COO overseeing the operation or the Primary Listing Agent
    • Listing specialist handles all the listing paperwork, marketing, and servicing of the listing
    • Showing /buyer agent who shows team listings and may represent the buyer in a sale of a team listing
    • Inside sales agent/leads coordinator who qualifies and nurtures leads, distributes and tracks all leads
    • Showing agent who simply shows properties and hands client off to a buyers agent who writes presents and negotiates the purchase agreement.  Either the showing agent or buyer agent attends inspections and the walk-through
    • Or a traditional Buyer agent who shows properties writes, presents and negotiates the offer; also attends inspections and walkthrough
    • Transaction Coordinator / Closing agent who handles all the details of closing the escrow

Rainmaker Team

  • Team Leader(s) is in charge; primarily listing agent, rainmaker (lead generator).
  • Internet-based lead generation teams produce primarily buyer sales
  • Team associates also generate their own leads (Teach to fish)
  • Team size and structure varies based on goals and production of the Team Leader
  • Written agreements with Team Associates outlining commission sharing, termination policy, team procedures, expectations, termination policy.
  • It’s not always about the leads! Team associates want structure, security and to learn from the top producer.
  • Pros: Increase productivity; additional income; specialization; leverage time and resources with the right team members
  • Cons: Inevitable challenges that come with managing people; turnover; recruiting and retaining good agents


Variations of the organization chart

  • Dual roles for the key position
    • Team Manager is also the leads manager
    • Admin serves as TC, Marketing
    • Hire to additional positions when needed (set a revenue goal)
  • Define Your Listing Policy
    • Can Buyers Agents List?
    • Or are all listings referred to team leader
    • Are listings in Team Leaders name/MLS ID with TA listed as the co-listing agent
    • Recommend Team Yard sign with optional sign rider
    • Do you want a listings specialist or showing agent?

Traditional Brokerage Style Team

  • Team Leader(s) has more of broker-owner/COO role. May list and sell but not the primary role as in Rainmaker Team.
  • Team size and structure varies based on goals
  • The model focuses on hiring and training new or newer licensees
  • Must have a new agent training program and team manager(s) (10-15 agents to 1 manager ratio is recommended)
  • Must compete with traditional companies who focus on new agents with tools, resources, support, and training.
  • Written agreements with Team Associates outlining commission sharing, termination policy, team procedures, expectations, termination policy.
  • It’s not always about the leads! New agents want structure, security, training, mentoring and leadership.
  • Pros: Higher team dollar generated initially with lower splits; Increase productivity; specialization; leverage time and resources with the right team members
  • Cons: Time and expense of training new agents; turnover of new licensees; recruiting and retaining good agents; retaining solid team managers; always recruiting; managing the larger operation



Expansion Team Model

  • Both the Rainmaker & Traditional Brokerage Style Model will work for expansion teams
  • Must have rock solid team operations manual and turnkey systems in place
  • Identify Team Manager first in the new market
  • Team Leader and primary staff support the satellite teams (Home base operations)
  • Leverage technology, cloud-based operations
  • Ideally – stay within your company/franchise

Reach Your Peak  –  Las Vegas’ Real Estate Trainer, Steven Kitnick

Steven KitnickSteven Kitnick
Broker of Record, Home Connect America
President and CEO, Nevada CE(

(702) 326-8722

Steven Kitnick brings a bountiful supply of talent and skills to the table. He’s clever, witty, and smart with the penchant for the devils and details. He conducts his classes with pride and passion. His entertainment background provides the platform for his pizzazz and panache. Steve’s trademarked slogan “Results with Integrity”™ captures the essence of his business philosophy.

With over 30 years of real estate experience, Steve has represented clients and customers in the marketing and sales of residential properties. He’s developed and implemented individualized marketing strategies, negotiated contracts, and coordinated the successful closing of innumerable escrows.

He’s coached, counseled, and trained agents for peak performance. Steve is the recipient of numerous top producer awards.

Since 2003, Steve has been managing director of Steven Kitnick Seminars, LLC – a continuing education provider primarily for the Southern Nevada real estate community. He has personally presented over 2,400 live CE classes and events.  Thousands of Las Vegas and Henderson area licensees have attended his classes and events.

His passion for helping licensees better serve consumers is evident in their success and their feedback.

You have to have a plan of action, goals, motivation, the drive, and, or course, you have to have persistence!

Wandering Zen  – Olympic National Park:  The Mountains


In this 5-part series, we explore Olympic National Park. We’ll share our travel log, the hits, the misses, the missed, and the reasons we can’t wait to go back again.  PART 3 – The Mountains.

Standing at 7,980-feet, Mount Olympus is the crown of the Olympic Mountain range.  Radiating out from the peak are, U-shaped valleys, meadows, lakes, and densely forested areas, some that are under 35 miles away from the Pacific Ocean.   We’ve talked about it during the two previous parts of this series, and it bears repeating that the diverse ecosystems of Olympic National Park make it a unique experience and one that should not be missed.

Hurricane Ridge

By far, Hurricane Ridge is the most popular and busiest area of the park.  As with most points of interest here, be prepared to drive get there,  I’m not complaining about that, quite the opposite, the scenery to and from all of these wonderful locations is beautiful and makes the treks very enjoyable.  You access Hurricane Ridge from Hurrican Ridge Road out of Port Angeles.  From the city to the end of the road and Hurricane Visitor Center you’ll travel about 19 miles.  The Olympic National Park Visitor Center is located just as you leave town and is the perfect place to stop, get acquainted with the area and what to expect on the ridge.  Once you leave there and start heading up the mountain, you’ll officially enter the park where you’ll pay the $30 admission fee.  As I mentioned, this is a popular place, and although the parking lot at the ridge is very large, it will often fill up early, especially during peak summer hours.  During our visit, we headed up around 8 am and by the time we left at 2 pm the parking lot was full.  We heard that the prior day, the parking lot was full by 9 am.  That is yet another good reason to stop at the Visitor Center at the base to get their recommendations for traveling around the park.  Now that those tips are out of the way, let’s chat about how this is a place you do not want to miss!

This two-lane road curves and meanders its way up the foothills offering up beautiful views of the snow-capped peaks and seamlessly neverending mountain ridges.  In a short amount of time, you go from sea level up above the tree line into the alpine glory that is Hurricane Ridge.  The views are spectacular in all directions.  The waters of the Strait of Juan de Fuca to the north ground you to where you came from and as you look around in every other direction the incredible peaks of the Olympic Mountains call you to wander.

The first stop should be the Visitor Center where you can check in with the Rangers and get their recommendations on the trails that will best suit your skill level.  There are a wide variety of trails up here that range from wheelchair accessible rim walks to ridge hikes and then much longer and strenuous hikes into the mountains.  I’ve borrowed the trail information below from the NPS website, for even more trail info and maps go to

Hurricane Ridge Map - NPS

Hurricane Ridge Hikes - NPS

It was a beautiful sunny day during our visit, a little on the hot side even, and it became quickly apparent where Hurricane Ridge got its name.  Certainly no gale force winds but just enough of a consistent breeze that it made the hiking enjoyable.  We were in search of a hike that would give us a good dose of what the area offered up while not taking the entire day.  The trusty rangers lead us to the Klahhane Ridge trail.  As with most places, there were substantial crowds at the start, but as we veered off of the Sunset Point trail and headed off on our adventure we quickly found ourselves alone on this beautiful trail.  I am a huge fan of alpine hiking and this is an easy hike that gives you a great payoff along the way.  Although there are no steep drop-offs, there are parts where you on the side of a fairly steeply-sloping hill so it might not be the best option if you are at all afraid of heights.  There are too many vistas to even mention and you find yourself stopping a lot to take it all in.  We passed meadows full of colorful wildflowers—Indian paintbrush, lupine, & glacier lilies. Mountain goats, marmots, black bears, and deer call the area home, although we didn’t see any sightings that day.  We didn’t have any intention of hiking the full 7.2-mile round trip hike so we turned around at about the 2.5-mile mark (ish) and headed back to the Visitor Center.  We passed a number of people on our way back so we played it right by getting up there early because we really felt like we had the run of the mountain that day!

If you are looking for an additional driving adventure – and the weather conditions are right – take the 8-mile mostly single-lane Obstruction Point (gravel) road that starts right from the parking lot at Hurricane Ridge.  Often called the most frightening road in the state,  it’s the highest elevation road in the park, with steep drop-offs and spectacular views!

Prior to our trip we bought several hiking books on the park and found that the vast majority of the hikes are longer day-hikes or backpacking treks.  Although that wasn’t what we had on the agenda we had planned on getting out into the wilderness and exploring.  This being our first visit we quickly realized that we needed to make the decision on whether to see as much of the park as we could or see less and get out there and get those hikes in.  It wasn’t an easy decision to make because those mountains were calling, but we know that we’ll go back and when we do, we’ll fill you in on the trails less wandered!

Here are a few photos from our trek along Klahhane Ridge…

Next Week:  The Beaches of Olympic National Park

The Ecosystems of Olympic National Park


Hurricane Ridge

Mt Olympus

Obstruction Point Road

 Mentioned in the Episode (Resources & Links)



Share this Episode!

Pin It on Pinterest