Redefining Real Estate: Gene Millman on building stronger relationships in a shifting market 

At the 2023 RISMedia Executive and CEO Exchange, REcolorado President and CEO Gene Millman joined fellow industry leaders to discuss the importance of MLS organizations working together with their subscribers in a shifting market.   

Although there were several ideas and thoughts presented, the constant was the need for a strong working partnership between brokers and MLS organizations driven by active listening. 

But that may only be a fraction of a much larger conversation that Gene Millman spoke about at the Working with Members in a Shifting Market panel, which took place at the RISMedia CEO exchange on Wednesday, Sept. 5. 

Millman, who has nearly 40 years in the business, added that multiple listing service data benefits real estate brokers and agents in a number of ways. REcolorado is using data acquisition to provide the most complete property records available. And how delivering that data in clearer, faster and more efficient ways provides additional benefits. 

One of the key things to do as an MLS is to be a business partner with brokers. Stop guessing what they want and instead engage with them to ask what they want. Remember, Millman adds, any MLS only exists as the MLS because of them – because they believe in and trust their MLS partners.  

As an MLS, one of the key responsibilities is to be a business partner with brokers, Millman said.  

“We need to stop guessing what they want and start engaging with them to ask what they need. We need to remember that we only exist as an MLS because of brokers,” Millman said. “They are the ones who believe in us and trust us to provide them with the services they need to succeed. We need to work together to build a strong relationship that benefits both of us.” 

Here are some tips from Millman on being better business partners to agents and brokers: 

  • Listen to their needs and concerns. 
  • Be responsive to their requests. 
  • Provide them with the tools and resources they need to succeed. 
  • Be a reliable and trustworthy partner. 
  • Work together to find solutions to common challenges. 

REcolorado has made engaging with brokers and subscribers a top priority. For example, REcolorado hosts regular Executive Round Table sessions and Customer Advisory Panels. It is during these meetings that REcolorado will sit down with their brokers and subscribers and ask, “what are your pain points?”  

“There is a reason we only have one mouth and two ears,” Millman explains. “We don’t want to be the best kept secret in the industry. After 32 years of being a practitioner, I understand what it takes. You have to let your customers know you really care about them and we’re here as their business partner.” 

Millman ended on a high note, explaining that there are many ways that the real estate industry can adapt and thrive in the ever-evolving marketplace. 

One opportunity is to focus on technology. The pandemic has accelerated the adoption of digital technologies in all aspects of our lives, and the real estate industry is no exception. Real estate agents and brokers who embrace technology will be better positioned to succeed in the future. 

Another opportunity is to focus on customer service. In a time of uncertainty, people are more likely to do business with companies that they trust. Real estate agents and brokers who provide excellent customer service will be more likely to attract and retain clients. 

The real estate industry is facing challenges, but there are also many opportunities. By embracing change and focusing on the future, the real estate industry can thrive in a marketplace that continues to shift and evolve.