Ricardo Rodriguez "Real Estate is not just about where you live. It's about how you live"
I met Ricardo a few years ago during a convention towards the end of
the day when you have met hundreds of people and the scene of
people becoming faceless. The meeting was at the request of a mutual
friend who was the HR Director at my former firm. I met him and he was
so full of energy and excitement that it reinvigorated me and so
started our friendship.
He got into real estate very accidentally as he tells the story of a
friend telling him he felt he would be "good at it". It was a business
that he was born for and his humility is one of the reasons why
he has succeeded so well. He moved to Boston from Colombia in the
early 90s with $25 in his pocket and no English to his vocabulary. He started working at a bike shop and he says looking back he should have never been hired because he spoke no English and knew nothing about bikes. However, the owner wanted to give him a chance.
Ricardo feels an enormous responsibility to be able to return the
favor and give back to as many people as possible as well as his
beloved city of Boston that accepted him with open arms. He grew an
impressive business in a town where "you are supposed to succeed with
my skin color and accent", yet he stresses that real estate is the
great equalizer if you approach it authentically and organically.
A large percentage of his current business is new developments, but
when he began he set up a lot of appointments, and some developers
laughed at him and told him to leave his office. Not one to
be easily discouraged, he found inner strength until he found some
young new developers that gave him a chance and he sold out their
building. So started a relationship that has lasted over a decade to
The lessons he learned when he built his team were lessons we can all
learn from. He realized that as he was getting busier, he hired agents
to help on certain projects on an ad hoc basis but he realized that
what was missing was his consistent DNA and culture. "I realized I
needed my innate feelings to be able to thrive and serve my clients. I
needed to build that infrastructure to impact the business I was
Ricardo built his team on three principles:
He says this serves him well because those are the pillars of his
business and he is responsible to his colleagues, clients and
community (the 3 "c's").
If you have an active community it builds trust. That is why he is
truly happy when a competitor does a large sale because that means he
can as well. "You're only as good as your last transaction", he
His final piece of advice is "Look to both sides for inspiration, not
The moment you believe your own press, you're out of the business.
A true visionary, great businessman, friend, and philanthropist.
Ricardo Rodriguez is an inspiration to us all.