In the following interview, Ron Shuffield, president and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices EWM Realty in Coral Gables, Fla., discusses rebranding this year, market trends, and more.
Region Served: Miami and Ft. Lauderdale
Years in Real Estate: 44
Number of Offices: 10
Number of Agents: 850
How do you stay flexible in today’s ever-changing real estate landscape?
The first step in exercising flexibility is recognizing when making a change is beneficial to your organization. Staying up-to-date with a dynamic industry such as ours requires the continual input of fresh information. Each member of our Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices EWM Realty family and I have been fortunate to belong to this family of companies since 2003. Through our close relationships with both our sister and affiliated companies, over the past 16 years, we’ve interacted with the top brokerages in the world.
What led to your decision to join the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices network?
Our South Florida team has been in a unique position to observe the solid growth of the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices network over the past six years. As a HomeServices of America family member, having a front-row seat to follow the positive impact of new systems and technologies, which Gino Blefari and Chris Stuart were shepherding across the network, caught the attention of our EWM management and associates.
Have you noticed any notable increase in business since the transition?
After our announcement this past summer that we were rebranding our 55-year-old EWM Realty name, our associates immediately began interacting with other Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices network members from across the nation and world. One of our first interactions with other Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices network luxury agents was through the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Global Luxury Summit, an annual conference that brings the top-producing associates throughout the network together. The gathering was less than 60 days ago (at press time), and referrals have already been exchanged.
What are some of the ways you go the extra mile for your agents?
Our vice president of Marketing has developed a Marketing “Graphix Lab” that lends professional design and marketing services to our associates. These in-house graphic design professionals give our associates the benefit of having designer-firm quality all under our roof. Other benefits include in-house technology, legal services and training opportunities.
What’s the most significant trend positively impacting your business today?
Florida is in an enviable position because of its exceptional growth rate. Our state adds just shy of 1,000 “net” new permanent residents each day. That’s almost 365,000 “net” new permanent residents annually. Our statewide population is expected to hit 22 million permanent residents next year. That means that demographers are predicting that Florida’s average growth rate over the next 10 years will be 1,100 “net” new permanent residents per day—365 days per year.
What is your top technique for staying in touch with clients?
Our company’s marketing and social media are designed to run concurrently with the communication efforts being individually managed by our associates. While we continue to expand digitally, we still publish our magazine, Lifestyles of South Florida, to promote our $1 million-plus homes and condos.