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‘The Gordon Ramsay of real estate’: The network training head who tells it like it is

By Juliet Helmke
10 January 2022 | 1 minute read

Auctioneer Andy Reid’s advocacy of a “no bullshit” attitude to customer care, as well as his candid approach to addressing mental health issues among real estate professionals, has made him something of a force in the industry.

The former sales agent, who hails originally from the UK, describes his entry into real estate as somewhat bumpy. When the pandemic hit, he realised it was more important than ever that he talked about his own experiences and mental health issues as a way of supporting others in the sector struggling to cope.

After being recruited into real estate by his father-in-law, Mr Reid initially struggled to see a future for himself dealing in property.

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“I hated it. Could not stand it. There was just the stereotype of what a real estate agent was supposed to be, and do, and how they were supposed to act, and whatnot, I just really hated it with a passion,” he said.

But 11 months in, something snapped. “I had a session around goal setting for the first time, and I went, ‘You know what? Fuck it, I’m going to be me.’ I’m not a material guy. I don’t really give a shit about houses, or architecture – I can appreciate it for the work, but I have no deep interest in it. But, helping advance human lives is something that I’m certainly interested in.”

In his work in sales and then as an auctioneer under the company he founded, Sold By Auctions, that meant focusing on how he could use real estate “as the vehicle to drive buyers towards whatever their purpose is.

And during the pandemic, he looked inward, turning his attention to helping workers across the sector deal with the radical changes to their daily lives. The effort ended up landing him a role dedicated to helping agents, and by extension, their customers, as Century 21’s head of training.

“Real estate professionals, we are social beasts. So there were a hell of a lot of mental health fractures appearing all over the place. And by that time, I’d been a few years down my own mental health journey, so I knew that that’s what I needed to do, in order to help the game not go to shit,” he said.

He started the live Q&A show The Silver Lining, which he broadcast seven nights a week through Melbourne’s longest lockdown in 2020, never missing a night.

“I wanted to try and be that beacon of connection in a very disconnected world that was trying to come to terms with all being locked away in our own houses, and stuff,” Mr Reid said.

The experience and feedback from his live streams showed him: “I do have value to contribute towards the game.” 

And while he shied away from focusing on coaching in the past (“My life is way too important to be inviting dickheads into it,” he said.), the subsequent offer from Century21 won him over when the network convinced Mr Reid that what they wanted was his honest perspective and his lack of hesitation to call things as he sees it.

“I said, ‘I’m not a corporate guy, my vernacular is not corporate,” Mr Reid recalled of his initial reservations. Indeed, his colourful vocabulary is one of the reasons, along with the British accent, that he’s earned the moniker “the Gordon Ramsay of real estate”.

But the network communicated to him: “We just want you to be who you are. That’s why we’re bringing you in,” and the deal was done.

The message he’s focusing on is how the game has changed and why agents need to find their own motivators, just as he has.

“Knowledge is now so readily available to the consumer. A lot of [agents] are discovering that they can’t bullshit anybody anymore,” Mr Reid said – adding that it’s something they shouldn’t feel they have to do. 

“It bores me to tears to think that real estate professionals still think that they can kid people, and convince people by just saying that they operate with integrity, and they’re trusting. The reality is, the real winners in the game are the ones that operate to a value set within themselves, that makes them just who they are, at all times.”

‘The Gordon Ramsay of real estate’: The network training head who tells it like it is
Andy Reid REB 2
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR


Juliet Helmke

Based in Sydney, Juliet Helmke has a broad range of reporting and editorial experience across the areas of business, technology, entertainment and the arts. She was formerly Senior Editor at The New York Observer.

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