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So what makes an exceptional BDM?

Increasing revenue, driving business growth and securing market share is always a hot topic within the Real Estate industry. Competition between local agents is fierce and as a result, exceptional Business Development Managers are in high demand.

What exactly is it, that makes a Business Development Manager exceptional, you may ask? This is a subject very close to my heart. As a former BDM with over ten years’ industry experience, please allow me to share my thoughts with you …

A BDM is not a Property Manager

In no way, is that expressed in derogatory terms. It is, however, a common mistake made by business owners when recruiting a BDM.

The skill set of a BDM is vastly different to that of a PM and is completely aligned with that of a sales person. It is vitally important that business owners follow the same recruitment and selection process for a BDM, as they would for a Sales Consultant. They must be:

  • target driven and results focused
  • champions at regular prospecting
  • able to set the appointment
  • effective users of scripts and dialogues
  • able to convert the appraisal into a listing
  • able to maintain relationships with existing clients whilst developing and extending their database of clients


Savvy BDMs are those with strong business and developer contacts; particularly when they have established themselves as a trusted adviser within their referral networks.

What is a BDM?

A BDM is essentially a sales person who just happens to work for the rental department!

They will perform at their peak when they are solely focused on:


BDMs must always be ‘client ready’ in terms of their responsiveness to new business enquiries. It is a definite game changer to have quick turnaround times, from a prospective Landlord’s point of view, when comparing with other local agents.

As such, I am a huge advocate for the BDM listing the property, then immediately handing over to a leasing consultant or a property manager. This must be treated with care and transparency from the outset, with exceptional communication between all parties, for the warm transfer to be successful. Ultimately, the Landlord should feel supported by more than one contact point within the business – rather than the old ‘list and flick’ (I shudder at the thought!).

Longer term, exceptional BDMs will execute a solid business plan to grow their team/department and may even run EBUs with support staff such as: PA’s, administration and marketing assistants, leasing consultants, etc. This is where the big business kicks in and the rent roll gains solid and consistent growth momentum. Happy listing!

Want to find out what you can do differently to support your BDM to achieve exceptional results, as they bridge the gap between your Property Management and Sales Departments? The team at REAL+ are ready when you are! Email us or give us a call on 02 4355 4999.

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