It was early 2014 and I was exploring my options for re-entering the real estate business as a salesperson rather than a branch manager or owner of a large brokerage. I was psychologically burned-out on real estate after the great recession and realized that in the end, many of my top salespeople fared the crisis better than I did as an owner/manager of a large brokerage. I simply wanted focus on maintaining relationships and selling houses rather than managing agents. About that time my good friend and fellow broker approached me with a proposal. What if we opened a small firm together? Perhaps we could attract a select group of trusted and seasoned professionals to partner-up with us? Our goal became to support the creation of a brokerage focused on esprit de corps and the success of its’ members rather than profits of the firm.
That brings us to today and yet another financial crisis. The big difference this time around is that I am surrounded by allies, people that I can really count on through thick and thin. I would like to take a moment to thank them for their unwavering support and friendship:
· To Linda Humphrey: You inspired me to join/launch this company and I’ve never regretted a minute of it. Your skill and devotion to this project has been essential which is to say, it wouldn’t have happened without you. Back in February of this year you sent a note warning us that the Corona Virus could be quite severe. Your forewarning placed our brokerage in the right mind-set to face this crisis and we may have been a month ahead of our competition in dealing with it.
· To Margie McIntyre: We’ve worked together for many years, yet you still surprise me every day with your tireless energy and enthusiasm. You have helped us all develop a collective conscience with your devotion to community involvement and leadership. I am a little concerned that you might be scrubbing the finish off the office light switches, door handles and printers one disinfecting wipe at a time, but it’s a small price to pay. By the way, do you ever sleep?
· To Jan Mackenzie: You have a knack for keeping cool and calm during the worst of times, we’re lucky to have you on-board as the head of our property management team. You have been at the fore-front in dealing with the consequences of Covid-19 and your strong communication skills, caring nature and good humor have given us an example to follow. And! Thank you for the fun and fashionable, home-made face masks.
· To Claire & Shawn Kirby: You were skilled when you joined us, but you’re taking it to the next level now. Innovation and hard work have always been strengths, you’ve now added industry leadership to your repertoire. One example is the Virtual Happy Hour, an online, bi-monthly meeting curated by you and attended by top producing agents from all over town. I’ll join this weeks’ meeting again of course, you’re helping us help ourselves. Well done.
· To Shirley Larkins: When joining our partnership at the first of this year you brought infectious energy, talent, and positivity. I think I speak for all the partners in saying that we couldn’t picture ourselves enduring this challenge without you. Okay, we may have survived but we certainly would have had a lot less fun doing it. In this short period of time you have become integral to our company’s future success and we are blessed to have you on the team.
· Carri Oullette, Tiffany Ross, Susan Hargrove: Thank you for working the front lines with us while keeping the gears of the company greased. Without you, our jobs would be infinitely more difficult.
From the beginning we have referred to our combined selves as The Tribe which Webster’s defines as:
a social division in a traditional society consisting of families or communities linked by social, economic, religious, or blood ties, with a common culture and dialect.
Wow! What a great definition in the face of these times. Circumstances are changing daily but as a team, I’m guessing that we’ll weather it well. Thank you partners and stay safe everyone.