Chicagoland real estate companies named as Top Workplaces in 2021

by Emily Mack

Several local residential real estate firms have been honored by the Chicago Tribune as Top Workplaces. Using staff insight, the annual list recognizes 200 Chicagoland companies, across fields, that maintain a high-performance culture. Rankings are based on employee feedback gathered through an anonymous, third-party survey.

Of the smaller companies, with 100 to 249 employees, john greene Realtor ranked as the No. 1 Top Workplace. The distinction marks john greene’s seventh consecutive year on the list. “It is our strongest belief that there is every opportunity to develop individual abilities to the fullest, affording both economic rewards and the satisfaction of belonging to a great industry,” reads the statement on their Top Workplaces profile.

Four other real estate companies ranked among this smaller division as well. At No. 30 is Compass Mortgage, a lender which ascribes its culture to three core values: “infinite worth, integrity and excellence.” In addition to ranking regionally for three consecutive years, Compass Mortgage also made the national list this year and earned a special Industry Award, for financial services, as well as 12 individual awards for Cultural Excellence.

Then, at No. 37, is the real estate management group Lendlease, followed by PulteGroup, an Atlanta-based homebuiler, at No. 40. The inclusion marks PulteGroup’s fourth consecutive year on the list. And ranking at No. 53, is Fulton Grace. Fulton Grace also made the list in 2019 and is considered one of Chicago’s fastest-growing residential real estate firms.

Moving on to slightly larger businesses, six firms were recognized in the category of companies with 250 to 999 employees. In the No. 6 spot is Kale Realty, a family-owned company with a highly personal culture. “We are a family-owned business and it’s important that we treat every agent as part of the Kale family,” their Top Workplaces profile reads.

Ranking at No. 8 is another family-owned firm: Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Starck Real Estate. Headquartered in Palatine, the brokerage has expanded to include offices throughout Chicagoland, Rockford and Wisconsin. Charity remains a core BHHS Starck value, according to their Top Workplaces profile.

Then comes Real People Realty at No. 28, marking the brokerage’s sixth consecutive year on the Top Workplaces list. Real People Realty is followed by the full-service real estate company d’aprile properties, at No. 32. Since its founding in 2012, d’apriele properties has grown to include 14 offices and has ranked as a Top Workplace for four straight years.

Jameson Sotheby’s International Realty also appears on the list of companies with 250 to 999 employees, at No. 41. Their “focus on cultivating an exceptional agent and staff experience,” as described on their Top Workplaces profile, is reflected in the recognition. And finally, Redfin is listed at No. 68. With a commitment to “fundamentally change the way people buy and sell homes,” the technology-based company values employees with “fire in the belly to change the game,” according to the Top Workplaces description.

And among large companies, with more than 1,000 employees, the top three were all local real estate firms: Compass, @properties and Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Chicago, respectively.

In receiving the high honor, Compass makes the Chicago Tribune’s list of Top Workplaces for the third time. According to the profile, the many Compass values include dreaming big, moving fast, maximizing your strengths and bouncing back with passion.

Ranked directly behind is @properties. With an employee count of 3,471, it is Chicagoland’s largest residential real estate brokerage firm. 2021 marks the ninth consecutive year that @properties has graced the list.

And finally, in the No. 3 spot for large companies, is Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Chicago. The designation marks the third year in a row that BHHS Chicago has ranked among top three workplaces on the list. “This award is made all the sweeter because it’s based on unbiased feedback from our agents and employees,” CEO Diane Glass said in a press release.

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