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RISMEDIA, October 31, 2009—Getting your clients to understand that real estate is local was one of the more difficult lessons that real estate professionals have had to preach during the recent housing downturn. As the media continually painted a negative picture of the real estate landscape, perspective buyers and sellers took the news to heart. Here, Bruce Zipf, president and CEO of NRT LLC discusses how leadership needs to start on the local level before it can expand to the entire company. 

Zipf_BruceBruce Zipf
President & CEO

For the 12th straight year, NRT was ranked the top brokerage in the nation. However, the real secret behind our success is not our large national footprint or unparalleled investment in marketing and technology; it is our presence in more than 30 top markets and our ability to distinguish ourselves at the most local level—the individual office. Here, our branch managers leverage their own personal brand of leadership to oversee their teams, tapping into their individual relationships with their agents as well as their in-depth knowledge of the local market. 

It’s a known fact that great performers always try to get better; our managers are no exception. To support our managers’ and sales associates’ competitive spirits, we invest through our Business Leadership Development Series a great deal of time and effort to improving our managers’ productivity and management skill levels, which in turn will further enhance our sales associates’ production and efficiency levels. NRT’s Business Leadership Development Series includes scripting/dialogue sessions, business development strategies to increase production, recruiting, coaching techniques to build a stronger team of agents, methods for conducting effective office meetings, articulating value to clients and pricing properties to sell. Managers then become a source of education, motivation and inspiration to their agents, building both loyalty and business at the same time…not to mention value. 

We feel this is a critical differentiator for our company and are so committed to the development of our team that we created a senior level position devoted to this initiative. And did I mention that all of this training—much of it conducted in a one-on-one setting—is provided in-house at no cost to our managers or sales associates? 

Our efforts in this organic-growth initiative are reflective of our deep commitment to each and every one of our offices across the country. We know that our continued success as the nation’s largest residential real estate brokerage is dependent on the individual success of our managers and sales associates, and we remain confident in their abilities to continually distinguish themselves and NRT in their respective markets. Real estate is local, and for us, so is leadership.