Every agent has a story to tell, about their journey from humble beginnings to where they are today. What are the challenges they faced? What was their journey like? How did they become successful real estate agents?
We decided to talk to someone who has been through the process of becoming an agent while establishing their real estate career. We asked a number of questions to better understand what one needs to do to start a successful career in real estate.
In this interview, we talked to Shanmugakanth or Shan for short.
Shan graduated from Multimedia University, BEng (Hons) in Telecommunication Engineering. He started out working as a network engineer in HP, where he worked for about 5 years. He later left that job and, as time went on, he found IQI, and began his journey as a real estate agent.
Here’s what he had to say.
1. Hey there Shan, good day. Could you please introduce yourself for our audience and tell us something about yourself?
Hi, I’m Shanmugakanth. I graduated from Multimedia University, BEng (Hons) in Telecommunication Engineering. I used to work as a network engineer in HP in Cyberjaya for about 5 years. I did some of my own business part-time and then I decided to quit my job and do the business full time. Unfortunately, the business failed and I went bankrupt. I didn’t want to go back to a regular 8-5 job, so I decided to venture into the real estate industry. I had no prior experience in real estate, and IQI was the first real estate company I joined. Now I have been with IQI for almost 4 years, and we continue to grow together. I really love IQI’s work culture and teamwork.
2. What do you need to become an agent? Education, training or both?
Both. I attended a 2-day training in NCC (Negotiator Certification Course) at Excel academy to get my negotiator certification. I got my REN tag and became a certified real estate negotiator. I also attended a 3-day course provided by IQI called New REN Training. There are a lot of other training programmes that IQI provides to help negotiators and agents grow. We have TT (Terrific Tuesday) every Tuesday @11a.m., project briefings, as well as small group meetings. This is how I equipped myself with the knowledge needed to thrive in the industry. I came from a background with no sales and real estate experience so these training courses really helped me a lot.
3. Would you please tell us more about the course you had to take become an agent? How long was the course and what was the fee?
As I said before, the NCC course is 2 days long. It starts at 10am and goes on till 5pm. The course costs about RM600. The other course I mentioned, New REN Course, is a 3-day course and costs about RM550 for newcomers.
4. Is it easy to become successful in the real estate arena? What kind of challenges did you face and how did you overcome them?
To be frank, it’s not that easy, and at the same time, it’s not that difficult. I came from a no real estate and sales background, and it took me a while to adapt.
I believe that knowledge is the most important key. Once I closed my first deal, the rest began to fall into place. I did face many challenges as well. When I first joined in 2016, the economy and property market was down. But I took that as a challenge and put in more effort, learned from my mentors and managed to become the top rookie of the year in IQI. That was in the first year that I joined the company.
5. Before you became one yourself, what was your impression of the real estate profession?
To be honest, I thought real estate was for people who had failed their SPM, people who have no job and have no other choice but to join real estate. But once I joined and became more serious about it, I realised my assumptions were totally wrong. Being a real estate agent is indeed a professional career. It’s more than just a sales job. It’s a profession where you connect with people, help them find their dream home and, most importantly, it’s fun! And yes, there is potential for earning a good income as well.
You can also pursue a diploma in real estate and expand your career from an agent to a team leader, head of team and beyond.
6. How have you and your team grown over time? How do you guys plan to get new clients in the future?
Knowledge is key. I always share what I have learned with my team. It’s a duplication process. The training sessions provided by IQI helped my team and me by equipping us with all the necessary knowledge about the real estate industry.
We use many methods to get clients, such as roadshows, cold calls, warm calls, social media marketing and much more. These activities help us to generate more leads.
7. How do your team and IQI ensure the quality of service?
First, we try to understand our clients’ needs. We make sure our clients fully understand the product that we are offering. We also make sure that we provide excellent service from beginning to end. On top of that, we provide after sales services such as keeping our clients informed and updated.
8. Finally, what is your message to those who are thinking of pursuing a career as a real estate agent/negotiator?
Like I said previously before I joined, I had the wrong impression about the real estate industry. But now, my life has changed completely because I decided to join IQI. If you like a challenge, if you are the type of person who likes to go outside of your comfort zone, and if you like to explore new frontiers, then you should not wait. Join us.
If you are interested in kick-starting your own real estate career, then don’t hesitate. Visit our website and be a part of a team of global real estate entrepreneurs and investors.