< Back to News

Leadership Development at Hughes Marino: 32 Stories and Growing

Download PDF
John Jarvis
John Jarvis

As a principal at Hughes Marino, I work as a licensed commercial real estate broker and a project team leader. We help companies to make great real estate decisions. After 26 years doing this work I am happy to report that I really love what I do. In 2012, I was asked to take on additional responsibility as Vice President of Leadership Development. There was no job description. It would be up to me to define the role, and I accepted the challenge.

First, let me say that I am not a very good cheerleader. I would not make a good “in your face” personal trainer. I am not that guy. But I am curious by nature, and I am always thinking about leadership, and about personal growth, so it is a natural fit for me to work with our team to define our leadership development goals together. Over the last twelve months we have rallied around some core ideas that are coming to define leadership development at Hughes Marino. Here are a few of those concepts.

How Do We Grow?

How do we grow as a company? We grow as a company when we grow as individuals. This is a cool concept with tremendous power. It reinforces the message that we are interested and vested in one another’s growth and development. It also reminds us that we cannot grow unless our people are growing. We have borrowed and adopted from author Joe Calloway the edgy and accurate phrase “If you are as good as you are going to be, then you can’t work here!” Love that. Not every workplace could get away with saying that. We can, and we do.

We are a collection of 32 ultra-high performers who play well together as a team. We invest a tremendous amount of time and energy in our culture. We are all about trust, and communication, and an absence of fear. We strive for excellence, authenticity, appreciation, and humility. Successful speaker, author and coach Mike Robbins has helped us with a few of these concepts. Thanks Mike. And on our own we also decided to rally around three core competencies. We call it Lead-Write-Present, and it goes something like this.


Each of our team members practices leadership through community service. Stepping forward and accepting a leadership role on a non-profit board is a perfect opportunity to practice leadership. First and foremost, it must be an authentic commitment by an individual with passion for the organization. We don’t join boards to get business. And once you are on the board, why not step forward and lead a committee, or an event, or become the board chairperson! The leadership role will take you deeper into the mission of the organization where you can make a bigger impact, and it will also force you to organize a team, and lead. Every experience makes us stronger and smarter, and better at working with people. This is how we grow.


Each of our team members is expected to write. Some write better than others, and we all need the practice. And the more we write, the more we realize that the hard part isn’t the writing. The hard part is the thinking. What are you going to write? What do you have to say that is fresh and interesting? And how are you going to say it? Once you get your thinking straight, the writing is easy. We expect our team members to be thought-leaders in the commercial real estate field, moving the conversation forward. We expect our team members to write, and to practice thinking and writing all the time. Not all of that writing gets published, but a lot of it does. Our website is loaded with great content and recent articles written by our team. We are moving the conversation forward, and it feels great.


We make a living presenting. When we meet with a prospective client, or with anyone who isn’t already familiar with the good work that we do, we give our “presentation.” These first opportunities are precious, and it is paramount that our team is able to convey in that moment who we are, what we are all about, how we add value and why the work that we do is so important. Robert Frost said “All the funs in how you say a thing.” And that is the point. We all have a story to tell, and a good story brings people together. Let’s get better at storytelling. Besides, it is fun. And so is winning new clients.

How am I doing? Do you like my writing? Hey, at least I am practicing, right? Hopefully some of these ideas are fresh. Hopefully they move the conversation forward. If you want to hear more, reach out and let’s find a time to get together. I’d love to tell you the rest of the story.

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 across the nation. Contact John at 1-844-662-6635 or john@hughesmarino.com to learn more.

Previous Story

The Family Model Is a Good Business Model

Next Story

Engaging Environments Retain Workers

Hughes Marino Favicon