Mike Fusek is coming off a year in which he ranked No. 18 out of 900 Sperry Van Ness advisers nationwide based on 2010 sales and earnings. Never mind there was a sluggish real estate market.
The 39-year-old senior adviser at Sperry Van Ness/Rankin Co. bucked the trend and in the last year served as agent for multimillion-dollar listings in Chesterfield Village, for attorney Aaron Sachs’ office building and the ProTel telecommunications office, to name a few.
Fusek says his real estate model, in which he specializes in the sale and leasing of retail and office properties, is built on honest leadership and continual fortitude.
“In today’s market, leadership includes being honest with clients about the real value of their property and not just telling them the price they want to hear to get the listing,” he says. “Anyone can sell commercial real estate, although it takes an adviser to help people buy what they want and need.”
Fusek currently is focused on advising clients about what commercial properties to invest in and, perhaps more importantly, what not to invest in.
“Engaging the client in a forward-thinking strategic plan helps them choose the right investment property for the long term and ultimately helps them reach their true goals,” he says.
An entrepreneur at heart, Fusek owned and operated a Minneapolis-based Saladmaster business for more than a decade. After starting Saladmaster Healthy Cooking Centers in 1992, he built the direct-selling business to a sales force of more than 100 serving markets in Minnesota, Arizona and Missouri.
“Leading a direct-sales organization for 17 years and coaching salespeople for a living is all about helping others become successful,” he says. “Unless the salespeople reach their goals, the organization will not survive.”
Fusek sold his Saladmaster company in 2005 to pursue an interest in real estate, initially as principal and managing partner for Pathway Properties Group, a commercial property investment and management firm. His arrival at Sperry Van Ness/Rankin Co. came through his investing in real estate with company leaders Tom Rankin and Tim Roth.
Seeing Fusek’s potential, in 2007, Rankin offered him a position at the company, where he earned his Certified Commercial Investment Member designation. Fusek continues to personally own multifamily, retail and office properties throughout Missouri.
A graduate of Leadership Springfield in 2008–09, Fusek is a founding member of the Springfield CCIM organization, which promotes and educates the commercial real estate industry. He also serves on the board for the Lutheran Family and Children’s Services Adopting Hope program and has coached Upward children’s basketball.Click here for full coverage of the 2011 40 Under 40.