Charles Rutenberg Realty Makes No. 4 on Tribune’s Top Workplaces List

by Chicago Agent

While the industry has been facing an economic downturn, Charles Rutenberg Realty, a Naperville-based firm, has been adding new agents to their team. According to The Chicago Tribune, this comes as no surprise, as the firm made the Tribune‘s Top 100 Places to Work list for the second year in a row.

“This year, things got even worse (in the market),” said Penny Altheide, an agent with Charles Rutenberg Realty. “There are more foreclosures and lower prices.”

Yet, hard times don’t seem to be holding back Rutenberg agents: the firm’s flexibility coupled with smart management allowed Rutenberg to earn it’s number four spot on The Chicago Tribune‘s top workplaces list for midsize companies.

The Tribune‘s list is comprised of the 100 best places to work, and is broken down into three categories: large companies, midsize companies and small companies. Workplaces can also earn special recognition for various things aside from straight rankings, such as employee appreciation, leadership roles and benefits, among others.

This isn’t the first time that Rutenberg Realty has made the Tribune‘s list, either. In 2010, Rutenberg placed 11th out of 35 on the midsize companies list.

Aside from the fourth-place ranking, Rutenberg Realty was also given special mention for work/life flexibility. Agents and brokers working in the Rutenberg office are provided with a much more flexible office schedule; employees are not required to put in hours at the office, but may instead use the office space at their leisure for projects, planning and meetings.

Charles Rutenberg Realty currently employs 760 active agents, which puts them up 9 percent from the end of 2007. According to Ray Zabielski, owner and managing broker, the firm moved up one spot in the Chicago-area sales volume ranking for this year, putting them at number 13.

In order to stay in business during the downturn, Charles Rutenberg Realty has drastically cut fees paid by agents to the back offices, allowing them to cut commissions in certain circumstances to close a deal. Agents with Rutenberg are also able to choose among a few commission options, adding to the flexibility of the firm. Some agents pay $35 per month along with $325 for each property sale as part of the commission plan. The majority of sales yield half or more for the agent’s commission.

As the firm’s sales volume steadily increases along with its Tribune rating, one can only wonder what 2012 will bring for Rutenberg Realty.

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  • Greg Viti says:

    Work place flexibility??? This article makes it sound like all their agents are employees…Wow they let their agents have flexability, they are independent contracters………. seems like an odd way to judge..

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