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Is it Possible That Only 7% of All Realtors Do Over 90% of the Business?

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Jonathan correctly pointed out that a third of of the members of NAR sold nothing last year.  Amazingly, that isn’t new – that has been true for as long as such stats have been kept on how much is being sold.In a solicitation email I received from Dirk Zeller he talked about the Pareto Principle – better known as the 80-20 rule.  This would suggest that 20% of the agents do 80% of the business and that 80% of the agents do the remaining 20%.  Dirk did some research for his area (Bend, Oregon) and concluded that Bend matched the NAR numbers which are even more astounding than the 80-20 rule.  Dirk’s conclusion: 7% of Realtors control about 93% of the total business. 

Pretty amazing.  I have not verified this number but I know it is close, if not exact.  For the Phoenix area here is what I found: there are about 40,000 members of the MLS (ARMLS).  Only 4.50%  of the total members of ARMLS had six sales or more (buyer or seller sides) in the past twelve months.  This is not an “average”, this is flatly stating that less than 5% of all Realtors (selling homes through the MLS) made at least 6 sales in the past year.  I don’t have an easy way of deleting those Realtors who work for builders, etc., but I can say the number with six or more sales is about 1,800 agents.

Dirk goes on to say that the 7% of agents who are doing all the business do things differently:

How do they do it?

Well, quite simply, I’d have to say differently. That’s right… they do more business than everyone else because they do business differently.

That they do things differently than the 93% who don’t do much business is pretty obvious.  That would have to be a true statement.  However, I don’t believe the successful agents do things much differently than any successful small business does them.  Main job is still: get and keep customers.  This never changes.  In the residential brokerage business there is one thing that is “different” than most other businesses.  Listings.  If you will take the time to really learn to list you can make more money than most people you will ever know.  And it isn’t hard either.  In fact, so simple, even a Realtor can do it.

Recommendations:  Read to the point of understanding, The Millionaire Real Estate Agent.  Go to this page and spend some time.  It’s free and it is all about getting and getting rid of listings.

Russell has been an Associate Broker with John Hall & Associates since 1978 and ranks in the top 1% of all agents in the U.S. Most recently The Wall Street Journal recognized the Top 200 Agents in America, awarding Russell # 25 for number of units sold. Russell has been featured in many books such as, "The Billion Dollar Agent" by Steve Kantor and "The Millionaire Real Estate Agent" by Gary Keller and has often been a featured speaker for national conventions and routinely speaks at various state and local association conventions. Visit him also at nohasslelisting.com and number1homeagent.com.

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26 Comments

26 Comments

  1. Benjamin Bach

    July 6, 2008 at 6:04 am

    Russel, have you seen Linda and Jim McKissack’s new book, Presentation Mastery for Realtors ? It’s definately not the textbook that the Millionaire Real Estate Agent is, but its a very good book about putting together a 7th level business.

  2. Jennifer in Louisville

    July 6, 2008 at 6:25 am

    I think the lure of “easy money”, and a low barrier of entry attracts a lot of persons that aren’t committed to the real estate industry.

    I suspect that about as much thinking as they do when considering the career is: “Well, I’ve failed at the other 3 or 4 jobs in my life – lets give real estate a whirl.”.

    A few small fees, a couple weeks of classes, and passing of a test later – and BAM! They are now a “real estate professional”.

    They don’t realize that it takes work to succeed (which is probably why they failed at previous careers).

  3. Mike Farmer

    July 6, 2008 at 6:32 am

    You can also be in the 7% with no listings or very few listings, so, what you say is true for the most part because most agents are trying to get listings, but it still remains that buyer agents can be in the top 7% by doing something different.

    Getting and getting rid of listings is not the sine qua non of success in real estate, except if you are mainly a listing agent — then, yes, getting and getting rid of listings is vital to success. However, if buyer agency is the main focus, then getting buyers and making transactions is vital to success.

  4. Chuck G

    July 6, 2008 at 7:53 am

    I agree with Mike F. Although it’s a little more difficult, you can certainly climb the performance charts by being primarily a buyer’s agent. In the ultra competitive city in which I make a living, there are a half dozen long-time Realtors who seem to get most of the listings. That will change over time, but if you’re going to survive during that transition, you’d better be bringing buyers to these listings.

    What’s interesting about these “top” agents is that not one of them has a blog, nor even understands the value of one. But where do I get my last four buyers? You got it…my blog. The times they are a-changing, and I firmly believe the old-school style of winning listings will be left out in the cold in the coming years.

  5. Elaine Reese

    July 6, 2008 at 8:30 am

    I don’t question that a few agents are doing most of the business, however, I suspect there’s more to the numbers if one digs a little deeper.

    In our market, the agents with the biggest volume have a team of 8-10 agents contributing to that volume that gets assigned under the name of just one agent. Therefore, the other 7-9 agents would show no volume giving a distorted viewpoint. If the volume of those big teams were divided by the number of team members, often those teams do less per person than many single agents.

    The other problem in stating agents without any volume is that it includes brokers and office managers who have a license but are non-selling agents. Our CEO has a license but has never sold a home. Our office managers have licenses, but are non-selling managers so they don’t compete with us. They would be included in your stats.

    There are also new-build reps who have a license, yet are no longer being recorded in the MLS sales volume.

    Then there are the retirees who get to keep their license without having to pay dues, yet, they mostly refer out any business from friends that happens to come their way.

    Bottom line, there are many caveats to quoting the number of agents without any sales. It would really be interesting to see how the numbers shake out if only the ACTIVE agents – those actually out pounding the streets for business – we able to be reviewed.

  6. Kimh

    July 6, 2008 at 9:21 am

    I would not be surprised if that number became 6% by the end of this year. Sad but true on selling ratios.

  7. Jonathan Dalton

    July 6, 2008 at 9:32 am

    But how can you tell who is active and who’s active but not really, Elaine? We’re seeing the change come here with folks who don’t renew and go to inactive status … beyond that, I don’t see how you can filter out the kindergarten teachers who have a license just for kicks and might get a deal a year from the folks really trying to make a living.

    I tend to agree with you on the team concept as it relates to the numbers … at the same time, I don’t think it’s a knock on the rainmakers if they’ve put together an infrastructure capable of doing a level of business that can’t be supported by a single agent. They also carry additional risk, depending on the scope of the organization, as their fixed costs are substantially higher than yours or mine.

    I know I need to get back to prospecting for listings … it’s been quite a while since I’ve tried because I’ve been kept busy with buyers. It’s a short-sighted view (with great results so far) but one I know I need to change.

  8. Eric Blackwell

    July 6, 2008 at 10:17 am

    First off, great quote Russell.

    Now to the heart of the matter. I think these numbers will change this year right around the time that each person has to re-up with their local board and pay fees. In Louisville that is October. I expect a drop in the # of agents on the rolls.

    We have a team in our office who is doing exactly as you suggest: Doing it differently. Listing. I went into the office on the 4th of July and guess who was there. Them. with three more contracts…

  9. Barry Cunningham

    July 6, 2008 at 11:05 am

    Hey mike..it’s happening again..uh oh…we agre wholeheartedly! Russell’s post is underscoring, IMO, why agents should be concentrating on the Buyer’s side of things rather than adding listings to an oversupplied market.
    Main job is still: get and keep customers…be it they be buyers all the better

  10. Jim Lee

    July 6, 2008 at 12:24 pm

    the 7% that do the 93% of the business are different from the other 93% that do 7% of the business; they have lots more money. ;->

    I believe there are lots of Realtors out there simply “playing office” so they say they have a job whether they make any, or little, money at it or not.

    Lots of housewifes, retirees, and more than a small share of bozos.

  11. Mike Farmer

    July 6, 2008 at 2:20 pm

    I’m going to get into your demographic yet, Barry.

  12. Eric- New Orleans Condos and Lofts

    July 6, 2008 at 4:04 pm

    Every market is a little different. In Louisiana which is not a bubble state or never had a bubble market. The number of agents is smaller than when I started 12 years ago. Its hard to make a living at it for many agents.

    Many just quit after Katrina to do other things. We had one agent that did 30 million by herself just say that is enough and walked away. She became an advocate of good government and causes that make a lot of sense.

    This is not every market as its much harder to break into the business. Many new agents are however doing well as they have good work habits. Hard work does tend to pay off in this business.

  13. Bill Lublin

    July 6, 2008 at 4:13 pm

    @ Jennifer;
    I think that has always been the case – real estate is a lousy job but a great career – too many people don;t get into it as a career, they think its a job where all oyu need to do is be present to be paid.

  14. Bill Lublin

    July 6, 2008 at 4:17 pm

    @ Mike Wouldn’t you agree that being a buyer agent is the same as being a listing agent? Its really about selling services rather then selling product.

    When I got in the business, because I was young, I found it easier to work with buyers then with sellers because their needs were generally more immediate, and satisfying those needs produced income more rapidly. When I got to a point where I couldn’t make much more money then unless I sold both ends of the transaction, I started listing (this was pre-buyer agency in my market) I didn;t realize that the major benefit of a large listing inventory is generating buyer leads, since most people don’t but the home the initially inquire on

  15. Bill Lublin

    July 6, 2008 at 4:20 pm

    Barry; I had to stop because I agree totally with your statement “Main job is still: get and keep customers”

    I partially agree with “…be it they be buyers all the better” – In any market, the benefit is always to have the type of customer that is in short supply. In a market like we had a few years ago, you wanted the listings because everyone had the buyers. Now you want the uyers because everyone has the listings – smart guys and gals always try to have both 😉

  16. Jonathan Dalton

    July 6, 2008 at 4:24 pm

    One of the conundrums here in Phoenix is one of eight homes is an REO property and that’s where the most activity is. These are most sellable listings. I’ve got a backroad in through my company but that’s about it …

    There’s good and bad to the bank-owned side of things. If the banks pay the invoices quickly, great. If not … well, I hear the sucking sound coming out of my own wallet again.

  17. Richard Johnston, REMAX - Sherman Oaks

    July 6, 2008 at 5:06 pm

    “In fact, so simple, even a Realtor can do it.”

    Now that is a funny statement. Thanks for making us laugh!

  18. Mike Farmer

    July 6, 2008 at 6:02 pm

    @Bill — that was pretty much my point, that’s why I disagreed with the emphasis on “getting and getting rid of listings”. However, buyer agency is not just for new agents — it can be a main source of business, or THE source of business. I’ve been doing it for 13 years. I take a few listings, mainly from friends, but my main source of business is buyer agency and working with investors.

  19. Paula Henry

    July 6, 2008 at 8:14 pm

    Russell – I originally heard this 1/3 figure earlier this year when a broker friend came back from Washington DC. When you look at it as 1/3, it seems like a lot, but when I look around at the industry and even those in my office – I know it’s true.

    Although I prefer listings, my business is 50/50. It’s a good thing right now. I’m working my way into the 7%.

    I subscribed to the RSS for your site, but have been unable to manage my feed reader, so thanks for the link.

  20. Eric Blackwell

    July 7, 2008 at 9:13 am

    Paula-
    That is a good point. Simply look at your office or those around you (more in my case) and you can see that the 33% number is real.

    Best

    Eric

  21. Jennifer Rathbun

    July 7, 2008 at 9:14 pm

    If everyone that is not productive got out of the business, what would happen to our fees? Would they skyrocket and and put even more people out of business. I know you want to linit the club, but as a new agent trying to break into the business, any more fees are going to make it hard right now. Knowing AG people are now yelling, “yes! Get out! Less for you. More for us!” Sorry, not going to happen!

    I’m a 3rd generation realtor. I’ve had 4 brokers in the family. 2 Managing brokers. 1 Education director. I’m in the business. It’s just going to take time to catch up.

    But even if I don’t make it to the elite 7%, I’m ok with that – and so are many other agents. I’m here to help the community. I’m here to help my family. I’m here because I like mingling with my Real Estate Comrads. And I’m not going down without a fight!

  22. Arlington real estate guy

    July 8, 2008 at 6:52 am

    I must say that Russell, despite all this awesome contributions to bloodhound and agentgenius and the writers thereof, is still stuck in the past when it comes to opining that you must get and get rid of listings. Perhaps that used to be the case, but now it certainly is not. Most listing agents are nothing more than data entry agents:
    1) No exposure for the home except using their listing to market themselves in the newspaper as newspaper ads do almost next to nothing to sell homes–yes it’s a raquet for most “listing agents”
    2) crappy amateur photography by themselves or a sucky vendor of small, dark, blurry photos
    3) listings that are not even properly entered into the MLS with adequate info for selling agents or buyers
    4) etc.

    To those of use who actually know how to get a home a TON of exposure it’s pathetic and a joke and not even worth respecting….

    For the fraction, and I mean fraction of listing agents who actually know what they’re doing my hats are off to you definitely. I suppose the same thing could be said of many selling agents (buyer) as well to be fair. I’ve seen people overpay by $100,000 for a condo who had idiot agents by their side.

    With changes in the industry and how consumers procure information, the buyer side is now potentially as lucrative and the listing side. I’m on track to sell 35 homes this year. How many listings have I had–not a damn one. How many open houses–0. I’m not calling any of the warm leads either–about 2000 registrations this year. If I had a team following up who knows what would happen–I’m working on it with baby steps.

    For those that can generate a bunch of warm leads (100s and 1000s) and collar grabbers and convert them into clients and disperse them to their teams, there are no limits on the buyer side anymore. And with proper techniques of follow up, these “buyer” agents will within a few years be listing a lot of property as well, but probably they will be more effective at their fiduciary duties as a listing agent instead of promoting themselves.

    Russell, the world has changed. It is not all about the listings anymore. I’m sure it used to be, but seriously, after all your exposure to new models of real estate open your mind.

    J

  23. Jim Lee

    November 17, 2008 at 7:29 am

    The rich too are ‘different’; they have more money just like the hard working 7%.

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Business Marketing

Simple ways to improve your organic reach on Facebook

(BUSINESS MARKETING) Facebook continues to make businesses and pages pay to play, but businesses still have a shot of improving their organic reach, according to experts in the field.

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Facebook open on laptop with white desk and small potted plant, open to organic reach.

Facebook organic reach is not dead, but you will need to work harder to get eyes on your pages. Here’s a rundown of what experts are saying will help you reach your audience. Facebook is still the top social media platform that marketers use and where consumers tend to look for and follow brand pages. So don’t despair!

Those running Facebook business pages have been seeing ever diminishing returns on their effort at getting their content in front of their audiences and fans, especially since around 2016. Yet Facebook remains the #1 platform for building an audience. Once upon a time, Facebook was incredibly fertile soil to grow our entrepreneurial and creative gardens in, at little to no cost to us. Many businesses are seeing a drastic reduction in reach, meaning that a tiny percentage of people are seeing our posts, even among those who follow our pages.

Have you ever heard something like, “The first one’s always free; that’s how they get you”? This has long been a business philosophy to hook prospective customers, used by savvy marketers and drug dealers alike. Facebook went and took that to the next level, introducing an easy-to-use platform where almost anyone could find and engage with their target audiences of customers, fans, members, and more.

Of course, there had to be a reckoning, and now that Facebook has more than 2.6 billion active monthly users worldwide, they continue to change the rules. Consider the amount of users and the amount of posts being made, and it makes more sense that Facebook tries to narrow the audience for any single post to a reasonable chunk. Otherwise, our brains would explode (okay, my words, not an actual medical opinion). Really, you don’t need to reach everybody, because not everybody is interested in what you’re offering. You need to reach the right people who are going to engage and build a smaller, engaged loyal group of diehard customers.

Community is key
Here are some of the latest tips and best practices to increase organic reach in 2021, provided by Facebook pros. Mark Zuckerburg keeps bringing up the concept of community, and the algorithm favors engagement, not only on Facebook, but across platforms. Nobody wants products and services constantly jammed in their faces.

This is a conversation, not a one-way portal into your customers’ brains and wallets. A constant barrage of salesy content, urging people to buy buy buy, grows real tedious real fast. “If you build it, they will come.” Only instead of a baseball field in the middle of nowhere, work to build a community.

Ask yourself these questions:

  • Are you creating conversations?
  • Are you using your platform to act as a resource and provide helpful or inside information in your niche or area of expertise?
  • Are you asking your audience what they want and would like to see more of from you?
  • Are you taking current events and trends into account, reacting to local/national/world news at all, and creating timely posts?
  • Are you using a variety of post types (photos, videos, links) and taking advantage of Facebook’s built in post tools?
  • Are you taking data into account for what content people are responding to favorably and when?
  • Do you ever invest in Facebook ads or boosted posts for important content or events?

Find the answer to these questions to reevaluate your strategy, work on promoting a dialogue with your audience, and ideally you will see more engagement on your pages, fruitful interactions that ultimately lead to loyal customers and bigger sales.

Create Conversations
Zuckerburg himself comes back to this point repeatedly in his regular updates on the state of all things Facebook and how the algorithm works, saying Facebook will “prioritize posts that spark conversations and meaningful interactions between people.” Not every industry lends itself to deep thoughts, but it can be simple enough to engage your audience with community questions. People love giving their opinions or talking about a shared interest.

Community questions can be fun, lively, and create fun interaction between your audience and the business. A simple This or That question posted on one of the background color templates can get the conversation started. If people don’t have to invest a lot of time to answer, then great! Depending on the industry, these can be easy one-offs: Red wine or white? Beach vacation or mountains? TikTok or Reels? Mac or PC? Harley Davidson hogs or Kawasaki crotch rockets? Early bird or night owl?

Hot takes, unpopular opinions, are another way to get people chatting. I’m not espousing trying to stir up controversy here, unless that is appropriate for your business, but people get emotional as all get out for something as simple as pineapple on pizza or beans in chili. What’s a popular or common opinion in your field? How can you introduce a hot take to get people chatting? For an entrepreneurial page, you could put out a hot take on a cluttered desk, or making lists, or standing desks.

Sure, these conversations may start out superficial, but who knows? When people begin interacting on your page more, they begin seeing more that you post, and that’s when you can introduce something a little weightier, asking them to share their expertise or advice on a relevant topic.

Become a resource
Whether your business is a science journal, digital marketing, interior designing, or a Texas Hill Country resort, your business and your audience is unique. Real estate agencies have become good at this, so we’ll use them as an example. If you are selling or leasing properties in Austin or San Francisco, sell the area. Don’t only post the properties you’re selling or agent profiles. Post those, yes, but also post industry news and local attractions.

When people are interested in moving to a new city or a new neighborhood or investing in opening a business there, they need to know why the area is attractive. What is the business climate? What are the financial perks associated with living there? What is the area known for (local restaurants, live music hiking trails, swimming holes, no traffic)? Has the area made a list for quality of life, affordability, great job prospects in X industry? Sharing blogs, articles, infographics, videos, and photos highlighting any of these can help your page serve the interests of your target audience. This is a good thing.

Ask your audience
This is a simple tip for keeping things closer to your audience’s interests, helping you identify areas where your page may be lacking–and opportunities for growth, and keeping the conversation going. Be careful not to overuse this one, but it’s an important tool.

  • Try a simple question, such as “What would you like to see more of on this page?”
  • Create a poll, which is much faster to answer, and helps you narrow answers down to what you really want to know.
  • Similar to the community questions, ask them to share something that has helped them. A classic example would be “What is the best entrepreneurial advice anyone has even given you?” Or “Please share some tips to fight procrastination.” Or “What is the top time-saving tool you use in your business (or for scheduling)?” Having your page followers (and hopefully others) chat with each other this way is helpful for them and for your organic reach.

Take current events and trends into account
This one’s simple: Read the room. This goes both ways. If there is renewed interest in, say, downtown lofts or sea shanty dances on TikTok, can you use this momentary heat to bring interest to your page? On the other hand, if there is a natural disaster, tragedy, or financial crash that has caused great suffering in an area? That’s a good moment to review your scheduled posts and delete or postpone anything that could be unintentionally triggering or offensive.

Some types of businesses are better suited to jumping on the latest trend. Do you have a bar or restaurant with a fairly young, social media savvy crowd? Go ahead, Photoshop that Bernie-Sanders-in-mittens image sitting on your patio (only if you can do it as the trend is hitting). Are you targeting an area that has recently been hit by extended power outages? I’m sorry to tell you, but this is not the time to promote that popup restaurant where diners experience eating in the dark.

Mix it up and use native Facebook tools
Of course you want to stay on brand, but please don’t get caught in a rut where all of your posts are one type. Consistency is one thing, but beware that this doesn’t turn into monotony. Assess where you can change things up. Add photos, videos, links to relevant blogs and articles, or community questions. Different people respond differently to different types of input. Use all the tools at your disposal to generate interest, draw people in, and get them reacting to and engaging with your page.

Facebook and all social media platforms have built in tools. They want you to use them. Often, this is a Facebook effort to capitalize on a similar, competing app. Trust me when I say, you will get brownie points (higher reach) when you take the time to use these native tools. Facebook Watch, Facebook Live, Facebook Stories, even using a background color template from the Facebook options, are all ways to show Facebook you’re paying attention and want to optimize the tools they are giving you.

Use provided data
You need to be able to look for patterns, evaluate the factors that made a particular post popular, and know when your customers and followers are likely to see your page and interact with it. Facebook provides a number of insights in the platform, but there are numerous external marketing tools you can purchase or sometimes use for free (depending on how many pages and platforms you are running, and how in-depth you want your data to be).

Posting willy nilly is not the most effective way to be. Decide what data is useful to you and make time to study it, and be willing to make changes to your content strategy based on the data. Like many other aspects of marketing, expanding your organic reach is a mixture of art and science, a balancing act of intuition and cold, hard numbers. Use them.

Consider paying to play
I know, I know, this story is about organic and not paid reach, but the fact is strategically paying for a Facebook ad or boosting a post to highlight a launch, event, special deal, or other important news will bring more people to your page. If the other tips, tools, and best practices referred to here are in place, once they find your page, you have the ability to keep their attention through organic means.

Keep on truckin’
These tips should help you expand your page’s organic reach. More importantly, they should help you build and support a community, earn loyal followers and customers, and generate positive buzz about your business. Keep working on becoming a resource and sharing helpful information. Have fun with it and experiment with new media and types of posts. Know yourself. Know your audience.

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Business Marketing

Buffer’s four-day workweek experiment: Boost or bust?

(BUSINESS MARKETING) After trying out a four-day workweek last year, Buffer is moving forward with the format going into 2021, citing increase in productivity and work-life balance.

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The typical five-day workweek is a thing of the past for Buffer, at least for now. The company has decided to implement a four-day workweek for the “foreseeable future.”

Last year, the company surveyed its employees to see how they are dealing with the ever-changing landscape of the pandemic and the anxiety and stress that came along with it. They soon learned employees didn’t always feel comfortable or like they could take time off.

Employees felt guilty for taking PTO while trying to meet deadlines. Juggling work and suddenly becoming a daycare worker and teacher for their children at the same time was stressful. So, Buffer looked for a solution to help give employees more time and flexibility to get adjusted to their new routines.

Four-Day Workweek Trials

In May, Buffer started the four-day workweek one-month trial to focus on teammates’ well-being. “This four-day workweek period is about well-being, mental health, and placing us as humans and our families first,” said Buffer CEO and co-founder Joel Gascoigne in a company blog post.

“It’s about being able to pick a good time to go and do the groceries, now that it’s a significantly larger task. It’s about parents having more time with kids now that they’re having to take on their education. This isn’t about us trying to get the same productivity in fewer days,” Gascoigne said.

Buffer’s one-month trial proved to be successful. Survey data from before and after the trial showed higher autonomy and lower stress levels. In addition, employee anecdotal stories showed an increase in worker happiness.

With positive results, Buffer turned the trial into a long-term pilot through the end of 2020. This time, the trial would focus on Buffer’s long-term success.

“In order to truly evaluate whether a four-day workweek can be a success long-term, we need to measure productivity as well as individual well-being,” wrote Director of People Courtney Seiter. “Teammate well-being was our end goal for May. Whether that continues, and equally importantly, whether it translates into customer and company results, will be an exciting hypothesis to test.”

Trial Results

Company Productivity
Buffer’s shorter workweek trials showed employees felt they had a better work-life balance without compromising work productivity. According to the company’s survey data, almost 34% of employees felt more productive, about 60% felt equally as productive, and only less than 7% of employees felt less productive.

However, just saying productivity is higher isn’t proof. To make sure the numbers added up, managers were asked about their team’s productivity. Engineering managers reported that a decrease in total coding days didn’t show a decrease in output. Instead, there was a significant output increase for product teams, and Infrastructure and Mobile saw their output double.

The Customer Advocacy team, however, did see a decline in output. Customer service is dependent on customer unpredictability so this makes sense. Still, the survey showed about 85% to 90% of employees felt as productive as they would have been in a five-day workweek. Customers just had to wait slightly longer to receive replies to their inquiries.

Employee Well-Being
With more time and control of their schedules, Buffer’s survey shows an increase in individual autonomy and decreased stress levels reported by employees. And, the general work happiness for the entire company has been consistent throughout 2020.

What’s in store for 2021?

Based on positive employee feedback and promising company results, Buffer decided it will continue the company-wide four-day workweek this year.

“The four-day work week resulted in sustained productivity levels and a better sense of work-life balance. These were the exact results we’d hoped to see, and they helped us challenge the notion that we need to work the typical ‘nine-to-five,’ five days a week,” wrote Team Engagement Manager Nicole Miller.

The four-day workweek will continue in 2021, but the company will also be implementing adjustments based on the pilot results.

For most teams, Fridays will be the default day off. For teams that aren’t project-based, their workweek will look slightly different. As an example, the Customer Advocacy team will follow a different schedule to avoid customer reply delays and ticket overflow. Each team member will still have a four-day workweek and need to meet their specific targets. They will just have a more flexible schedule.

Companies who follow this format understand that output expectations will be further defined by area and department level. Employees who aren’t meeting their performance objectives will have the option to choose a five-day workweek or might be asked to do so.

If needed, Fridays will also serve as an overflow workday to finish up a project. Of course, schedules will be evaluated quarterly to make sure productivity is continuing to thrive and employees are still satisfied.

But, Miller says Buffer is “establishing ambitious goals” that might “push the limits” of a four-day work week in 2021. With the world slowly starting to normalize, who knows when a four-day workweek might reach its conclusion.

“We aren’t sure that we’ll continue with the four-day workweeks forever, but for now, we’re going to stick with it as long as we are still able to hit our ambitious goals,” wrote Miller.

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Business Marketing

Should your content management system go headless?

(BUSINESS MARKETING) You may be familiar with your typical content management system, but had you heard of a ‘headless’ model? Let’s dig into it together.

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Person using content management system with hands on keyboard and small bit of desktop visible.

At some point, you have probably worked with a content management system (CMS) like WordPress or Drupal. If you haven’t already, you at least know that this computer software is used to manage website content.

But, have you ever heard of a headless content management system before? We didn’t. So, we set out to find out what it’s all about and how beneficial, or not, it can be for your company.

What is headless CMS?

Unlike your classic CMS, headless CMS is a back-end only content management system. It decouples where your content is stored and authored (body) from the front-end where your content is displayed (head).

This CMS isn’t tied to a particular output like a web page. Content is transmitted as data over an application programming interface (API). It’s a content repository that delivers content seamlessly to any device.

Benefits of Headless CMS

More versatile
Headless CMS isn’t your classic “monolithic” CMS so you aren’t constrained to an all-in-one system that might work for websites but not mobile devices.

Content is consumed by customers in more than one place now. Headless CMS provides a more versatile way to deliver multi-channel content to websites, Android and iOS apps, and even IoT (internet of things), like a smartwatch or in-store kiosk.

Businesses will benefit from this because only one back-end is needed to manage and publish content for different services and products.

No need for specialized developers
Developers aren’t tied to a specific programming language or framework. A developer can choose between using Javascript, PHP, Ruby, or any language they prefer.

If you already have a talented developer, you don’t have to scramble to find someone else who specializes in a specific system or language you are moving to. Your current developer can do the job for you in the best way they know-how.

Better Security
Security is important. Not being married to the front-end, headless CMS has a security advantage a regular CMS doesn’t. Usually, content provided to a headless CMS is read-only, and the admin portion lives on a different server and domain.

With the back-end detached from the presentation layer, there is a smaller target area to attack. Also, layers of code can be used to hide the content-delivering API making it safer than a traditional CMS.

Real-time collaboration
With two separate systems, content editors and web developers can work concurrently. This shortens a project’s timeline and helps get your product and services to market quicker. Also, content editors don’t have to spend more time creating the same content for each system. Designers and developers can take care of that.
Downsides of Headless CMS

As with anything, headless CMS isn’t perfect and isn’t for everyone. It has its disadvantages.

More technical
Little technical involvement is called for in a traditional CMS. As a result, the tool can be picked up quickly by almost anyone.

A deeper understanding of CMS, coding languages, and front-end technologies is needed when using headless CMS. You must have a developer that can build the web or app just for you.

Increased maintenance
With the body separated from the head, there are two systems to maintain. Implementation and maintenance could potentially become complex.

Bigger price tag
Building a system from scratch costs time and money. With a traditional CMS, there is one account, and, most likely, one payment. With headless CMS, you’ll have multiple payments for the CMS, a developer, and the infrastructure running your website or app.

Your custom CMS also isn’t coming from a pre-built content management system. All that hard work takes time (and patience) to get it done right.

Conclusion

Headless CMS lets you create a unique user experience and allow for cross-platform publishing, but it isn’t a one-size-fits-all content management system.

Before you jump ships, take inventory of all your content needs. Does your content need to be published on different platforms? Will a simple stand-alone website work for you? Only you can decide what works best with your business, but we hope this information helps.

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