Brent Watson is the latest agent to leave Compass and return to Coldwell Banker

“…New York people come into LA and think they’re going to change things”

TRD LOS ANGELES /
Jan.January 11, 2017 06:30 PM

The atmosphere was comfortable at Compass, but Westside agent Brent Watson said the pull to return to his former stomping ground was just too strong.

Watson left Compass’ Beverly Hills office last month after a year with the firm, and has returned to the Beverly Hills office of Coldwell Banker, The Real Deal has learned. Watson said he missed the company support he received at Coldwell.

“I needed to be in an environment where I was getting the information I need to have as a busy agent — pocket listings on sales that are happening, who the players are [etc.],” he said. “At Coldwell Banker, we have high-end networking meetings once a month for top agents and we didn’t have that [at Compass].”

Watson, an estates director at Coldwell, said the New York-based brokerage firm, which was most recently valued at north of $1 billion, may be experiencing a culture clash.

“It’s interesting how New York people come into L.A. and think they’re going to change things,” he said. “This is one of the most fickle and unpredictable towns.”

Watson got his start in the industry 29 years ago, jumping into real estate right after college. He moved from Calgary, Canada to L.A. in the mid-1990s and never looked back. His celebrity clients have included tennis legend Pete Sampras; actress Milla Jovovich; and designers Nate Berkus and Jeremiah Brent.

“What made me get into real estate is the idea I could be my own boss,” he said.

Since launching in Los Angeles in 2015, Compass has been on a hiring spree. But since September, at least seven agents, including Watson, have left after a year or less.

The focus on nabbing top talent instead of fostering supportive relationships with new hires may be to blame, said a source with knowledge of the exits.


Related Articles

arrow_forward_ios
Tomer Fridman and Brielle Cohen (Credit: Compass and iStock)

Tomer Fridman hit with lawsuit over commission split

Tomer Fridman hit with lawsuit over commission split
Hiten Samtani, Sally Forster Jones, Santiago Arana, and Aaron Kirman

For top LA resi agents, it’s strictly posi vibes

For top LA resi agents, it’s strictly posi vibes
Hiten Samtani, Sally Forster Jones, Santiago Arana, and Aaron Kirman

Don’t miss LA’s top dealmakers on Monday’s TRD Talk

Don’t miss LA’s top dealmakers on Monday’s TRD Talk
Kofi Nartey (Credit: Rachel Murray/Getty Images)

Side Deal: Kofi Nartey bolts Compass for VC-backed rival

Side Deal: Kofi Nartey bolts Compass for VC-backed rival
Jamie Duran and Coldwell Bankers Beverly Hills office

Brokerages are recruiting. But they’re not spending

Brokerages are recruiting. But they’re not spending
Robert Reffkin (Credit: Brad Barket/Getty Images)

This is who Compass terminated in California

This is who Compass terminated in California
Cindy Ambuehl (Credit: Tommaso Boddi/Getty Images, and Hilton & Hyland)

Compass’ Cindy Ambuehl claims ex-assistant stole trade secrets to fuel rise in LA luxury real estate

Compass’ Cindy Ambuehl claims ex-assistant stole trade secrets to fuel rise in LA luxury real estate
(Credit: iStock)

For LA brokers, coronavirus means closed open houses and peak uncertainty

For LA brokers, coronavirus means closed open houses and peak uncertainty
arrow_forward_ios

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

Loading...