Lessons for a Young Broker from the CEO of Reonomy

While I’m not a real estate broker by trade, I certainly relate to the entrepreneurial spirit many brokers embody. Since co-founding Reonomy, a commercial real estate data company, I’ve cut my teeth on commercial real estate (CRE) and learned its complexities inside and out. Based on my continued interactions with brokers to better understand and solve their pain points, it’s clear the recent democratization of data has had a strong hand in the advancement of their careers. Here are a few additional takeaways to help you navigate the turbulent waters of CRE…

“Always create value.”

Every successful entrepreneurial venture starts with recognition of a need. Young brokers can learn from this mindset and strive to create value—for their clients, and in turn, themselves. 

 First and foremost, always know your audience; what are they looking for out of a deal and how can their ROI be maximized? Not every client is the same and recognizing that earlier rather than later is imperative. Once you’ve established their needs, execute on their vision. For example, if a client is planning on expanding their retail portfolio, come to the table with market trends, competitor insights, and potential buying opportunities based on specific pieces of data that match the criteria they're looking for. Consider tax breaks and opportunity zones as well, to ensure your client maximizes their potential investment.

 With the rise of CRE technology, property data is more available than ever before to help create value for buyers and sellers. By meeting your customer’s personalized needs you’ll establish trust—vitally important in the world of real estate. Build credibility to solidify business relationships and potentially open valuable new opportunities down the road.

“Don’t be afraid to pivot.”

The definition of “insanity” is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. If your current process isn’t yielding any returns, change it. Many professionals still rely on antiquated methods to conduct research and source deals instead of using new tools to boost efficiency and performance.

 As the landscape continues to evolve, don’t be afraid to try something different.

From identifying targeted opportunities to sourcing new listings, a robust CRE platform like Reonomy eliminates traditional inefficiencies for more streamlined workflows and better business results. CRE technology is also instrumental in lead management. In conjunction with a data platform, a CRM like Salesforce can help organize and automate lead outreach. So, while your competition is cold-calling and sifting through files to find information, you’ll be a step ahead with the click of a button. 

“Recognize the importance of relationships.”

To reiterate, trust is important in this industry. Commercial real estate is, and in my opinion, always will be greatly relationship-driven. Whether you’re working for buyers or sellers, the roots of your success lie within your book of business; the bigger that book is, the better chance you have of closing a deal.

 How do you compete with sophisticated brokers who have had an entire career to build relationships? Acknowledge the value of networking and embrace the meaningful connections you make from the beginning. To ensure partnerships start off on the right foot, use technology to make more informed decisions and establish that aforementioned value. Thoughtless errors can put your reputation and relationships at risk. From prospecting through research and analysis, use data for stronger due diligence. This can help you avoid egregious mistakes and prepare you for better transactions down the road, particularly in intricate off-market deals where mutual trust is even more imperative.

 Last but not least, CRE technology can also help young brokers take back their time, allowing/enabling them to concentrate on fostering existing client relationships. Rather than spending valuable hours digging for property details and ownership information, CRE technology can make research and analysis more efficient. This allows young brokers to focus on what matters most—establishing long-standing working alliances for overall better deals.