Thoughts on Leadership: RISMedia’s CEO Exchange

By Gino Blefari

This week my travels found me in New York for RISMedia’s 2016 CEO Exchange conference and I have to say, it was probably the best RISMedia CEO Exchange I’ve attended in recent years with engaging panel discussions, brilliant moderators and exciting keynote speeches.

The event kicked off with Alex Perriello, president and CEO of Realogy Franchise Group, who delivered a keynote on “The State of the Real Estate Union” and had many fantastic insights to share.  

After Alex’s presentation, John Featherston, president and CEO of RISMedia, moderated a panel discussion about the real estate market from both a macro and micro perspective. Panelists—including Candace Adams, president and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties and Westchester Properties as well as Maryann Vitale Alles, president & CEO of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Select Properties—shared what they’re experiencing in key regions around the country, what the challenges and opportunities are in today’s real estate market and then forecasted where the market is going in the next six months.

candace-adams

Candace Adams, president and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties and Westchester Properties as well as Maryann Vitale Alles, president & CEO of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Select Properties participated in a panel discussion at RISMedia’s 2016 CEO Exchange in New York City.

Next, Jon Coile, president and CEO of Champion Realty, Inc. moderated a panel discussion on “The Evolution of the Real Estate Model: What’s Working and Why.” And I have to say, Jon is someone who can not only expertly moderate a panel better than almost anyone but also someone who should probably host the Tonight Show. He’s just that quick and funny. Vince Leisey, president of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Ambassador Real Estate, joined Jon onstage and spoke about how vital it is to control and master your company culture in order to find success and growth.
Day 2 kicked off with a keynote presentation I was honored to give to the crowd on “Success Strategies for Today, Smart Planning for Tomorrow” followed by a panel discussion on “Achieving Agent Buy-in: Communication Strategies for Uniting Your Sales Force”. During the panel, moderator Joseph Rand, general counsel and managing partner at Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate—Rand Realty masterfully navigated a conversation about communication and motivational strategies to recruit and retain agents.

Also noteworthy during that day was a panel moderated by Pat Riley, president and CEO of Allen Tate companies on “ The Future of Homeownership: What Will Sway the Odds?” Panelists spoke about how to translate American’s desire to own a home into the reality of homeownership.

After New York, I was off to Sea Girt, NJ to attend the launch of our latest Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices network member, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Signature Properties, and speak to their team. Signature Properties, (previous RE/MAX Signature Properties) is a long-standing brokerage leader in the Sea Girt market, serving residential communities across Monmouth and Ocean Counties. Founder and CEO Bret Violette cited the combination of Signature Properties and Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices as “unstoppable” in his local market and emphasized that with this new affiliation, his brokerage was “marvelously positioned for the future with the intent to grow.” (Read more about the firm here.)

So, what’s the message? From a fantastic RISMedia CEO Exchange to an excellent, new member launch, I learned so much this week from so many people. And really, learning is a key cornerstone to effective leadership. As John F. Kennedy once said, “Leadership and learning are indispensable to each other.”

GINO BLEFARI is CEO of HSF Affiliates LLC. You can follow Gino on FacebookInstagram and Twitter.

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