I recently had the opportunity to sit down and have a quick interview with a role model of mine, Gail Spreen. Gail is the managing broker and owner of Streeterville Properties. As a young professional, fresh in the business, I’m always seeking for words of wisdom from top REALTORS in Chicago. I must admit the YPN-Mentor Series was started by a part selfish effort on my end to get a chance to sit down and gain some 1 on 1 insight on how to improve my business. However the YPN is all about sharing and growing together. So for your viewing/reading pleasure please go ahead and enjoy branding insights from one of Chicago’s best REALTORS, Gail Spreen.
Me: What’s the largest business challenge/hurdle you had to cross?
Gail: Getting well-known and attracting clients.
Me: Do you think being involved with your community is important as a REALTOR?
Gail: Yes. You have to show commitment and involvement in your community. Invest in the area you work in. Your involvement has to be meaningful and something you are passionate about. It's important to remember that you have to love what you do and find meaning in your involvement. Community involvement is an investment, not a quick fix to push your name. Find a cause that best suits your passion, something that you will push because you want to, not because you see it a way to make money or gain more clients.
Me: What’s one piece of advice you can give agents in the earlier stages of their careers?
Gail: To find your niche, get involved with what you love to do and can market yourself through. Run your business with a long-term and bigger-picture mindset. It is imperative that you develop yourself as a brand and handle yourself as such. As a REALTOR, you have to be dynamic and caring. Every day, work towards your long-range vision and what you care about. Don’t get into real estate for the immediate pay out, or you’ll be broke. Money will come if you find meaning in what you do and love coming to work every day. Oh -- and remember to provide great service!
Me: Is real estate a good career choice for a young professional today?
Gail: Absolutely! Right now is the best time to get into real estate as a career. As a REALTOR, you have to know everything about what you sell. You have to be an expert on the area you are selling. You have to know every building, floor plan, surrounding park, prices and other neighborhood facts. Now is an opportune time to get in and learn and build your business. Real estate is all about hustling and letting the fire underneath you push you to your limits and maximize your potential.
Me: “Gail Spreen” is a name commonly linked with Streeterville real estate, in agents’ and clients’ minds alike. What’s the most important thing to remember when building a name for yourself in real estate?
Grigory Pekarsky,2011 C.A.R. YPN Chair and Managing Broker/Partner, Vesta Preferred Realty