Richard Robbins Is Championing A New Era Of Real Estate Excellence

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This January marks Inman’s fifth annual Agent Appreciation Month, which culminates at Inman Connect New York in a celebration of agents at the end of January. Plus, we’re rolling out the coveted Inman Power Player Awards, as well as the New York Power Brokers and MLS Innovators awards.

Inman contributor Brandon Doyle made it his goal to interview 100 real estate professionals. Here’s a Snapshot of those conversations.

In real estate, it’s not just about the homes we buy or sell; it’s about the lives we touch and the dreams we help come true. At the heart of this sentiment stands Richard Robbins, a man whose narrative isn’t just one of success but of transformation and unyielding commitment to betterment — not just of business practices but of lives.

Robbins’ roots are firmly planted in the soil of a small Ontario town, where he cultivated the seeds of entrepreneurship that would flourish into a career spanning more than three decades. At just 24 years old, he dove into the world of real estate sales armed with a strategy that was as simple as it was ambitious: To outwork everyone else.

The young go-getter swiftly became an award-winning top producer, setting the pace for what would be an illustrious journey. But it wasn’t long before Robbins’ path led him to a fork in the road. In 1988, amidst a significant market downturn, he opened a real estate brokerage in North Toronto. With economic tides against him and unfamiliar territory surrounding him, his tenacity was put to the test.

Three years later, the results were incontestable. Robbins had not only secured a place among the top 2 percent of Greater Toronto Area Realtors but had also led his brokerage to an impressive 12 percent market share. Yet, what truly marked this period as a triumph was the transformative approach he adopted, centered around treating business as just that — a business.

“I stopped working at 6 p.m.,” Robbins recalls, “which was almost unheard of for agents in the ’90s, but clients respected this — and my business and life flourished like never before.”

This philosophy became the bedrock of Richard Robbins International Inc. (RRI), a company dedicated to coaching and training real estate professionals not just to succeed but to lead fulfilling lives. Now, as RRI celebrates 25 years, the organization stands as a testament to Robbins’ vision, having influenced over ten thousand coaching graduates and reached over 330,000 industry professionals.

In his role as CEO and chief visionary officer, Robbins is the lighthouse guiding his team. “My role is to keep our team focused on an inspiring future and our mission to help real estate professionals build a business and life they love,” he shares. His words resonate not just within the halls of RRI but throughout the global real estate community.

Robbins is animated by the transformative power of his work, reveling in the shift from salespeople to businesspeople among his clients. “Seeing our clients transform, building a business they love and one that supports the life they want to live,” he says, “that’s what gets me excited.”

But even visionaries face challenges, and for Robbins, it’s the relentless pace of change within the industry. His advice for navigating these waters? Embrace the right technologies and maintain an unstoppable mindset. “Being able to adapt to change with ease … will be the difference-maker for all agents today,” he advises.

Recently, RRI’s impact was spotlighted on Bloomberg TV, an accolade that underscores the company’s influence. Yet, when asked about his most defining moment, Robbins reflects on a personal pivot — the day he chose his family over a potential listing, a decision that fundamentally altered his approach to business.

As for coaching needs, Robbins acknowledges that while markets and technologies have evolved, the essence of coaching remains constant. “Coaching is a necessity for agents to learn how to thrive in changing markets,” he states, emphasizing the timeless nature of adaptability and growth.

Leading a dynamic team at RRI requires a focus on core values, a challenge Robbins meets head-on by anchoring every decision in the company’s charter, which he calls “a living, breathing guide that is discussed in all meetings and at every major decision point,” underlining the importance of clarity and shared purpose.

Robbins’ narrative is dotted with stories of transformation, none more poignant than that of an agent drowning in debt who, with RRI’s guidance, shifted focus from fear to hope and built a million-dollar business within two years. It’s stories like these that Robbins believes encapsulate the impact of his coaching philosophy.

For those looking to remain steadfast in the face of industry shifts, Robbins offers sage advice: “Shift your mindset to ‘Bring it on’ rather than ‘Oh no, what now?’… educate yourself… enlist the help of others… and focus on mastery of a few key elements that work for you.”

Richard Robbins’ influence on real estate extends beyond the metrics of sales and market shares. It’s in the lives that have been reshaped, the dreams that have been realized, and the industry that continues to evolve under his guidance. His legacy is one of unwavering dedication to the growth of individuals and the advancement of an industry he loves.

As the real estate landscape continues its relentless march forward, Richard Robbins and RRI stand at the vanguard, not just as participants but as architects of the future. It’s a future that’s bright, boundless, and, thanks to visionaries like Robbins, brimming with the promise of balance, fulfillment, and success.

Brandon Doyle is a Realtor at Doyle Real Estate Team — RE/MAX Results in Minneapolis and co-author of Mindset, Methods & Metrics – Winning as a Modern Real Estate Agent. You can follow him on Twitter.



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