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Osher focuses on mental health for high performers

By Georgina Shanahan

Osher Günsberg – one of Australia’s biggest media personalities – opened up about his struggles with mental illness with Ray White’s top performing agents in Melbourne yesterday.

The 48-year-old TV icon who has been a guest in the living rooms of Australian’s for nearly two decades was remarkably forthcoming about his struggles with his own mental health issues at Ray White’s Elite Performers’ Conference.

The recovering alcoholic with ADHD described some of the lowest points in his life came when he was at the most highest profile years of his life, while hosting Australian Idol.

He shared his story of mania, psychosis and depressive episodes with the 300 high performing agents from across Australia and New Zealand.

Despite being sober since 14 March 2010, he says he still regularly calls ahead to a hotel to ask them to remove all the alcohol from a hotel mini bar.

He hit rock bottom in 2010 and was “divorced, unemployed and paying the rent out of my savings”.

But he sought help and still to this day takes his medication daily, practises mindfulness, attends sobriety meetings and uses breathing exercises to get through his days.

He spoke to the Ray White agents about resilience in the face of adversity.

“I clawed my way back from unemployment to The Bachelor,” he said.

“You cannot use a brain that is in trouble to fix itself. If you are in a crisis, you need to seek someone to help you and that’s the only way forward.”

His tip for surviving anxious moments or stressful meetings was to breathe out for twice as long as you breathe in.

“In for three and out for six, it works. I use it all the time, so arm yourself and your team with this simple technique. I am mentally healthy now, I am on medication, I go to therapy, express mindfulness and gratitude daily.”

His advice to anyone faced with a mental health issue was to disclose it to their boss, and access the support available.

“Mental health issues are only an issue when management makes it one, and there’s a lot of support available now.”

High performance sales can be a stressful career. Ray White had a record number of elite agents qualify for elite status in 2021-22 with 640 members, compared to 547 in 2021, and 306 in 2020. To achieve this level of recognition, sales agents must gross over $600,000 in commission in the 12 month period. The group also saw 241 agents qualify in 2022 as Chairman’s Elite who grossed more than $1.25 million in commission, compared to 178 in 2021, and 63 agents in 2020.

Ray White Managing Director Dan White said the elite members were the ‘pinnacle’ of the leading group.

“It’s important for us to recognise what you’ve achieved and keep going forward but we know there’s more potential in all of us,” Mr White said.

“We are always looking for ways to get better, push our limits, there’s no finish line and we are always challenging ourselves.”

Mr White often gets asked what’s the one ingredient that made an elite sales performer?

“But there’s no one size fits all as everyone has a different style and personality.”

The leading group finished the 2022 year with an enviable 29 per cent auction market share across Australia and New Zealand.

“We conduct one in three auctions, and our share has never been this high as we double down on our strengths. It’s important in any industry, not just ours to double down on your strengths and  we believe in the auction method of sale,” Mr White said.

Ray White has kicked off 2023 by announcing its `referral program’ is now live across Australasia. The trial in Victoria in December created more than 700 sales and property management opportunities.

Now if a client asks a Ray White member to refer an agent in another market but they dont know an agent there, it will find you the right person and keep you up to date as it’s very visible regarding referral fees etc.

Property management has been a big part of the referral program.

This is yet another example of a network effect – where Ray White’s members use the corporate team as a springboard.

The harder you push on them, the higher they all go.


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