Hiring Your First Land Business Employee (LA 1898)

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Transcript:

Steven Jack Butala:
Jack and Jill here.

Jill K DeWit:
Hello.

Steven Jack Butala:
Welcome to the Land Academy Show, entertaining land investment talk. I’m Steven Jack Butala.

Jill K DeWit:
And I’m Jill DeWit broadcasting from the Valley of the Sun.

Steven Jack Butala:
Today Jill and I are talking about hiring your first land business employee.

Jill K DeWit:
I’m excited about this topic. We went into great detail on this the other day in Career Path as we brought ahead some of our staff to help these professional investors. It was really interesting the way the conversation went and what people need help with, and even just wrapping your head around this whole thing. So, we’re going to talk about that today.

Steven Jack Butala:
People in career path thought we had a real positive response. Everybody had thought it was really useful. 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 K DeWit:
Oh, I thought you were going to say something else. You’re going a little ahead. No, that’s it? Oh, I’m making notes about the show. So Dan wrote, “I was walking some properties a few counties over yesterday, and I went to visit a property that I have had listed with a broker for five months. I was going to take some better photos than she had, preparing just to sell it myself. There was not even a sign on the property. I couldn’t believe it. How motivated is she to sell my property? Not motivated enough to even put a sign up? I’m asking to terminate the listing agreement early. Seriously, it’s nicer than a lot of the surrounding properties and it has a nice shed and a well. No wonder there’s no interest. So the broker got right back to me like immediately. She said the sign keeps getting stolen and they cost a hundred dollars each to put out, so they stopped placing them in that area about a year ago.”

Steven Jack Butala:
That’s a good firewood.

Jill K DeWit:
That’s hilarious. “She said, no problem on her end terminating the listing agreement, that she’ll send over the form ASAP. Made it sound like she doesn’t like that area very much. Why wouldn’t she just say that initially? But whatever. A few months ago, other brokers and she herself claimed she was the expert in this area. So this confirms it. I am actually the expert in this area. I have sold five 40-acre parcels in this little area in the past year, which is more than any of the local people. I was just trying to save myself some time and energy, but in this case, there’s nobody local to help. I’ll just keep on doing it my way.”

Steven Jack Butala:
There’s a real clear message in this. This is very hard for new people to understand. People like Dan, who’s a very successful member and a Land Academy alumni, I mean Career Path alumni have understood this. Dan specifically has understood this since the beginning. You are the expert. These are rural markets.

Jill K DeWit:
That’s true.

Steven Jack Butala:
The people that live there, they’re not experts about their real estate. They’re experts about the job they have. Maybe they’re expert farmers, but they’re not experts about land in the area. Just like if you live in an urban area like we do, if you ask your neighbors what their house is worth, they’re probably not going to know. But we do.

Jill K DeWit:
That’s very true.

Steven Jack Butala:
Week by week we know what the value of our stuff is. So, you’re the expert.

Jill K DeWit:
It’s very, very true. This is a tough one. I’ve been in this situation and I get it. Sometimes it’s hard to find the right people. And you’re right, I would’ve done the same thing. That when you say, “Let’s end the agreement,” they go, “Sure, fine.” They don’t care. That tells you they don’t care. It’s sad. The good news is, here’s what I think’s happening too right now, and I don’t know when this was written, but-

Steven Jack Butala:
Really recently,

Jill K DeWit:
The good agents are going to rise at the top and they’re going to be left, and the not good agents are going to be off doing something else here really fast.

Steven Jack Butala:
I mean, I don’t want to beat a dead horse on this, but we say this probably all the time now. So let’s just say it and kind of end it. We’re going through a change in this market. It’s really good at flushing up bad real estate agents. Bad escrow agents are not necessarily bad, but the ones that are not that active. So, that’s good.
Today’s topic, hiring your first land business employee. This is the meat of the show.

Jill K DeWit:
So my original title for this was Pros and Cons of Hiring versus Doing It Yourself. That’s for me what this is. I want to talk about that.

Steven Jack Butala:
Sure.

Jill K DeWit:
So what are the pros and cons of doing this all by yourself or hiring it out? Because this is the exact discussion that we had after an awesome session yesterday. By the time this airs, it was last week in Career Path.

Steven Jack Butala:
Before Jill launches into this, I will say this. There’s no right or wrong way to do this. These are all just opinions. We have great examples in our group of people that are a one person show and they smashed it. We have great examples, were good example of very successful operation with a lot of people involved.

Jill K DeWit:
But you need to know what, or you need to know what’s possible. That’s it. So let’s think about this. I’m a one man show and a lot of people come into Land Academy like, “I’m going to do this. Maybe I’m going to turn into the family business, teach my kids how to do this. I’m here to maybe supplement my income or replace my income and do it by myself.” There’s nothing wrong with that. It’s a great path. We have a lot of people like Jack just said, who make a nice life only doing the amount of work they want to do, the amount of deals that they want to do, and making the amount of money that they want to make. They’re like, “You know what? I’m happy. This is great. I do a deal a month. I make a hundred thousand bucks. That’s all I want.”
Okay, that’s fine. There’s nothing wrong with that. But you have to understand there’s going to be a point where you are limited on what you can do. Because there’s really only one of you to go around here. So I want you to think about and know about taking that step and hiring that employee and knowing what you want. I guess it really goes back to your goals. How big do you really want to take this? So I hope that when you sit down and decide you’re going into this, you already have it in your head, “Here’s what my end should be.”

Steven Jack Butala:
Boy, Jill, you just nailed it for me. That’s really what my whole point is here. So go ahead.

Jill K DeWit:
So, knowing what your end should be. If your end is, “I only want to have the four-hour work week and do it by myself and not have anybody else, I don’t want to have anybody answer to, and I really don’t want to have to lead a team.” So that’s cool. But if you’re like, “No, my end goal is to take this to the moon. I really want to make this huge. I want to make this my little land selling empire,” then you need to start sooner than later, preparing and getting ready for it, and getting your first employee.
There’s two ways you could do that and then I’ll pass it off here. One is you VA the heck out of it until you’re done and you need help managing your VAs, right? Or you just jump to the, just fast forward and get yourself that transaction coordinator who knows their stuff and they’re sitting right beside you really fast, and you just shove everything to them. The end result on that model is a VA’s not going to push you. A VA’s going to finish their job and upload the report and go do something else. But that right TC, Transaction Coordinator, whatever you want to call them that’s sitting right next to you, they’re going to go, “Now what? Now what?” They’re going to force you to do more deals. That’s a good thing. It’s a good problem to have. Take it away.

Steven Jack Butala:
My lifelong professional goal has been to not work. That’s the truth. So almost everything that I’ve created from in a land business, and then eventually with Land Academy and Jill, was to reach that goal: to do as little as possible. And so for me, having the right key employees to do all this stuff, lifelong employees, has always been in the back of my head. In fact, I never considered that there was another way. I never considered that I could be a one person show and be successful, nor have I ever wanted to be. I want to be the ringleader.
I’m a startup person. I want to put all this stuff together. I want to put the people in place. Maybe self-fund it, maybe raise the funding somewhere else, and then educate everybody within a certain amount of time. And if they have an entrepreneurial spirit, then let them go and let them start to do stuff. And so, we’ve reached that point. It’s taken a lot of years. This has been working for a while with you and I. Jill had a huge role in that. In fact, she was so effective in being essentially what, back then Transaction Coordinator, she just ended up being a partner because that was the best way to make her stick around. This is all true.

Jill K DeWit:
To make her stick around.

Steven Jack Butala:
I mean, how many job offers did you have?

Jill K DeWit:
Well, that’s true. That is true actually. I understand.

Steven Jack Butala:
So, it worked out great. But what Jill said earlier, she just nailed it. There’s something in the back of your head right now about, I’m going to be the person who’s going to work here, and I’m going to do a lot of work 4, 5, 8 hours a day and I’m going to make a bunch of money. That’s one end. Or my end, my silly end, which is, I don’t want to work here at all. That’s true. I still don’t. I don’t want to work here at all. The truth is, I enjoy teaching and I think Jill does too. I enjoy doing the podcast and interacting with Land Academy members and watching people succeed and helping people succeed. But the land business, Jill runs it herself.

Jill K DeWit:
You know what’s funny about that? My whole life, I thought I didn’t want to work too. This is total truth time. It’s not that I didn’t want to work. I didn’t work for somebody else. So that’s it. I just hated doing it for somebody else. I love it now. Honestly, I’m so happy that your niche, you get warm and fuzzy about teaching, because I get warm and fuzzy about doing deals.

Steven Jack Butala:
I know you do.

Jill K DeWit:
I love helping people, but I get more warm and more fuzzy helping us. I’m going to argue that it makes me a better. I’m better at sharing with other people too, because I’m really focused over here figuring out how to make the land business better, more profitable, and all that good stuff. Then this one Jack says, “Great, now we’re going to share it with our people.” I’m like, “Yep, we will.” That’s fine.

Steven Jack Butala:
The theme of this episode and for the rest of the week, and I’ll close on this, Jill, is you have to make these decisions for yourself. I can’t sit here and tell you that my way’s better than your way or her way’s better. There’s a theme in Discord right now where Discord has done exactly what I wanted it to do. If you’re not a member and you want to just take a peek at Discord, go on landinvestors.com and check it out. There’s a view only or read only version of it. The amount of stuff that people are, how we’re all interacting with each other is really, really clear there. It’s really a positive, accurate way to take a peek at what goes on in Land Academy with members. There’s a trend in Discord that it’s like, I need some more help. I need some more help. I need some more help.

Jill K DeWit:
Oh, like staffing help.

Steven Jack Butala:
No, just help. Just I need some more help. This happened, this happened, this happened.

Jill K DeWit:
That’s what Discord is.

Steven Jack Butala:
More senior members answer.

Jill K DeWit:
There is your help.

Steven Jack Butala:
Right.

Jill K DeWit:
I confess I’m confused. Meaning, does someone know how to do this? Then the response is, “Yes, here’s what you do.”

Steven Jack Butala:
Then the person who originally asked the question where I need help, I need help, it gets answered, and three or four people get involved. Then at the end it’s like, “Oh, that’s how you do it.” What they’re saying, they’re not really saying, “How do I do it? How do I do it?” What they’re saying is they’re working through what works for them through more senior members in the group, including Jill and I. I really think that’s a super, super healthy use of a community.

Jill K DeWit:
I agree. Happy you could join us today. Five days a week, you can find us here on the Land Academy Show.

Steven Jack Butala:
Tomorrow the episode on the Land Academy show is called Comparing the Private Equity Business Model to the Land Academy model. You are not alone in your real estate ambition. So I realized it when Jill and I were putting the topics together for this week, how much I modeled Land Academy and a bunch of other stuff actually after that private equity model. Because I have a ton of respect for how the concept of private equity and buying companies and making them better and then reselling them or having some exit plan. It’s been something that I’ve been involved in my one way or the other in my whole career. I didn’t realize it until this week. This is what I’ve modeled.

Jill K DeWit:
That was your underlying theme, and it just kind of light bulb went off. I understand. That’s really cool. Hey, by the way, thank you for tuning in. If you think that this whole land investing thing might be a good fit for you, get our free ebook on landacademy.com on the website. At the top, you can find a place to get the free ebook. Then get involved in our online community at landinvestors.com and start chatting with people and you can find out more. Always, too, you could send questions to my team via support@landacademy.com.
We are Jack and Jill.

Steven Jack Butala:
We are Jack and Jill. Information.

Jill K DeWit:
And inspiration.

Steven Jack Butala:
To buy undervalued property.

 

Thanks for listening, and finally, don’t forget to subscribe to the show on Apple Podcasts.

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