C21 Circle’s Tom Bretz on smart real estate brokerage investments

In this episode of RealTrending, Tom Bretz, founding principal and CEO of CENTURY 21 Circle and CEO of Elmdale Partners, talks about how he skillfully managed acquisitions of different compensation models and cultures into his traditional model, what he sees as the smartest real estate brokerage investment in today’s market and the trends he’s seeing that are driving the industry.

Here is a small preview of today’s interview with Tom. The transcript below has been lightly edited for length and clarity:

Tracey Velt: What are some things that you’re doing to kind of prepare your brokerage for potential threats?

Tom Bretz: We’ve always looked at it as the perfect balance is high touch and high tech, right? I think the gold standard for that is probably Apple Stores. When I go into an Apple Store, if I need a really smart person to help me I can be at the Genius Bar and talking to people, and if I just want to be left alone and touch the various Apple toys, they will leave me alone. I think that that’s great. So, inside of our businesses, we’re constantly working on the tools, the systems, the training, the websites.

But the people part of it is why everyone stays with sort of the traditional brokerage models. And, that’s just really putting people over process, right? You have systems, you have processes, you have standardization, and then you make exceptions all over the place for the things that come up with human beings and their issues. We have 1400 individuals and it’s not just a big number. It’s 1400 separate people with individual issues that we think about every day.

The RealTrending podcast features the brightest minds in real estate. Every week, brokerage leaders, top agents, team leaders, and industry experts share their success secrets, trends, and lessons learned navigating this ever-changing industry. Hosted by Tracey Velt and produced by Elissa Branch.