Global Luxury Real Estate Mastermind Magazine

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GLREM Premiere Issue Q1, 2021

Michael Valdes

A unique look at his podcast, magazine and what it means to him.

Stan Ponte

Learn about Stan’s start in the business, how he built his career and more.

Global City Highlight

Moscow - Exploring Patriach’s Ponds.


Globa l Luxur y Real Estate Mastermi nd

Real est

tate insights, Global leaders, One podcast.

EDITORS NOTE Dear Readers, I started the Global Luxury Real Estate Mastermind over a year ago because I wanted to be like the character in the book “The Go Giver” and observe all the laws of success particularly The Law of Compensation which states that your income is determined by how many people you serve and how well you serve them. Earlier in my career, I think I was hyper focused on building my “brand” and achieving success and perhaps in hindsight that served me well to a certain point, but the moment I understood the greater gift of servitude to others, that’s where true greatness lies and what my singular focus has been ever since. The podcast was a platform to invite my friends from around the world in our industry that have influenced my life and allow them to share the great lessons they endured. It was such a larger reach than the small group of students I was able to guide in their career on a one off basis through my direct coaching. To date, this podcast has over 5 million impres-

sions, and is distributed on all major channels in over 70 countries. There have been over 13,000 direct downloads and the response has been humbling to say the least. GLREM digital magazine is yet another way to bring in the lifestyle that was experienced in the podcast throughout the last year and allow a forum to visit with past guests, get insights on industry leaders and enjoy some lifestyle highlights of major cities we have connected with on this journey. I thank you all for your participation and support of this premiere issue and allowing me the opportunity to serve you all. Please visit in order to communicate with me directly. Regards, Michael Valdes





STAN PONTE Stan’s success as a top performer in New York City.

PG 9.

EMPOWERING A NEW LEADER People are not as you have known them from the past.

PG 16.


Questions by the community! What would you ask?

PG 18.

Inside the Woolworth Tower Residences.



Did you know that almost three and a half billion people use social media daily?

PG 22.

Andres Bohorquez

Maria Batenkova

WE DEVELOP WORL I t ’ s Yo u r N ex t M ove

Con t act us at : general @ l eader steam. c om


www.le ader steam. c om

click m e to li sten to th e podc a st e pi s ode ꙟ


tan Ponte is a Senior Global Real Estate Advisor and Associate Broker with Sotheby’s International Realty - Upper East Side Brokerage. He has been consistently named among the top agents in Manhattan by sales volume according to “The Thousand” list, an annual national ranking by the Wall Street Journal and REAL Trends. As a realtor in New York City for the past 20 years, Stan’s client list ranges from first time home buyers to CEOs, philanthropists, hedge fund managers, tech world innovators and entertainers. Stan’s success as a top performer in New York City’s white glove firms includes two years of management experience at a global real estate firm, where he honed his business development and agent services skills. In 2017, in addition to Stan’s resale activities, he is proud to have been chosen as co-director of sales to represent the Woolworth Tower Residences.

An Interview by Michael Valdes

“The opportunity to sell extraordinary homes in the most recognizable and beloved building in the world is one of the proudest moments of my career.”

Global Luxury Real Estate Mastermind |



tan, you were the very first interview I did for the Global Luxury Real Estate Mastermind podcast a year ago and we are now distributed in over 70 countries with over two million impressions and counting. I am humbled by the reach and the amount of people we have been able to help and it all started with the candor and kindness with which you shared so openly with that inaugural conversation. I will always be eternally grateful. It is only fitting that you become my first interview with the first episode of the GLREM digital magazine, so thank you again!

In our original interview, we spoke about philanthropy, lessons learned and legacy among other topics, but I’d like to start with an update on how you survived and thrived during this past COVID year?

to look forward to on Friday nights. If for no other reason than to put on some nice clothes and have a “night out”. We had as many as 1000 families watching and singing along to the lyrics that we emailed out literally all over the world!

This past year was one of with significant challenges not only from Covid, but also the initial impact of the shutdown and stay at home orders. When I learned that real estate was not initially going to be considered an “essential service” it was the first time in twenty-two years that I wasn’t out there doing by job ev- You then started a “Coffee with Stan” series which was more business oriented. How did eryday! that come about? We all needed to feel a sense of connection and belonging. You and your husband, John started a Friday night sing-a-long via zoom which grew exponentially. How did that get started and what type of reaction did you receive? In those first thirteen weeks my Husband and I hosted a weekly Zoom sing along with family, friends and colleagues. What started out as a cancelled 49th birthday party turned into a community which gave all of us something

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By late Summer, the political rancor had gotten louder and more contentious! I felt called to add my voice to the conversation and began interviewing senate candidates in a 30-minute live format in order to get past the rhetoric and to help myself and my community better understand the positions and policies that these candidates were really advocating for...beyond the talking points! 2020 was actually one of your best years in real estate. What do you attribute that to? In fact, 2020 was one of the best years in real

tal space have been able to continue to create art, share stories and hold space until theaters re-open. This year also marked the launch of my Mother’s horse rescue, rehabilitation and adoption ranch called and I am so proud of the lifesaving work that she is doing! Mentorship is also of paramount importance in your life. Tell me how you inspire others with your busy schedule? Well. we weren’t able to stay as busy in the beginning, but we did stay connected! We maintained our daily 10am meeting, took on new initiatives and looked at our business model to search for ways to improve our ability to meet our client’s needs. The result of this year long effort is the launch of ourtrustednetwork. The Woolworht Residences, Presented By Sotheby’s International Realty com which is a new website that allows our Photography by Travis Mark Sotheby’s Internationa Realty clients to meet estate for many real estate professionals across professional, client focused brokers who value the country as more people were working from the opportunity to act as a trusted real estate home and realized that they had the opportu- advisor. nity to really make decisions around “how and where” they wanted to live. In New York City What is the greatest lesson you learned in in particular the virus hit early and hit hard, the past year? and many buyers and sellers turned to me as a seasoned, steady and clear-eyed advisor who To slow down and literally smell the roses, and was able to help them navigate an extremely the daffodils and the peonies! challenging market. I am very proud to have been there for my clients and grateful to have What is the greatest regret of the past year? achieved a personal best milestone in my caThat I sped up again! reer. Philanthropy continues to be a big part of Finally Stan, in your current book of life, your life. Please update us all on your cur- what is this chapter entitled and why? rent efforts. I am turning 50 this March and I have reached This was an extremely hard year for the live Part 2 in the book of my life and it is called, theater with Broadway, off-Broadway and all “Love and Joy - especially in the quiet motheaters across the country having to close ments” their doors. We truly came together and through a reimagining of theater in the digiGlobal Luxury Real Estate Mastermind | 11

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panning over 6,711 SF of interior space on the 29th floor, this 5-bedroom, 4-bathroom plus two powder rooms is the perfect blend of Tribeca loft meets historic penthouse. With six skylights, up to 22-foot ceilings, and duplex terrace totaling 2,770 SF, there is no shortage of natural light throughout this residence. Unmatched cinematic views of the surrounding cityscape in addition to unique sightlines of the building itself, The Pavilion res-

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idences offer a once in a lifetime opportunity to live in the iconic Woolworth Tower. The Woolworth Tower Residences offers a club-like intimacy, surrounded by award-winning restaurants, hotels and shopping. Offering white glove service in a resident-only lobby and amenities including the Gilbert Lounge, Woolworth Pool, Fitness Studio, Wine Cellar & Tasting Room, and on-site parking. Originally commissioned by retail magnate F.W. Woolworth, architect Cass Gilberts 792-foot tall neo-Gothic masterpiece continues to capture the imagination and grace the worlds most famous skyline. Photography by Travis Mark

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EMPOWERING A NEW LEADER Photo by Snapwire from Pexels


When someone new takes the reigns, everyone plays a key role in empowering the leader to succeed.

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e have all had leaders we love. And when those beloved leaders retire or leave their role, the transitions can be challenging, not only for the new leaders but also for the rest of the organization. How can you and othersempower this transition for everyone involved? Here’s a scenario: Arnie was promoted from salesman to sales manager, the top position in his business unit. He replaced a man who had been in that position for 15 years, was well-loved and appreciated by the employees. From the day he took over the position, he dealt with being compared to his predecessor—not only by his staff, but Arnie also compared himself, causing the inability to internalize the self-identity to the role, that was necessary to succeed. Arnie believed he didn’t have a lot of the charismatic qualities of his predecessor. He felt he wasn’t as good-looking or outgoing, and he failed to acknowledge people and appreciate them publicly as well as his predecessor. His team consistently invalidated him, gossiped about him and talked

about him behind his back. And, he knew it was happening. They made him wrong by not giving him a chance to lead. They felt he was one of them—a salesman, not their sales manager— and failed to help empower him to lead. In actuality, Arnie took the lead for them, but they didn’t see it that way. He cared enough about them to take on the role. He made less money, giving up a successful sales position and even hired a sales coach, on his own dime, because he was concerned that the team’s limiting approach to this new relationship to him would get in the way of everyone’s performance and success.

will you be putting in place to restore the breakdown?”

Appreciate their contribution to your success. When you are doing well under the new leadership, acknowledge them for your success by communicating that it is a product of their leadership. Then ask them what you can provide to support their continued success with you.

Know they want you to be successful under their leadership.

EMPOWER TRANSITION Listen from the future—people are not as you have known them from the past.

Arnie was not only concerned about the success and legacy of his predecessor, he was concerned about the morale of his staff. In actuality, he was quite talented, intelligent and brilliant in a very quiet way. Some would say he hired a coach in fear of his job or to look good, but this actually was a person that really wanted to make a difference. He learned how to deal with people’s disenchantment in a powerful way and he became well-loved and appreciated. He also worked We tend to relate to people as the past rather than lis- with people to understand what they were concerned tening in a new way. We need to remember they have about. They feared what they might lose with the loss new accountability and the conversations that direct of the past leader. He addressed these concerns headtheir actions, and results will now be very different. on, which helped give people the confidence in his They will have distinct concerns from the concerns skills as a leader of the team. He went on, and continof their past responsibilities. New leaders really are ues today, to be one of the best leaders and performers in a new conversation and it works to empower the of that business unit. conversations and concerns in their new role of accountability, rather than relating t them from the past. Check in with them to ask them how it’s going and what they are learning in their new accountability.

Acknowledge what is working about their leadership. Don’t compare how much better (or worse) they are than the last person, but let them know what is working under their leadership. All new leaders are concerned with how they are doing with you and if you are getting what you need from them.

Give them the space to make mistakes. We all make mistakes. Rather than make the new leader wrong, try to make it better for them. Ask them, “What are you learning from what’s happened? What

Kelly Townsend is co-owner of Leaders Team, an executive coaching and consulting firm based in Naples. She is also a sought-after speaker on personal development.

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This column will appear in every issue of the magazine. Michael will respond to the questions that are sent into the website and submitted via the “Ask Michael” button!

Why did you start GLREM? The greatest joy I found in my career was mentoring others. Helping people to achieve greatness and elevate them to their full potential. Those are things that do not fit on a balance sheet and very selfishly, I found amazing satisfaction in it. The challenge I faced was that the people I could help personally were finite. The schedule became overly complex and the number of people you could touch personally started diminishing. The idea of starting the podcast was to bring together friends of mine in the industry that have reached the pinnacle of success in their career and sit down for a conversation on how they have achieved their goals. It’s surprising how similarities begin to emerge as a roadmap to reaching your goals in your career. I started my first podcast interview with my dear friend, Stan Ponte who is one of the top agents in New York City and I thought it was only fitting to have the first interview of this magazine to be with him as well.

What was the greatest surprise about the show? I am humbled as to the number of people we have been able to touch. We are distributed on all major podcast distribution channels including Spotify, Apple, Google, iHeart and all others. We have over 13,000 downloads and have over 5 million impressions.

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“The world is vast - So let’s start thinking about it that way.”

More importantly has been the personal messages business to be generational and long lasting. from all over the world saying how the conversations have helped them look at their business and career 3) Believe in yourself differently and allowed them to grow. The odds are against you. 80% of those that enter the industry fail in their first year; an additional 10% drop That’s what energizes me. off after year 2. If you have survived your first two years, your probability odds change greatly in your favor. You have to believe that you are the best person What are the next steps for the podcast? for the job. Always remember your “why” and make This digital magazine became the next step which will sure everyone around you knows it as well. be offered on a quarterly basis. For those that subscribe on our site, it will be sent to you automatically What’s the best lesson you ever learned in and everyone else can visit our website to download your career? a copy. Humility. In my 20s, I wanted everyone to know about Aside from that, I will also be working on a book based my accomplishments, now I simply want to use them on all the powerful mastermind conversations I have as a vehicle to serve others. Once you realize that had the privilege of conducting. There will be much whatever you are working on is greater than yourself more to come on that project in the coming months. and you simply have a role to play in making sure you bring as many people along on your ride and help othWhat are the top three pieces of advice you ers it changes your perspective.

would give someone entering the business In your book of life, what is this current today? chapter entitled?

This is a question that I ask so many of my guests so I appreciated that someone asked that of me as well. Creating a legacy - At this point in my life, I am starting to create a foundation. My goal will be to help em1) Have a business plan. power the youth that are interested in technology but Most agents operate as independent ocntractors and do not have the funds or the resources to allow their as such are the CEO of their own company. You need inspirations which may change the world one day to to act like it! Success is a nath equation. Find out how reach fruition. I’ve learned to dream big and to make much you want to make in a given year, divide by 12 sure I have a small part in helping humanity and leavand that becomes your monthly goal, now divide by ing the planet a little better than I found it. 4 and you have your weekly goal. You can break this down to a daily goal. Now you need to formulate how you are going to get there. Your marketing budget, PR, finance, etc. 2) Become the expert We live in a world where information is readily available, consumers are looking for a true “expert”. You need to provide information that is not available to the regular consumer. Things like: what are the top economic reasons for someone to invest in your listing as opposed to others? Can you assist in getting your client’s child to the best school in the area? can you assist with getting your client into the country club?, etc. Build your network so that you become an advisor as opposed to a transactional agent. You must build your

What would you like to ask Michael?

Go to today and ask him a question!

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Photo by A.Savin via Wikipedia

GLOBAL CITY HIGHLIGHT MOSCOW LOCAL FAVORITES Patriarch’s Ponds Guide to where to eat in the city 20| Global Luxury Real Estate Mastermind

Moscow is a city of contrasts, with its unique charms and many great places to discover. It’s a mixture of the past and the future, combining its bohemian metro stations and soviet Stalin-style buildings with modern Moscow City skyscrapers. Today, let’s take a tour to the most controversial and locals’ favorite neighborhood - Patriarch’s Ponds or simply known among locals as “Patriki”. Here, you will get lost and later found in one of the most expensive, gastronomic, and lavishing places in the entire city. Uilliam’s Uilliam’s is one of the most popular restaurants in both the neighborhood and the city. It is mostly famous for its modest but astonishing food by an Italian chef, Luigi Magni. During the summertime, you can easily spot the place being surrounded by standing outside crowds with its signature Aperol Swing cocktails in their hands. Great place to grab a glass of prosecco or dine in after exploring the neighborhood. Avocado Queen. You can probably guess the main ingredient and the hero of this restaurant by its name. Avocado is the

centerpiece of almost every dish here - you can find it in many delicious varieties with a tendency to the taste of Asia. My personal favorite is a baked avocado with scrambled eggs and truffles. Found and operated by one of the most famous Russian restaurateurs Arkady Novikov and Pinsky. The brand chef is an Australian Glen Ballis. A wonderful spot for a weekend brunch with your friends or a weekday dinner date. Pino Restaurant & Bar. Pino is a cozy and charming place with a busy atmosphere, international food, and a great selection of wine. An outstanding choice for a romantic dinner or delicious breakfast - try a gigantic syrnik (fried Russian quark pancake) or just enjoy their vast variety of breakfast food with delicious lattes.

Photo by Uilliam’s

P.S: The restaurant is quite busy, always make sure to book in advance. 13th Restaurant. This is the last on the list, but not the least. With its beautiful and welcoming decor, the restaurant offers many delicious choices. To conclude your beautiful evening in Moscow, try the ‘Kitchen Garden’ dessert that will make you want to come back for more.

Photo by Avocado Queen

P.S: Suitable for vegetarians and vegans as well with their variety of vegetable dishes. Although the neighborhood might seem crowded, loud, and overpriced, it is impossible not to get tempted by its unique ambiance. Once you get a taste of “Patriki”, you will always come back to enjoy a special atmosphere of modern Russia, still filled with the memory of the old days.

Photo by Pino Restaurant

Maria Batenkova is co-owner of Green Mo. A Green Digital Marketing Agency based of New York City. Photo by 13th Restaurant

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MAXIMIZING SOCIAL MEDIA FOR REAL ESTATE Social media is in its early stages in the evolutionary impact it will have in centuries to come. If social media were a human, it would still be a baby. Think about this - humans developed a capacity for language over fifty thousand years ago, yet the very first recognizable social media platform dates less than fifty years back. Still, social media has had an enormous impact on the way we conduct business today. Did you know that almost three and a half billion people use social media daily? That’s almost literally half of the world. It represents a market worth over sixty-one billion dollars. Naturally, it has become a great place for real estate agents to find potential clients. With so much purchasing power concentrated in one space - wouldn’t it be incredible to gain awareness of how the algorithms work so we can make more informed decisions? With a few principles on navigating social media, we can ‘train social media algorithms’ to work for us. For this to happen, we need to redefine how we use social media.

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Separate your business and personal accounts If you recurrently like posts about babies, the algorithm within social media platforms will naturally begin positioning more pictures of babies in your newsfeed. How do we take advantage of this? We start by separating our personal from our business account. Use your personal account to follow friends, family, and all of your favorite influencers. Feel free to ‘Like’ as many memes, pet pics, and baby pictures as you wish. However, from your business account, you have to be laser-focused on who you follow and which posts you like.

Find competition and similar-minded people. If your primary objective with using social media is to get clients, leads, or create a personal brand, you need to be conscious of what you like and even who you follow on your business account. Following people within your industry will help you by using your feed as a “tailored news feed” that will show what others are up to and how the more prominent players in your industry are finding success. Doing so will help you avoid distractions and enable you to focus on what matters most to your business.

Discipline and consistency on your business account On your business account, like posts by people doing similar things to the ones you’d like to achieve. Doing so will prompt algorithms to search for similar-minded people and companies and present them to you in a “silver platter.” You’ll begin to notice your competitors’ posts and advertisements. You can find inspiration for new ideas everywhere, and there’s nobody who understands your customers better than you and your competitors. Strategically liking posts on your business account will help the algorithms work for you. The next time you’re scrolling through your business “explore page” or news feed, ask yourself: Is it in my business’ best

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interest for me to know more about this? If the answer is key, and little by little, you’ll see your following oris yes, like it. After a couple of likes, the algorithms ganically grow. will ‘reward’ you by presenting similar posts on your Growing your social media presence and following renewsfeed, including those from your competitors. quires time, effort, and a unique perspective. As social When it comes to your business, you need to redefine media continues to evolve, we must find a clear vision what ‘liking’ a post represents. Rather than using the and define a point of view. Following these tips may ‘like’ button whenever you relate to the content, ‘like’ help guide you to grow your following, and with it it instead when you want to see similar posts. Using your business. the ‘like’ button as a ‘show me similar posts’ button will prompt the algorithm to search for similar content. Let the algorithms find your competition so you may learn what they are doing best. Rodolfo Delgado is the Co-Founder & CEO of Replay Work the platform that works best for you. Listings, the first platform to find apartments for rent It’s easy to enter into a stage of paralysis when prein NYC focused on unedited sented with so many social media platforms. TikTok, videos Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, ClubHouse, Pinterest, Youtube, the list goes on. While it may not be necessary for you to tackle all of them, you do need to try the few, pick your favorite, and laser-focus on that one. In my experience, Instagram and TikTok seem to be the social media platforms working best for real estate lead generation and brand awareness. I have also seen people be very successful with Youtube. The platform that works best for you will highly depend on where your audience is - and that may primarily rely on their age-range.

Remember the rules of the game. Keep in mind that their primary purpose of social media platforms is to profit - they are a business. As we scroll through videos and pictures, their main objective is to capture people’s attention for as long as possible. Creating content that sparks discussions, comments, likes, and people sharing or saving your post will boost the algorithm to present your post more often on everyone’s newsfeed, as it knows it is likely to spark interest. There’s an unspoken rule many people abide by, a “like for like” mentality in which some of your friends will always keep liking, commenting, and sharing your posts as long as you do the same. Leverage your friendships and network to promote your content by reciprocating with likes and comments. Consistency

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