TAMPA, Fla. – Mary McCall, CRS, GRI, isn’t what you call a born salesperson. In fact, the broker-associate with RE/MAX ACR Elite Group Inc. in Tampa, says, “I never really liked the idea of selling anything, but I had two teenagers and college costs looming, so I started working as an office manager for a real estate firm.”
Fast forward 25 years and you’d never guess this savvy salesperson and former schoolteacher ever had reservations about getting into sales. That’s because in her view, what she does isn’t really sales.
“I’m helping people,” McCall says. “I’m helping families and individuals make one of the most important decisions of their lives. That changed my outlook. I’m more of a counselor than a salesperson.” She says she truly loves the “hand-holding” stage of a transaction and thrives on working with first-time homebuyers and seniors.
And, being a counselor is an extension of her volunteer work. “I’ve been involved for years with my church and as an elderly caregiver,” she says. McCall currently assists a 90-year-old lady who needs help getting to and from doctor’s appointments, grocery shopping and picking up prescriptions. But, most importantly, says McCall, she’s there as a friend.
“I believe in helping those who have no one else, no family around,” she says. “The elderly thrive on visitors. They can be very lonely.”
So, it comes naturally for McCall to extend her love for helping others into her business. Many of her clients are seniors who are moving out of family homes and into assisted living. They want a compassionate person helping them make the transition, she says.
In addition to her passion for helping those in need, McCall also believes strongly in continuing education. “It’s not the same real estate world it was even five years ago,” says the incoming national president of the Council of Residential Specialists. “It’s about more than getting a designation; it’s about going further and honing your skills so you don’t slip backwards.”
But nothing gives her more pleasure than helping her community rebound from the foreclosure crisis. “Real estate professionals can play a huge role in offering guidance to those in need. We can point buyers and sellers in the right direction so that they can work with attorneys and tax advisors to find a way out,” she says. “We’re rebuilding our community step by step.”
If there’s one word that sums up McCall’s essence, it’s compassionate. It’s obvious from her choice of professions (as a school teacher and then as a real estate professional) to her volunteer work with the elderly both as a caregiver and as a real estate advisor. “I’m a compassionate leader,” she says. “You lead by example and you build confidence – that’s a part of everything I do.”
Not only is Mary McCall passionate about strengthening her community, she also is a dedicated Realtor who has taken additional education courses to enhance her knowledge and expertise. She holds the professional designations of Certified Residential Specialist (CRS); Graduate, Realtor Institute (GRI); Performance Management Network (PMN); and e-Pro, a program that teaches the latest technologies to help Realtors connect with tech-savvy consumers. In 2005, Florida Realtors honored McCall as the Associate Realtor of the Year for her dedication to the real estate profession and her community.