“Hello, I’m Kon. I’m not a public speaker…”
Kon Stathopoulos Speaker Review
This is how Kon Stathopoulos, (McGrath West, North West, Hills & Hawkesbury) introduces himself at our Conference during his keynote address.
Straight off the bat you get a sense of his humility. Kon is humble despite his success. Kon is humble when lesser men’s and women’s heads would be the size of a Chinese spy balloon.
That’s just the way he is, according to those who know him best.
He may not have a boastful or conceited bone in his body, but what he does have is passion…and lots of it!
Passion for sales. Passion for property management. Passion for people in general.
And his passion and curiosity were on show for all to see at the Conference as he shared his incredible story to a captivated audience. (He says he’s not a public speaker but probably does it better than some people who would describe themselves as such.)
Not your typical Real Estate story
Kon is so well known in the real estate industry that it is surprising to hear him reveal that he has only been in the industry for 8 years.
To put that in perspective, the Brisbane Broncos have been trying to win a premiership for longer than Kon has been in the industry. (Fingers crossed that line won’t age well!)
Kon says fell into real estate by accident (his words), but can you call being personally headhunted by John McGrath an accident? I mean, that man does nothing by accident.
Kon had been working in a completely different industry when John McGrath made him a proposal: completely upend his life, move to Sydney, and run his flagship office.
Most people would have politely finished they cup of tea, made their excuses and left.
But not Kon. He said yes.
“After 15 years [in his previous job] what I needed in my life was to be really uncomfortable. I needed some change. I need to be challenged in a way that was going to unlock something that I didn’t know that I had in me.”
John McGrath had seen something in Kon that he had not even seen himself yet. A skill that is hard to master and that Kon has since implemented in his own life.
“And that’s kind of my secret formula with people. When I see someone and am sitting down with them, I’m actually looking at them going ‘how can I unlock the brilliance in them?'”
“What special power have they got that he doesn’t even know he’s got so I can actually help him change his life? That’s what John [McGrath] did.”
So he made the move and jumped into his new life with both feet.
New industry – new success
When John arrived at the new office that he would lead, there were 26 agents doing about $13m in G.C.I. and the property management side of the business had about 5,000 managements.
After two years under Kon’s leadership, those numbers had doubled.
Soon he was placed in charge of a larger team and given responsibiltiy for more areas of Sydney. Shortly after that, Kon was placed in charge of the whole NSW division of McGrath.
Things seemed to be going brilliantly for Kon, but even success can pose it own challenges, such as when McGrath became a publicly listed company.
Sometimes the best gifts are poorly wrapped
“We floated the company and that didn’t go well. It didn’t go well for agent sentiment, it didn’t go well for 9 profit downgrades in a row.”
“But what it did teach me is that sometimes the best gifts are poorly wrapped. Sometimes what you think are the worst things to happen in life are generally the best things that happen in life because they provide a platform for change.”
To cut a long story short, by the end the business was going $124m in G.C.I, had 350 agents across 32 offices.”
But due to turmoil in the leadership structure, including three different CEOs in 3 years, Kon had enough and resigned.
After 6 months of kicking his feet and waiting for a new opportunity, he get a call offering him a franchise in Parramatta, a part of Sydney Kon was not especially keen to relocate to.
He initially refused the offer flatly, but when challenged to actually go and visit Parramatta (or Paris-matta as he now lovingly refers to it) he realised the massive potential right under his nose.
“I think the lesson for me was sometimes the opportunity’s so big, yet we’re so closed at being able to actually find it.”
20X in 20 months
Skip forward to another meeting between Kon and John McGrath. Kon had just shown him his 5 year plan for his new office in Parramatta.
“We were doing just under a million dollars in sales G.C.I. We had around 300 managements and five people in the team in total.”
I said John, I reckon we can get to $5m in 5 years.”
What John McGrath said back to him made Kon sit up straight and focus 100%, he had never heard a question like this before.
John simply asked. “Why can’t you do your 5 year plan in 6 months?”
“Who would you need to become? What would you need to do?”
Kon knew. ” I need to be that guy in the trenches with my team, I need to be the person that’s picking up the phone and congratulating someone that wants to lease through us.
“I’d be at opens, I’d be at auctions, I’d be at listing appointments, market appraisals. I knew what I needed to become.”
“I’d need to get productivity up per agent by 25%, I’d need to recruit 5-10 of the best agents I could get. I need a gun BDM.”
“I need to upskill my property management department and bring it out of the dark ages.”
“That’s when I met Joel, Corey, and Bryn (STAFFLINK leadership team).”
The end result? Kon achieved his 5 year plan in 6 months.
I’m just going to repeat that for emphasis.
He achieved his FIVE year plan in SIX months! Most of the people I know take 5 years to do their 6 month plan!
We will go further into some of the challenges and strategies that Kon used to achieve his incredible success in a later blog post.
But we really just wanted to share a bird’s eye view of the amazing story that is Kon Stathopoulos’ real estate career.
We were privileged to hear his story at the STAFFLINK Conference.