We had the good fortune of connecting with Stephanie Lloyd and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Stephanie, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
Before I started my own real estate business, I worked at a local credit union in business development. After my second child was born, I was still working late nights, weekends, long hours away from my kids, and wasn’t given the job growth opportunity I had been working towards and counting on. I knew how hard I worked, and my job history had always been in sales – making something out of nothing – so I figured it was worth a try to quit and work for myself. I gave myself 6 months to get my business going, and if I wasn’t successful I was going to go find a job somewhere else. Thankfully it took off right away and I have never looked back. Quitting my reliable paycheck job and going out on my own into a commission-only, highly competitive career was scary but it was absolutely the best decision I could have ever made and I am so glad I did it.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
I am a real estate broker, which means I am a realtor but I’m the boss and I own my own company. A lot of people become realtors and never aspire to be a broker, but to me it was a no-brainer. Why should I pay someone part of my commission when I am the one doing all the work? I also have a deep dedication to the non-profit community in San Diego, which is where I got my start professionally here in San Diego, working at KPBS. I work hard so that I can help people as much as I can, once my family’s basic needs are met. Giving back, whether to my clients, or to non-profits, is a pillar of what I do and why I work so hard. It brings me joy. I have learned so many lessons along the way, I am always learning and growing! I have learned that there will always be one person who is unhappy with you, no matter how hard you work and how hard you try. They are just unhappy with themselves or life in general, and you have to shut that out and not let it get to you. I am a people-pleaser and I work incredibly hard, so I take any sort of criticism to heart. I have learned that there is no easy road to success. The people who are successful in this world work incredibly hard, there isn’t a short-cut. In order to be successful, you have to like what you are doing, or you’ll never put in the effort needed to get where you want to be. I also learned while trying to grow my company, is that the reason people work with me, is to work with ME, not someone else on my team. In a service-based business, you are your product. So I am very conscientious about not growing too big so that I can’t deliver the VIP service my clients have come to expect and appreciate from me. I never want to be so busy that I don’t know my clients well, I want them to feel confident that I am fully tuned in to their real estate goals, and am always focused on achieving them . At first the idea of being hugely successful was attractive to me and I had that on my vision board, but I have realized that making a difference in individual lives is what drives me, not the monetary success, so I have settled into staying smaller, kind of a Jerry Maguire approach.
Any great local spots you’d like to shoutout?
This one is easy because I live in America’s Finest City! What I love most about San Diego is that there is a never-ending list of new and fun things to do, see, eat and drink. I love showing off our city. Here is my greatest hits list: -Start the day with the world’s best avocado toast and a strong coffee on the patio at Blackmarket Bakery on Adams Ave. From there, go hike at Torrey Pines, where you can often see dolphins playing in the ocean along your hike. Walk along the beach and collect some shells, and then go to Seaside Market in Cardiff for some “cardiff crack” tri-tip in a burrito or a sandwich. Head back down south and go vintage shopping in Ocean Beach for some treasures. Stop at Azucar for a sweet treat (cuban pastries are to die for) and then head down to Broadway Pier to take a ferry ride over to Coronado for amazing views of the harbor and bridge. Late afternoon head to Little Italy to Monello for apertivo, where you can have the best Aperol Spritz in town, and they bring you delicious Italian nibbles with every drink order. After that, head to Starlight Lounge in Mission Hills, for a simple dinner and the original vodka mule. It’s my favorite place to unwind and have some drinks in a low-key setting with friends. After that, I like to end the evening on the rooftop deck at Born & Raised, to appreciate the beautiful views of the city and have some unique cocktails. Activities-wise I love Cowles Mountain and Lake Murray for hiking, people watching downtown, the 7-Bridges walk through uptown San Diego, and walking through Chicano Park in Barrio Logan to admire the beautiful art.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
My shout-out goes to my husband Reza. He has always encouraged me and had my back. He pushed me to get my real estate license when I didn’t want to back in 2011, and supported and helped me every step of the way. He is truly my partner in all that I do and I wouldn’t be successful without his support.