A decade ago, we saw the opportunity to engage with a premium, elegant, boutique brand in Belle and merge that with real estate. Our first office was a single room and we were a corporate team of three. We had no outside signage, no nothing, it was just us.
And whilst our office and team have grown, in the last 10 years, my days haven’t really changed. It is still about people and innovation and making sure that the values of our business are being held constant. In some respects it is easier now than it was 10 years ago, and in other respects, it is much harder.
There have been a lot of people who have been with us since day one, and who have played a big role in our success. People like Tim Foote and Steve Thomas, whose contribution is without a doubt. And Phil Collins, who has been an integral part of building and maintaining the brand - and the imagery of the brand - over the last 10 years.
There have been tough days – there is no doubt about that. But I think the vision and value set that we started with a decade ago, to build something different, is still with us today. The thing that has really helped us is the consistency of our culture. Of course it gets challenged, like every culture does, like every business does, but it is our commitment to consistency which has helped us develop.
I am really excited about the growth of our residential business and how far it has come. The synergy between our people is such an important part of why we succeed and I think it is going to be an important part going forward. And the best thing is, there is still so much growth to be had, particularly with our Commercial and International businesses just getting started.
There hasn’t been a single event, or one individual, that has made us successful. It has been the collective nature of how our people have developed their businesses within our network. It is great to watch how our businesses have been able to grow, achieve and compete in their marketplaces. Ours is a high-performance company and it relies on people who are very competitive.
The difference between Belle Property and the other real estate brands I have worked with is the quality of our business: the quality of the brand, of the people who have joined us and of the future that is ahead of us.
We are growing a very special company but we are not finished yet - we are entering one of the biggest periods of change that we will see in our industry and we need to be on our guard, be ready to innovate and be agile as we go forward.
The next 10 years will see us growing throughout Australia and Asia and possibly New Zealand. I don’t want Belle Property to be the biggest, I want our network to be the best. I have always believed in the expression ‘if you’re not feeling out of control, you’re not going fast enough’ – for me, that sums up Belle Property!