How Jill Hires Support Staff (CFFL 515)
Jack: Jack Butala with Jill DeWitt.
Jill: Hi there.
Jack: Welcome to our show today. In this episode, Jill and I talk about how Jill hires support staff. It sounds boring, but it’s incredibly important.
Jill: Oh, it’s a process.
Jack: Before we get into it, let’s take a question posted by one of our members on the landinvestors.com online community. It’s free.
Jill: Okay. Christian asked, “Hey, everyone. I’ve been going over the program and listening to lots of podcasts and Thursday calls.” Note from Jill, those are free right now to the public, FYI. “And I’m rapidly coming to the conclusion that I don’t know what I’m doing. I have almost no business experience and literally no real estate experience. I’ve signed a few leases, but that’s it.” Oh, that’s okay.
“Can you guys suggest some basic and accessible books, websites, YouTube channels, et cetera, that I can use to learn the basics of how real estate works? I’m more or less understanding most of what I’m reading and hearing here, but it’s hard to get a handle on things without a basic framework of knowledge, so any help would be greatly appreciated.” Aw, good stuff.
Jack: Boy, I’ll tell you, what a great question. The show and all of our written material covers all the details for every step of the way on how to get through your first acquisition sale, or your 16,000, I guess, which is what Jill and I are on, so it’s really hard. We’ve all been standing exactly where you are. Everybody.
Jill: You know what, you probably have everything at your finger tips, Christian, and it’s just pushing the button kind of thing, you know, and just diving in, but you’re already here, so you’ve kind of already done that, which is good.
Jack: Anything else, you just take it step by step.
Jill: Yep, and use us.
Jill: Yeah, and use our community. We were talking about this a few minutes ago. I know that we have the most helpful, considerate, by design, great group of individuals here that will, us included, help you every step of the way. So you get hung up on something? That’s what landinvestors.com, that online community, is for. Go, any little question, like already I’m about to push the button on this. Am I missing anything? And everybody will weigh in and help you.
Jack: Yeah. I mean, here’s the basic steps. You target or pick an area where you want to send offers, blind offers. Step 2: You price the area and send the offers. We have the tools for all of this stuff every step of the way. Step 3: You field the calls, or hire somebody to field the calls, and then choose the offers, or the ones that you want to buy. You buy them, prep em for sale on the internet, and sell em, and I know I’m skipping along the top here, but again, all throughout our written materials and on our websites, you’re gonna find the answers to all of this. Start at landinvestors.com and really ask this question, and I’d love to see, like Jill said, you have to really deconstruct-
Jill: Do you know-
Jill: Do you know what else?
Jack: And model yourself after somebody who’s really good at it, either us, or like, Luke Smith, or there’s several other people, Tory Watson. There’s a lot of other people in our group who are really, really successful.
Jill: Well, I was gonna say too, Christian, you’re not alone. Most individuals go over all the information more than one time, some, several times, so-
Jack: Especially Chapter 5 in the program that we have, the Cashflow from Land Program.
Jill: Right when you’re really getting into learning how to work with the data. You know how to select the county, all that good stuff. You’re not crazy. This does not come easy to most of us, but once you get into it and you understand, you’re like, “Oh, now I get it!” A light bulb will go off, Christian.
Jill: Hang in there.
Jack: Like math.
Jill: Well, you know, and like you probably hear me say too, my ten deals thing, that’s why I say that. You’re not gonna be comfortable, so think of the people around you in our community that have 20, 30 deals under their belt. They felt the same as you on deal two, three, four, and five, until pretty much about ten, so be patient, and you’re not alone. It’s gonna take that long to go, “Okay, that’s it. Got it! Now I understand.”
Jack: Here’s a motivational story and it’s very brief. Jill and I know a contractor who’s probably 20 years our senior, and he’s a Snowbird and he comes down from Iowa every year, and a long time … We’ve known this guy for 15 or 20 years, probably 15. I’ve known him for 15 years, and he told me this story one time.
When he was a really young guy with the shirt on his back, he was sitting in an office. He was sitting among several other sales guys in an office, trying to get contractor work, and he was sitting next to a guy that was a broom salesman, and a light bulb went off over his head and he said, “So this guy … Maybe this guy is gonna sell a couple of brooms today, and maybe next month, the brooms are gonna wear out and he’s gonna come back and sell em. If I sell this guy what I’m selling, which is contractor, commercial contractor work, and it all works out, I’ll maybe make a couple hundred million dollars with this guy over the course of my career,” and he did. He signed the guy up, and he still knows him today, so my point-
Jill: You mean, hired him to do his stuff?
Jill: Okay, got it, because if he can sell a broom, he can sell this.
Jack: He hired Ron.
Jack: So, then he said, and then he had this thought-
Jack: He had this thought.
Jill: Wait, our friend was a broom salesman?
Jack: No, Jill.
Jill: Sorry. You said he hired him. I’m like, “Wait a minute. Wait a minute.”
Jack: Let me start over.
Jill: I’m all confused.
Jack: Our buddy Ron, who’s a commercial contractor, in Iowa, was sitting next to, in a lobby, a broom salesman, and the light bulb went off to his head-
Jill: Thank you.
Jack: And said, “This guy’s gonna sell some brooms today, and what did he do in the end? He sold some brooms. If I sell my contractor services to this guy, in the end what am I gonna sell? Well maybe a couple hundred million dollars over and over and over again, over the years, if this guy does what he says,” and he did, he sold em, so if you succeed at this, you’re gonna set yourself up for a lifelong income stream, so you’ve chosen correctly is my point, so I know it seems daunting in the beginning, but it’s super, super simple.
Just take it step by step, and reach out to everybody in our group constantly to the point where you’re annoying, and you’ll have all the answers you need. It’s all here. We have all the tools, and if we don’t have the tools, we know where to point you, and believe me, the tools are in development that you need, so good work, and welcome.
If you have a question, or you want to be on the show, reach out to either one of us on landinvesters.com. Today’s topic: How does Jill hire support staff? This is the meat of the show, so it seems silly, but man, it’s so important. You’re only as good as the people that are working with you. So how do you hire? What do you do?
Jill: It’s a process. Let me tell … You know what? And I’ve learned. It takes a lot. There’s a … You have to hire. Literally get all to the point, and hire several people before you really find one that sticks, and then one that clicks with you, so. I’m in the process right now. I’ve hired two. I’m about to hire a third person, because I’m really ramping up for some good stuff, and well, we’re just that busy. Let’s be honest.
So, the process, for me, and this is, man let me tell you, over trial and error. It’s funny that there’s a difference in talent in what you get out there on places like Indeed versus Craigslist, don’t want to lie, but there is. Now I still go for both, kind of like how we say, when you market your property, put it out there all over the place. Let it be known, so I do that. You know, I’ve even put it on social media, and things too, that I’m looking to hire people, so the only thing about social media is I have it comes back where it’s like, “Hey my friend,” and they think their friend is a rockstar, and they may not be a rockstar, so you’ve gotta be careful of that.
Jill: So, that has backfired on me, but you do have to put it out there all over the place, and it’s funny. I’ve learned that you’ve gotta have people that are a little bit intrigued, but not too much intrigued. Seriously! I’ve had people that are like-
Jack: It sounds like a date.
Jill: Well, almost. Yeah, you’re right. They’re a little too into you. Seriously, that’s not the guy you want to date, and that’s not the person you want to hire. They’re a little too excited. Like, oh no, this could be bad, because they’re gonna be a stalker, and then you don’t want that, so … You’re a stalker employee, so anyway. That can happen too by the way. So I’ve learned, so what I do now is I go through. I have a whole process, and if I follow the process all the way through to the end, I stand the best chances of getting a good employee, so first thing I do, I don’t waste anybody’s time. We’re not coming in. We’re not meeting in person. You have a great resume. I need to hear how you sound on the phone. I gotta talk to you.
Jack: Excellent, Jill.
Jill: So I send them a calendar invite, and they can pick the time on my calendar, and that’s like a first test too for me too. Can you figure this out? Are you that interested? You know, and set up a calendar invite, and then what we’re gonna do from there, just have a talk on the phone. You know, well, let me back up. One little thing too, by the way, I have to be honest with you. I do, before I send this calendar invite, I check em out on the internet, like our people check us out. I check them out. I look em up on Facebook, I look em up on LinkedIn. I want to make sure that their resume matches their background, and they’re not, crazy people.
Jill: You know what? And that’s just the way the world is, and everybody should be doing their homework.
Jack: Here’s a few helpful tips from me. I have a real simple basic checklist to see if they can make it through the door. What you’re really hiring for, like it or not, is somebody who’s really good on the computer. I mean, any of these positions that we have, they have to be able to type really well. They have to be able to have good grammar, written grammar. They need to know how to use Excel fairly well. It used to be that, people would go to work. I’m old enough to remember when you would go to work, and you would just use a program that was designed for the job that you were doing.
Jill: It’s proprietary. All the proprietary-
Jill: Stuff, yeah-
Jack: And that’s just not the case now, and then if something was broken in the computer, you didn’t work for several-
Jill: Called your IT staff!
Jack: Called somebody-
Jill: They would actually come over too sometimes.
Jack: And take the afternoon off-
Jill: Sit with you!
Jack: While they fixed it!
Jack: It’s just not how it works now. You’re responsible for everything that goes on in the computer, so what you’re really doing is hiring a person who’s really, really good at computers, and then you … with a good-
Jill: And you have a personality. You have to have the attitude.
Jack: With a good attitude.
Jill: Right? I can teach em a lot of stuff-
Jack: That! Me too.
Jill: But I can’t teach em pleasantries and grammar. I’m not gonna do that, by the way.
Jill: So you gotta have that first of all. So, okay, so let’s just say they pass that test. What’s my next phase? You know what? I know it sounds silly, but I’ve gone and bought those Excel tests. You can go to these companies online, and you put in the person’s email, and it emails them a link to go and do an Excel test, and you can do all kinds of different tests. That’s really cool! Even personality tests, which I’d probably get into. I don’t need that, but I do the technical ones, and I want to make sure they can do basic and intermediate … I want em to do basic and intermediate Excel stuff. They’re don’t have to be a rockstar. They don’t have to be you, Jack, but they need to know their way around, because they need to be able to do a mail merge, and little things like that, so-
Jill: So much, because that’s really my … All of the stuff that we do nowadays, it’s all on the computer, and I want em to be comfortable, and that reminds me. You brought this up a few minutes ago. I actually had an employee from a temp agency. I’m done with temp agencies now, by the way, cause that’s not what it used to be.
Jill: But I had a girl and, oh my gosh, we were all in the same room at one time. We were getting ready to-
Jack: It was a while ago.
Jill: Transition. It was a long time ago, and we were transitioning to a bigger setup, where we had like four offices after that, but at one point, we were all kind of … Well, we had multiple offices, but I think we were all working together too, just to try to get to know each other and everything. Anyway, so this girl, she couldn’t figure out what was wrong with her computer and she called Erin over and Erin said, “Your monitor’s off.” And Erin … I’m like, and it was so funny because Jack’s at one side of that room and I’m at the other, so we both looked at each other.
Jill: We knew, “well, writing on the wall.”
Jack: One of the good things about hiring from a temp agency is you don’t actually have to fire that person.
Jill: No, that was nice. That night, I just called agency, I said, “Yeah, she’s not coming back,” and they said, “Okay.” And I said, “We’ll have her stuff waiting out front with the receptionist,” and they said, “Okay,” so I didn’t have to do anything of that. That was beneficial.
Okay, so I take em through Excel, and then if they get that far, now I’m gonna do an in person interview, and that’s when I really … That’s my really get to know them time, and if I can’t do an in person interview for whatever reason, I just had one the other day, I will do a Skype interview, and that’s a pretty big deal, doing a Skype video interview, and I did one with this girl. She was driving cross country in an RV, bouncing around. Her husband’s driving. It was the coolest thing ever, and I was so darn impressed. She was on it, man, and I hired her, so I actually have not met her in person yet, but I’m like, “You’re in.”
Jack: You know, when you listen to Jill on this show, you just think she’s a sweet, loving, and she is.
Jill: Thank you.
Jack: But when it comes to employees and work, because she’s been burned so many times by being the nice guy-
Jack: For her to say that, about someone, “We had a good interview,” it never happens. She probably interviews twenty people and she says that one time, maybe.
Jill: Yeah. I have-
Jack: That’s the truth. You have to go through ten people, literally.
Jill: I have screened-
Jack: Ten people.
Jill: Between 100 and 200 people right now.
Jill: And I think I set up … I’ll tell you how it just went. I just screened between 100 and 200 people. I sent calendar invites to maybe 20. I-
Jack: Here’s numbers. Good.
Jill: Yeah. 20 people got through that phase, through the in … through my, you know, it looks like they had what they needed. Then, we did maybe 10-12 actual phone calls, because half of those people, say 40%, didn’t even reply, like it went in their spam, or who knows what? They didn’t. They did something else, like they didn’t even reply to the call.
Jack: Yeah, cause they just apply for every single job.
Jill: Right, they didn’t even … weren’t looking-
Jack: They don’t care.
Jill: So, they already didn’t … It didn’t sing to them, and that’s fine, so that happens, and then now, I’ve got … I have one strong. Well, I hired two. I got one more that … Two more in person interviews coming up this week, and one more phone call, and then I’m probably gonna shut it down for a while, so if I get two people out of this, so that’s the thing. 200 to two, that’s what it takes!
Jack: Yeah, I mean, in IT, you’d actually hire ten people and work with them for a while, and then one lasts. It’s pretty sad.
Jack: I mean, this sounds like a silly topic, but throughout the years … One of the reasons you listen to this show probably is because we have a ton of experience and we’re trying to help, so hiring the people under you, I mean, if you have the wrong person or the wrong virtual assistant, get rid of em man, trust me. Just get rid of em as fast as you can. Don’t give em sixth and seventh and eighth chances. It really dramatically changes how much money you make and how many deals you do.
Jill: There’s stuff you can teach, stuff you can’t teach.
Jack: You can, with a good attitude and the right basic skills, you can take … And you’ve then spent time, like kids, you know, if you’ve spent time with them, if they have a good attitude, they’re gonna be lifelong-
Jill: What do you do with the kid with the bad attitude?
Jack: If they’re … That’s-
Jill: You know, kick em, but you can’t fire em!
Jack: That’s for a different show. I have a plan … I have some experience with that also.
Jill: How Jack fires children. What the heck? Aw.
Jack: And lastly, here’s my point about employees. This is the speech I give new people after they pass the two week test. We hire em, and then we work together for two weeks. We don’t put em on the payroll, because we want to see if they check the A hole.
Jill: It’s gotta be a good fit for them too.
Jack: The speech I give them is, “You’re here to help me. I’m not here to help you,” so there’s a lot of people, especially the younger generation that come in and they look up to Jill and I like we’re mom and dad, like, “Can you open this can of pop for me? Can you, you know, the printer’s out of toner. My computer didn’t”-
Jill: You hate that one. That’s funny.
Jack: I fired somebody-
Jill: I know.
Jack: For saying that sentence to me. They were with me for two years and she said, “The printer’s out of toner,” and I said, “Yeah? That’s good. You’re done. This is your last day,” because if you can’t-
Jill: I’m sure it was more than just that.
Jack: Well, yeah. That was like-
Jill: It builds up. That was that.
Jack: The last straw. And all kidding aside, this is a huge issue. For some reason, there are certain people that just think that they’re entitled to work some place and get a bunch of help and kind of just chill out, and that’s just not how we roll. You could never do 15,000 deals if you had that kind of attitude in the time span that we’ve done. We hustle.
Jill: Oh my gosh, do we ever.
Jack: What are the … I was telling Jill yesterday. She is the single hardest working person, like I said-
Jill: Thank you, Jack.
Jack: She doesn’t come on … On this show, she doesn’t come off like that. She is the single hardest working person I’ve ever worked with, even when I was in public accounting.
Jill: Thank you.
Jack: Both from a time standpoint, and your heart’s in it, and you know, just moving forward, but-
Jill: Thank you.
Jack: And you hide it really well. You have a great attitude.
Jill: Thank you.
Jack: Join us in another episode, where Jack and Jill discuss how to use information, that’s me.
Jill: And inspiration, that’s me.
Jack: We do just about anything you want.
Jill: We use it every day to buy property for half of what it’s worth, and sell it immediately.
Jack: You are not alone in your real estate ambition, so how many people do you have right now that are inbound, like you’ve hired, hired?
Jack: And do you have another one?
Jill: Well I have one that has a definite start date in a week and a half, I mean, well she gave her notice. I mean, she’s coming full on, and then the second one, I’m meeting tomorrow actually to finalize her start date and then transition. She’s gonna be part-time to full-time cause she’s just moving here to the city, and then I have another phone interview tomorrow. Pretty hopeful, we’ll see how it goes.
Jack: I hired a person. He’s about a month and a half in, and he, you know him, and he’s, you know how we say, “Run on your [inaudible 00:17:33],” these deals. It’s like, oh my gosh, I gotta run to the bank to get this deal done before they change their mind.
Jack: That’s how I feel about this guy. Every day I turn around, he’s got some new great, unbelievable thing that he took on, without me even asking it. It’s all done right and documented correctly, and I’m like “Jeez.”
Jack: I gave him a bonus for no reason yet, a couple weeks, a week ago.
Jill: Hey! Just kidding.
Jack: I really did.
Jill: I know. I’m just kidding. That’s good. I’m glad.
Jack: Information, oh yeah. Information, inspiration to buy undervalued property. I got so excited, I didn’t know where I was.
If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to email me directly at jack@LandAcademy.com.
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