It's a Team Effort

A new certifcation program and a new safety book help real estate professionals become a leader out in the field.

Pocket Book of Safety Tips

The Little Red Book: Safety Rules to Live By for REALTORS® is a new publication from the REALTOR® Safety Program that focuses on practices that agents and brokers use to stay safe on the job. Available starting Sept. 23, the booklet is for new and seasoned practitioners seeking to develop safety protocols for a real estate business.

Nearly 1,000 REALTORS® submitted information about their daily safety habits and real-life advice. These safety tips, many presented in a light-hearted way, fall into seven categories: Your Safety Philosophy, Identity Protection, Cyber Safety, Personal Safety Protocol, Open House Safety, Safety and Your Clients, and Best Advice You’ve Ever Received.

The cost is $19.95 for a package of five copies and $9.95 for a digital download from the REALTOR® Store at Since September is REALTOR® Safety Month, there’s no better time to share these important tips.


Become a Certified Team Player

Sandy Bowser, a practitioner with Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage in Ellicott City, Md., will be one of the first REALTORS® to complete training for the new Certified Real Estate Team Specialist certification."I was interested in this course to learn how other teams operate and what’s working for them," says Bowser. "Everybody seems to be doing teams differently, and we were looking for ideas on how to be better."


CRETS is conferred by the Real Estate Business Institute (formerly the Council of Real Estate Brokerage Managers) and is the only team certification recognized by the National Association of REALTORS®. Its development underscores the rising influence of teams in brokerages. "As we've seen an increase in the number of teams, we wanted to make a conscious effort to support them," says Jill Malloy, education manager at Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage, Mid-Atlantic. Malloy's brokerage sponsored the three-course series at its Washington, D.C., office for 40 of its agents, including Bowser. The brokerage brought in industry trainer Adorna O. Carroll, author of the CRETS courses, to lead the sessions.


Bowser has been in real estate for 29 years but began working as a team leader seven years ago to focus on her favorite aspects of the job: working with customers and training new agents. Other agents on her team focus on showings, open houses, paperwork, and contracts.

The certification is open to both agents and brokers with an interest in starting a team or for those already leading or participating in teams at their office. The program, which entails a two-day core curriculum and the choice of a one-day elective course, is designed to help

REALTORS® learn how teams change the customer service dynamic and how to build a successful team. Participants learn how to unbundle tasks and create individual job descriptions, establish team compensation plans, and manage team conflicts. The sessions also present best practices in team management and analyze team growth stages and structures to learn why some teams succeed and others fail.

Any brokerage or REALTOR® association can sponsor the program and offer it locally. Visit the CRETS course calendar at to find a course near you. An online version is expected to launch in early 2016. Learn more at