We’re kicking off 2017 by speaking with our Broker of the Year, John Speros. John has been with Ackerman & Co. for eight years and is one of the premier land brokers in the Metro Atlanta area. We caught up with John between deals for some insight into the mind of one of our senior brokers.
A.) Congrats on being named Ackerman’s Broker of the Year for 2016. Can you tell me how you got to that point and what your goals were at the beginning of 2016 and how you achieved them?
The real answer is simple: I produced more revenue than any other broker at Ackerman. I don’t start off the year hoping to be Broker of the Year. I just focus on helping the client meet their objectives and if you do that the commission seem to follow.
B.) What brought you to Ackerman & Co. and how long have you been here?
I joined Ackerman & Co almost eight years ago when Larry Wood, Sean Patrick, Kyle Gable and I left another firm. We all felt that Ackerman provided a unique platform for our business.
C.) Can you tell us a little about what you do at Ackerman & Co.?
My focus is selling raw land for commercial and residential development.
D.) What is the best part of working at Ackerman & Co.?
Ackerman & Co. gives me ALL of the support that I need to be successful including administrative, marketing, research and other support services.
E.) What’s something that surprises people about you?
For some reason, people see me as really intense. I have had several people say that they were warned about how difficult I would be to work with only to discover that I am pretty easy going.
F.) What is the most exciting thing about commercial real estate to you?
It all or nothing. I learn something new in every transaction. It’s like Vegas with better odds.
G.) What is the most rewarding part of your job?
I enjoy helping my clients achieve their objectives. The commissions are anticlimactic, to me.
H.) What advice do you have for someone trying to break into your field?
Get lean on all expenses, be prepared to go for two years without an income and find someone to mentor you.
I.) What book do you think everyone on the team should read?
The Good Earth by Pearl S. Buck.
J.) If you could have lunch with a U.S. president or someone famous, who would it be and why?
That’s tough to narrow down. There are so many people that I would love to talk with for an hour. I would have to put Ronald Reagan near the top of that list.
K.) Do you have a bucket list? What’s one thing on your bucket list that you can share with us?
At 60, I have completed most of the “physical” bucket list items. However, I would like to step foot on every continent.
L.) Who has been the most important person in your life?
My father. He taught me a great work ethic and emphasized getting my education. He could also “fix” just about anything and “fixing” things take a logical thought process that I use every day in brokerage.
M.) What lessons has your work life taught you?
If you work hard and smart, you seem to have more luck!