Could you spot a passionate woman in a crowd? Could you see someone in a coffee shop and feel their intensity, determination, fortitude, and know they were willing to do work their tail off to provide everything their family wants and needs?
Of course not.
We can observe or sometimes watch and learn about people, yet first impressions are only superficial. Granted, that seems awfully philosophical for a blog about our team member Alison Koopman’s recent success in being named to the 20 Under 40, however her stellar trajectory in real estate began as an interesting first impression!
I’m embarrassed to admit this: Todd and I jumped to conclusions the day we first met Alison at Coffee Crossing. (Don’t worry – we’ve all grown a lot since then and retired that practice!) Alison arrived to our meeting dressed in something I can best describe as free-spirited colors mixed with Dana Carvey’s church lady character… A teal cardigan, hair in a bun, retro glasses, floral prints somewhere I think, and she folded her hands politely in front of her. I know I know – it sounds judgmental!
Let’s be real for a second though: Alison showed up to interview for a sales position with a fast-paced and intense team, and as you know, first impressions are crucial in sales. Todd and I exchanged a quick yet discernible glance of “who are we interviewing again?” and took our seats.
Alison indirectly and immediately persuaded us that her persona was simply a reflection of two undeniable character traits: her fierce independence and proud self-expression of a fun woman who doesn’t take herself too seriously. I don’t remember what she said. I only remember how I felt at the end of that interview: Alison was, is, and will be a driven, independent, formidable person with the heart of a servant (read: teacher) who wants to claw her way out of her current situation and achieve something greater to help her family realize their vision of success and happiness.
As she told us her story, we learned Alison’s talent was unfortunately hidden behind a desk. At the time, she was teaching high school students and feeling less-than-fulfilled at the end of every single day. Luckily she knew there was more opportunity, more reward, and more to life out there and she was determined to find it!
We moved Alison through our lengthy interview process at light-speed and completed everything in only a few weeks. Within days she became a fully licensed agent working in our 100 Days training program, which is essentially our version of real estate boot camp. She quickly started to outshine whatever modest persona she presented at the Coffee Crossing first impression!
Think I learned my lesson about judging a book by its cover?? Since then we’ve committed to staying in curiosity with everyone and “seeking first to understand” where they are in life and why.
Alison began to take territory as a buyer’s agent within a couple months and represented the level of client service everyone hopes to experience in a real estate deal. She was immediately (and still is) honest, trustworthy, knowledgable, diligent, and resilient. Whatever talents she hid behind her desk as a teacher quickly surfaced as she became a more confident and assertive agent. Alison began to show up equal parts soulful flower-child and dedicated guide with an evident and infectious passion for accomplishing goals.
Later we learned this is just who she is… celebratory dancing and negotiating like a bulldog for clients are just bonus perks that come with the package.
In her first full year, Alison outgrew her teaching lifestyle/universe and became exactly what she set out to be: a rockstar agent who never dropped the ball on being a rockstar mom, wife, and friend. Oh, and she just happened to close $11,500,000 in volume and 73 buyer homes in the two years she has been with us. FYI – average real estate agents sell eleven houses in a year. (Insert micdrop here, right?) She has also earned Rookie of the Year for Southern Indiana, served on several local committees, helped our team coordinate multiple client appreciation events, and managed to have dinner ready for her family almost every night to boot. And she’s just getting started…
The Paxton Group will always celebrate successes like Alison’s 20 Under 40 award. Our team only exists because of individuals like her. So many on our team have “taken territory” over the last few years that it would be impossible to highlight everything. However we will pause occasionally to acknowledge that the people in our tribe represent genuine, talented, servant-hearted leaders.
Can you spot us in a crowd? We’re the ones who climb out from behind desks, out from under comfortable shade and reach for something far more uncomfortable: hard work and success….
And maybe a teal cardigan.
Congratulations Alison on your huge accomplishment!
“I’m so lucky to not only call Alison a co-worker, but one of my best friends. I’m so incredibly proud of what she’s accomplished in her real estate career, and know that this is just the beginning of a very successful career. Love ya girl!” – Rachel Ulrich
“Congratulations Alison! You may not be in the classroom anymore but you continue to teach and inspire us everyday. Your positive attitude and determined energy are infectious. Thank you for all you do!” – Anica Bell
“Alison and I had an immediate bond on one of my first days at TPG, it all started for our love of doughnuts and Diet Coke! But, also for out desire and passion to provide opportunities for our families and most importantly helping others! Alison, you’ve been a great friend and mentor my first year on this side of real estate. Thank you for believing in me and pushing me to be my best. I’m so very proud of you and know you’ll do great things and not just in real estate. Xoxo” -Amanda Granger
“I am so proud of Alison! Her love and passion for life and helping others is amazing to watch! I am very thankful to have Alison in my life to brighten it daily. Love you Alison and great job!” – Kristin Nolot
“It seems that Alison Koopman is unable to not have a smile on her face and love in her heart. Alison transitioned from education to real estate around 2 years ago and has been wonderful with connecting with her clients, finding them the best home for their family at the best price and terms. She is always an absolute joy to be around and in her short tenure in real estate has become a strong leader within The Paxton Group, Keller Williams and our local real estate community. Alison earned Rookie of The Year Honors from SIRA and now serves on several committees and councils volunteering her time back to the wonderful world of real estate. Alison continues to learn and grow both personally and professionally all while keeping her “Big Why” of her family at the forefront. Congrats to Alison, although I’m not surprised as many more great awards are likely coming her way! We all at The Paxton Group at KW are grateful to be in business with our friend Alison Koopman!” – Todd Paxton