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In the following interview, Joe Miller, president of Old Colony, REALTORS®, a member of Leading Real Estate Companies of the World®, discusses the firm’s competitive differentiation, the local market, motivational tactics and more.

Region Served: West Virginia
Years in Real Estate: 40
Number of Offices: 7
Number of Agents: 200
Favorite Way to Connect With Agents: Face-to-face. Beyond that, I like talking on the phone.

What is the first thing you do when you get to the office every morning?
I’m not a person with an absolute set routine, so some days it’s checking social media and others it’s looking at office numbers from the previous day. My mornings are usually spent socially, checking in with those in the office and seeing how they’re doing.

Please describe your best tip for boosting productivity.
It may not be that original, but every morning I identify one thing I can do that day that will have the biggest impact on my personal productivity and peace of mind. Then I look at my to-do list to see if it’s on there and make sure it’s No. 1.

What are some of the biggest challenges in your marketplace?
We have offices in four markets, some as far as three hours apart, so they’re quite diverse. One is in an economically challenged part of the state, so their economy is in rough shape with unemployment in the double digits. On the other end of the spectrum, we have a presence in a university city where unemployment is 3 percent. Despite the variety, inventory is a common problem for all our markets. It’s not just the quantity of inventory, but the quality of the housing stock. This leads to frustration when buyers can’t find something exciting that meets their needs.

How is your team tackling this challenge?
Our solution is to point out the progressive nature and wealth-building opportunity of housing and the importance in making some compromises. We also try to get available houses upgraded and help the seller and buyer collaborate to make repairs.

What sets your team apart from other firms in your area?
We’ve been around for 73 years and have established what we think is an excellent reputation, one that’s well recognized in our market. We have a high level of professionalism and are very tuned in to our communities. Our agents are well-trained and not only do we keep our team current and up-to-date, but also we keep their values and level of service on track.

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Zoe Eisenberg is RISMedia’s senior content editor. Email her your real estate news ideas at

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