The Real Deal New York

What they're reading now

Real estate pros share picks for books on consumer culture, strategies for selling and Bruce Springsteen

January 01, 2017
By Marynia Kruk

Ryan Fitzpatrick
Managing director, Town Residential’s Flatiron office

What are you reading?
“Small Data” by Martin Lindstrom.  The crux of the book is that by looking at “small data” points, Lindstrom extrapolates important insights about human behavior, much of it economic in the sense that it pertains to how and why people in different countries and cultures do what they do, including why they buy or don’t buy certain products.

What spurred you to read that book?
This book is both a fascinating insight into one of the leading minds of marketing as well as a critical reminder that God is in the details. Paying close attention to the granularity of data is key to anticipating future trends and success.

Has anything else you read in it stuck with you?
As a non-citizen coming to the U.S., Lindstrom, who hails from Denmark, provides a useful lens through which to understand and reassess certain attributes of American culture and behavior.

Derek Bestreich
President, Bestreich Realty Group

What are you reading now?
“How to Master the Art of Selling” by Tom Hopkins.

What spurred you to read that book?
This is actually my third time reading this book. I had recommended it to a few of the brokers in our organization, and they saw value in it. As a result, we decided to have our entire company read and discuss a chapter each week. We are using the book as a “training textbook” of sorts where we discuss different sales scenarios and brainstorm ideas for improvement.

Has anything you read stuck with you, and would you recommend it to others?
When I moved to New York at 23 and set out for a career in sales, I was a sponge for any strategies that would make me great at my profession. This book hooked me from the very first sentence, which reads: “I learned a long time ago that selling is the highest-paid hard work — and the lowest-paid easy work — that I could find … the choice was mine.”  The book provided me with foundational sales skills and ideas that I credit for numerous wins over many years.  For anyone who works in sales or who is tasked with winning business, at some point or another this book is a must-read.

Zach Ehrlich
Founder and CEO, Mdrn. Residential

What are you reading?
I’m reading “Born To Run,” Bruce Springsteen’s autobiography.

What spurred you to read that book?
I’ve waited years to read Bruce’s story in his own words. Having seen Bruce perform nearly 100 times in 12 countries, his story is one that I feel closely connected to. The autobiography starts out about his childhood, where he felt isolated, an outsider with bigger ideas than his upbringing could bear. Though I grew up in better circumstances, I also could not wait to get out and be on my own.

Has anything you read in it stuck with you?
Would you recommend it to others?
Bruce’s story delves into his role as a band leader, and players who he must command and commandeer over the course of each performance, as well as the task of conveying a broader picture of what they seek to achieve on any given night. In this case, Bruce’s company is his band, and he is the CEO. There are incredible parallels when building a company from scratch, growing with your team and creating the broader vision of where you are going. No one can do it alone, and it’s a privilege to help steer the journey. As Bruce often says, “I told a story with the E Street Band that was, and is, bigger than I ever could have told on my own.” 

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