Dependable business growth is harder to find for already established lettings and estate businesses. Once businesses have met their long-term goals, the path becomes unclear and purpose can be lost along the way. Many businesses often ‘grow for the sake of growing’, resulting in the silent lettings agency killer – complacency.

Being able to pinpoint WHY you aim to grow is the most important step in creating strategies for letting agency growth. Why? Because it gives letting agent owners a clear-cut aim, and from this, a way to scale their success. This may be because your business wants to develop upon your services and processes so that YOU can expand YOUR profits. 

A fantastic example in the letting industry would be Richard James Estate Agents. Managing Director, Sue Gidney is the epitome of continuous business growth! As an estate agency with already nine branches with four lettings arms, Sue’s achievements were already a success in itself.  

Striving for further success was a greater challenge to raise the bar EVEN HIGHER. Why? It becomes harder to see new routes to trial, new risks to take and with this, there is SO much more at stake for successful businesses like Richard James Estate.  

Richard James Estate Agency has over 70,000 contracts and is a model for letting agents across the UK. Want to know how one of the most successful letting agents UK have done this? See how Sue Gidney, Agent Rainmaker of the Year 2019 achieved this! 

Sue Gidney’s Growth Mindset 

How to avoid the Killer of Lettings Businesses: Complacency. 

1) Striving for Constant Enrichment  

Even with twenty yearsworth of experience within the lettings industry, Sue desired new knowledge on how to progress further. With a team that operated seamlessly, she aimed to add a greater sense of challenge into the equation. As a managing director, she evolved her team further, getting them to adapt to new and unique situations that had never been done before in her agency. At first, there was resistance in the beginning. Many letting agencies fall victim to the ‘if it’s not broken, don’t fix it’ attitude. Sue recognised through an AR workshop that she attended, that the way forward was to adopt the attitude, ‘if it’s working well, develop further on this method’. From this, Richard James Estate joined forces with Agent Rainmaker to work on developing their strong business elements! 

With an additional income of £2 million within two years of the Agent Rainmaker Programme, Sue proved to all letting agents that growth is exponential! With the goal of increasing this to £8 million, Sue Gidney sets a shining example to all industry professionals that aiming high and investing in this is the way forward! Even now, the agency aims to expand their sales division and portfolio acquisition.  

2) Having the Courage to Take the Plunge 

With more at stake as a larger business owner, taking risks and changing things up can feel quite literally, make or break. Sue mentioned that “tweaking the numbers” had a significant impact upon her agency. Adding new processes outside of the usual ‘tried and tested’ not only reinvigorated the working atmosphere; it also gave the team the opportunity to overcome new learning curves. The team was evolving with the new processes and structures, and from this, the risks had paid off phenomenally for the agency.  

3) Empowering your Letting Agents 

In order for Sue to lead her team towards greatness, overcoming the resistance and getting members to see the bigger picture, Sue was set on empowering her team. She delegated responsibilities to other people, away from micro-managing and onto focused growth. Giving team members accountability enables them to feel more a part of the journey, acting as though the business is their own 

This is evident in Sue’s discussion in one of the Agent Rainmaker Live Event lessons, Growth Strategies in Action. In this discussion, the one thing that Sue disagrees with about winning the Agent Rainmaker of the Year Award, was that the whole team was not engraved onto the award. Great leaders recognise that without their team, their success would not be possible.  

“Great leaders create more leaders” – Roy T Bennett 

At Richard James Estate, they incentivise their team and promote healthy competition. By shaking things up in the agency, Sue implemented one of Agent Rainmaker’s techniques called ‘Hustle Hour’. From this competitive and fun style of motivating and incentivising her team, 107 vals were booked in one hour and thirty minutes! Incredible results that would enable higher lead generation from simply adding a timed competition to the mix. Not to mention a big bottle of bubbly champagne for the winner who scored the highest amount of lettings valuations for the team, courtesy of Agent Rainmaker! Have one on us (or a few) for this one! How could we not reward Sue’s team for breaking the record of all Hustle Hours that we have previously recorded.  

Investing in rewarding your team and adding a competitive element really kicked things up a notch for this letting agency! 

4) Recognising your Chargeable Worth  

Sue discussed with us that layering her services was key to ‘tweaking the numbers’ and accumulating more profit. A key lesson that AR teaches in their workshops is understanding your worth, which is where Richard James Estate and AR struck first. Questioning the typical estate agency fees for letting, asking the question, how much do letting agencies charge and can this be improved was crucial in the agency’s success.  

5) Building a Supportive Team and Network 

Spreading the accountability between team members not only reduced the high stress levels involved in running a business, it also gave those team members a higher purpose.  

Sue created a board of directors to put in place just this. This meant that she could surrender elements of control and successful delegate with positive effect. Being open to different perspectives and support meant that as a business owner, it wasn’t as stressful (or lonely) at the top! On top of this, for two years, Sue has been a member of the Agent Rainmaker community, so there is always someone to turn to in times of difficulty. As business growth strategists, the value of creating a supportive network is something that we can wholeheartedly vouch for. Lettings training is what we do best and we pride ourselves on nurturing the growth of businesses like Richard James Estate Agency!

To credit her success, Sue earned the ‘Agent Rainmaker of the Year’ award in 2019, as she relentlessly raises the bar year in, year out in the property game. 

Founder of Agent Rainmaker, Sally Lawson commended Sue on her passion within the industry. 

“Sue is an inspiration to lettings professionals. Working with Sue and looking behind the scenes at her agency, you can see a motivated team, a tight ship with high levels of structure and process”.  

“Sue is someone to be looked up to and recognised as one of the best in the industry” 


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