Thoughts on Leadership: The Journey to Somewhere New

By Gino Blefari

This week’s travels took me first to Seattle for AREAA’s 2018 Global + Luxury Summit and next to T3 Summit in Miami, an invite-only think tank for leaders and executives in the residential real estate industry.

I was proud to attend AREAA’s event in Seattle with Peter Turtzo, SVP of international operations for Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices; Rosalie Warner, SVP of network services for HSF Affiliates; Troy Reierson, HSF Affiliates director of business development; and Teresa Palacios Smith, HSF Affiliates vice president of diversity and inclusion. As Teresa says, our organization is working tirelessly to ensure that every facet of what we do mirrors the diversity we find in the marketplace. AREAA was an opportunity to enhance that mission through idea sharing, networking and learning about ways to elevate the standards of our industry.

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Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices PenFed Realty Agent Embarks on Bucket-list Adventure

Erica Baker, a 27-year-old agent with Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices PenFed Realty in Annapolis, MD, set a goal of traveling to 30 countries before she turns 30. So far, she’s halfway to her bucket-list goal. With a friend, Baker has so far climbed the Great Wall of China, swam with whale sharks in the Philippines, traversed 82 miles of Mt. Everest and spent hours holding the perfect spot for New Year’s Eve fireworks in Australia.

“I’m a real estate agent, so traveling keeps me the best,” Baker told Capital Gazette. “I’m making sure I feed my soul so that I can help others.”

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Thursday Thoughts on Leadership: Travel to Learn

By Gino Blefari

This week my travels find me in the city of St. Louis to meet with the team at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Select Properties, an amazing group of real estate professionals who prove with crystal-clear assurance what you can achieve when you have a strong, vibrant culture at your brokerage business.

I have to tell you, being in St. Louis was really an eye-opening trip for me. I’ve long been a fan of the idea that new eyes see old things in new ways and sometimes, these “eyes” aren’t literal eyes but instead places, things and experiences that widen your perspective in ways you never thought possible. Travel, in this sense, is more than just going from one place to another but instead a complete mindset shift and a chance to learn what you otherwise would never have known. For instance, who knew that there’s an area of St. Louis called “The Hill,” home to baseball greats Yogi Berra and Joe Gargiola Sr., who spent their childhood living across the street from one another on Elizabeth Avenue?

“Not only was I not the best catcher in the Major Leagues,” Gargiola once famously said, “I wasn’t even the best catcher on my street!”

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Thursday Thoughts on Leadership: Winning is A Habit

By Gino Blefari

This week my travels find me first in Irvine for a meeting with Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices California Properties CEO Mary Lee Blaylock and the California Properties team then off to Dallas to meet with Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices PenFed Realty Texas agent Russell Rhodes, leader of the Russell Rhodes team, PenFed Realty Texas Broker/president Rick Wylie and the entire PenFed Realty Texas team. After that I flew to Detroit and spoke with agents, managers and leadership at Real Living Kee Realty. For each meeting, I delivered several principles for success, specific ideas to follow in order to win.

It’s no surprise winning is on my mind because I just received a text from my good friend and former All-Pro wide receiver for the San Francisco 49ers as well as five-time Super Bowl champion, Dwight “The Catch” Clark, who’s on his way to Houston for Super Bowl Media Week appearances. Each summer, as soon as pre-season begins, teams have one Wildly Important Goal (WIG) in mind: Make it to the Super Bowl and then, win the Vince Lombardi Trophy. This trophy—a football resting atop a pedestal that measures 22 inches and 7 pounds of sterling silver glory—is only given to the team that has proven to be the very best in the world.  

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Thoughts on Leadership: From Denver to New York City

By Gino Blefari

This week my travels found me first in Denver for the launch of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Innovative Real Estate. The brokerage, led by Brokers/Owners Scott Nordby and Lora Nordby—two fantastic leaders in the real estate industry—operates four offices with more than 160 agents. It also consistently dominates the Denver market in key production categories and stands among the Top 10 brokerages in the competitive Denver metro area. When I say I’m proud and honored this fantastic team joined the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices family, I really mean it.

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