Administrative Assistants and Real Estate

Today I'm going to be a bit controversial.  I'm going to talk about secretaries.  That's right, I said it, secretaries.  

The definition of secretary is, "an employee who does clerical and administrative work in an office for a person or organization", per the Encarta Dictionary on Microsoft Word.

Hmmm, really?  I know that a definition is supposed to be a succinct way to describe something, however, the author of the Encarta Dictionary has obviously never worked in Real Estate.  I just need to get this off my chest about these so called clerical and administrative personnel in our real Estate Offices, well, MY OFFICE, at least.  

Our Secretaries (or Administrative Assistant as they like to call themselves) don't get to the office until around 10am.  I don't know about you, but I've already done about 4 hours of work for my business at this point, so it seems a bit late to me.  Then, once they get in, they have to take the next hour or two to listen to voice mails, field phone calls, and catch up on all the things they left hanging the day before when they left by 5 - 5:30.  WHAT????  Who can get a job like this, with these hours and NOT be fired?  WHAT??? I say, I'm appalled by this - aren't you?  

Well, those of you who know me - knew there would be a PLOT TWIST - so here it comes......

These ladies DO get in around 10.  Those 1 to 2 hours of fielding calls are usually from all the agents chomping at the bit just waiting for them to come in!  WHY??  Because we can't make it without these wonderful girls!! 

These ladies get yelled out by customers because unlicensed persons aren't able to give out property information and the customer on the phone doesn't want to be transferred to an actual agent!  These ladies will MOVE their WHOLE schedule around in order to make us property flyers/ marketing brochures / write letters / proofread property descriptions, etc. The only thing I haven't been able to get them to do is write this blog for me!! 

Both of the ladies in my office have small children / newborn babies.  These girls are busy.  I have seen them take on feeding a child while answering the phone, printing a property flyer, putting a file together and getting talked to by an agent all at the same time and all with a smile on their face!  They listen to us cry and whine about our listings not selling fast enough, our open houses not going the way we wanted and our loan officers dropping the ball (a story for another day).  I know that I can call and one of these ladies will set aside what they are doing to walk me through something, talk me down off the ledge or make time for me later in the day in order to show me how to make a brochure or how to best highlight the pictures of my listings on the newest social media site!  

Do I even need to mention that these ladies are ALSO still performing all the other normal clerical duties of an office, as well?  Putting together our files, making sure all the paperwork is there for compliance, chasing us down weekly to get the proper signatures on the proper paperwork.  Need I mention that there is always more than ONE problem child in every Real Estate Office?  We aren't wired to do any more paperwork than is necessary to get an accepted offer, and frankly, that can be daunting too! :)  If it weren't for these girls and their persistence, well, I'm not sure what would happen!  Let's not even mention the fact that in order to get paid the next week on a closing, files have to be in by a certain time.......when do you think they get those?  

I just want to say thanks!  My Type A, aggressive, busy and always multitasking even in my mind brain won't allow my brain to remember to say it to your face, so I thank you now.  I know it's not Secretary's Day or whatever they call that when the manager is obligated to recognize your existence, but I wanted you to know.  We all know you are here and we are SO THANKFUL for you!!

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Bernie Weiss

Bernie Weiss

Broker Associate
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