Keller Williams is a unique company that puts agents first and works tirelessly to identify and meet those needs. As one of the most innovative and successful real estate companies in the industry, KW is the grand experiment of Gary Keller. The origins of our company have roots in the early experiences of GK in the real estate business. The Keller Williams background is ‘built for agents by agents’.
How It All Started – Keller Williams History From The BeginningIn 1979, Gary moved to Austin, Texas to begin his real estate career. He loved teaching and training so much, he decided his career would have much more of an impact in management. He wanted to help agents achieve their business and life goals. Working for the #1 brokerage in Austin, Gary was moving up the ladder very quickly in his company, but after being promoted to the vice president of expansion, he quit. The vision of the company he was with was that the agents worked for the company. Gary disagreed saying the company worked for the agents. His vision showed that if you work on building the business of the agent, the brokerage would grow as big as it wanted. “Companies are nothing more than people. People create everything inside an organization and what’s going to make us better in the long term is the way our people think. Our goal is the tap the way people think and take advantage of that thought process to put to use for everyone.” In 1983, Gary’s grand experiment began. Partnering with Joe Williams, Keller Williams was created with just a few associates in a tiny office. Within two years, KW had become the largest single office real estate company in the metro area. All seemed well, but the market crashed soon after and after losing half of his top agents to other companies, Gary decided it was time to create a new model that revolved around the agents. Asking his agents this question, Gary carved out the new Keller Williams real estate business model. “How can we run the company in such a way that you achieve everything you want and at the same time we achieve everything we want?” What did they come up with?
The New Keller Williams Business Model
- the best possible commission structure
- treat agents as business partners
- profit sharing with the agents that help grow the company
- give full access to financial information to all associates (open books)
- formalize input on how the office should be run via the ALC (Agent Leadership Council)
- have supportive management/staff that consults, trains and promotes teamwork
- have the highest level of training in the industry (#1 in real estate agent training)