Reffkin admits mistakes were made in 2018

In an end-of-year email the CEO acknowledged the company “faced challenges” but predicts 2019 will be “monumental”

National /
Jan.January 04, 2019 12:15 PM

Robert Reffkin (Credit: Columbia University and iStock)

In many ways, Robert Reffkin had a blessed year. In 2018, Compass expanded from 37 markets to 122, raised $1.2 billion, hired over 1,000 employees and signed on almost 6,000 new agents, the brokerage head told staffers in a company-wide email.

But Reffkin also admitted that in some areas, the company “fell short.” He highlighted the failed July launch of Powered By Compass, software the company had hoped to license to independent brokerages but was forced to roll-back following criticism from their own agents.

“We launched some technology without testing it thoroughly with agents,” Reffkin wrote, “and learned we can move too fast.”

Another “rocky” moment for Reffkin came in August, when news of Compass’s acquisition of Pacific Union, a blockbuster California brokerage, leaked to the press. “Doing multiple mergers in a single year put strain on our employees, our culture, and unfortunately, the incoming agents felt and saw those cracks,” said Reffkin, according to Inman, which published his email on Thursday.

In his company-wide email, Reffkin also expressed regrets over what he had previously called an “arrogant marketing strategy.”

Reffkin predicted that 2019 would be “monumental” for the company and reiterated his “20/20 by 2020” plan, which would see Compass reach a 20 percent market share in each of the top 20 markets by 2020. [Inman] — Decca Muldowney

Correction: A prior version of this report said Reffkin didn’t note in his company-wide email a previous regret regarding “arrogant” marketing strategies; he did.


Related Articles

arrow_forward_ios
Wyoming ranch with ties to Walt Disney hits market for $71M
Wyoming ranch with ties to Walt Disney hits market for $71M
Wyoming ranch with ties to Walt Disney hits market for $71M
Seattle Hotel Group's Bruce McCaw and property at Hunts Point, Washington (Getty, Windermere Real Estate)
Bruce McCaw’s Northwest estate hits the market at record-setting price
Bruce McCaw’s Northwest estate hits the market at record-setting price
Extell's Gary Barnett and 217 West 57th Street (Barnet by Paul Dilakian, Itrytohelp32, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons)
Barnett: Central Park Tower will fall short of $4B sellout
Barnett: Central Park Tower will fall short of $4B sellout
From left: Extell's Gary Barnett and JDS Development’s Michael Stern along with One Manhattan Square, The Narrows, and 111 West 57th Street (Extell, JDS Development, Getty Images, The Narrows Condo)
New development sales plummeted 30% in July
New development sales plummeted 30% in July
Zillow's Rich Barton, Allen Parker (Zillow Group, Getty)
Zillow brushes off Citysnap threat, says agent advertising will fall
Zillow brushes off Citysnap threat, says agent advertising will fall
Douglas Elliman Chairman and CEO Howard Lorber (Getty Images)
Sell, sell, sell: Lack of listings dampens Elliman earnings
Sell, sell, sell: Lack of listings dampens Elliman earnings
Zillow's Rich Barton and Opendoor's Eric Wu (Zillow Group, LinikedIn, Getty)
After iBuying debacle, Zillow partners with Opendoor
After iBuying debacle, Zillow partners with Opendoor
Redfin CEO Glenn Kelman (Illustration by Priyanka Modi for The Real Deal with Getty)
Redfin’s losses swell to $78M in Q2
Redfin’s losses swell to $78M in Q2
arrow_forward_ios

The Deal's newsletters give you the latest scoops, fresh headlines, marketing data, and things to know within the industry.

Loading...