The advice Dan Kieres received from the current owner of Elliott’s Seafood Grille in Edison Park, where he used to valet as a teenager, continues to resonate with him and be the philosophy he works by.
“Owning a business is all about creating a unique & pleasant experience for the customer,” Alex Elliott, the restaurant’s owner, told him. “Regardless of whether you’re having a good day or bad day, if it’s sunny or rainy outside, it’s all about the client experience.”
Kieres would stand in the street and wait for customers to toss him their keys, so he could park their cars as they entered the restaurant. He dreamt of owning a business on that same street and now he does. His brokerage faces the restaurant that sparked his entrepreneurial ambitions.
Kieres, managing broker of Northwest Real Estate Group, assists buyers and sellers in the city and surrounding suburbs, customizing his approach to meet their specific needs.
“My life’s work and purpose is creating value for my clients, centered around real estate,” Kieres explains. “But I’ve also found purpose behind supporting the development and growth of our agents.”
The 20 agents on his team are all focused on one thing: the client. “People won’t remember what you say,” Kieres insists. “They will remember how it made them feel.”
Since his business is heavily based on referrals, he does his best to make clients feel special. His approach is a gentle combination of business, making the experience memorable and leading the transaction since his team is the process experts.
“Outworking the competition is key,” he says. “Real estate doesn’t sleep or take days off!”
When taking on new clients, he conducts education/expectation meetings. “Being prepared is the difference between winning and losing in this market,” he explains. “We make sure we have all of our ducks in a row before getting started.”