Chris is focused on helping develop people and their businesses; while also finding more passive income streams to build a bigger legacy to pass on to his family.
Raised in a Christian family, Chris believes the “secret” to success and living a fulfilled life is being kind and helping others. He went to DeMatha High school and rowed on the crew team for 2 years, then went to University of MD and graduated in 2006 with a degree in Marketing. While in College, Chris worked with Southwest Airlines as a Marketing Intern focusing on Southwest for business travel.
After college, Chris became a sales account manager for Pepsi Bottling Group – managing a team of 4 and selling to 13 large stores in a high end area of Maryland. Through a college friend, Chris was connected to a new home builder (NVR) and joined them in 2007 as a Sales And Marketing Rep.
He recalls people thinking he was crazy getting into a 100% commission job in real estate, during the worst market most of us have ever been through – And he would never change a thing!He Worked at NVR until 2014, and for the last 3 years he was there, Chris helped sales people learn how to sell market, and manage their communities.
In February 2014, He was hired as Team Leader for the Bel Air, MD Keller Williams Office. And in June of 2019, Chris was hired as Area Vice President of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices PenFed Realty. Chris’ main focus for the last 5 years has been to recruit talent for his company and for teams, and to coach other agents to higher levels of production and quality of life.
Chris enjoys playing cards and basketball with friends (he also coaches his sons team). He Loves playing with his kids, trips to the beach with family and friends, and spending quality time with those who are close to him.Chris grew up in Maryland right outside of our Nations capital. He resides in Harford County with his wife Rebecca and 2 children: Braeden and Brynn.[Podcast transcript]
Umar Hameed 0:00
Welcome to another episode of The no limit selling podcast. I’m your host Umar Hameed. And today I got the chance to sit down with Chris Perry. Chris is the area Vice President at Berkshire Hathaway homeservices. And Penn fed Realty.
This was a great conversation because Chris is an inspired leader got a chance to talk about leadership, what works, what doesn’t work, and how you as a coach can lead your team to become awesome. The other thing that made it special was that we got a chance to do this interview, not in a studio or an office, but we were out in the park, sitting underneath a tree in the shade. It was a great environment to be in. That’s the new reality with COVID.
Look forward to a great interview coming up. And just before we go there, I want to tell you about my latest product is called neuro boosters and neuro boosters. It’s like software for your mind is a series of audio tracks that have NLP and applied neuroscience embedded within them. They show you techniques to take charge of your mindset. So you can see How you feel or act in any situation.
So for example, if you’re a sales rep and you’re just not in the zone today just free go into that meeting, listen to the track called unstoppable shows you how to take charge your mindset and amp up that motivation dial. So you go from a six to a nine or a 10. This is going to change your sales career.
To find your boosters. All you need to do is to go on my website, no limits, selling calm, you’ll find it on the homepage. Anyway, here we go. Say hello to Chris. Are you ready to become awesomer Hello everyone. This is Umar Hameed, your host and welcome to the No Limits selling Podcast, where industry leaders share their tips, strategies and advice on how to make you better, stronger, faster. Get ready for another episode.
Hello everyone today I have the privilege of having Chris Perry here he is the VP of regional awesomeness for Berkshire Hathaway. I probably got the title wrong, Chris, welcome to the program.
Chris Perry 2:09
Tell us your title. Thank you, Mr. So my title is the area Vice President for Berkshire Hathaway homeservices penfed Realty for the Baltimore region.
Umar Hameed 2:16
Now you know why wimped out on the title. So the thing I am really been looking forward to this conversation because your position is all about human beings, right? And how do you get better performance out of people better performance out of teams, and also how you seduce people to come over to Berkshire Hathaway? That’s all human dynamics, right? Absolutely. No doubt about it. Yep. So you were an agent, minding your own business, making good living, what possessed you to step over to Berkshire?
Chris Perry 2:46
So the Berkshire Hathaway opportunity was twofold. So I was already in a recruiting and growth role with another company and was very, very happy there. But I was also approached by the leadership in the region for Berkshire Hathaway. penfed Realty and they had a position open up for area vice president.
So essentially was to take my recruiting and coaching role, and then spreading it out over the entire Baltimore region, which was very attractive to me. And when I researched the company, I also saw it as you know, they’re on the beginning phase of a hockey stick growth trajectory. So it’s very excited to become part of something like that.
Umar Hameed 3:22
Brilliant. So tell me what it feels like. When you look at, let’s say, a particular realtor and in Berkshire Hathaway, of course, we’re not going to name names, but someone you look at and go, you know, let’s call this person, Janet, or john. Let’s go, john. JOHN is doing good. But I can clearly see john could be a frickin Rockstar. And why don’t they see it themselves? So how do you tackle? Think of a real world situation? Of course, change the names and how do you engage with a situation like that? Sure.
Chris Perry 3:57
Yeah. So sometimes, well, most of the time, what I find humara is that the biggest challenge that any agent has, whether they’re new, experienced, low producer, high producer, is However, their mindset is towards something. So what I focus on with most of my coaching is the results triangle. So we focus on the baseline of the triangle with their mindset first, and I guess that’s in the right spot.
If that’s in the right spot, which most cases it’s not around something specific. If it’s in the right spot, then we move on to their skill development. As long as they focus on the habits and skills, then they’ll get the results. So it’s mindset. And then skill development habits become a part of that that daily routine, and then as they focus on their habit creation, and they stick with that, their skills will naturally get better, then the results come from that. But the mindset has to be there to stick with it through the obstacles, the challenges, and if it’s not, then we have to dive deeper into that. Absolutely.
Umar Hameed 4:55
Another area that’s challenging for a lot of people just in general sales, you get someone that In a company, and they’re freaking fantastic. And then management in their wisdom goes, You know what, we’re gonna make you, the sales manager, which is a different skill set. And oftentimes they struggle there because people do not do things exactly the way they’ve done it. And they get distracted from their production because they’re dealing with the people that are trying to lead.
Same thing is true in the real estate business where you get someone that says, finally, you know, I’m going to develop a team. And I’m going to get people to be part of my team. So together, we move forward. So talk about the transition, maybe two stories, story a, of somebody that did the transition really well.
And Bill successful team may have had a hiccup or two and you may want to talk about that hiccup. And then after that, we’ll take a look at somebody that didn’t make the transition while with a great individual producer, but not a great team leader.
Chris Perry 5:53
Okay, perfect. So the transition from sales into Team Leader role is what you’re
Umar Hameed 5:57
Yeah. So think of a specific example of somebody real That made that transition really well. And what you thought the elements were that allowed them to succeed that way, and then we’ll look at somebody, once again real life names changed. Absolutely. That struggled.
Chris Perry 6:11
Okay. Not a problem. Yeah. So a team that I’d like to focus on, of course, they’ll remain nameless that did it really well. I think the big things that these folks do is they focus first on their leadership skills. Most of the time. When you transfer obviously, from sales into leadership, it’s a completely different skill set, as you said, Yes.
And they don’t focus on developing themselves as a trainer and leader and mentor and guide. So the folks that did this very well, are very, very high producers now and top notch in the industry and in the Baltimore region. And they focused on growing their people, they focused on team dynamic. So not only leading people one on one, but also knowing how to lead a team as far as getting them together for a common goal is a challenge for a lot of folks, right
Umar Hameed 6:58
because most Most teams out there in the world. And I’d say probably 90%, maybe 98%. When you look at the sum of the parts, the hole that’s created is less than the sum of the parts because you get ego and politics and people being complacent. And once in a while you get these teams where the whole is much greater than the sum of the parts. And when that happens, that’s magic.
Chris Perry 7:22
Absolutely write books about that stuff. They really do. No doubt about it. And I think that’s the whole idea, you know, is one plus one equals three, when you lead it properly. There’s a multiplicity effect of it. And when you have the synergy, and everyone’s driving towards a common goal, then what you find is that there’s this culture of support. Yes.
And it’s not just about me, me, me. And then what that allows the leader to do is then continue to define who they’re looking for. And when you’re super clear about who you’re looking for, find them you bring in the right people, right? It’s absolutely
Umar Hameed 7:51
know who to say no to and when you do it, super duper fantastic. One plus one is 11. Absolutely. So tell me about a team, a producer, that was really good individually. And when they started building a team, it went sideways.
Chris Perry 8:09
Absolutely. So opposite example of that would be someone who very, very great, very determined, very motivated, hard worker. However, sometimes I see challenges with letting go of control. Yes. And that’s a big issue when you can’t. And usually that’s a lack of trust is typically what that is, or something in the ego that won’t let you let go.
Even though you trust the person, you feel like the client is best off working with you, right? Where it’s just the level of service that you provide. And as long as that person that you bring on board creates the same or better level of service, then you should trust and be okay, letting go of control. So, I find that that’s one of the biggest challenges for folks that struggle with building a team in real estate is letting go of control. Sometimes it’s financial, but typically It’s the control piece.
Umar Hameed 9:01
What’s kind of paradoxical is this is that oftentimes, they see it as not trusting the person that they’re leading. And oftentimes it comes down to them not really trusting themselves, for sure. But they don’t see that there’s a blinder there, for sure. And that’s where being a coach, it’s challenging getting them to see it clearly.
And one of the ways a lot of coaches go is they actually tell them what’s going on. And what creates is a resistance. No, it isn’t. Yeah, what are you talking about? And the thing is to really get them to, to meet their model of the world. And then get them to get an insight and then they go, holy shit.
Chris Perry 9:44
Yeah, yeah. Absolutely. Yep. It’s it’s about looking in the mirror. Yeah. And as a coach, I think that’s the thing is, you know, we have to be courageous enough and also caring enough to have the tough conversation or to ask the tough question that nobody has because it’s Sometimes people don’t want to poke the bear.
You know, these people are big producers, they have big egos, they’ve never been told no, or they’ve never, you know, been told that there might be a little, you know, flat tire on their vehicle that they’re driving, right. And if they would just stop to be aware to fix it, they’d go a lot faster, and their whole team would be aligned with that vision much more easily.
Umar Hameed 10:20
And oftentimes, what I find is people get to a certain level in the team, and it’s a really, it’s gonna solidify who we are what we do, and they’ll work with a consultant or read a favorite book, and they come up with, we are a team dedicated to the betterment of our community. Our clients are employees. And it sounds like such Hallmark bullshit. And then they go, our values, our integrity, customer service, and you can go to any company anywhere in the US or Canada, or Mongolia, and you’re going to find similar language on what they’re doing.
And I think the trick really is To figure out who is the leader, what is their purpose in life? Like, why are they here? And that purpose can become the mission of the company? Absolutely. And once you get the mission of the company, it’s like, Okay, what goal would align with this mission, that would be enough to get people to go, I want to be part of that exactly. So that it aligns with who you are.
And then if we figured out Chris’s deepest values and criteria around work and made that the values and criteria around the company, Chris’s building, then you become the poster child for that company, because you’re living it breathing it without trying to be something else.
And then you attract the right people coming in. And so all of it is organic, but we make it so complicated. Why do you think we make it so complicated because you can look at writings from 1000 years ago, leaders are struggling with the exact same stuff. Why these people so difficult?
Chris Perry 11:56
And why hasn’t it changed or adapted?
Umar Hameed 11:57
Yeah, yeah. So So what do you think that is? Why does the human condition remain the same?
Chris Perry 12:02
Yeah, I was gonna say, I believe part of that’s the human element, I think. And I was having a conversation with some other leaders inside the Berkshire network across the country. Because, you know, when it comes to recruiting, that’s one of the biggest things is, you know, knowing like being genuine and who you are, because we can all fake it for a certain amount of time. Yes. How long can that last? What’s the battery life for being someone that you’re not? And then who are you attracting? Even if they are great, talented individuals, if it’s not who you are, and you can align with it from a values perspective, then you’re probably going to have a lot of challenges, obstacles, you know, things to overcome, that maybe are not overcome, if that makes sense from a long term company perspective. Yeah. So, you know, just for example, you know, from a recruiting perspective, you know, we always talk about it, we, you know, even if somebody has a ton of production and would make our company good money, and they’re making great money and everything looks really good from a financial perspective. That doesn’t necessarily mean that They’re a great long term fit for our company.
Umar Hameed 13:02
Absolutely. And I think part of the problem is this is that for most people, it’s difficult to figure out who they are and what they stand for. And so we have three faces one, we show the outside world. And oftentimes that’s Look at me, I’m pretty amazing. I know everything. And for some people is like, I’m broken. Nothing a level workout. But both of those are an illusion that we show the outside world. Then we have this delusion, which is, this is why I think I am and oftentimes that’s not accurate. Then there’s the internal, this is who I actually am. And once we discover that, it makes life so much simpler, because you don’t have to have this delusion of who you think you are, you know it, and if you get brave enough, then that’s what you show the outside world. And we probably both know people like that, that who you see as who you get, and then people around them just feel safe because it’s like, I’m not sure what it is to be around you, but there’s a Something that makes me feel comfortable. And I want to do business with you, I want to be part of your team. And so how do you navigate those waters?
Chris Perry 14:12
So how do I navigate those waters as far as
Umar Hameed 14:14
yourself? And then how do you lead people to? To see the lightest? Well,
Chris Perry 14:19
okay, understood, that’s great. So, for myself, I think that that’s a matter of also, you know, working with, you know, a coach, you’re on, you’re on your own right. So, for you to be a great coach for someone else, you have to have someone that’s coaching and development you as a leader as well, and also looking for opportunities for you to grow. So, so I have that person in my world, obviously. And they, they certainly helped me with that, you know, from a leadership perspective, and, you know, just questioning some of my, you know, direction, you know, making sure that I’m going in the right place. And then I think ultimately that to some degree rolls downhill, right. So you know, much like a parent caring for a child, you know, you want them to make a difference in the world so you care for someone else to hopefully make a difference. In their team, for example, yeah, definitely. So same kind of analogy, if you will. And for me, I think a lot of the time is when I focus on the agents that I’m coaching, we always like to look at what I call a gap analysis where you figure out, you know, this is where you are, this is where you want to go, let’s find that gap. And how do we build that bridge over that gap or fill that gap or what have you? So, So ultimately, a lot of times there’s, you know, the goal, you know, the why behind the goal after you dig deep to find that for this individual. So anytime they do something that may not seem aligned, aligned with that goal or with that, why, then you’re able to as a coach or a leader question that and, you know, maybe poke holes in it a little bit. So, how have them figure out if they’re making the right decision, right? Because a lot of times again, these folks are, you know, blazing new trails, they’re trying new things, and sometimes just asking questions and almost allowing them to talk it out loud with someone helps them figure it out. I used
Umar Hameed 15:57
to be tech support for Hewlett Packard alone. time ago, and you just ask a couple of questions that will just do the solve anything. And then you’d hear this magic phrase.
Unknown Speaker 16:11
Oh, it worked.
Umar Hameed 16:12
And it was like, You didn’t tell him anything. And it was like, Oh my God, you’re so smart and so amazing. And all you did was just get them to state the case. And they found the solution themselves. And that’s the ultimate coaching.
Chris Perry 16:25
Absolutely. Yeah. It’s just getting made, basically raising awareness about what’s going on. Because a lot of time these folks have their blinders on. They’re so focused on what they do day to day, we see
Umar Hameed 16:34
the world as we are exactly. And it’s the coach’s job to get people to expand that scope a little bit. And just by seeing that new land, it allows them to go,
Chris Perry 16:44
huh, yeah, the perspective of it, right, giving them a new viewpoint new perspective.
Umar Hameed 16:49
So Chris, why the hell is real estate so hot right now we’re in a pandemic. When it first started, people weren’t letting people into their homes to show their homes. So what do you think is going on? Why is real estate so freakin hot? Would you agree it’s hot out? It’s amazing,
Chris Perry 17:05
right? So why? Yeah, so I think that for the first two weeks, and I’ve talked to several agents in different areas, especially the coast, you know, the beaches. I’ve talked to a lot of agents. And what I’m hearing is the first couple of weeks that this went down, there was a lot of job insecurity. People did not know what their companies were going to do and what was going to happen with their job. And then after a couple weeks, and the company started deciding that you know, they were going to go to some portion of virtual or what have you, and folks knew financially kind of where their company was and where their job was going to go. Then you started getting more secure decisions being made nice. So folks decided, Hey, you know what, if I’m going to work virtually, and my kids are going to be home for a good portion of the year, then I want to have that upgrade, right? So I want to move from the townhome to the single family or I want to move to the beach to be closer to the beach because my family is going to be able to access that easier while I’m working you know virtually or what have you. So You see that demand and that the circumstances, right? So some of these circumstances that perhaps would have existed five to 10 years from now for these individuals, it basically sped up those decisions, right? And the inventory so low that there’s this huge buyer demand and the inventory being low. It’s just created, obviously a feeding frenzy for listings.
Umar Hameed 18:20
Brilliant. And I’ve got a friend who wasn’t getting a pool. And this year, it’s like, we’re getting a pool. Yeah, I want my kids to have fun and they got like this palatial home so they’re like all while often, but it was like, yeah, that exact same thing. I want to do better for my family
Chris Perry 18:37
now. I’ve seen Yeah, pools, RVs boats, you know, all these things and beach houses. Definitely. I’ve spoken with some folks in Ocean City and the agents there and they’re like, Man, it’s just so tough to find anything for anybody right now because there’s a lot of offers on every house down there.
Umar Hameed 18:53
So Chris, tell me about your Moby Dick where it You were coaching and just a lot of struggle trying to get this person to, to come around. And so talk about the struggle, and then what final epiphany help that person, get that breakthrough, because, you know, when you talk to coaches, um, a coach is fantastic. And it’s so easy, but sometimes you get people that need help. And it takes a little while to really, because it’s not about you. It’s about how to get them to get the insight. So tell me about one of those cases where it was a struggle getting there.
Chris Perry 19:27
Absolutely. Yeah. So I’d say that there was a big producer that I was coaching with for a couple of years. And they were very, very strong at growing their business, growing their volume, and even you know, pushing the team and helping them grow. But sometimes again, we forget that people need encouragement. And that’s a big thing. Like, you know, people can push, push, push and talk about results. But a lot of times you just need to add a boy or a girl you know, as a salesperson, especially with all this rejection and ups and downs.
So this individual just kept on forgetting to, you know, celebrate people’s successes with them or publicly and tell their story. And I think that was a big struggle for them naturally. But over time, with consistent focus on that, they got better and better at it. And what they found is as they started doing that instinct consistent with it, of course there are people appreciated that on the team. And it showed team success.
It showed their success as a leader, it showed that they also had a human element, right? It wasn’t just about the numbers and the results, even though obviously that was their driver. They also realized that there was something human behind that. And they were missing the boat on that, right. So there was almost like a cultural gap inside their team. And as they started focusing on that it filled that void, and that people felt cared for where they didn’t before.
Umar Hameed 20:46
So how did you get that person to get that epiphany because I’m sure you brought it up several times. And they were like, either not noticing it, or pushing back. So how did you get that message across in a way that they got in took action on it?
Chris Perry 20:58
Sure thing, so It was it was really, it was almost, like circuitous. So in this specific situation for me, I had the luck, I’d say, of having some of the inside scoop from some of the guys on the tunnel where they were sharing what their experiences were. And, you know, obviously, what they were lacking and where I could help the team leader grow and also provide value. So as I learned a little bit more from them, you know, directly about what the situation was, I was then able to have some more serious conversations with the team leader to, you know, really.
Umar Hameed 21:29
So you had data to kind of back up what you were saying, as opposed to exactly nice. Yes,
Chris Perry 21:33
absolutely. So I had a framework and a foundation to start with. And then of course, going through conversations with the team leader asking questions about what’s going well, and maybe what was lacking and then finding those opportunities where the team leader was maybe saying something was lacking, like, motivation on the team that would that would, that was a key, you know, trigger there. Okay. Well, motivations lacking Well, why do you think that is right? So then you dive deeper into that and then asking the right questions leads to them figuring out okay, maybe this is part Me, not just my team, right? So
Umar Hameed 22:02
that’s brilliant. So before we part company, what are three pieces of advice you’d give realtors right now that are looking to improve their performance and then three pieces of advice you’d give team leaders to improve the team performance. Okay?
Chris Perry 22:23
So I’d say for agents looking to improve the performance. One, don’t let what you can’t do stop you from doing what you can do. Brilliant. So for example, people used to do client appreciation parties. Well, now people don’t want to get together in groups, right?
Because of COVID. So I’ve seen a lot of folks switch to virtual, you know, again, virtual happy hours with their past clients, virtual get togethers with their past clients, etc. So, you know, again, switch gears a little bit if you need to, right.
Just do what you can. I’d say stick with the farm. The farm is very strong geo farming a neighborhood right That’s still extremely strong and going very well for the folks that do that at a high level. And ultimately also, I would say support local businesses, because that’s, again, a sector that’s, you know, struggling through this, this, you know, pandemic, and the more that we support local businesses and make our make our real estate business, a vehicle to support these folks.
Again, not only are you building camaraderie in the local community, but you’re doing something you know, for the good of the locals, right. And they’re going to remember that. So again, they’re going to eventually, you know, refer business to you, you’re going to refer business to them. It’s basically a I scratch your back, you scratch mine situation.
And to your question about the team leaders, three points of advice for them, I’d say, don’t be afraid of investing money, because I think a lot of folks look at, you know, getting an admin or transaction coordinator, you know, if again, they’re just starting a team, for example, or in some cases, some people bring on agents before they have the infrastructure. So maybe the first piece of advice is bring the infrastructure on Prior to bringing more salespeople in, right, always hire one step ahead of your growth.
So, inside of that, don’t be afraid of the financial aspect of it. A lot of people look at the cash that’s involved with paying a salary or paying for, you know, some added service. Well guess what you’re recruiting to a value proposition. And if you haven’t spent time creating it, then you’re not going to keep the people you bring on without the value.
Don’t be afraid of letting go of control is another one. So again, these folks that you hire, if you’ve done your job properly, as a leader and talent, you know, acquisition, you know, professional, then the folks that you bring on will do the job just as well as you after a little bit of training and guidance. So you can be confident to let go of that control.
And, and three, check your ego at the door. You know, as a team leader, I think it’s good. It’s good to have a chip on the shoulder because you’re a big producer and you’re your driver, your determination determined person.
However, you got to remember that human element, you got to remember to Encourage your folks and make sure that keep them motivated as a leader because, again, everybody has a battery life. And if you’re not taking care of the human capital that you have on your squad, then the results will definitely be impacted by that.
Umar Hameed 25:13
I’m taking notes here, Chris, thanks so much for sitting down with me. I learned a lot and this one we’re out in the park and enjoying the day and Hello COVID
Chris Perry 25:23
Yeah, I know. Hey, thanks for the opportunity. Tomorrow is good too. Good to be on with you.
Umar Hameed 25:30
If you enjoyed this episode, please go to iTunes and leave a five star rating. And if you’re looking for more tools, go to my website at no limit selling calm. I’ve got a free mind training course there that’s going to teach you some insights from the world of neuro linguistic programming, and that is the fastest way to get better results.
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I am a performance coach who uses Applied Neuroscience to help individuals and teams break through their barriers so they become awesomer! Take a look at my Motivational Speaker Kit