RISMedia's Real Estate Magazine

SEP 2018

Real Estate magazine is the industry's leading source for real estate news and information since 1980. Published monthly by RISMedia, Real Estate magazine offers timely and relevant real estate news to the industry's top brokers and agents.

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RISMedia's REAL ESTATE September 2018 97 boosters, and we love hearing ideas from our people that we can experi- ment with." Trapani's passion for excellence, and his long-standing commitment to community, have deep and mean- ingful roots. "Just a few months after we launched Sereno Group, I had a life- changing experience," he says. "I was scanning the bookstore busi- ness section and spotted a book— "Let My People Go Surfing,"—by renowned mountain climber, busi- nessman and environmentalist Yvon Chouinard. The book, and the com- pany Chouinard founded, Patagonia, Inc., are all about how business can and should do good—that you can make a profit without losing your soul." It was a lightning rod moment for him, Trapani says, helping to shape and reinforce his own thinking, and it set in motion his commitment to creating a socially responsible busi- ness. The experience resulted in the birth and development of Sere- no Group's "1 Percent for Good" program, committing 1 percent of the firm's gross revenues to envi- ronmental causes and to charitable or community-minded groups com- mitted to making a difference in the areas the company serves. Last year, Sereno Group gave $516,000 to 28 separate causes, making it one of the top 35 corpo- rate givers, according to the Silicon Valley Business Journal. "We are determined to eclipse $1 million a year in charitable giving," Trapani says. Sereno Group is also committed to shrinking its footprint on Earth through efforts toward greener liv- ing, pledging to conserve natural resources, prevent pollution and waste, and be environmentally re- sponsible. Every office recycles paper, plastic, batteries and toner cartridges, turns off lights when not in use, works toward a more paper- less environment and patronizes other Green-certified businesses whenever possible. In their offices and at home, Sereno Group associates are en- couraged to use environmentally- friendly cleaning products, to keep vehicles well-maintained and to car- pool when possible. They remove themselves, and assist clients to be removed from, as many junk mail lists as possible by going to stopjunkmail.org. What does social responsibility mean for the company's clients? "It means patient, meticulous service that goes above and beyond the norm," says Iwanaga. "Our goal is to exceed the standards for pro- fessionalism, market knowledge and approach. In addition to being trusted advisors, we like to be the kind of people others like to hang out with. In many cases, the people we meet as clients become our friends." Proschold agrees. "We want our agents to know three things: We care about you. We will be open and transparent. We will do everything in our power to help you increase your business. We like to think that's the best way to ensure their hap- piness and confidence and, as a consequence, a better home-buying or home-selling experience for our clients." According to reports in The Silicon Valley Business Journal, the tech- nology hub has the strongest mo- mentum of any other major metro in the country in terms of economy and real estate—a position it has retained for three years straight and is expected to continue in as the industry expands from traditional hardware and software into sectors like artificial intelligence and auto- motive technology. That would indicate rosy busi- ness prospects for the future of Sereno Group, which deals almost exclusively in the high-end housing market. But the firm's leadership team fully intends to maintain its boutique approach. "We remain committed to push- ing the edges in finding ways a for- profit business can leave a positive and eternal impact on society, and hopefully in influencing future busi- ness leaders to consider following suit," Trapani says. "We never set out to be the biggest brand. We sim- ply desire to be a brand that agents, clients and the community consider purposeful, creative and of the most exceptional quality." RE For more information, please visit www.serenogroup.com. "We remain committed to pushing the edges in finding ways a for-profit business can leave a positive and eternal impact on society, and hopefully in influencing future business leaders to consider following suit." - CHRIS TRAPANI Chief Executive Officer, Sereno Group

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