The office that best embodies the Sperry Van Ness® culture and thus is able to increase its market share receives the Sperry Van Ness Firm of the Year award. This year, the award is given to Sperry Van Ness/Miller Commercial Real Estate.
SVN Miller, which has offices in Maryland and Delaware, has been a Sperry Van Ness franchisee since 2007. That was the year that the principals decided to bring together the top commercial producers in the area to form a specialized commercial real estate group. Since then, SVN Miller has commanded a high market share by growing its main office by recruiting high-achieving sales agents who embody SVN core covenants and culture, and expanding their footprint in the Mid-Atlantic through the addition of four satellite offices.
The SVN Miller team started out in January 2007 with 15 staff members including two managing directors and eight advisors. Today, they have doubled the staff, to 31 total, all working among its five offices.
SVN Miller places a lot of emphasis on having a sociable atmosphere by involving the entire staff in various group activities throughout the year. SVN Miller holds an annual investor forum each year in which advisors and the marketing team get together. It has also hosted several broker forums where all commercial agents in the area are invited to collaborate on deals.
A great example of SVN Miller’s strong team spirit came through during Hurricane Sandy. As the ocean flowed down the streets of Salisbury, Maryland, the team saw first-hand the devastation of a national disaster. Yet, within a month, thanks to the entire staff including spouses and children who help move out, renovate, move back in, decorate, work through IT issues and more – SVN Miller was back fully operational, barely missing a beat during the crisis.
But it goes beyond socializing and educational get-togethers. Miller believes in team-building though community service projects. Every year, the offices participate in several community projects such working with Habitat for Humanity, doing a river clean up through the local Chamber of Commerce or participating in a Warrior Dash. Advisors and staff, who each have favorite charities and causes and want a chance to showcase them, provide the project ideas.
Perhaps most telling of Miller’s team culture is the set of “success bells” that hang in the back of the office. Each time an advisor has a new contract, settlement or other good news, the advisor rings the bells, which starts a chain of congratulations that creates their unique team camaraderie.
*All Sperry Van Ness® offices are independently owned and operated.