Francesca Rose is everything we look for in a Mentor. She is on top of the Chicago real estate game, loves what she does and leads by example. If, as an agent, you have dealt with The Francesca Rose Team, chances are you enjoyed the experience. The team strives for high-level professionalism with every transaction.
My first deal with Francesca was about a year ago. From personal experience I can say that I never forgot it. I never met Francesca face-to-face until interviewing her for this piece. However, I still remember how much I enjoyed dealing with her and instantly recognized her as a leader in the industry.
Dealing with hundreds of REALTORS® a year, remembering one you have never met is definitely special. I was excited to get to talk to Francesca about what makes her unique. With no surprise at all, she answered in her bubbly, enthusiastic manner and provided incredibly useful information we can learn from:
Greg: What got you into real estate and made it your career?
Francesca: My mother was in real estate so growing up I was always around it. However, she drove an overgrown station wagon and I was an economist with a fancy briefcase. At that time real estate was the last thing I wanted to do. Later, I was hired by David “Buzz” Ruttenberg to rent in the Belden Centre. The first day on the job I sold a unit and realized, this is a pretty sweet job! After that I was hooked. Buzz was a mentor and inspired me constantly. My mother remains my strongest mentor -- and by the way, now I drive an overgrown station wagon! (laughs)
Greg: The Francesca Rose Team is one of the highest regarded and most respected brands in Chicago real estate. When building your brand, what was imperative for rising above the competition?
Francesca: We have three main focuses. First, we provide concierge-level service. We take care of our clients at every step of the transaction. We are a boutique operation, not a production line. We provide first-class service so that our clients enjoy the transaction as much as possible. Second, from the beginning I understood the importance of specialization. I wanted to excel in one area so I chose Streeterville. Knowing my product better than virtually any other agent was my goal, and once I accomplished that I duplicated my efforts over and over again. This gave me a niche and, in turn, built my business to where it is today. Lastly, I realized that to accomplish the first two points I needed a team. To achieve perfection and the high level service I was looking for, a team was the only answer. Very few operations are one-man operations. Teams are the way of the future.
Greg: Is having good rapport with other REALTORS® important to your success?
Francesca: It is critical! Having good rapport with other agents makes all the difference with scheduling showings, negotiations and getting feedback for your listings. The most important point to remember is that fighting for your clients does not mean fighting with other REALTORS®. Agents need to stop being so combative and remember that we just need to get the deal done. We get too much heat from our clients, attorneys and mortgage brokers. We need to support each other.
Greg: What is your best ‘lesson learned’ from real estate?
Francesca: At a certain point I realized that I can’t do it all. I was working non-stop but I was not working smart. I had this fear that I wouldn’t be able to find help who could do things as well as I could. I hired an assistant and that was the beginning of the Francesca Rose team. Hiring my assistant allowed me to do what I do best. After 20 years in the business, it allows me to maintain the passion without burnout.
Greg: What are your top three success tips for REALTORS® looking to grow and build their business?
2011 C.A.R. YPN Chair and Managing Broker/Partner, Vesta Preferred Realty