We picked the brains of real estate leaders to find out where they see opportunities in the coming year.
During the last few months, we had the chance to visit and observe the national conferences for all major brands. While we were there, we had the opportunity to personally visit with a few of the leaders of these companies. Here are some thoughts about what they’re thinking about their companies and our industry.
Michael Miedler, President and CEO, CENTURY 21
It’s clear that Miedler, who has a significant background with Century 21 and Realogy, has his sights set on the fundamentals of working side by side with his affiliates to grow their businesses as a means of increasing his business. He commented that, despite the challenges from new models (many of them less expensive than many of his affiliates for his agents), he thinks Century 21 still offers excellent value. While he believes that technology is essential to the future of Century 21, we got the sense that he also believes that creating strong, enduring relation-ships with the affiliates will be just as important in his future growth plan.
Charlie Young, President and CEO, Coldwell Banker
Young, who is leading a complete rebranding of this venerable brand (now over 110 years old), shared that among the challenges Coldwell Banker faces is not recruiting great talent, but engaging with them in a way that is meaningful and long-lasting. In a refreshing and fun way, he includes the term awesomeness among the cultural attributes of this new, forward-leaning global network. While he and his peers have more than a few challenges in their businesses (who doesn’t?), he also believes that building a powerful, enduring culture is going to be vital to maintaining the company’s position in the market of the future.
We will be reporting more on what national branded organizations think in future editions. What’s interesting is that while virtually every conference had a strong emphasis on technology and the drive to build robust data and artificial intelligence capabilities, in private conversations with agents, teams and local leaders, they talk about the need to re-engage with the agents and staff of their companies.
We do believe that the four most significant real estate brand organizations will successfully build out their tech platforms, and it could be that the trend towards consolidation among them (and a few others) will accelerate as a result of these investments in tech. We know that the REAL Trends 500, released at the end of March, showed that the 500 largest firms had gained market share each year for the past five years in a row. Many of them are affiliated with one of the four largest brand organizations. It stands to reason that there’s a potential for these new platforms to help recruit and engage agents more so in the future.