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Hughes Marino Celebrates Anniversary with Team & Special Guest Jesse Itzler

By Shay Hughes

Every year, teammates from all of our offices come together for a special event at our headquarters to celebrate our company’s anniversary, and it gets better with each year, and every new teammate! Last Friday we celebrated another eventful year for our company, and in true Hughes Marino fashion, it was packed with LOVE, inspiration and positive energy!

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To kick-off the day, team members from around the room stood up to describe what they love about Hughes Marino. The most common themes were our teammates, the positivity and the loving support everyone provides inside and out of our offices. It was an eye-opening moment for our new team members, because the love we poured out to one another was so heartfelt!

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Another touching tribute to our anniversary was our company timeline, where a few team members from every year since the company’s inception spoke about their experience at Hughes Marino as our team has grown over the years. They shared stories about their Hughes Marino family being there for them when they were needed most, hilarious stories of meeting Jason for the first time, surf trips and our expansion to other offices throughout the years. It was truly moving for all of us, and was fun to reminisce about all of the journeys we have been through together. We definitely shared a good number of happy tears and big laughs!

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Following our inspirational morning filled with love, growth and insight from our team, we knew we had to follow that up with an amazing act to end our anniversary and supercharge our team for the rest of 2019! We are happy to say that entrepreneur, best-selling author and business mogul Jesse Itzler certainly did not disappoint!

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Jesse’s excitement and passion for the entrepreneurial spirit really inspired and invigorated each member on our team. During his time with us, he walked us through his journey as an entrepreneur—from his rapping days, to co-founding Marquis Jet, to partnering with ZICO Coconut Water in its early stages and taking the product to an explosive new level, to marrying his successful wife Sara Blakely, (founder of Spanx and one of my personal business idols!), to writing the New York Times best-selling book Living with a SEAL and his most recent book, Living with the Monks.

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Jesse gave us so many incredible (and inspirational) ideas to reflect on, both personally and professionally. Here are eight takeaways that our team really enjoyed. We hope they inspire you, too!

1. Pressure is a privilege.

This was a refreshing concept to all of us. Introduced to Jesse by his long-time friend and mentor, Tim Grover, in Jesse’s own words, “if you don’t have pressure, you’re not living life to the fullest!” While our massive growth has been both extremely rewarding and exciting, it also has come with its own set of challenges, which we have embraced as opportunities for growth and even greater fulfillment! From hiring the perfect teammates, to nurturing our leaders and team members, to maintaining our award-winning company culture and living out our Core Values each and every day, it is truly a privilege to have the pressure we put on ourselves to be hugely successful. We would be lying if we said it was always easy taking care of our team, clients and community, but the pressure has truly been the ultimate privilege, and seeing each team member grow both personally and professionally is so incredibly fulfilling!

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2. Remember tomorrow.

Since we are always thinking long-term when making decisions that impact the success of Hughes Marino, this concept spoke directly to us! Jesse emphasized that whenever you take an action, it should first be framed with a simple question to truly change the trajectory of our actions. “How will that decision make me feel tomorrow?” This can be applied both personally and professionally, from our daily commitment to taking care of our health, to proactively working on a project or communicating with team members, we must always think in terms of the future and “will this benefit me tomorrow?”

3. Dedicate 10% of the day for yourself.

While everyone leads extremely busy lives, it’s important to carve out time on a daily basis to do things that make you happy and recharge your batteries! Jesse dedicates 10% of his day to taking time for himself, and talked about the importance of learning how to say “no” to things that don’t move your life or career forward. This really resonated with us, because while we work extremely hard, Jason and I try our very best to ensure our team members have plenty of time to take care of themselves and enjoy time with family and friends. By “federing it,” (one of our favorite HM-isms) we provide our team with extra time off over the holidays and long weekends throughout the year, so everyone has plenty of opportunities to recharge, nurture their personal lives and take time to pursue things that are important to them too!

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4. Have a Misogi – What will define your year?

First of all, what does “Misogi” mean exactly? It is all about testing your abilities in a foreign environment, which take you completely out of your comfort zone, and doing something that is so challenging that just achieving it once can fuel you for an entire year. Jesse suggests picking a major goal each year to accomplish and then going for it! After hearing this, we challenged our own team to name their own “misogi” of 2019, and we will be helping support one another to reach these gargantuan goals! It’s an amazing way to support personal growth and aligns perfectly with our Core Value #7: pursue growth and learning.

5. How you do anything is how you do everything.

I love this concept and think it really represents our company’s mantra (and another HM-ism!) that literally everything matters. We give so much care, attention to detail and commitment to excellence with everything we do, which is how we operate in every aspect at Hughes Marino. Of course, it all begins with how we hire new team members. We never compromise on finding the perfect teammates, because how you do anything is how you do everything. Compromise is not an option!

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6. I didn’t come this far to only come this far.

Jesse sees this phrase on his wall every morning, as an encouraging reminder to seize all opportunities, and I sense this will become one of our new HM-isms very soon! He learned a very valuable lesson from SEAL David Goggins: when your brain says you’re done, you’re only 40% done, which is a powerful reminder that we need to push further than we think humanly possible! Have you reached an obstacle that makes you consider the option of giving up? Don’t! You didn’t come this far, put in all the effort and commitment, to only come this far. What a motivating statement!

7. Don’t get off the bike!

This idea goes hand-in-hand with #6. Jesse shared a story of a podcast he had with Lance Armstrong, where his coach encouraged him to not get off the bike until he got the win. And to never give up—don’t get off the bike! You can keep going, even when you think you can’t!


This might be one of the greatest takeaways for myself! Jesse makes it a point to have “no zero days,” in that every day is productive, and moving toward a goal! We should always be moving the needle forward, whether it be personal goals, or company goals. The key to having no zero days? Jesse says repetition, and that lasting change happens when you are always changing. I am so incredibly proud of our team, as I can truly say that each individual has no zero days! While it may be hard to believe, it is so true, and our strong work ethic is one of the many things that bonds us as a high-performing team!

After listening to our teammates touching stories and hearing Jesse’s incredibly inspiring ideas, we left feeling pumped and ready to take on any challenge that this new year will bring! Looking back, it was a perfect day with our perfect team, and I wouldn’t have it any other way! Cheers to another incredible year of growth, hard work and LOVE!


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Shay Hughes is president & COO of Hughes Marino, an award-winning commercial real estate company specializing in tenant representation and building purchases with offices across the nation. Shay writes about business leadership and company culture on her blog, Lead from Within. Contact Shay at 1-844-662-6635 or shay.hughes@hughesmarino.com to learn more.

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