The Keller Williams Story

The Keller Williams Story

Today, more than any other time in real estate history, agent and broker goals seem to be diametrically opposed.

Real estate agents require their commission programs to be exceedingly high, yet brokers are becoming more and more aware that this presents a true profitability squeeze: two people can’t save the same dollar!

Solving A Riddle

Gary Keller and Joe Williams established KELLER WILLIAMS in 1983 as a traditional real estate company. The firm had grown to over 30 associates by 1986. Due to the pressures from 100% concepts, they found themselves faced with the commission-profitability paradox. Their interdependent approach was a creative and team-oriented response to this riddle.

No Compromise Approach

Gary and Joe invited their associates to a meeting where they outlined the commission-profitability squeeze paradox; however, both broker and associate determined that neither was willing to compromise their earning potential. The resulting unanimous solution combined the best of all worlds with a progressive approach. Rather than "compromise" associate and broker goals the "team" incorporated the two. The result—the office grew to over 100 associates in less than five months. Few would argue that the inventive KELLER WILLIAMS programs they designed are some of the past decade’s biggest advances in broker-associate relationships and income opportunities.

Combining the Incompatible

The desire to engineer a truly win-win company with no limits on associate career and income opportunities led the reasons for the change. The KELLER WILLIAMS Team discovered a way to champion the highest possible commission structure within a full support environment, with expansive profit potentials for the broker and associate. By doing so they created a method for combining the incompatible—achieving both associate and broker career and income goals. They then went one step further by advocating the concept that a commission program would be just one form of compensation associates would have—not the only one.

Unexpected Demand

The KELLER WILLIAMS System became triumphant. KELLER WILLIAMS associates asked the firm to expand their opportunities by offering the system to brokers in other cities. In fact, the first affiliate broker was brought in by an associate. The San Antonio Market Center was so successful its first year they received their Chamber’s "Pride In Progress" award for being the area’s fastest growing new business.

The resulting demand for the KELLER WILLIAMS System was unexpected, and as a result, KELLER WILLIAMS did not emerge overnight. The entire company is the result of a massive commitment from a highly successful group of real estate agents and brokers.

And it was commitment of time—the time to develop the best, to reject any shortcoming and to rethink, redo and continuously perfect a system, policy or program until it was right for KELLER WILLIAMS and its associates.

After this extensive benchmarking and trending development experience, KELLER WILLIAMS created a new level of real estate company. Your company!

~~If the company successfully develops its associates, then its associates will successfully develop the company.

An End to Compromise Between Broker and Associate

What made this task so significant is the realization that compromise is inherent in so many real estate companies. For instance, high commission plans usually mean no support, no education and no team environment. Superior support, education and team environment usually lead to low commission plans. Neither compromise creates a win-win company.

A Clear Mission

KELLER WILLIAMS has developed a clear sense of its own vision and direction for the future.

KELLER WILLIAMS is a training and consulting company that also provides the franchise systems, products and services, which lead to productivity & profitability.

KELLER WILLIAMS thinks like a top producer, acts like a trainer/consultant and focuses all its activities on productivity & profitability.

MISSION To build careers worth having and business worth owning.

VISION To be THE real estate company of choice for a new generation of professional real estate associates and broker owners.



•To be a training and consulting company that also provides the franchise system, products and services that lead to productivity and profitability.

•Proper Implementation of the KELLER WILLIAMS Model

BELIEF Real Estate is a local business driven by individual real estate agents and their local image with their centers of influence.

BEHAVIOR KELLER WILLIAMS thinks like a top producer, acts like a trainer-consultant and focuses all its activities on service, productivity and profitability.

Our Relationship

KELLER WILLIAMS is an "interdependent" company. Our philosophy is that our associates are uniquely positions, both as our customer and as our partner. Together, we have but one goal—to dominate our markets, memorably and profitably.

The Design

KELLER WILLIAMS is designed to achieve the highest commission split possible within a full service company and make a reasonable profit. We share that profit with our associates and remain flexible enough to meet the ever-changing needs of our associates, customers and marketplace. To accomplish these standards of operations, the following premise was established:

The company office should operate as a Market Center designed to service agents and customers based on that which the agent needs to operate his/her business.

A survey of active real estate agents and their companies revealed the following:

Clients Coming to the Office

94% of the agents said 0-1 of the sellers came to their office in a month. 67% said their sellers never come to their office. 2% said only one seller a month came to their office.

Where Contracts are Written

98% of the agents said at least 50% of the contracts were written in the field. 49% said all of their contracts were written in the field. 11% said 95% were written in the field. 38% said at least 50% were written in the field.

What is Important to Agents

90% of the agents listed either training and support, leadership and inspiration or proper company image as the most important role the company can play in their career. 59% said the most important role the company can play is training and support. 17% said leadership and inspiration. 17% said proper company image.


63% of the agents said they prospected one hour or less a day. 17% said they do no prospecting at all. 46% said they prospected one hour a day.

Open Houses

76% of the agents said they hold two or less open houses a week. 17% said they do not hold open houses at all. 36% said they hold one a week. 13% said they hold two a week.

Common Mistakes

79% of the agents said the most common mistakes made in building a career were not goal setting, not planning, not prospecting enough or not following up consistently.

Conclusion: Real estate agents need a work environment designed around their needs with the savings passed on to them. The KELLER WILLIAMS Market Center is not necessarily an office, but rather a place for agents to use as a base of operation. Calls are received and messages taken; management support is provided; research is done; and customers are met. Our sales associates work from the office and from the marketplace. Success always occurs in the marketplace.

Compensation for the Next Generation

The KELLER WILLIAMS compensation concept is one of a long list of "Firsts." Building upon this heritage of innovation, the compensation concept is a milestone in agent income opportunities.

KELLER WILLIAMS is committed to the concept of associate compensation being more than just commission programs. This is where other companies stop and KELLER WILLIAMS begins. This commitment is what lays the conceptual foundation for our innovative alternative to traditional and 100% companies. Our dedication to continually explore providing our associates the highest compensation opportunities in the industry is an entirely new dimension in real estate.

High Commission – No Risk Concept

KELLER WILLIAMS’ compensation concept was designed by top producers for top producers. After months of study, these top producers determined the commission program the company would embrace:

The highest commission program possible in a local market within a full-support company with no required risk to the associate.

The impact of such a concept is that associates can receive all of the benefits of high commission programs and full-support programs without any of the negatives associated with either.

Profit Sharing – Unexpected Innovation

Few would disagree the real estate agent is the foundation of a real estate company. Without them, there would be no company. KELLER WILLIAMS goes further than any other real estate organization in recognizing the significance of this by offering an income opportunity unparalleled in the real estate industry.

KELLER WILLIAMS was searching for an additional way to reward those associates who build the company. Unexpectedly, the result was the most significant compensation innovation in real estate history: an open-ended profit sharing program. This program allows any KELLER WILLIAMS associate, owner, Market Center Team Leader ("TL"), local and national employed staff, regional director or affiliate broker to participate in the profits they help create, anywhere in the world, a KELLER WILLIAMS Market Center exists without assuming any financial risks.

The Benefit of a Full Loop™

KELLER WILLIAMS continuously has two associate product and service goals:

• To anticipate the most important real estate products and services trends.
• To develop these products and services first.

We accomplish both of these goals through our Full Loop Products and Services Planning Process™. Countless hours are spent each year by our associates working through this process. KELLER WILLIAMS associates and brokers help analyze trends in 10 key areas:
II.Training and Education
III.Literature and Marketing Pieces
IV.Institutional and Promotional Media Advertising
V.Relocation and Referral
VI.Ancillary Business Opportunities
IX.Marketing and Customer Programs
X.Compensation and Income Opportunities

Through this Full Loop™ process, KELLER WILLIAMS turns the products and services recommendation and quality control process over to its associates and affiliate brokers. The process provides the "from the marketplace" feedback and direction needed to develop effective business tools when they’re needed. It’s part of the culture. Always has been—always will be.

World Class Image

Countless measures have been taken to build KELLER WILLIAMS’ world-class image. KELLER WILLIAMS believes the key to a successful career is to establish the right image up front and then to strengthen it over time. The company supports the philosophy that the two most important image criteria for a Market Center are:

• It be local and regional.
• The agent’s image be first—the company’s second.

It has taken years for the real estate industry to prove this and yet most real estate companies ignore it. Real estate is a local industry—not national. It is also a people industry and the fact is, most people do business with people—not companies. These concepts are the heart of the image of KELLER WILLIAMS.

Tailor-Made Education

As you’d expect in the in the industry’s finest real estate company, both education and training are tailor-made for our associates. Through our Keller Williams University, KELLER WILLIAMS associates have the opportunity to receive the very best in real estate education. Both experienced and new associates are provided extensive opportunities to further their education on a weekly, monthly and annual basis.

Local and Regional

Contrary to most, KELLER WILLIAMS views the real estate industry as a local and regional business. For this reason, it has taken unprecedented measures to design the firm as a team of regional operations. In turn, the goal of each region is to become a major regional power by building major real estate forces in local markets.

This strategy endows our associates with the strongest possible support system in the industry. Everyone wins.

A True System

In the Market Center, KELLER WILLIAMS has created the industry’s strongest long term economic model time tested and proven. This was achieved only after thorough research and practical experience.

For years there have been only two major real estate office economic models—traditional and 100%-desk fee. After investigating both systems carefully, KELLER WILLIAMS associates chose to take the best from both. The result was a better win-win economic model, which is a hybrid of the two.

Our associates receive all of the support advantages of "traditional" while gaining more compensation advantages than just a "desk fee" concept. For the broker it provides the lowest financial risk operating system possible within a full-support company. The KELLER WILLIAMS economic and operating system delivers where others fall short.

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Contact Information

Photo of The Courtney Orlando Group Real Estate
The Courtney Orlando Group
Keller Williams Towne Square Realty
222 Mount Airy Road
Basking Ridge NJ 07920
732.921.1825 (Direct)
908.766.0085 (Office)
Fax: Dillon: 732-803-2522