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By Paige Tepping

RISMEDIA, January 17, 2009-At your company, what are the most important fundamentals essential for your company’s continued success? For Joe Brown, president and COO of Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage, his answer is a positive attitude.

“A positive attitude is the number-one thing that we need to focus on,” he says. “In addition to staying positive, we need to focus our attention on growing our company, especially within the declining market that we are in.” Here, meet Brown, and learn what other day-to-day best practices are effective in the San Ramon, California marketplace.

brown_joe.jpgJoe Brown
President & COO
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage
San Ramon, California

Region served: Silicon Valley, Monterey Bay and East Bay
Years in real estate: 29
Number of offices: 28
Number of agents: 1,800
Average sales price: $700,000 to 750,000
What is your best idea for time management: Start with a plan and then work the plan.
Best tip for dealing with difficult customers: Stay positive and always take the high road.
Words of advice for real estate rookies: Agents have to stay focused on their job, which is to find people who need to buy or sell. It is crucial to remain positive and not get inundated with the negativity that is around us.

What are your best ideas for client retention?
Every manager has their own style of managing, and for me, staying close to my agents is the best way to communicate with them and make sure their needs are being met. It is important to be visible so that my agents can put a face to my name, so I put a lot of effort into personally staying in touch by visiting my offices as much as I can. Communication is another key to client retention, so I send out a weekly market update that focuses on a positive aspect of the industry and a Reality Check newsletter that goes out once a month.

What are you doing within your company to make sure you stay ahead of your local competitors?
At the beginning of 2008, we focused a lot of attention on REOs and driving REOs to our agents. Now, with the relief program that has been introduced by the government as well as the pressure on lenders to not foreclose over the holidays, our new focus will be on short sales. Traditionally, short sales were not a big part of our marketplace, but we are in the process of educating our agents on how to deal with them.

What are two fundamentals essential to your company’s continued success?
A positive attitude is the number-one thing that we need to focus on. In addition to staying positive, we need to focus our attention on growing our company, especially within the declining market that we are in. Bringing more quality agents into our company allows us to grow our market share, which, in turn, gives us the opportunity to reach more buyers and sellers.

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