Watching the buzzards circle.

By
Real Estate Agent with Coldwell Banker Residential

Our managing broker, Cornelia Steffes, recently announced that she was retiring before the end of the year, and introduced us to her replacement.

Cornelia has been the managing broker the entire time that I've been here, and well prior.  I think she's been here some 30+ years.  She's phenomenal, and is a walking real estate encyclopedia.  In additional to her vast real estate knowledge, she's been doing this nigh onto forever, so she knows everyone's stories, and knows where all the skeletons are buried.

She's also a welcoming shoulder to cry upon, and we've all (myself included) plopped ourselves down in her office chair and bared our souls, while drenching them in tears.  And somehow she manages to smile that caring smile, and listen to our woes.  We have over 80 prima donnas in our office (and yes, I'm one of them), and she listens to our gripes, keeps our confidences, and metes out balms, salves and real world solutions, whether they be real-estate-related or not.

She will be sorely missed.

Meanwhile, I'm sure you're wondering, what's going to happen?  Well, Cornelia has chosen her succesor in Barbara Kleban.  Barbara is a wonderful new addition to our office. She's smart, energetic and well-versed in many of the things that we need to drag our sorry asses into the 21st century.  She understands many of the new technologies, has schooled us on the uses of things like Facebook, Yelp, Trulia, Zillow, Realtor.com, Hootsuite, Pinterest and is bringing the ship around to include modern methods of presenting at listing opportunities, including smart-phones and tablets!  We're going to survive nicely, thank you.

Being the premiere office in our area, many have seen this transition as the perfect opportunity to pillage our directory, and recruiting has taken on a frenzied fervor.  Anyone who's "anyone" in our office, has been approached by the other offices in the area, and offered riches galore if they'll jump ship.  Higher splits, marketing money, premium parking spaces, signing bonuses... believe me, the world is being offered.

I, however, will not be one of those jumping ship.  I still believe in our office, and our new leadership.  Barbara Kleban has shown some tenacity and business know-how beyond her years.  I'm going to hang around and see how it goes.

Meanwhile, I'll watch the buzzards circling.

- 9

Posted by

 ALAN MAY, Realtor®
Specializing in Evanston Real Estate and North Shore Real Estate

Coldwell Banker Residential Real Estate, 2929 Central Street, Evanston, IL 60201
847.425.3779      Cell: 847.924.3313      Email: Almay@aol.com

Evanston Real Estate & North Shore Real Estate
Licensed in Illinois

   

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Ambassador
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Tammy Emineth
Content Marketer, SEO Teacher, Website Fixer
Personal SEO - Website SEO and Real Estate Marketing

You have to weigh the balance of what's working now and what may work in the future. If you're happy where you are, stay and bloom! Good luck to all those moving on and new recruits coming in.

October 12, 2012 03:52 PM
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Hannah Williams
Expertise in NE Philadelphia & Bucks County
Re/Max Eastern inc.

Good for you Alan ! I just stopped by in one of other   offices (we have 3 branches)and saw one of our should I say old agents come back home I was so happy to see him and him me ..Click your shoes 3 times because there is no place like home Stay where you are ..Thats my advise and I am sticking to it

HelpfulHannah

October 12, 2012 04:03 PM
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Brenda Mullen
Your San Antonio TX Real Estate Agent!!
RE/MAX Access

Sounds like your new Broker is going to need agents like you!  I am quite sure your office will manage to stay on top :)!

October 12, 2012 04:43 PM
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Gayle Rich-Boxman Fishhawk Lake Realtor (503)755-2905
"Your Gateway to the Lake" Birkenfeld Oregon
Vernonia Realty

Alan, if you took this at "face value", you would wonder how Barbara could fill Cornelia's shoes....looks? youth? but if Cornelia has hand-picked her, she's dyn-o-mite. I love the fact that you are staying. Good for you.

 

October 12, 2012 07:39 PM
Rainmaker
604,789
Sussie Sutton
UTR TEXAS Realtors - Rep for buyers and sellers.
UTR Texas Realtors

Sad that you are loosing your broker, all good things must end. However, when one door closes another opens. I am sure she will bring many great ideas to the company.

October 12, 2012 07:57 PM
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Ed Silva
Central CT Real Estate Broker Serving all equally
RE/MAX Professionals, CT 203-206-0754

Alan, for all the intelligence and business savvy you accredit to Cornelia, her choice of successor has to be wise as well. Good Luck to Barbara

October 12, 2012 08:44 PM
Rainmaker
856,467
Donna Foerster
Metro Denver Real Estate Agent
Cherry Creek Properties, LLC

Alan~ What a nice tribute to Cornelia and an equally nice welcome for Barbara.  Cornelia made a wise decision in her replacement.  Anyone who leaves is being foolish.

October 12, 2012 10:14 PM
Rainmaker
1,000,464
Conrad Allen
Webster, Ma, Realtor
Re/Max Professional Associates

Hi Alan.  Change is always tough.  The grass is usually not greener in the other guy's yard.

October 13, 2012 03:30 AM
Rainmaker
1,775,119
Gabe Sanders
Stuart Florida Real Estate
the BlueWater Realty team specializing in Martin County Residential Homes, Condos and Land Sales

Yes, one of the rights of passage when there's a change in management.  The vultures do come out and circle.

October 13, 2012 04:55 AM
Rainmaker
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Sheila Anderson
The Real Estate Whisperer Who Listens 732-715-1133
Referral Group Incorporated

Good morning Alan. You retiring Broker sounds very special and I'm sure you will miss her. Her replacement (not predecessor) sounds great too. Good luck.

October 13, 2012 05:25 AM
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Liz and Bill Spear
RE/MAX Elite Warren County OH (Cincinnati/Dayton)
RE/MAX Elite 513.265.3004 www.LizTour.com

Alan, Sounds like you've been fortunate to have two very good brokers.  Hopefully too many don't jump ship and give the new broker the opportunity to prove the office will keep on keeping on under her leadership.

October 13, 2012 05:43 AM
Ambassador
983,564
Alan May
Evanston & Northshore of Chicago real estate
Coldwell Banker Residential

Suzanne - change can be difficult.

Pat - people are always prepared to take advantage of every weakness.

Paula - we ain't dead, nor dying.

Rob - they've been after me for years.

Mike - grass that is greener, is often covered in manure.

Barbara - why thank you, ma'am.

Tammy - I love our office.

Hannah - there's no place like home.... there's no place like home.

Brenda - that's the idea.

Gayle - and that's exactly it... Cornelia has hand-picked her to be the best manager for our office, and our culture.

Sussie - I will miss her greatly.

Ed - that's what I figure, as well.

Donna - everyone has to make their own choices.  For me, it makes sense to stay.

Conrad - and if the grass is greener, you have to be careful where you step.

Gabe - oooh... it's a right of passage?  Does that mean it'll be made into a feature film?

Sheila - She is... and we'll miss her.  (yes, I know... someone else already pointed that out, and I've fixed it... I wrote this one in a hurry, as I was heading home).

Liz & Bill - I hope the same.  I've got enough change going on in my life.

October 13, 2012 07:56 AM
Rainmaker
444,038
Gay E. Rosen
Honest, Hardworking and always Professional!
Houlihan Lawrence

ALan - change is so hard but the very fact you are staying on board might merit you a commision increase! How could they risk losing the funniest, wittiest person in the office ? Your departure would be sorely missed.

October 13, 2012 08:15 AM
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Alan May
Evanston & Northshore of Chicago real estate
Coldwell Banker Residential

Gay - oooh..... commission increase....!   [Hey, Barbara!!!]

October 13, 2012 06:10 PM
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Patricia Kennedy
For Your Home in the Capital
Evers & Company Real Estate, Inc.

Alan, I understand that recruiting is an important part of a good broker's job.  Still, I do find it sort of offensive when the buzzards try to take advantage of changes that occur in an office. 

October 16, 2012 07:18 PM
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Alan May
Evanston & Northshore of Chicago real estate
Coldwell Banker Residential

Patricia - I don't find it offensive... as you say, it's part of their job.  Recruiting is a normal part of this business, and personally, I find it flattering to be so sought after.  I am one of the top producers in this office, so I would find it a little odd if they DIDN'T come looking for me.

October 18, 2012 08:32 AM
Anonymous #23
Anonymous
Barbara Kleban

I am honored to have an agent as wonderful as Alan here in our office as one of our top producers and most vocal supporters. As evidenced by this blog with its loyal followers, Alan embodies the tech savvy, creative, driven, energetic Realtors we have in our office and need more of! I'm focused on our goals and striving to fill the very big shoes and carry on the legacy of Cornelia Steffes, who built a successful, market leading office. I'm committed to these Realtors and helping them be real estate rock stars so my only words to anyone looking to lure them away would be.... Bring it on. As an office, we stand on our own merits, programs, and strength. We are focused, driven, and ready for anything!

October 18, 2012 11:00 AM
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Alan May
Evanston & Northshore of Chicago real estate
Coldwell Banker Residential

Barbara - thank you for the kind words... you do, indeed, have big shoes to fill... but I'm fully confident that you'll do a great job... you already are.

October 18, 2012 08:40 PM
Rainmaker
716,974
Debbie Walsh
Hudson Valley NY Real Estate 845.928.8000
Keller Williams Realty

So true the grass is always greener.  Not too long ago several agents in our office were wooed away to another.  As of this moment they have all come back except for one and that person looks to be leaving too. 

October 23, 2012 01:25 PM
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Alan May
Evanston & Northshore of Chicago real estate
Coldwell Banker Residential

Debra - oddly enough, once they leave... it's YOUR grass that appears greener.

October 23, 2012 08:24 PM
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