Musings of a Career Consultant

SoCal Texan in Bmore Leading Rock Stars

From Coast to Coast March 14, 2013

I left Texas 7 1/2 years ago and started what was an amazing life in Southern California. My real estate team enjoyed some great years in the downturn and my leadership grew due to the opportunity I snatched up all around me. Because of those two combined pieces, I was offered and accepted a position as the Team Leader/CEO of the Keller Williams Metro NW Market Center. My new home is in Baltimore, MD.

That’s right… Maryland! It’s a big move and yet I believe this is an amazing opportunity to let my real estate team in SoCal to continue to grow while I build on my leadership. Even if it’s from the other coast.

This is an amazing opportunity for all of my clients. You now have a coast to coast  REALTOR that’s ready to help you find the best agent for you, even if it’s not me.


The Texans, Notorious BIG & #BullsOnParade October 26, 2012

When I was home just a couple of weeks ago, a friend and I were already talking about getting Super Bowl XLVII tickets and booking a room in N’awlins (or New Orleans for those of you unfamiliar with our term of endearment) because our beloved Houston Texans are for sure going to it. Cocky? We don’t think so. We’ve seen the momentum so it feels like an easy bet to make.

We (the Texans and their fans) have been waiting for some love outside of our Houston city limits and the media’s gobbled up every fumble, tackle and missed field goal… until we killed the Ravens. Apparently, we finally showed our stuff and those outside of Texas are taking notice… about time (says every Texans fan ever).

Y’all thought our Packers loss would send us back into the funnies and that Ravens win made us front page news. Shows what y’all know about Texas football. We’re never out. We’re always looking for opportunity.  We’re a little beastly in that way.

Or to put it another way, borrowing from the late Notorious B.I.G.And if you don’t know, now you know …

“Our team knows how to respond,” Texans defensive end J.J. Watt said afterward when a reporter asked him about the fallout from the defeat to Green Bay. “I knew we wouldn’t be down on ourselves. The way we attack practice and go out with intensity and focus every single day, there was no chance of that happening. No one gets too high or too low on this team. We just grind, every single day.” Proving that mindset is Texans#98 Connor Barwin. He’s coined a phrase that has taken hold, “Bulls on Parade” with a hashtag to boot.

As a REALTOR, I know that sometimes the market’s tough… and for a long time and yet if you keep “grinding” every single day, you too will see the success shine through. You might have a loss that hurts along the way (we’ve all had our Green Bay games) and yet the majority of your season will be good things and those around you will start to take notice. What would your hashtag be? Why shouldn’t you start it? I think I’m making mine #pushit.

So, here’s to my Houston Texans. I don’t own a piece of the team and yet this team full of determination and grit owns a piece of my heart.

Happy Friday, y’all!


Don’t Call it a Comeback: Job Growth Weakest in a Year; Unemployment Rate Up June 1, 2012

I read a lot every morning (thank you, twitter) about housing, economics and legislation surrounding housing. It feeds my little soul. Sound weird to you? Don’t worry, you’re not the only one. But we each have that thing that challenges us every morning to make the world better than we left it and my belief of education of consumers, elected officials and REALTORS on housing related issues fuels me.

So, this morning, I saw this headline come through from DS News (Job Growth Weakest in a Year; Unemployment Rate Up) and immediately the lyrics from LL Cool J‘s Mama Said Knock You Out popped into my head: Don’t Call it a Comeback.

We added 69,000 jobs in May… far below our goal of 150,000 and our unemployment is at 8.2%. In California, those numbers aren’t much prettier – as of March, we’ve gotten our unemployment down to 11.2% from it’s 2010 high of 12.4% and our jobs aren’t being added as quickly and plentifully as we’d like. What I also harp on is underemployment. There are so many Californians that are working fewer hours with less benefits than a couple of years ago.

I know jobs exist in our Country and you might be feeling it differently where you live. In Austin, where I was two weeks ago, the paper the day I flew out was toting a 6.5% unemployment rate. I thought to myself “show offs”… I was envious of my home state’s good fortune in this economy.

2012 is the year to make your voice heard and I don’t care what side of the aisle you’re on (I’m fiscally conservative and socially open-minded), you need to vote in YOUR best interest, in our Country’s best interest.


I Love my Family (my KWRI one, too)! May 21, 2012

Last night I got back from a 10-day trip to Texas. It was all family, all the time and 5 days of it was work… how’s that make sense? Stick with me, now.

The 1st weekend was my cousin’s graduation from Texas State. She’s actually my 2nd cousin but since we’re closer in age than her dad and I, we’ve never called each other anything other than ‘cousin’. I’m so stinkin’ proud of her and can’t wait to go to her next graduation since she’s not done impressing us yet!

The 2nd weekend I stayed with my uncle who lost his home in the Texas wildfires last year. They finished his home in January but he had the Housewarming Party this weekend. After that awful experience, they’re finally getting settled into their new life. I can’t imagine losing my whole life… I guess it’s a good thing so much of mine’s on facebook!

Now onto my KW family! They were the reason for the trip and I loved every second of my training in Austin. They say learning anything in our company is like drinking from a fire-hose and after walking out of 5 days of training with almost 1000 pages in material, I’d say “yea,” that’s pretty accurate. I’m so grateful that this company is all about Culture and making sure you’re acclimated before throwing you out into the world. I felt like my 1st 90 days in this position were almost nothing but training… I was VERY nervous walking into my 90-day Review. Good thing it was all positive 🙂

I’m blessed and fortunate that I’ve found a company that takes such good care of me. I can’t go to Texas everyday to see my family but every single day I get to feel at home. That is more of a blessing than I could’ve ever imagined for myself. I’m one lucky little lady.


Blessed and Blazing August 11, 2011

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I was very fortunate this week and got to go home to the great state of Texas. While it was an abnormally short trip, I got to have dinner with my cousin. Now, this isn’t just any cousin. This is the same cousin that used to toss me up in the air as a young child until his arms were too sore to continue, whose daughter would be my 1st 2nd-cousin and who still reminds me so much of my father. Spending time with him is like going back in time and being hyper-present all at the same time. Without trying, he always reminds me how small life is and how big I can be. Like my father, he wants nothing more than the very best for his daughter and that doesn’t include falling in line. It requires us to stand out, demand more and challenge what others think is quite enough for us. Especially when I was young, this was a bit of a foreign concept. I still find it so odd that my father couldn’t want anything more of his mother or mine than for them to cook, clean and stay home with the kids but he wouldn’t dare dream that life for me. He never wanted me to get caught. Never get stranded. Always be 100% self-reliant. Sometimes you don’t realize something about yourself until you do. Until you’re across the table from someone who looks at you with fond memories and hope for the future.

Sometimes you don’t realize something about yourself until someone reminds you. Who you are, at the core. Where you came from, no matter how small a start. What you represent, whether you recognize it or not. Why you have to work so hard, even if it seems to go unnoticed. When you’ll get there, though the journey is your true destination.

Sometimes you just don’t realize how blessed you are or how quickly you forgot how blazing hot Texas is in August!


What Should You Know That You Don’t? June 25, 2011

Who first said that you don’t know what you don’t know? Whoever it was, they were right! I’ve run into a few people over the last week in major positions at major companies (all real estate related) that didn’t know what was going on legislatively. Listening to some dodge bullets and be vague, some just flat-out admit that they don’t know what I’m talking about and some skirting the issue by changing the subject, was quite interesting. You can’t seek out the information you don’t know you need, right? So, how can I get upset with these power-people for not knowing what they should know (or at least, I feel they should know)? I can’t, really.

See, I’m abnormally in love with real estate legislation. If it weren’t such a public love, I’d be 2 steps away from cat-lady crazy. It’s exciting to me to get involved with what could change our industry (both for the worse and the better). I love when good bills go through and work pretty defiantly to stop bad bills. I even write to my mom’s representative in Texas and state my position as an out-of-stater but former resident… yes, I know… cat-lady crazy!

My biggest concern is that when money gets tight, the government can start getting pretty tricky and I don’t want them taking away anything that my clients deserve. I like to think of myself as a Legislative Liaison for anyone that wants my information. When I get calls asking my advice or what’s going on, I get so pumped! Why? Because knowledge is spreading. So, if you know that I’m talking about you in this post, utilize me. I’ll help you help those around you, whether it’s other agents, your clients or your representatives.

Also, I just read this NY Times article that was pretty interesting about the Tiger 21 group.

And, I try to watch the Think Big Work Small guys every day. They’re super entertaining, albeit a bit edgy. They’re mostly geared for Lenders but are trying to make themselves more REALTOR friendly. Side note, they’ll be at CVAR for a video marketing workshop on July 11th. I’d love to see you there!

Should you have any questions about anything you’ve read here or if you’re interested in any city in Southern California (particularly the San Gabriel Valley or Inland Empire), please feel free to call your favorite REALTOR Smile

And, I can always send you a FREE Market Analysis on your home, just ask.


What are you taking with you? March 13, 2011

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I’m very blessed to have amazing people around me and with all the hard work I put into my clients finding the perfect home, my investors finding a great deal, my local, state and national associations getting my undivided attention to detail on certain projects; I don’t find the time I’d like for the ones I love most.

Most know that all of my family is in Texas. That makes time with them precious. It also makes the friends and colleagues here in California, that much more imperative to me. I value having good people around me and I can easily drown myself in work and forget to connect with the people I care most about, mostly because it’s easy for me to get to the office early and stay late when I don’t have someone at home complaining about how much time I invest in my Real Estate world.

On this Sunday afternoon, I hope that you’re surrounded by love. I’m surrounded with work but I just spent the last 6 days with amazing friends, colleagues and mentors. I was very blessed to go to the RE/MAX Convention where over 4,500 people from over 50 Countries gathered to share ideas and network. It was great to meet new people and reconnect with my RE/MAX Masters family. Then I spent some time with some of my CVAR & TIGAR family. I really do work with some of the best people in the industry!

If you don’t feel blessed on this gorgeous afternoon, go find something to make you smile… a child’s laughter, your mother’s cooking, a wise word, a warm breeze. Make sure that you remember that you can only take memories with you… everything else is getting left here. What are you leaving behind (generosity, kindness, knowledge) and what are you taking with you?

And, a BIG Congratulations to my friend, fellow CAR Director and YPN, Sofia Aquayo! She just got engaged and is happier than I’ve ever seen her! Best of luck to you and George!


CA Facts March 23, 2010

I love history so I feel like I’m at a disadvantage knowing so little about the state I now live in. I can spout Texas knowledge pretty easily but California is a different story. Since I love history, it didn’t take me long to get a hold of some of these facts once I sought out the information.

  • Pacific Park, which is on Santa Monica Pier, has a vintage 1910 hand-carved merry-go-round which appeared in the movie The Sting which starred the gorgeous pair of Robert Redford and Paul
  • The LA County Fair (which I look forward to every year) that is held in Pomona boasted demos of orange toothpaste in 1922… yea, we’re really into our citrus!
  • San Bernardino County is the USA’s largest county with over 3 Million Acres… and it feels that way when you’re driving to Arizona, too!
  • The Avalon Hotel on Catalina Island was built as a home by author Zane Grey in 1926 and is where he spent much of his later life.
  • Dana Point was named after author Richard Dana who wrote the novel Two Years Before the Mast… is it just me or are we picking up on an author theme?
  • The Iron Door Saloon in Groveland says it’s the oldest place in the state serving drinks… since 1852… the Gold Rush didn’t bring alcohol out here sooner or did they all go under when the rush was over?
  • The 1st person to personally receive their Walk of Fame star was Joanne Woodward who was quite an actress in her own right but is best known as the love of Paul Newman’s life.
  • Not that we’d expect anything less from Hollywood but the 1st motion picture theatre opened in LA April 2, 1902… someone’s got a birthday coming up!
  • 1 out of 8 US residents live in CA… no one here is surprised by that fact!
  • Simi Valley is the home of the Ronald Reagan Library and Yorba Linda is home to the Richard Nixon Library.
  • Eureka! is the state motto and it’s Greek for “I’ve found it!” which alludes to the Gold Rush.
  • About 300,000 TONS of grapes are grown here each year… that’s a lot of wine!
  • Our Country’s highest and lowest points in the continental US are 100 miles away from each other… Mount Whitney’s peak and Badwater in Death Valley… 14,495 feet to 282 below sea level!

And, just as a side note, I learn more and more about Mr. Huntington each and every day. If you don’t know and you live within driving distance to Pasadena or Huntington Beach, you should really learn about this guy. He basically built Southern California. It’s really incredible!

Oh, and if you want to see more of CA for less, check out JetBlue’s sale that ends tomorrow!