Thursday Thoughts on Leadership: The Importance of Diversity

By Gino Blefari

This week my travels found me first in Irvine, CA for a Town Hall meeting at our HSF Affiliates HQ and next in Las Vegas for the Zillow Group Broker Forum at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel. As I travel across the country and attend meetings led by some of our industry’s most powerful and innovative minds, I keep circling back to a theme prevalent in so many keynotes, panel discussions and coffee-break chats: diversity.

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Thoughts on Leadership: Michael Phelps, NAR and Winning

This week my travels took me to Chicago and then on to Southern California but let’s talk about Chicago and the 2017 REALTORS® Conference & Expo. My conference experience actually began in a very unusual way. Let me explain …

At exactly 7:22 a.m. –5:22 a.m. my time—I headed down to Starbucks for coffee, just as I do every morning to begin my usual routine. I was just waking up and had on a t-shirt and a bit of bed head when I arrived at Starbucks. (Hey, we’re always honest on this blog.) Anyway, there I am in line to get coffee when I recognized Michael Phelps was waiting right in front of me.

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Thoughts on Leadership: Get on Board

By Gino Blefari

This week my travels found me first in Minneapolis for a HomeServices of America, Inc. board meeting and then in chilly Chicago for the National Association of REALTORS® Conference & Expo. But more on my Windy City trip and NAR takeaways in next week’s post …

For now, let’s return to Minneapolis and talk about boards. In official corporate terms, a board of directors is primarily responsible for protecting shareholders’ assets and ensuring they receive a good return on investment. In this particular case, the HSoA board met to discuss budgeting, assess risk and in general, make decisions that would move the organization and its affiliates toward even more growth and profitability.

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Thoughts on Leadership: Innovation and Planning

By Gino Blefari

This week my travels find me in San Antonio, TX for 2018 Sales Convention planning. As you know, I’m a huge proponent of planning. Last year during my keynote onstage at Sales Convention, I even quoted one of my all-time favorite sayings by Dwight D. Eisenhower: “In preparing for battle I have always found that plans are useless but planning is indispensable.”

Also, for those who haven’t read it, I wrote a post all about business planning here.

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Thoughts on Leadership: NAGLREP in Palm Springs

By Gino Blefari

This week my travels find me in Southern California, specifically in Palm Springs for the 2017 National Association of Gay & Lesbian Real Estate Professionals (NAGLREP) 2017 National Convention. Key to my role as CEO of HSF Affiliates is to attend so many events and I have to say, I think the real estate industry does an incredible job putting together its national and local conferences.

It makes sense the real estate industry is among the best. These gatherings are our chance not only to gain new knowledge about real estate but also to make important connections, discover best practices, network with intelligent professionals and at the core, grow our business. In real estate, we rely on no one but ourselves for our ultimate success. If we can’t close a deal, if we can’t nail the listing appointment, if we’re not informed about the market, then we don’t get the business. That’s why real estate conferences are so well-put together and refined. They’re essential for us to become better leaders. NAGLREP is no exception.

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Thursday Thoughts on Leadership: CFOs and Trendsetters

By Gino Blefari

This week my travels took me to Asheville, North Carolina for the annual CFO Conference, which brings together CFOs from among the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices network to share ideas and economics trends. Also during the conference, we discussed best practices for how the CFO can better serve his or her company as not only the financial steward of the organization but also as the trusted partner to the CEO and leadership team.

I was excited to be among the CFO community at such a picturesque location though while I spend time on the East Coast, my thoughts remain with those in West, particularly in Northern California where devastating wild fires still rage, one of the worst fires to hit the Golden State, ever. We all send prayers to those affected by this awful disaster, and hope the winds cease soon and the flames are able to be extinguished so recovery can begin. Stay strong, California, we are with you!

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Thoughts on Real Estate: A Crowded Market Spurs Buyer Creativity

By Gino Blefari

For many homebuyers, rising prices and low inventory continue to push the market seemingly out of reach. In the CoreLogic Case-Shiller September report, Seattle, Portland, and San Francisco experienced the steepest price hikes with 13.5%, 7.6%, and 7.4% increases respectively since last year. Also, the National Association of REALTORS®  says existing home sales were down 1.7% last month.

Yet despite these market challenges, our research shows that prospective buyers, particularly Millennials, remain positive about the market and are determined to find the home they want. This may be, in part, to the resourcefulness of buyers who have found increasingly novel ways to make their bid stand out.

Our national Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Homeowner Sentiment Survey released in September found that:

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Congratulations to Deborah Berg, Honorable Mention for the 2017 Good Neighbor Awards

Congratulations to Deborah Berg, agent with Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices HWWB, REALTORS®, for receiving the “Honorable Mention” in REALTOR® Magazine’s 2017 Good Neighbor Awards! Berg was also a 2017 Web Choice Favorite, an online competition which saw a record-breaking 93,000 votes! The publication will donate $2,500 for Berg’s Honorable Mention win and an additional $1,250 bonus for getting the next-highest vote totals in the Web Choice Favorite contest.

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Do You Want to Join the National re_think Council?

Applications are now officially open for the national re_think Council 2018 term! We’re looking for stellar, top-producing millennial agents in the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices network to apply. Our vision is to be the premier member-driven think tank in the real estate industry, focused on sustainable success for current and future real estate agents.

Would you or someone you know be a good fit for the Council? Please email rethink@hsfranchise.com and we’ll send you the 2018 charter and application today! Applications are due Nov. 3.

Thoughts on Leadership: Real Estate and Legislation

By Gino Blefari

This week my travels find me in Washington, D.C. for the National Association of REALTORS® RES Advisory Group Meeting and next in San Diego to attend the 2017 AREAA National Convention (but more on that next week). I’ve long embraced the virtues of our industry’s leaders working closely alongside lawmakers to ensure not only the synergy of current legislation with our business practices but also to ensure our nation’s laws promote and encourage homeownership for all.

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