Emma Davis is the CEO of Pointe3 Real Estate. Emma is a thought leader, influencer, visionary, and successful entrepreneur. Emma provides the leadership and energy that has inspired the creation of Pointe3 Real Estate. Emma Davis joins other leading CEOs and Founders taking part in our Leader Roundtable Interview Series. The DotCom Magazine editorial team has recently awarded Pointe3 Real Estate with our Impact Company of 2019 award. We are delighted to have Emma join us for our Leader Roundtable Interview and our popular “speed round” as well.
Emma, thank you so much for taking the time out of your busy day for this interview about your company, leadership, and entrepreneurship.
1. What is the “elevator pitch” for Pointe3 Real Estate?
We offer a full suite of real estate, rental, and relocation services in the greater Seattle area – everything from helping someone find an apartment, to helping them buy their first home, to leasing out and selling their investment properties. Pointe3 is known for our concierge-level, investment-minded approach – whether you need help with rentals, with real estate, or with relocation.
2. What is the key to your company’s success?
Since we began this 20+ years ago, we put our focus on providing our clients with the best customer service experience possible. In the real estate and relocation industry, it can often feel ‘transactional’ – and we never want anyone to feel that way. Our team members are cherry-picked to have compassion, a drive for continued learning, and a service-driven mentality, and every person at Pointe3 constantly strives to put the client’s experience first.
Even during the recession, our company was growing rapidly as others in the industry faltered. This was because we adapted to what our clients’ needs were – even if a deal made us little or no money, it was worth it to build and retain the relationship with our clients. The trust, faith, and confidence that our clients have in Pointe3 have given us an extremely loyal customer base that goes out and promotes our business for us.
3. Many of our readers are just starting to build a company. What advice can you give entrepreneurs just starting out with a new venture?
First, be sure that you’re building a business around what people actually need, not just what you think you’re good at. Too often we see companies start up with a fantastic idea, but falter because they never got over their excitement and truly analyzed if there was a need in their market for it. Survey and listen to what your clients are really asking for.
And second, don’t neglect your family! My husband Charlie and daughter Penny are the most important things to me – family must always come first, and business second.
4. For other entrepreneurs seeking to build a business as successful as yours, what advice can you give them when times get a little challenging?
As cliché as it is, remember that every challenge is a learning opportunity. For us, one of our challenges was the real estate and relocation market’s fluctuations based on corporate hiring, recession, stock market changes, etc. – a lot of external factors outside of our control. So, we stepped back and diversified our business in enough ways that we have some stability whatever the market is doing (e.g. when one aspect of our business is down, the other side is up).
When we come across a challenge of a competitor offering discounts, we analyze what corners they’ve cut in order to offer it at that price, and make sure our service is addressing those missed needs (and that our customers know that). Each challenge offers a chance for you to grow your business.
5. How important is the commitment to client satisfaction at Pointe3 Real Estate, and how do you make sure your customers will become raving fans of your company?
Client satisfaction is by far our top goal. At every turn, we’re checking ourselves to make sure that the client’s needs are not just being met but exceeded. If anything is promised, it’s delivered on time and even better than it needs to be. If a client finds an issue or has a problem, we own the mistake, even if it wasn’t our fault, and do whatever we can to fix it. Every client we work with is a long-term relationship for us.
6. In today’s fast changing business environment, how do you stay abreast of things?
I read all the local and national industry-related news each morning and attend as many conferences and educational events as possible, particularly those related to legislation that can affect our industry. Our team meets regularly to train, share ideas, and plan for ways to adapt to the changes that are coming.
7. What is your “Why”? Why do you get up in the morning, and how do you keep yourself at peak performance to lead Pointe3 Real Estate?
We have an absolutely fantastic team at Pointe3. It feels much more like an extended family than just an office, so getting to work with them is a privilege. In my role, each day brings a new challenge or an interesting project for me to tackle, and problem-solving is definitely one of my motivations and passions. My other big motivator is to be an inspiration to my daughter Penny, hopefully helping her grow into an empathic leader with a strong work ethic.
On a personal level, before I start working, every morning rain or shine I take my dog for a walk through a local forest trail, and I use that time to clear my mind by connecting with all the sounds and smells in the forest. I have to purposefully shut off my brain from buzzing on to do lists and be mindfully present. Then at the end of the day, I keep a gratitude journal where I write at least three things I’m grateful for that day. So, my work day is always sandwiched with some gratitude and mindfulness, which allows me to better grasp the big picture and remember the insignificance of any annoyances or difficulties I’ve been struggling with.
8. Can you recommend a book that has had an influence in your career? How did it influence you?
Kevin Tisdel, the Owner and Founder of Pointe3, gave me a copy of Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap and Others Don’t by Jim Collins about 16 years ago, and I still find myself pulling ideas from it on a regular basis. It has stood the test of time and I re-read it occasionally to remind myself of the qualities we’re striving to achieve.
I also keep a quote by Rabindranath Tagore taped near my desk and saved on my cell phone: “I slept and dreamt that life was joy. I awoke and saw that life was service. I acted and behold, service was joy.”
9. When communicating with your staff, can you tell us the most important thing you do so that they are able to carry out the objectives that you set forth at Pointe3 Real Estate?
Our company isn’t built with a tight hierarchy – we’ve instead focused on building a team of extremely talented individuals who are able to work on the tasks the company needs to sustain and grow, while also seeking out opportunities for improvement and ways to create more efficiencies. Collaborating is vital to furthering Pointe3’s culture and brand.
10. Can you explain what leadership means to you?
Leadership means multiple things to me depending on the leader we’re talking about. I’m lucky to be surrounded by great leaders at Pointe3 and pull inspiration from them daily. Kevin Tisdel’s leadership evokes inspiration and entrepreneurship. Ashley Hayes: strength and determination. Carrie Watt: empathy and insight. Kristel Dirkes: industriousness and intuition. Kim Reidy: passion and tenacity. And I hope that my leadership evokes service and ingenuity.
We would like to have some fun and do a “speed round” with you! We will ask you ten more questions that we want you to answer in just one to three words only.
Here you go!
1. In three words or less, what makes a successful CEO?
Drive, observation, action.
2. Describe your business in one word?
3. Describe your customers in one word?
4. What one attribute do you look for when hiring an employee?
A passionate work ethic.
5. What is the one word you want your customers to say about your company?
6. In three words or less, describe your passion?
Joy from service.
7. In three words or less, describe what it takes to be successful?
Empathy with enterprise.
8. In three words or less, describe your first year in business at Pointe3 Real Estate?
Challenging but exhilarating.
9. In three words or less, describe how running a successful company has changed you?
Lessons in selflessness.
10. What is the one word that you believe has the most power in the English language?
Emma Davis, thank you so much for sitting down with us for our DotCom Magazine Leader Roundtable Interview Series. We very much appreciate the time you spent helping our readers learn more about what it takes to be a leader. We wish you, your family, and of course Pointe3 Real Estate, nothing but the best.
Emma Davis, CEO of Pointe3 Real Estate, The Leader Roundtable Interview Series