LJ Hooker St Peters is living proof that hard work pays off. Certainly no overnight success; Principals Mario Bonomi, Rino Pancione and Claudio Buccella success has been around 22 years in the making. This once small office, which opened its doors in May 1988 with 6 employees, today houses LJH Commercial, LJ Hooker Adelaide Business Broking, LJ Hooker Adelaide City Residential and employs 40 staff.
Growing a real estate business in a multi cultural location requires more than cultural understanding. There is no doubt that having multi-lingual staff, definitely leads to a superior channel of communication with buyers and vendors, landlords and tenants. When it comes to building trust with an Agent to handle one of the larger investment decisions a person may make in their life-time, the ability to provide the comfort of speaking the same language can mean important points don’t get lost in translation and gives the agency a unique point of difference.
LJ Hooker St Peters is living proof that hard work pays off. Certainly no overnight success; Principals Mario Bonomi, Rino Pancione and Claudio Buccella success has been around 22 years in the making. This once small office, which opened its doors in May 1988 with 6 employees, today houses LJH Commercial, LJ Hooker AdelaideBusiness Broking, LJ Hooker Adelaide City Residential and employs 40 staff. The international award winning property management office sets itself apart on many levels, yet boasts a major point of difference: with an awareness of the changing face of Adelaide – it can also boast a phenomenal strength in the number of languages spoken fluently by it’s staff.
Today, the buzzing hub of employees speak Italian, Greek, Korean, Chinese, Spanish, Vietnamese and Polish. In addition to the various languages spoken, many of the employee’s cultural backgrounds vary from Indian, English and German. The principals proudly claim to have always been a business is representative of the multi-cultural face of Australia. Property transactions are not confined by culture or race. Being involved with so many different cultures has allowed the business and employees to flourish both professionally and personally.
The agency has always been LJ Hooker, this brand was chosen due to strength and the history it had. “We believed LJ Hooker to be a strong brand in the market at the time, it had history and therefore offered security, as we believed that we had a business with inherent value in the event that we had to sell,” says Bonomi. In an industry which revolves around location the principals made no mistake selecting St Peters as their location, an inner Eastern suburb in Adelaide minutes away from the city, which today boasts affluence with its wide leafy lined streets and attractive properties. Some of the surrounding suburbs this office services include St Peters, Joslin, Royston, Payneham, Payneham South, Trinity Gardens and Maylands, all of which are home to many different cultures and nationalities.
LJ Hooker St Peters are no strangers to winning awards;and 2010 recognised them as the best in their game for an award they have long strived for number one in the LJ Hooker network for – Property Investment Management. This notable International achievement amounting from a local Adelaide agency was no fluke, but years in the making. “Strategies to become number one in property management started from day one. The office opened with a business plan which had a main focus on building a strong and repetitive income stream from property management portfolio, this major focus remained at the forefront of all business operations over the years and continues to today,” the directors say. Today specialising in Property Investment Management, they manage in excess of 1,600 tenants, their listing to appraisal ratio is at 90% with a vacancy rate of sub 2%.
With all three of us speaking another language in addition to English I think we realised early on in the game how beneficial the bilingual tool was, says Buccella. Like most Australian capital cities, Adelaide’s population increases from one year to the next, has a lot to do with migration. Population and property cannot be separated, over time, when the principals recognised the benefit in being bilingual they continued to expand on this strategy, embracing language and culture as a tool to reach the market on the widest level possible.
An office equipped with such a mixed variety of cultures and nationalities allows the business to connect astutely with the current times; this platform provides a multitude of people to feel they can deal with someone with whom they can relate, in what can often seem like a daunting market. We have remained a strong business over the duration of our journey and we recognise how this point of difference allows us to further connect with our community, says Pancione. Throughout the years the principals tell of the satisfaction they have felt having helped so many new migrants in business, as students and professionals. “Many friendships created, span across many cultures,” Buccella says,“Our office is proof of that”.
TIPS FOR SUCCESS
Inducted into the REISA hall of fame in 2009, bestowed an LJ Hooker Admiral and awarded property management practitioner in 2009 (REIA) Mario Bonomi shares some tips for success:
- Only engage staff who buy into the office culture and ethos.
- Ensure that all clients/landlords are genuinely happy with the service being promised and delivered.
- Ensure your tenants are also being treated as you would want to be treated as a tenant – as they may eventually become a landlord client.
- Over deliver on every promise.
- Ensure that all your people are enjoying the journey, as they are the ones who are on the bus with you.
It’s not magic, and it takes a lot of focus and energy – being consistently honest, honestly consistent with all that we promise, says Bonomi.
Elisa Bonomi, Marketing Manager for LJ Hooker St Peters, LJH Commercial Adelaide, LJ Hooker City Residential and LJ Hooker Business Broking Adelaide. Qualified with a Bachelor of Marketing & Communication, Elisa’s expertise are in the creative areas of marketing through advertising, PR and graphic design. Visit http://www.ljhooker.com.au/stpeters.