What is the proper response to life-long lagniappe?
I’ve got family on my side and my wife’s side in rural America. When I tell them that my main business is representing healthcare organizations and governments in real estate lease negotiations, I can tell what they’re thinking: You really get paid for that?
We take it for granted, but commercial real estate brokerage is a great business. It isn’t very capital intensive. There’s rarely pressure on commissions, everyone (usually) understands the model and it is (almost) infinitely scalable.
As an SIOR, a leader in the market, and business owner, what is the proper response to that? One option is to be thankful to live in a time and place where this business is possible. Another is to milk all you can out of a good situation. A third is to look for opportunities to share some good fortune through charitable giving.
I’d like to propose a few other options that perhaps hadn’t occurred to you—at least initially. I’d like to propose using our gifts within the community, within our organizations and within our households.
One of the questions I’m often asked is, “Where does the name come from?”
That’s a fair question. I’ve shared what prompted me to start the firm elsewhere, so I won’t go into it here, but most of the plan preceded the name. It came down to the moment when having a name was critical path to launch.
Should I name it after myself? It means something when an owner is willing to put his name on a company, but would that seem a little braggy?
Should I name it after the street where our first office was located (like a lot of old line firms do)? Should I localize it to an area? Maybe. I went through biblical and historic names, too, but they felt too distant or cold for what was going to be a community driven firm.
What would it take for a community to NEED a company?
Does Atlanta need Home Depot or Delta Airlines? Does Orlando need Disney World? Maybe yes. Maybe no.
But when we set out to create a new kind of real estate firm, the vision began with:
To create an organization that was driving so much value into the community that even those who didn’t understand our mission would admit that they couldn’t imagine the city without us.
As we matured and Partners in our organization began to own our mission, our vision became:
Imagine our city. Build that city.
To accomplish this, we focus on three areas: