November 8, 2023

How (and Why) To Create a Growth Plan

What should go on my growth plan if I am an Executive Assistant in real estate (or a Transaction Coordinator, Listing Manager, Director of Operations, Chief Operating Officer or all-around Ops Boss®)?

First, let’s back up. What is a Growth Plan & why do you need one?

  • A Growth Plan is a purposeful strategy where you plan out what things you’ll do throughout the year to stretch and grow yourself – whether that is intellectually, spiritually, professionally or personally.
  • You need a Growth Plan because WHO you are and how you THINK must change to become the person who can DO what you want to do and go where you want to go. So, if you have big plans, the first thing you need to do is work on yourself.

How Do You Build A Growth Plan?

In our BE A BOSS class, we brainstorm on Growth Plans. We’ll share the brainstorming categories below.

Before you brainstorm, we suggest you start with a list of growth areas. What areas need growth? Are you looking to develop new skills? New habits? Learn about a particular subject?

For example:

  • In order to grow from EA into DOO, you might need to learn more about financials. Perhaps you may be taking on responsibility for the profit & loss statement for your team.
  • Maybe you’ll be hiring leverage for the first time – a virtual assistant or your first in-house transaction coordinator – so you need to learn more about recruiting, hiring, leadership and retention.
  • You also may be realizing that as you take on more responsibility, you need more stamina, and you need to be healthier physically and emotionally.

So, write down your goals and the areas of growth that are most important for you, and then you can begin to brainstorm.

Here are 4 Categories to Brainstorm – We call it LEAP

L: THINGS YOU LISTEN TO & READ (Book, Blogs, Podcasts, Newsletters)

  • What books should I read that will address the areas I listed above? If you’re not sure where to start, check out our Shop that features some of our favorite books.
  • What blogs should I read regularly? Of course, we recommend the Ops Boss® Blog. We also recommend The Assistant Files, written by Ops Boss® Coach Elizabeth Gilbert.
  • What newsletters/news should I subscribe to? Read The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Inman News, Harvard Business Review – there are tons of options.
  • What podcasts should I listen to? One podcast we recommend for leadership growth is The Leader Equation.
  • If you don’t know where to start, ask your rainmaker what they read (or listen to) and follow suit. That will help you get on the same page.


What experiences might you undertake in order to grow yourself? This is one of the most powerful categories because, oftentimes, the consistent habits and skills transfer from one area of your life to another. Here are some suggestions:

  • Volunteer work – If you’re looking to develop your leadership muscle, step up and lead a committee (rather than participating in one). If you have a fear of hospitals, volunteer in one.
  • Serve on the ALC in your office.
  • Teach a class.
  • Start an Ops Mastermind.
  • Sign up to run a marathon or a 10K.
  • Travel – If you’ve never traveled outside the U.S., plan a trip abroad. If you’ve never traveled somewhere that you don’t speak the language, do that.
  • Climb Mt Kilimanjaro.
  • Embark on a nutrition, exercise & weight loss plan.


  • Are there classes offered in your office? (Examples: Ignite, contract classes, social media. We recommend the BE A BOSS Series. (“10 Secrets of a Mega EA” and “Systems Are Sexy“) and Rock Referrals Like A Boss
  • What about taking classes at your local community center, church or online? (For example, if you are taking on the P&L for your team, is your own financial house in order? If not, you might take Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University. If you’re an admin who’s been in real estate for less than 3 years, you could sign up for Ops Boss® Group Coaching. Or you might learn a new language.)
  • What about industry or company training and conventions? (Of course, we recommend Ops Boss® Leader Retreat. Others might include KW Family Reunion, eXpCon, FUBCon, Mega Camp, BOLD, Regional Masterminds, and Inman Connect.)
  • Maybe you should get your real estate license.
  • We suggest you look outside real estate for classes and events too. Tony Robbins Business Mastery, UPW and Landmark Forum are great choices.
  • The options here are endless and we encourage you to think big. For example, Ritz Carlton, Disney and lots of other companies have amazing customer service training.


What relationships might you need to stretch and grow yourself? Here’s a list to start with:

  • Accountability Partner
  • Mentor/Mentee (you may need a mentor, you may grow from mentoring someone else)
  • Coach (One-on-One or Group)
  • Nutritionist
  • Personal Trainer
  • Counselor
  • Financial Advisor
  • Networking Group
  • Spiritual Director
We know you can think of LOTS more ideas. These are meant to give you a kickstart. Remember, the question is, “Who do I need to be to go where I want to go?”. Think like you are already there, then work backwards.

Cheers to your GROWTH! That’s BOSSY!

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