Is there something known as a perfect real estate team?

November 11, 2017

My goals are just a set of dreams, that I hand over to my team. I develop real estate. They develop MAG lifestyles.

I am often asked what I look for when I hire for MAG. My most repeated answer? “Human beings, NOT CVs.” Personalities of people are more important for me than their qualifications; and there are certain characteristics that define my dream team. My motto is not to just hire great individuals, but people who complement the players in our team – it is a collection of passionate, honest, hard working men and women who make our team great.

There is a saying in Africa that has stuck with me all these years. Someone wise said “If you want to go fast, you should go alone, but if you want to go far, you must go together.” In today’s world of fast planning and even faster delivery, it’s easy to sometimes forget that success takes vision and time; and that we must take the time to choose the right people to accompany us on the journey to achieving our goals.

The first and foremost aspect I look for in my team members is integrity. Their trust in me and my vision and loyalty to my organisation single pointedly defines if they are someone I would consider to be part of my team. Warren Buffet explains this in a humorous quote when he says, “Somebody once said that in looking for people to hire, you look for three qualities: integrity, intelligence, and energy. And if you don’t have the first, the other two will kill you. You think about it; it’s true. If you hire somebody without [integrity], you really want them to be dumb and lazy.”

That brings me to the next personality traits that matter – positivity and emotional intelligence. The understanding of people and how to manage them is what makes teams. Otherwise it’s just a group of people who perform tasks that are assigned to them. In addition to that, they must be optimistic and have a positive energy about them, which they spread to their colleagues; because nothing ever happened when people only complained about the way things are, but the world progressed when they found solutions to problems and ways to implement them.

However, the one aspect that in my opinion is key in determining the flow of work, is effective communication. Whether it’s the vision or instructions to perform a task, clear and concise communication is what puts things into gear and produces results. If the construction manager doesn’t clearly indicate the ratio of water to sand, the building will never be constructed. At every step of the way, it is communication that helps put one foot forward after another.

I personally am a supporter of strong work ethic. Whether that’s maintaining work hours or delivering on-time as promised, I believe in maintaining discipline in work and expectation, and ask the same from my team. At the same time, we need to also be flexible to take things as they come and make the best out of a situation; because when we plan a project that may take years to realise, we cannot stipulate the advancement in technology, in people’s finances or the political situation. Hence my team and I strive to be as flexible to ride every wave of challenge. Ultimately that is what builds trust and increases dependability.

I can, without a moment of hesitation, leave my dreams with my teams; and watch them develop professionally as well as personally. So there you have it, for everyone who wants to know the secret to my success – it is my people – it is my team. These are the people I can depend upon. These are the ones whom I trust to make my visions a reality.

– Talal M. AlGaddah is the Chief Executive Officer of MAG PD and CEO Middle East Awards’ ‘Young CEO of the Year’ – 2017.