Blog Stories Living Room's Best Business Investments

Living Room’s Best Business Investments

By Jenelle Isaacson, June 19, 2018

Forbes.com contributor recently asked entrepreneurs to share their best business investments from the past year and I was happy to share our two biggest investments at Living Room Realty.

“Making the right investment in your small business can mean the difference between growth and stagnation. What that right investment is – marketing, training, technology, labor, personal development – will vary from business to business and owner to owner, depending on a variety of factors.” Dinah Wisenberg Brin

Staff are Living Room’s biggest asset and investing in training and development of our staff. We invest in our people by sending them to executive trainings and paying for membership to peer-to-peer organizations that support executives’ personal and professional development.

We set aside five percent of our budget each year for trainings and consultants for our employees. Employees have an education credit that renews each year. We don’t say ‘no’ to any request for learning because we feel if our employees are able to pursue their passions and what brings them joy, they are more likely to be productive and stay with a company that supports them as whole beings. We spend a lot of time reminding staff that they have this credit and encourage them to use it.

We also invest in creating fun and intentional joy. At our most recent annual state-of-the-union meeting, we hired a local celebrity cat rapper– yes, a guy who raps about his cats. It’s as silly as it sounds and the ROI to create the unexpected joy for our agents has returned dividends all year long.

Read the full article at forbes.com.

Jenelle Isaacson

Owner

What does being lead singer and guitar player in a female punk band have in common with starting a real estate company in the middle of a recession? Not many people can answer that question. But when you ask Jenelle Isaacson, founder and CEO of Living Room Realty, there’s no hesitation; where most would see a chasm, she sees a bridge. For Jenelle, it’s all been about finding a voice—the singular and irrepressible expression of self. Once a quiet, studious, high-school girl growing up in Portland, Jenelle started a punk band after college. She played guitar, wrote cathartic songs, performed, and traveled across country while living out of a van. All that seems light years from the present moment--owning a successful, growing company; serving on boards of civic and philanthropic organizations; enjoying family life with her two young daughters and long-time partner. Still, she uses the same voice now that began to emerge on stage years ago. Whether it’s business or music, “It’s important to know what your voice is. If it’s true, it will resonate.” Jenelle’s voice, her truth, is about being brave enough to take action without apology, being heard without being exploited, to be energized, constantly problem-solving and refining her skills in the pursuit of building a purpose-driven company. All this requires risk-taking. She’s learned the hard way that she can’t fix everything and that not everyone will share her vision. But even as she explains the difficult choices she’s faced, Jenelle radiates joy. “It’s never okay to play small,” she says with conviction. And this, more than anything, is what she strives to impart to other women, empowering them to pursue their passion whole-heartedly and to be leaders who speak with their own unique, unapologetic voice. Living Room Realty, founded in 2009, offers residential, commercial, and property management services. Living Room ranks in the top 15 real estate companies in Oregon, with more than 110 affiliated broker-agents. For more information, visit www.livingroomre.com. Noted Achievements: First west coast real estate office to receive B Corp status • Top Workplaces, 2014-2016 • 100 Best Workplaces in Oregon 2017 • 100 Best Green Companies 2017 • Oregon Business in Ethics Awards in 2014 • Jenelle has been featured in The Portland Monthly, Oregon Business, and Realtor Magazine • Portland Business Journal 40 under 40 Business Leaders • Board of Directors, Rock n Roll Camp for Girls, receiving 2015 award for creative philanthropy • Board Member, Entrepreneurs’ Organization Global Network, Portland chapter • Orchid Award recipient for Business and Civic Contributions • Guest speaker: OPB’s Think Out Loud, Investor Beat, Cascadia Green Building Council • Advocate speaking on behalf of Benefit Corporation legislation with Oregon Secretary of State, Kate Brown
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  • jenelle@livingroomre.com

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