California Real Estate: Q&A Kofi Nartey

By Mandy Ellis | Original article, California Real Estate

This might be your first introduction to Kofi Nartey, but chances are you know his clients: Michael Jordan, Kevin Durant, James Van Der Beek and Iggy Azalea, to name a few. The broker behind the celebs pulls from his background with the Oakland Raiders and a decade of acting to understand his clients and deliver the over-the-top service they demand. His choice to niche down into sports and entertainment has paid off in national director position, multiple awards, speaking and training opportunities, and a best-selling book on Amazon. We caught up with Nartey to discuss how developing his niche and leveraging his experience cultivated his network and helped his business boom.

What specific skills from your sports and acting careers helped your real estate business flourish?

From my sports career, everything from teamwork to hard work, to being resilient, to overcoming losses, to overcoming failure and even knowing my physical limit. And the physical limit that sports stretched me to, real estate will never stretch me to– so it makes me feel like I can accomplish anything in real estate.

Acting helped my understanding of people. The times I had to dive into a character or understand the nuances of a character helped me… read [people] better. It also helped my presentation skills and thinking on the fly when it comes to working with clients.

What do you believe firmly separates you in your highly competitive niche of sports and entertainment?

If you make the decision to specialize– whether to work with first-time home buyers, or sports and entertainment, or retirees– you have to have an increased understanding o their specific needs. What separates me is I have actual sports and entertainment experience. I’ve been to business school and I’ve been a broker for 13 of my 16 years [in real estate]. The people who truly focus on [sports and entertainment clients], we all know each other because we’ve been at it long enough that either our names have come up, or we’ve referred business to each other. Plus, there aren’t a lot of people who specialize in it nationally.

What’s your secret for maintaining and growing your personal network?

About 30 to 40 percent of my clients are in sports and entertainment space, and that part [of my business] has created even greater visibility for myself, my team and the listings we carry. I’ve had to build the network organically. Over the last 10 years, I’ve been able to build arguably the largest database of sports and entertainment contacts in the country, but it was all through warm connections. One business manager will introduce me to another, or a client will introduce me to their representation or wealth manager. If you then do a good job, it’s easy to get those introductions or referrals.

What’s the difference between Kofi the Sports and Entertainment Division Director, and Kofi the dad and husband?

In the Sports and Entertainment Division, I try to bring leadership, ideas, best practices, support and guidance. Some of those translate to being a dad and husband: support, leadership and guidance. At work you have to be on and ready for anything. I get to be a little bit more relaxed at home. At home, I just have to be on and ready for my kids. They’re at that age now where they’re double-teaming [my wife and me].

You’ve talked about using your “daddy voice”– a low-toned, slow, direct way of speaker– in previous speaking engagements. Any times you’ve had to use it with either a client or another real estate professional?

Fortunately, I don’t have to use it too often. Agents are humans as well, we’re flawed, and sometimes we have true human responses to situations that are reactions based on emotion. I usually try to catch agents before they go too far down the emotional path, and that’s when the daddy voice comes in. It’s lower toned, a bit slower, but very deliberate to stop people and make them think about their next move.

Photography by Piper Ferguson.

Posted by thesesociety_0md1v7 in Real Estate