Get efficient, remove distractions and innovate, @properties CEO Thad Wong, Fathom Holdings CEO Josh Harley and Sotheby’s International Realty President Kamini Lane said at Connect.

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Over the past few months, it’s become clear the housing market is taking a turn.

For brokers, that means it’s time to arm agents with the tips and tools necessary to turn that market shift into an opportunity.

How does a broker do that exactly? Get efficient, remove distractions and innovate, Inman Connect Las Vegas speakers Thad Wong of @properties, Fathom Holdings CEO Josh Harley and Sotheby’s International Realty President Kamini Lane said during a panel moderated by Anthony Lamacchia, CEO of Lamacchia Companies.

Josh Harley, Kamini Lane, Thad Wong and Anthony Lamacchia at Inman Connect Las Vegas Aug. 3 | AJ Canaria of MoxiWorks

Harley argued that brokerages should strive for efficiency by eliminating unnecessary costs.

“We all have bloat in our businesses,” Harley said. “Find that bloat, remove that bloat, streamline the operations and then use those funds to help your agents.”

Meanwhile, Lane argued brokers should be sure agents aren’t getting distracted by headlines discussing how bad the market is now or will become.

“Some of that is truly putting into context the environment that we’re in right now,” Lane said. “We see headlines that make it seem like the sky is falling and like it’s 2008 all over again, and the reality is that that’s not true. There are fundamental factors that are very different than they were back then.”

All that market crash talk “becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy,” Harley added.

On the innovation side, Wong shared how he ended up purchasing the Christie’s International Real Estate brand during the pandemic, in order to take hold of the opportunity to gain national recognition.

“During COVID we bought the Christie’s network and that did two things,” Wong said. “Number one, that gave our agents in our region a better wrapper. If we had built the Ferrari engine that hummed perfectly, we had a nice Honda body. Something respectable, but not great. So when I put on the Christie’s International Real Estate wrapper on it, it’s perfect …”

“In doing that, when it came to expanding and networking, it created another stream of revenue for us so we can expand in downturn and only dominate the market further,” Wong continued. “It also gave us the chance to distribute our technology under a brand that had international appeal and was internationally aware, and it made us an international market overnight.”

For companies who are looking to innovate through expansion or acquisition like @properties, Wong also stressed that organic growth is some of the most successful growth for a company. All the session speakers agreed that when looking to grow through partnership or acquisition of other companies, it’s imperative to make sure there’s a culture fit.

“I totally agree with that on culture,” Lane said. “If you’re going to purchase a company, you have to have a culture fit.”

View the entire session through the video above.

Email Lillian Dickerson

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