Recognising and celebrating milestones in commercial real estate

Jul 26, 2023
the significance of recognising and celebrating milestones in commercial real estate

I just released the 150th episode of the podcast, so I’ve decided that now is a good time to cover the power of recognising and celebrating milestones.

Below are a few basic but significant ways that commercial real estate agency leaders can do the same.

Recognise Employees

Acknowledge long-serving team members with personal notes, awards, and public plaudits.

Be generous for important anniversaries; gifts, cash (or equivalent) and/or plaques generally work.

You can create a pathway to celebrate the progress and success of your revenue-generating employees – such as noting when agents close their first deal (or close their first deal generating more than $10,000 in revenue, etc.).

Celebrate Clients

Write cards, make calls or send gifts to commemorate anniversaries in new spaces or mark significant purchases.

Explore unique traditions or create your own – for example, when I worked in Korea, I participated in a number of gosa ceremonies (these involve a severed pig’s head – find out more in the episode!).

Keep a record of when clients first started doing business with you – or something else that is important to you and that they won’t be expecting you to acknowledge – to strengthen relationships.

Share Milestones

Communicate personal and business growth milestones to the marketplace.

You might decide to set revenue targets and promise donations to charities if they’re achieved; this is an opportunity to thank clients and employees for their contributions to an important cause.

Recognition paves the way to more extraordinary achievements. When you celebrate them, you motivate people to create even more milestones together!

For more of my ideas about recognition and milestones in commercial real estate, tune in to episode 150 of CRE Success: The Podcast.


Episode transcript:

Today we are celebrating 150 episodes of CRE Success: The podcast. 

And as I was preparing for today's episode, I was thinking, "Well, what can I do to celebrate this milestone?"

And what I've come up with is a way to help you recognize and celebrate milestones that you, your employees and your clients reach.

Is that a little bit meta, perhaps, but let's discuss.

Hello, welcome to episode 150 of CRE Success: The Podcast. My name is Darren Krakowiak, and I help commercial real estate agency leaders to accelerate growth in their business.

Really appreciate you joining us for today's episode. And I just wanted to invite you if we're not already connected on LinkedIn to please jump on LinkedIn and send me a connection request. Let's get connected on there.

Because I've just launched a new weekly newsletter, which is called the CRE Agents: Weekly.

We've already got, I think, 1500 subscribers, in the first three or four weeks that we've put out this newsletter.

And what we're delivering there is specific and tactical advice for commercial real estate agents and leaders to accelerate growth in their business.

So, if you enjoy the content that we're putting out each and every week on this podcast, I think you're going to enjoy receiving the CRE Agents: Weekly at the start of each week.

So, to get it, jump onto LinkedIn. If we're already connected, well jump on my profile page and just click Subscribe on that newsletter. If we're not connected, well, let's get connected.

And also, you'll see under the featured posts that newsletter that you can subscribe to. 

Don't know how to find me? My name is Darren Krakowiak.

Don't know how to spell that? Well, just google Darren CRE Success. And I think Mr. Google will do all of the rest of the work.

So, it is episode 150 of the show. And I just want to point out that a couple of episodes ago, we had a special guest, Jim Tsagalis, who is the founder and managing director of Lease Equity.

And he talked about a milestone that he was celebrating in his business; it was 21 years of Lease Equity.

And he talked about a huge event that he had, and I think he was being a little bit maybe humble in the interview because it was a huge event in Perth.

He had the Lord Mare over there, talking really, personally and positively about the impact that his business has had on the Perth Real Estate market that produced this incredible video.

While you're on LinkedIn, by the way, connecting with me or subscribing to the newsletter, go and check out Lease Equity LinkedIn company page.

I think around the middle of June is when they released that video and you'll see this incredible two-minute video that they made to mark their 21 years in business.

I think that's a great template for the type of thing that you may want to do when you want to recognize milestones.

Jim talked about in the episode how they recognize their past and present employees in order that they joined the firm.

So, a lot of opportunity when you reach milestones to recognize and to really make a splash for the company, for your clients and also for your people.

Now, if you are a leader in a business, there are many things that you can do to recognize long serving employees. So, I just want to spend a moment on this.

If you're in Australia, you have a statutory obligation to recognize long service leave, I don't know if this exists outside Australia.

But in Australia, depending on what state you're in, it might be after 10 years or 13 years, or maybe you can take some prorated, but companies are required to give you around like three months off long service leave once you have racked up that amount of time working for the same employer, which I think is you know, a pretty good deal for the employee.

But also from the employer’s perspective, if you've had a staff member stay with you for 10 years, then that's also a pretty good deal for you.

So, if you're outside Australia, and you don't have the statutory obligation to provide long service leave, then maybe you might want to be a little bit generous when it comes to recognizing people's 10 year anniversaries.

Some of the things that I would look to do when I was working in a leadership position in commercial real estate could be as simple as writing a note, a personal note from me to the employee to recognize their 5, 10, whatever years of service.

Generally, the five, the 10, the 15, and the 20 are the ones that we would take a moment to recognize.

You can look to give awards; it might be a gift voucher.

I remember we used to give these, I think it was like a coin or a like a gold coin, that was Vader a certain amount that I guess I could go and cash in if they wanted to.

You might make a charitable donation in their name.

You can just create a plaque to recognize their service.

You might post on social media to recognize your long serving employees.

And that sends a message to the marketplace, to potential employees that you're a good place to work to clients that you're a stable organization that has long tenured employees.

It's great marketing for your business. And it's also great recognition for the employees.

You might want to reward your longest serving staff with a lunch.

And I remember one staff member, we gave them a budget after 10 years.

And this particular staff member was a bit of a lone wolf. And we'd let him pick exactly who he wanted to take out to dinner.

We gave him the budget. And off he went and did it. And apparently, he did have made some business.

We just didn't know who they were. So, we sort of empowered him to go in and do that.

And, of course, at your annual company event, you can set aside a moment to recognize milestones, like the Academy Awards, when they recognize people who've died over the past year.

We want to recognize people who are at their 5-year, 10-year, 15-year, 20-year mark of employment.

And that is a place where you can perhaps hand out those awards that you offer to people at the time of service.

Alright, so that's about employees. Let's talk about specifically employees that are revenue generating.

So, what I do, I've got is for people who do deals. So, for agents, are we recognizing their progress, as they, for example, do their first deal.

What about when they get their first fee over $10,000, and first fee over $50,000, then those fees over $100,000. 

What we can do here is we can create a pathway. A pathway, which celebrate success.

And when you acknowledge people's success and progress, I think that they associate that progress and success with you.

And in fact, I'm in a coaching program. And the way that they recognize success and create a pathway, which helps you continue to strive to do more is through karate belts.

So, it's based on your monthly recurring revenue, the average over the last three months.

And once you've hit a certain amount, you're a yellow belt.

And then when you get to the next level, you're an orange belt.

And then you get to red belt, and then you keep going again, until you hit black belt.

And black belt is then they've got more levels above that as their business has grown, they've had to increase the recognition that they're offering to their clients.

So, recognizing people's milestones is a great way to keep people motivated. And just to have your own system, I think, to recognize the progress of your people.

Let's talk about clients. One of my clients used to celebrate. And he was working with occupiers providing project management services and tenant web services.

And this was a good one, I felt a little bit quirky. It was this card that they had about, they're celebrating their one-year anniversary of moving into an office space.

And that's probably a date that comes and goes with no fanfare, because these clients are on 3, 5, 10-year leases, but they will get a card from the company.

And I think maybe there was a gift, I can't remember. But the point is, is that they are recognizing that milestone at a time when the client is not expecting it.

So, it's a nice surprise. It is a touchpoint that you can have with that client. And it's all positive, right? It's all good.

I can remember in Korea, there was a few things that we used to do, which is a milestone. It's not really a milestone because it would be when companies were moving in, I just entered a list.

But we would provide like a plaque for those companies to recognize that, hey, you've just signed a 5,10 more like a long term, 10-year lease in this building.

And we used to have these ceremonies as well, which was called a Gosa Ceremony, which is where they bring in like a seven pig's head.

And it's the Korean shaman comes in, and he kind of is there to get rid of the bad luck and bring the good luck into the business. (Maybe a little bit off topic)

But you know, if there's a particular tradition that you have, maybe it's something that's in your heritage that you could bring.

And you could maybe not bring a seven pig's head into someone's new office, but you could send them a card to realize, "Hey, this is what we did in this place. And we just want to recognize your milestone moving into an office with this."

The same thing, of course, you could do with purchasing a property.

Or it could be around a client anniversary date, right?

So, if you've got a client or property management client, the first time a client's done a deal with you, you might have a system to recognize that anniversary of when they became a client.

It wouldn't be something probably that would pop up in their mind, but it's something that you could do.

Again, unexpected, but a touch point, a positive touch point to have with those clients.

One other thing that I would recommend doing in terms of milestones and a way that you can communicate your business's growth or your own personal growth as an agent to the marketplace is to say, "I'm going to tell you all about this before it happens."

But when it happens, you celebrate and share it, you could say, "I set myself a target to hit a certain amount of revenue, I set the business, a target for this year, and we hit it. And I made a promise that when I hit that number, I was going to make a donation to this particular cause, because that's important to me. And we've hit our target. So I've decided to donate X amount of money to this charity, thank you to our clients for helping us make this difference. Thank you to our employees for helping us make a difference and hit this number. We're just helping this charity do this work."

So, as we celebrate 150 episodes of CRE Success: The Podcast, I hope that this episode today helps you mark important milestones in your business, for yourself or for your clients.

And one thing that you can do to help us celebrate one of them 50 episodes of the show, is to subscribe to us, if you're listening on Apple Podcasts.

I haven't, I guess checked how you actually subscribe to a show on Apple podcasts recently. So, I thought I'd check that.

And as you're listening to the show, there's three dots that are next to the title of the episode. Push that button, and then go to show.

And then at the top. There's the plus button that you can subscribe to the show or follow the show. And once you follow the show, you'll automatically receive each and every episode. 

If you're watching this on YouTube, where you can click the subscribe button which I'm sure you know how to do on this channel.

And then you'll be receiving just once a week when we do drop a new episode.

That's our show for today. And thank you so much for listening to 150 episodes of CRE Success: The Podcast. I will speak to you soon.

About the author


Darren Krakowiak, Founder, CRE Success

Darren Krakowiak, the driving force behind CRE Success, brings over 20 years of hands-on experience and a legacy of success in Commercial Real Estate. His passion for the industry is matched only by his commitment to nurturing the growth of others. Darren’s vision extends beyond coaching; it’s about building a community of thriving professionals in Commercial Real Estate.

About the author


Darren Krakowiak, Founder, CRE Success

Darren Krakowiak, the driving force behind CRE Success, brings over 20 years of hands-on experience and a legacy of success in Commercial Real Estate. His passion for the industry is matched only by his commitment to nurturing the growth of others. Darren’s vision extends beyond coaching; it’s about building a community of thriving professionals in Commercial Real Estate.

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CRE Success

Level 1, 10 Oxley Road
Hawthorn VIC 3122

+61 3 9005 8473
[email protected]

© CRE Success


Sign up for the latest news and free training from CRE Success


CRE Success

Level 1, 10 Oxley Road
Hawthorn VIC 3122

+61 3 9005 8473
[email protected]

© CRE Success