February 9, 2018 – Despite setbacks in certain locales, the real estate industry has bounced back from many of its problems in recent years. But a dire need for executive talent in the field still remains. In particular demand, recruiters say, are executives who survived the last downturn and who now have a vision for better times ahead.
To help meet that need, executive search firm RETS Associates has expanded into the residential real estate sector. The firm has hired John Colelli, a veteran industry professional who will serve as a director and key driver in the placement of residential real-estate positions, ranging from mid- and senior-level management to division presidents.
Mr. Colelli previously worked for the Newport Group, where he focused on residential real estate. His previous experience also includes production roles for mortgage firms such as Eagle Home Mortgage and Millenium Home Mortgage.
“John brings a deep fluency in the residential real estate space,” said Kent Elliott, principal at RETS Associates. “Our commitment to ensuring our recruiters bring an intimate knowledge of the industries we serve continues to be a true differentiator for RETS in the market, enabling us to place the best-quality talent custom-fit for the unique needs of our clients.”
Real Estate Recruiters
Jana Turner, principal at RETS Associates, said the business will continue to follow its core principals. “At RETS, we strive to be more than just recruiters – we are client advocates first and foremost, and we don’t settle until we find the right position or candidate that sets all parties up for success,” she said. “We intend to take that same approach in our residential real estate work.”
RETS Associates is a boutique recruiting firm specializing in the recruiting and placement of interim, permanent and executive positions in the real estate, home-building, construction and real estate development industry. Founded in 2002, the firm is headquartered in Newport Beach, CA, with additional offices in Los Angeles, San Jose, San Francisco, Seattle and Chicago.
Search firms have been bulking up their services to the real estate sector in recent month. Here are a few examples from the Hunt Scanlon Media archives:
A new executive recruitment firm, Hanning Recruitment, has been launched in the U.K. It is headed by Toby Speke and backed by Rory Penn and Thomas van Straubenzee of the London agency VanHan. Headquartered in Mayfair, the firm will focus on the residential and commercial property sectors.
Odgers Berndtson has appointed Robert Baron as partner and national practice leader, real estate & infrastructure. Mr. Baron leads the firm’s efforts on behalf of developers, investors, lenders, occupiers and service providers in the real estate and physical infrastructure sectors.
London-headquartered executive search firm Sheffield Haworth expanded with the addition of Emily Von Kohorn as a managing director in the firm’s global real estate practice. Based in New York, she brings a venerable background in real estate asset management, development, capital raising and investor relations.
Downturn Leads to Opportunity
According to the “Real Estate Hiring Forecast” report, recently released by recruiters Ferguson Partners, 93 percent of the largest real estate companies forecast either an increase in hiring or that they would maintain hiring at their current levels. In previous years, there was much higher demand for executives who could either invest or raise capital. The new report found a greater focus on individuals who can drive value and cash flow in assets.
While real estate is still largely a local business and sector, more key players are starting to adopt a regional focus across borders, looking to apply development processes to a dynamic and challenging industry, according to Egon Zehnder. As a result, these global and regional players want leaders with the competence and skills to successfully operate in and cope with such a demanding, competitive and at times crowded environment.
To thrive in this new landscape, executives will need an exceptional understanding and knowledge of the real estate market. Of particular importance will be awareness of fundamentals, influencers, dependency and dynamics, said Egon Zehnder, as well as a regional/ international/ cross-cultural leadership mindset, robust risk management skills and contingency planning know-how. Strong organizational and stakeholder leadership combined with a fast-paced and forward-thinking perspective on development and scenario planning will allow real estate leaders to structure unique deals that will maintain viability and profitability in dynamic, fluid markets, the recruitment firm said.
Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor; and Andrew W. Mitchell, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media