Swanepoel's Inner Circle

Swanepoel's Inner Circle: What it takes to salute those who make a difference 

A list's value is in the data and time that go into creating it. And the SP 200 is built on massive data sets, weeks of debate and a commitment to objectivity.

January 11, 2023
4 minutes

Editor's note: Stefan Swanepoel has four decades of leadership experience in many facets of real estate, including brokerage, global franchising, association and MLS management. He is a widely respected strategist, sought-after trend analyst, best-selling author and the founder of Real Estate News and T3 Sixty, one of real estate's leading management consultancies.

Lists help us not to forget stuff. Lists help us prioritize tasks. Lists help us order data.

In the USA there are lists for just about everything. Lists that rank restaurants where we could eat, the universities our kids attend, the best sports teams or the most expensive neighborhoods. But the value of a list is not the list itself: It's the data and time invested in gathering and sorting that data. A list's value varies greatly based on the source and compiler, and the time taken to produce a list that is meaningful and useful.

T3 Sixty has access to huge data sets built from thousands of hours of data collection, verification and research. From there, tens of thousands of different sets of data are tabulated in various tables, formats and lenses to make sense of the data and deliver it in a readable and meaningful format. Many of these lists form part of the annual Real Estate Almanac, a comprehensive compilation of statistical, financial and productivity data of brokerages, franchisors, public real estate companies and technology companies serving the residential real estate industry, MLS organizations, associations and many more.

This week, T3 Sixty released the 10th edition of the SP 200 ranking of the most powerful and influential leaders and executives in the residential real estate brokerage industry. I have every year been part of the journey in creating this extraordinary list and can state that it is one of the hardest and most intricate tasks undertaken by the T3 Sixty team every year.

After developing numerous spreadsheets, reviewing hundreds of bios and resumes, conducting countless calls and interviews, engaging in group and private debates about what activities matter, apply or should even be considered, we attempt to calibrate the data against a nine-point checklist. A list is made and then we go back and forth for some eight weeks, finetuning and debating whether a leader should or should not be included or placed at any specific spot.

There is an unspoken duty that rests on T3 Sixty to produce the SP 200, or any other list for that matter, and to ensure it is as meaningful and as thorough as possible. We fully realize that the SP 200 depends on both factual statistical data as well as personal experience and subjectivity. Each reader will have a divergent opinion of who they would have placed higher or lower on the list and that is utterly understandable. The SP 200 is simply our attempt to understand and describe our beloved industry and based on our research, rank leaders in an unbiased and objective manner.

You probably recognize or even know leaders such as Gino Blefari of HomeServices and Berkshire Hathaway, Gary Keller of Keller Williams Realty, Glenn Sanford of eXp Realty, Ryan Schneider and Sue Yannaccone of Anywhere Real Estate, Robert Reffkin of Compass, the Hannas from the Hanna Group, Nick Bailey of RE/MAX, Phil Soper of Bridgemarq and so on. Exceptional men and women who collectively influence the lives of a large part of our industry family. The top 20 real estate enterprises account for 750,000 real estate agents and combined represent more than 60% of the nation's residential real estate sales volume whilst being fierce competitors.

Being on the list of over 2,000 leaders we consider each year affirms that you are on the radar on a national level. Being one of the 245 leaders that were included in one of the many focused categories that informs the overall list means your performance and accomplishments during the past 12-18 months was more impressive and commanding than most of your peers and the SP 200 recognizes you for stepping up and leading at the highest level.

Of course, leaders primarily focus on the organization they represent, however, most do more than what you would see on first blush. Leaders wear multiple hats, many serve on association or MLS boards, countless contribute to their local community, while a great deal are active in impressive charitable activities.

At the beginning of every year, on behalf of the industry, T3 Sixty acknowledges the contributions of the industry's finest leaders and recognizes what they do for their agents, their companies, the industry overall and home buyers and sellers in general. We salute you!

For a detailed list of all the leaders, categories and lists please visit sp200.com. If you know these leaders, or the companies they represent, give them shoutout on social. I am!

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