Real Estate Assistant Interview Questions

Real Estate Assistant Interview Questions

– When you interview candidates, you really have three main objectives that you need to accomplish
during your process. First, of course, you need to verify that the candidate has
the skills, experience, and culture fit for your office, but you need to do that while
also getting their buy in. They need to like you as
much as you like them. And then of course you
have to do all of this as quickly as possible because you’re busy and your candidate’s busy
and if you put too many steps into your process you risk
losing great candidates along the way because another
employer swoops them up. So how do you get all of the
information that you need to make an informed
decision about a candidate and how do you do that
as quickly as possible? Hi, I’m Vanessa Rosenblum. I’m the President of Pro REA Staffing where we are passionate
about fostering careers in real estate and
growing real estate teams. And while I don’t have a magic bullet or a magic solution for you, I do have some well-researched suggestions to help you navigate the interview process and screen your candidates as effectively and efficiently as possible. In this video I’m going to take you through a three-part interview framework, and I’m using the three-part framework because you really need to meet
with a candidate three times before you make hiring decision, but you might actually
need an additional step in your own process, so this is a suggestion. It’s not a hard rule, but
it’s easier to talk about it as a three-part process. Now I’ve created an interview guide to go along with this video. So what I recommend that you
do is that you pause this video and you go to Go to resources, interview guide, and download the interview guide so that you can follow along as we go through this talk today. I’ll see you back in a second. (upbeat music) All right, so do you have
your interview guide? Now before we dig into it we
screen real estate assistants. We place real estate assistants
with real estate teams. And no matter what the specifics
of the job description are there are really five
key qualities or traits that every person we
place has to demonstrate. These are just universal for this job. And so as you’re
interviewing your candidates you need to be thinking
about whether or not they possess these traits. So these are the things to keep in mind throughout your entire interview process. First is, a demonstrated
ability to organize themselves and others to create systems and consistently manage processes. I mean that’s basically what a real estate assistant
does all day, right? The next is they need to pay
close attention to detail while working in a fast paced and rapidly changing environment. Next, they need to be
a leader in their role. They need to need minimal
supervision or direction, and in fact, they need
to naturally manage up. They need to develop solid
strategies for solving problems. So this is the person who sees a problem and comes to you with three solutions for you to pick from, right? We love those people. And then finally we’re looking for someone who is a natural caretaker. And this is just essential. Every leader of a company, every top salesperson needs
a caretaker in their corner. This is the person that
looks at your schedule and realizes that you’re not
going to have time for lunch and so they have a
sandwich delivered to you so that you can eat it in your car on your way to your next meeting, and they remember that you
don’t like goat cheese. So the first step in
every interview process should be a phone interview. This is just a really
quick and efficient way to screen out the people
who have low energy, who lack the level of
professionalism that you require, and who just don’t meet the
basic requirements of your job. Make it simple and use an
online scheduling system like or These are easy to use online schedulers that will link to your calendar, and you can just email
the link to candidates and they can book
themselves on your calendar, and then you can just go
boom, boom, boom, boom, boom, through your phone interviews. Keep these short. I would schedule them no
more than 20 minutes apart. And honestly a lot of my phone interviews don’t last more than
seven or eight minutes. As soon as I know that they’re not going to be a match for the job,
we wrap up the interview. In my interview guide I have a template for a real estate
assistant phone interview and in the email that you
received with the interview guide I have an editable version so you can create your own template
around these questions. So I put the most important
things at the top, the things that are disqualifiers, we just get that out of the way up front, and then we dig more
into who the candidate is and we get some additional
information about what they’re looking or
and why they’re looking, those kinds of things. Remember to take notes. Trust me, after you’ve
interviewed 20 candidates, you will not remember why you
liked candidate number four. And make sure to include notes about things you wanted to follow
up on or dive deeper on in your in-person interview. But once you’ve completed this you’re ready to move candidates forward to your in-person interview. (upbeat music) So let’s just talk about some basic tips for interviewing candidates in person, and these are mistakes that
I see new hiring managers or people who are not
comfortable interviewing, these are the kind of
mistakes that they make. The first is, listen more than you talk and stay in the question. This is hard for a lot of people. But just ask your
question and stop talking. Silence is okay. Just ask your question
one time and stop talking. The next is to have an
outline of questions that you want to ask, but
don’t stick to a script. In the interview guide you’ll see that I have a lot of questions in there. Definitely don’t ask
all of those questions. But pick and choose the one
that are the most relevant for you and have a list of
maybe 15 or 20 questions that you hope to cover in your interview. And then have a conversation
with your candidate, remember, you also need
to build relationship with this person as you
move through this process. And really, there’s
nothing more off putting than sitting across the table from someone who is reading questions off a list and just checking off every question they’re supposed to ask you. It’s really off-putting so don’t do that. The next is to ask followup questions. And this is important no matter what, but this is a lifesaver
when you’ve asked a question and maybe your mind has wandered
or you’re not quite sure what to ask next. A followup question gives you
a second to compose yourself and plan your next step. So for example, let’s
say you asked a candidate to tell you about a
project that they completed in their last job that
they were really proud of. So your follow-up questions
might be as simple as tell me more about that
or what did you learn? What problem or what
challenges did you face as you completed that project? What did you enjoy most
about that project? How did you balance working on that with everything else that you had to do? And looking back what
would you do differently now that you have hindsight? So think about how much more information and how much deeper you
can go with a candidate by asking followup
questions to a key question. And really, most of the time the more
interesting information, the stuff that you really need to get to isn’t answered on the topical question, it’s answered in those followup questions. And then going along with that, you need to dig in for details. A lot of candidates stay on the surface and they won’t really
get into the specifics, and you need to get them
down into the details so that you can really verify
that they actually do know what they think they know
or what you think they know. So for example, let’s
say a candidate told you that they were used to managing
10 transactions at a time in their last real estate office, 10 transactions a month. And so your followup questions would be walk me through a typical transaction and tell me about your
specific responsibilities at every stage of the process. And slow them down if they start to get too topical with you. You want every single step. And this will really clue you into really how much they were
involved in those transactions. Other questions might be how
did you organize your files and how often did you communicate with the other parties in the transaction? I would also want to know if something was going off the rails in a transaction, at what point did you bring
your agent back into the deal? And then finally, what types of problems were
you able to handle on your own. So that tells you whether
or not this person was just collecting signatures or if they were really
managing the transaction. (upbeat music) So interviews are more than just about gathering information. They’re also about building a relationship and so you need to make
sure that you take the time in this first face-to-face interview to share a little bit about the company and about yourself and if
you’re interested in a candidate there are three important questions that they must be able to answer before they walk out of their
first in-person interview. This is to secure their buy
in so that they’ll stick with you through the rest
of your interview process, because we’re not done yet. So the first thing that candidates need to know and want to know is why are you passionate
about what you do? Why are you on this mission and why should they join
you on this mission? That’s key. Second, they want to know why
you’re interested in them. What is it about them
that has you excited? They wanna know why they’re valued. And then finally they want to know how they can win with you,
how they can add value. And think about this, if they’re currently employed and they’re considering changing jobs, and that’s the scenario for
most candidates these days, they want to know that they’re going to be successful in their new job, that they’re going to
succeed and win with you. So if they’re not clear about
that or if they have concerns about whether or not they
can meet their expectations, they’re probably not changing jobs. So it’s important that
they have that information at this point in the process. But at this stage after
you’ve met with the candidate at least once in person, this is where you can
have candidates complete a behavioral assessment or
do some kind of homework or skill assessment
outside of your office. I’ll create another video
and I’ll talk about the disk and how to use behavioral assessments during your interview process, but we just don’t have time to
get into that on this video. But I’ll make sure to tag it. And by the way, if you’d
like to be notified of new videos as we put them out, make sure to subscribe and ring the bell so that you’re notified
when we post new videos. (upbeat music) All right, so at this point
you’ve narrowed down your field to two, maybe at the most
three, of your top candidates. And now it’s time to go deep. This is a long interview. This is your skill assessment
and goal alignment interview. And it should last at least
three hours, maybe four hours. And during this interview you need to accomplish three important things. The first is to validate skills. Now we’ve tried every skill
assessment under the sun and there’s just nothing that compares to putting a candidate at their future desk and asking them to complete
a real world project to validate that they
really do know how to do the things that they
say they know how to do. The next is assessing culture fit. So if this candidate walks into the office and they suddenly realize
that they’re gonna be alone in a back office and have no interaction and that doesn’t work for them, wouldn’t you rather they
figured that out now and vice versa. If your office is wild and crazy, people are running
around and it’s stressful and there’s papers flying, that’s gonna be great for some people and a total nightmare for others. And you need to see how they fit into the vibe in your office. So they need to be in there during work hours if at all possible. Now I realize that if this
is a confidential search you can’t do that. But you could at least
bring them in on a Saturday so they can see the
space and hopefully meet some of the other people that they’ll be working with on your team. Finally, this is your chance to talk about standards, expectations,
vision, admission, and goals. This is the deep stuff. So this is when you ask questions like how should I manage you? How honest can I be with you? What is it about our mission
that you connect with? This is where you share,
these are my standards, this is what I expect
from the people around me. Can you live up to that? And vice versa. What do you expect from me as your boss? Candidates might say things like I expect you to be
perfectly honest with me. If I’m bothering you, tell me. Or if you set a meeting with
me expect that you honor it. So you guys, this is your
chance to come into alignment so that you guys can move together with a strong foundation of trust and respect and communication. This is essential. (calm, relaxing music) All right you guys, we’ve finally get to the end of this process, but you’re not quite finished yet. By the time you finish your two or three deep dive interviews
with your top candidates you should be really clear about
who you’re excited to hire, and they should be equally excited about you and the opportunity. But you’re not quite done yet. So this is where you need
to wrap up your references if you still haven’t
spoken to at least three, but hopefully five or six
professional references, you need to make sure you do that, just so that you can validate what you think you know about a candidate, and uncover anything that you, any issues that you might need to address with the candidate. And now you’re ready to write an offer and go off into the sunset
with your ideal candidate. Congratulations, wooo, you made it all they
way through the process. Now I know it can be a lot, but it’s essential that
you follow a framework and you work a process
in order to make a hire and that you don’t skip any
of these essential steps, especially the deep dive interview. Even if you think someone
is absolutely perfect and they check every box, you still need to validate their skills. You still need to make
sure that your standards and expectations are aligned, and you still need to make sure that they’re a good culture
fit for your office, that they fit into your environment. So do not skip this step. If I can help you with any of this. If you’d like help with
screening candidates or you’d like some coaching on
how to improve your process, reach out to me. You can schedule a free
30-minute consultation by clicking on the link
in the description below. And I’ll see you in the next video.

One thought on “Real Estate Assistant Interview Questions

  1. Did you download the Interview Guide? If you did, let me know what you think about it here in the comments.

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