Above from L to R: Michele Christiana, Front-Office Coordinator; Richard Molner, Regional Vice President; Sandy Murphy, Office Manager
Richard “Rick” Molner
Regional Vice President and Principal Broker
United Real Estate | Philadelphia
Region served: Greater Philadelphia
Years in real estate: 18
Number of offices: 1
Number of agents: 225
Key to continued growth and success: For my agents, it has been training, education, support and mentoring. For me personally, it is my wife Robin, seven children and 14 grandchildren.
Favorite part of working in real estate: Helping people find their freedom in their real estate careers.
Rick, you came to United Real Estate from another national residential brokerage. What attracted you, and why was United a better fit?
After losing eight agents to United Real Estate in just one month from the brokerage where I worked, which was the No. 1 company in the nation at the time, I took an interview with CEO Dan Duffy when I was approached for the regional vice president/principal broker position. I didn’t know who United was at the time, but I took the interview because I wanted to see why I was losing agents to them. Not only was I impressed by what United offered—from their Bullseye™ Cloud-Based Productivity Platform to the everyday support and resources—but I was also pleasantly surprised that they wanted my opinion about what they were doing given my success in the industry.
In what ways is United unique among its competitors, and how have your agents benefited?
The obvious point of differentiation is our 100% flat-fee commission model. While other brokerages promote this model, they are so thinly staffed that agents often find it difficult to find their broker/manager, local or national support team or office staff. At United Real Estate | Philadelphia, we have a front-desk coordinator, an assistant who helps with office growth initiatives and an office manager who has been with the firm for almost 10 years—and no matter when you call, there is always someone to speak with. As a broker, you have to be available to new and experienced agents who need business guidance or are facing a hurdle in a transaction.
Your office is one of United’s fastest growing and has achieved numerous awards. What is the secret to growing and maintaining a thriving agent base?
It sounds simple, but you have to treat people the way they want to be treated. I’m constantly telling my agents that I work for them because if I’m not here to serve them, they’re going to go down the street to the broker who will listen to them and be there for them. In addition to being there for my agents when they need me, we also have a great agent training/mentoring program. The last thing I want is for our agents to flounder, so we provide the help they need to keep them from getting discouraged. Also, you have to be honest, and if you do right by people, you can never go wrong.
How does your office team work together to achieve goals?
We meet often to talk about what we have on the agenda for the day, the week and even the month. We are so passionate about working together to achieve our goals, and we treat people as individuals rather than numbers from the get-go, beginning with the interview. In the onboarding program, we work to discover what our agents wish to accomplish and get to know them on a personal and professional level, and that helps us help them. We each have unique positions and strengths we use to support our agents as a team, beginning with our Front-Desk Coordinator and Conveyancer, Michele Christiana, who handles the phones and all of the conveyancing in our office. Jay Catania, our director of Agent Services, oversees our growth efforts and technology training while Sandy Murphy, our regional office manager, handles compliance and transaction/paperwork questions.
How are most agents who join United learning about the company?
In today’s technology age, our local agents, friends and followers across social media are constantly reading about us. We also have a concerted national marketing and communications effort that helps agents find, investigate and explore our company. While our name is constantly in the news for our growth, the hero of the story isn’t a national brand, but rather, our agents and brokers across America. All that is good, but the very best recruiting source is our current agents who are strong advocates and share their passion for United. They are instrumental in attracting colleagues from other firms.
What advice would you give broker/owners who may be facing challenges when it comes to recruiting in the changing market?
My best advice is to be there for your people when they’re in need. We were given two ears and one mouth for a reason. People want to be heard, so when someone has an issue or great advice for our company, we listen and respond accordingly. And don’t just say what they want to hear; you have to be authentic.
“Rick possesses a positively contagious exuberance for building the brokerage, and that is reflected by every team member. Their professional experience is an incredible asset to our agents’ careers, and it shows in their growth and sales results!” – Rick Haase, President, United Real Estate
For more information, visit https://www.GrowWithUnited.com.