Real State

Two Top Agents Share How They’ve Achieved Exponential Growth


When agents achieve truly exceptional growth, it’s worth paying attention to how they got there. Two agents who have seen such profound growth in their businesses are Jose Medina and Stacey Sauls, who each sat down with Gary Keller and Jay Papasan to share the areas of focus that were game-changing for their businesses.

Medina runs a team in Canton, Ohio, and has experienced phenomenal sustained growth over the past two decades.

“Since about 2004, my team has been on a trajectory for about 20% growth year over year on average,” he says. “Some years are 10%, and some years are 30% to 40%, but over that time, it’s been about 20%. In 2020, we had about 1,030 transactions and $184 million in volume. That was a culmination of a lot of time on task.”

While Medina has experienced long-term growth, Sauls, whose team serves the Charlotte Metro Region of North Carolina and South Carolina, has seen her business explode over a relatively short time in the business. Building on her previous work as a real estate paralegal, Sauls joined KW as an agent in 2011. Quickly, her business was outpacing what a solo agent could handle, and she now leads a team with multiple divisions serving a large regional builder.

“Everyone remembers Gary Keller saying, ‘You’re five years away from where you want to be,’ and the team started in 2017,” Sauls says. “So when I think about that and look at where we’ve come, just following The Millionaire Real Estate Agent, it really is true. I followed it because I said this is going to be the fastest way to success, and it worked.”

Below, Sauls and Medina share their strategies for achieving exponential growth.

Stacey Sauls: Scaling Up Successfully 

For Sauls, the secret of her success traces back to her commitment to following the MREA. When she needed to scale up her business after outgrowing what she could handle on her own, she followed all of the models and systems to build her team and then help her team members grow their own careers.

Related reading: 5 Choices of Operational Leverage

“If people will just tell you what they want to make, you just track it backward,” Sauls says. “Run the numbers, and show them how to get there.”

Another strategy that has worked like gangbusters for her team is shortening the life cycle of the sale by zeroing in on buyers who are ready to make a move.

“Motivation is everything,” Sauls says. “Make sure your clients are motivated by making sure they have a timeline. Then cut that timeframe in half. You can figure out what they want and kind of push those buttons to get pen to paper.”

And for Sauls and her team, that shortcut might involve skipping showings.

“I don’t even think you need to show any houses,” she says. “That’s a limiting belief a lot of agents have. You could work from home right now and get contracts. You just have to consult with the buyer and say, ‘Hey, homes are selling before they hit the market. So we’re not going to get inside this house. We’re going to win this house, and then you’re going to walk through it.’ It’s all in your delivery. You’ve got to be confident.”

Jose Medina: All About the Systems

For Medina, the key to his remarkable year-over-year success has been consistency with the systems that work for him and his team.

“Someone once told me mastery is on the other side of boredom,” he says. “It’s a matter of just being really consistent.”

Continuity within the team in terms of long-term team members also played a big part in hitting those big numbers.

“I’ve been very blessed over the years,” Medina says. “I have four team members that have been with me for over 13 years, so we’ve had very good consistency. We also have eight team members that have been with me for somewhere between five and 10 years, so over time, we’ve had a lot of consistency. We’ve had turnover, absolutely, but we have leaders that have been with me for a long time, and I’ve been able to delegate authority to them, and they’ve been able to grow the organization and help build that and build the organization, time on time on task, basically.”

Medina stresses that along the way, you’ll make mistakes, but the important thing is remembering to learn from them.

“I know there was a period of my business where we were just focused on units and acquiring people to be in business with, and we lost sight of profit, quite honestly,” he says. “For me, the key is to have really smart individuals in my life that kind of make sure we go back to the model, that we focus on what’s really important and keep our eye on that.” 

Related reading: Three Mistakes to Avoid When Hiring

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