Thursday, February 12, 2009

An Amazing Athlete

Yesterday morning I observed an amazing athlete. He possessed all the attributes that go into the composition of a good athlete, balance, agility, upper body strength, endurance, speed, quickness and a mindset to be above average. No, I was not watching ESPN nor any other sports venue.

I was watching a young fellow running alongside of a big green and white truck that said Waste Management on the side of it. He was working my neighborhood, here in Killearn Estates. He would run from location to location, keeping up with the truck. He would sprint to a trash receptacle and dodge between cars as he pulled it to the rear of the truck. He would then lift that obtuse object above his head and shake the contents out of it and then return it to the spot he had retrieved it from. Occassionally he would leap onto a foothold on the truck and take a brief ride. The truck meandered along the route that I was walking with Maggie the Wonder-Bassett. I was overtly impressed with what I saw.

I could not help but reflect on this sight and contrast it to the morning news. Alex Rodriguez, A-Rod ( now A-roid) the New York Yankees mega-star, was implicated in the utilization of performance enhancing drugs to get an edge in the sport in which he already was a star. This news, coupled with the strike MLB baseball went on a few years ago, has just about cooled my interest in this league, forever. These prima donnas make millions of dollars playing a game that most of us would gladly play for free. Then the revelation comes that they cheat to maintain pace. The bottom line is a heart breaking take away message that bad people cheat.

My waste management guy, I am sure, uses some performance enhancing tools as well. They are most likely: a mortgage payment, a wife and children dependent on him, an employer who pays him and just the endorphins that arise from wanting to do his job well. A-Roid would do well to spend a few hours following this man. Perhaps he could learn a little about what it takes to be a true champion. At least he could look at an example of what it means to have character.

Not all champions are found between the lines of a field of competition. Most of them do not have agents standing at the ready to sell them like a bottle of ripple. They are working class people who go to work everyday and put in the required amount of time to earn their pay. They are the backbone of this great nation of ours. We see them all around us. All we have to do is stop and pay a little bit of attention and they will teach us what life is all about.

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The Little Man:

Friday, February 6, 2009

It's Okay to be Little Bitty

As I address this let me start by stating that I worked for “LARGE“ for thirty years. I was employed by the DuPont company which has been a Fortune 500 company for many years. I worked in various assignments over my career with DuPont, many of them at an Executive level. I was there long enough to make the determination that large does not always equate to better.

Many functions in large corporations, going back ten years or more, began to be out-sourced to smaller firms. Examples are Human Resources, relocation, fleet management, printing, and so forth. Why this move to out-sourcing? Simple: Smaller firms could deliver much more efficiently. Most large corporations get hand cuffed by their own policy manuals. Smaller firms can assess, analyze and correct a function much quicker than a large corporation can do it for themselves.
To apply a nautical analogy: Which takes longer to turn around, the USS Norway or a canoe? The answer, of course is a canoe.

All the foregoing holds true in the real estate world. When you decide who is going to help you buy or sell, or both, who is it going to be? One of the large corporate real estate firms or a smaller, local firm? Essentially , the only difference you will see is the presence of national advertising. Do you really believe that when you see that hot air balloon on CBS that it makes a difference in the buying or selling process as it relates to you back in Tallahassee? Of course, it doesn't.The smaller firm utilizes the same tools to market or buy as the larger firm, the multiple listing service (MLS), local newspaper, signage, flyers, open houses, realtor net-working, so forth. One thing the larger corporations consistently do, that smaller firms do not usually, is charge you a transaction fee. That is a fee, usually between 300 and 500 dollars that you pay just to do business with them. Whether you successfully buy or sell, you will owe that fee. We do not and never will charge you a fee to do business with Lee Vass Realty.

Smaller firms operate locally. They are specialists in the local market. National companies are spread out over the whole nation spot-lighting the country coast to coast. If you were to go deer hunting, do you want a shotgun in your hand or a rifle? Most likely you want a rifle. The smaller firm is the rifled approach. Small firms are the local market specialists.

When you choose a realtor to represent you the over riding consideration is to choose one that you know and trust. The small firm does not give up one iota to the larger firm. In fact the smaller firm is usually not tied to a lot of policy manual dictates. The smaller firm can tailor a marketing strategy to your circumstances from the get-go.

Most larger firms have a large number of agents reporting to a Broker. The Broker dictates policy and is often hard, if not impossible, for you to access. Why not work directly with the Broker? In most smaller firms you do just that.

At Lee Vass Realty you work directly with the Broker/Owner. We operate under the same State of Florida, DBPR licensure as any other agency. We are members of the Tallahassee Board of Realtors, Florida Association of Realtors and The National Association of Realtors. We carry errors and omissions insurance. We are plugged into MLS. We live in the local market. We can best represent you locally.

I hope that I have convinced you that you give up, very little, if anything at all by foregoing the use of a large firm in favor of using a small real estate agency. Call me to get going on buying or selling in the local market.

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Alan Jackson sings it: