As the start of a new school year approaches, Chicago-based Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices KoenigRubloff Realty Group is helping children in need prepare for a success. The brokerage’s Michigan Avenue office recently filled 475 backpacks with school essentials for the children at The Dvorak School of Excellence, a Chicago Public School located in the North Lawndale neighborhood of Chicago.
By Gino Blefari
This week my travels find me in New York City, in particular at the prestigious Harvard Club for RISMedia’s Real Estate CEO Exchange, which brings together more than 225 powerhouse real estate leaders from all brands and all sectors of the industry to strategize on how best to meet the needs of today’s consumer.
I’ve been attending this event for more than 20 years and you might ask yourself why I go back to the same conference year after year … Well, here’s why …
By Susan Ireland
One of the biggest drivers to profit in a real estate company is high-caliber leaders. Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices is hyper-focused on the development and training of stellar agents but knows it’s important to foster great leadership, too.
For years, the business consultant team has used the Operations Review tool to help network members measure certain benchmarks tied to profitability. One key component of this review is the Sales Associate Survey, which includes expectations of leadership, associate satisfaction levels and associate engagement in company tools and resources. Other benchmarks include expense management, agent recruiting/retention and sales associate productivity. In nearly every Operations Review, there was a direct correlation between profitability and strong leadership.
By Gino Blefari
This week my travels find me in St. Charles, MO at the Whitmoor Country Club for the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Alliance Real Estate Golf Tournament benefitting the Sunshine Kids. Before we hit the green, I met with the Alliance Real Estate team to talk about 8 principles of success and the 4 Disciplines of Execution (4DX). I’ve visited the brokerage many times before and each time I’m reminded that Alliance Real Estate has forward-thinking leaders at its helm: CEO/Owner Andrea Lawrence; President/Co-Owner Kevin Goffstein; and Executive Vice President/Co-Owner Bob Bax. It was evident from this meeting that the company is poised for even greater success in the St. Louis marketplace.
After our meeting it was off to a day of golf, and everyone—including actor and Sunshine Kids Executive Director G.W. Bailey who was in attendance for the event—had one goal in mind: Raise money for the Sunshine Kids.
By Gino Blefari
This week my travels find me in Northern California, where I’ve been keeping close tabs on the devastation caused by Hurricane Harvey. I’ve received numerous phone calls, made quite a few myself, emailed network members, and read your emails in return, which detail not only the destructive aftermath of the storm but also the inspiring courage of volunteers who are stepping up from all parts of the country to help where help is needed. Small boats, military Humvees … these heroes are deploying whatever it takes to bring those in harm’s way to safety.
It could be a whole post—or even a book—to explain why the worst situations bring out our very best but it’s certainly worthwhile to examine Hurricane Harvey through the lens of leadership. When disaster strikes, we look to leaders to provide strength, inspire hope, and guide us through hardship toward recovery and ultimately, some kind of resolution.
By Gino Blefari
This week my travels find me in Northern California, taking meetings, organizing calls and just this morning, leading a teleconference with Debbie De Grote, founder/CEO of Excelleum Coaching & Consulting all about business planning. For all of us, a business plan is vital because even as an agent we must think of ourselves as a business, and all businesses must have a plan. Remember the wise words of Benjamin Franklin: “If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail.”
Some may think it’s strange though to have a business-planning call at the end of August but there’s a reason for this exact timing. During my 30+ years in the real estate business—as an agent, a manager and an owner of a company—I’ve always found that there’s a cash flow problem in the months of January and February. This applies to agents as much as it does to owners.
Why? Because real estate operates on a 90-day cycle, so what we do 90 days before gets paid out 90 days later. This means a lag in business during the fall months will show up in Q1 of the new year. The lag is understandable, though avoidable; it’s obvious to notice right after Halloween a great number of agents go into hibernation. There’s Thanksgiving, the holidays … life gets busy and business gets put on the back burner. (Extrapolate those 90 days during this lull and you’ll understand clearly why cash-flow problems plague us in January and February.)
To get you started, access our Business Planning Essentials by clicking HERE.
The Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices national re_think Council isn’t only about picking up new stuff, it’s also about rethinking what works and reapplying it. The latest re_think Council white paper details how top producers manage a work life balance in the real estate industry utilizing both the FISH! Philosophy and Gino Blefari‘s Ten Keys to Success. Download it here.
This week my travels found me in Park City, UT and Salt Lake City, UT, then in Southern California for team meetings at our HQ in Irvine. But instead of focusing on the business of the week, I want to instead detail my time spent in SLC, where I was honored to help present our “Love Your Home” Sweepstakes grand prize winner, Aaron Zimmerman, of Sandy, UT, with a $50,000 check. This was our third year running a “Love Your Home” Sweepstakes, (held in conjunction with HGTV), and we set a new Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices record with an astounding 5.7 million entrants, 77% above last year’s sweepstakes registration.
With such an incredible number of entries, you might think, “There’s no chance I’d ever win!” But someone must win, someone did win and for 2017 that person was Aaron Zimmerman. Beyond being a serendipitous moment for Zimmerman, his win marks a three-year-long turn of true serendipity for our Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices sweepstakes. Each year, our winner was someone who will use the money in an impactful, substantial way. Let me explain …
This week my travels find me on the final day of 11 days of straight travel, which is unusual for me because I’m typically home on the weekends. However, this week-and-a-half business adventure has certainly been worthwhile and I’d like to recap some of the highlights for you now …
By Mitch Lewis
A newly released survey by the Chamber of Notaries of Paris shows prices for real estate in Paris are on track to reach record highs this summer as buyers—particularly those from Italy and the UK—seek properties in the city’s in-demand districts or “arrondissements.”