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The One Thing We Cannot Teach

…which explains why we made it our first Core Value.

By John Jarvis

At Hughes Marino, we help business leaders make great real estate decisions. Business owners rely on us to provide valuable guidance on complex, multi-million dollar real estate lease and purchase transactions. It isn’t easy. Our clients count on us to conduct robust and ethical negotiations on their behalf, and to oversee and manage the various competing interests. We often have to navigate through diverse and competing agendas, from the property owner, who wants the highest price, to our client, the tenant or buyer, who wants top quality space at the lowest price, to the agents who only get paid if the transaction closes, to the attorneys who are well paid on an hourly basis whether or not the transaction closes. I wrote in a previous article about how five cents in rental rate can yield (or cost) a landlord over $1 million! You get the picture – multiple parties, differing perspectives and competing priorities, with a lot of money at stake. So how can you trust your broker to always do the right thing? Because it’s in our DNA. It’s who we are. And we recognize that is the one thing we cannot teach.

We do a lot of teaching and training at Hughes Marino. Much of it is focused on our Core Values. For example, we expect ourselves, each one of us, to deliver excellence in everything we do, a very lofty standard indeed. So we talk about what that means, about how it is experienced from the vantage of our clients. We practice and train to do the basics so well that they become cutting edge. We also expect each one of us to proactively communicate with everyone. That means never getting an email or a phone call that starts with the words “Where are we with…” This includes all communications with our clients, and also with our teammates, and with our families and our friends. Yes sir, proactively communicate with everyone – that is a habit worth developing. And we talk and train an awful lot on the power of authenticity, gratitude and humility, about pursuing growth and learning and about generously giving to others. These are the things that we teach and train and practice. These are our priorities.

So how do we address our highest priority, our first Core Value? We hire to it.

Always do the right thing. Powerful words to be sure, and what exactly does it mean? Circumstances change, lines can blur, and it isn’t always easy to sort out exactly what the right thing to do is, right? Well, maybe. Except, actually, you always know. You may not be able to articulate it precisely, but you know what the right thing to do is by the way it feels when you are doing it. We hire people who get this, who agree with this, and for whom this feels right.

So there it is, the one thing we cannot teach. And the one thing we look for in every new hire. Our first Core Value, and our highest priority. Always do the right thing. And we know it when we see it in a candidate because we can feel it, and so can they. And when we see it and feel it, we act on it and we hire that person. You know, because it is the right thing to do, and we strive to always do the right thing. This is how we grow.

John Jarvis is a senior vice president of Hughes Marino, an award-winning commercial real estate company specializing in tenant representation and building purchases with offices in San Diego, Orange County, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Silicon Valley and Seattle. Contact John at 1-844-NO-CONFLICT or john@hughesmarino.com to learn more.



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