Earvin “Magic” Johnson took the R4 stage on Wednesday during the Featured Morning Super Session – but not for long. Johnson, who entered the arena at the Mandalay Bay Hotel & Casino to a standing ovation, quickly walked down to join the crowd of RE/MAX Affiliates, where he greeted audience members by name and spoke about his business insights.


Telling the crowd that in order to remain successful, real estate agents must evolve as their clients do, the CEO of Magic Johnson Enterprises pulled from his own experience as an entrepreneur.

Parlaying his legendary basketball career into a hugely successful business career – he’s owned the Los Angeles Lakes, Los Angeles Dodgers, Magic Johnson Theatres, Starbucks franchises, and food service companies – wasn’t always easy, he said. But Johnson told the thousands in attendance how he’s found success in everything he does.

“Magic was probably the best speaker of the week,” says Kevin Horikami, Sales Associate with RE/MAX Excalibur Realty in Scottsdale, Ariz. “In fact, I’m going to put his SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) analysis into my listing presentations. I can explain to sellers that this is a strategy Magic Johnson uses, and talk to them frankly about all the strengths and weaknesses of their home. It becomes a total strategy, instead of ‘fix this,’ and ‘do that.'”

In his own words, here are just a few of the business tips, including SWOT, Magic Johnson shared with RE/MAX Affiliates:

1. Be open to change.
In a marketplace like today, you as a business owner within RE/MAX have to reinvent yourself because the market changes. A lot of times we’re used to doing business the same way, but the problem is you have a different customer than you did 10 years ago, 15 years ago, maybe 18 to 20 years ago.

2. Over-deliver to your customers.
It’s not enough in the marketplace any longer to just deliver. If you want retention, if you want those same clients and customers to go out and say great things about your business, you have to over-deliver to the marketplace and to the community and to your customers. That’s the one thing I preach every single day to my employees. If I over-deliver now, I gain all these ambassadors that don’t cost a dollar or a penny – they don’t cost anything. Because you over-deliver to them, they’re going to go out and talk about your service.

3. Be your biggest marketer.
We can’t wait for people to come knocking on our doors anymore. Yes, you’ve got a strong brand, but you’ve got to go out and start knocking on doors, meeting people, going in Starbucks and saying, ‘Here’s my card.’ I’m my biggest marketer. When I come out of church, I say, ‘There are my Starbucks down the street, everybody.’ You have to go out and be aggressive.

4. Don’t give up.
Ten times banks turned me down when I first started to build my business. They wanted an autograph and a picture and they wanted to meet me, but they didn’t want to invest in me because they thought I didn’t know business. I’ve come a long way because that 11th bank said yes. But I believed in my strategy and I believed in what I was doing. And I knew we’d be successful.

5. Ask, “How can I get better?”
I’m able to be proud of what I do, but also, every morning I’m looking for ways to get better. How can I get better? The thing all of you need to do every year, twice a year, like I do is a SWOT of your business. SWOT: strength, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. It’s helped me grow as a CEO and helped me grow as a man, too. I’m glad I do this exercise every year, twice a year, so I can understand where I am and what are the opportunities. We all want to grow.


DYNAMIC SPEAKER Earvin “Magic” Johnson shared his rags-to-riches story and ways he achieved his
extraordinary business success before a spell-bound R4 audience in Las Vegas.

PERSONAL TOUCH Magic Johnson walked among listeners, addressing them by name, while he
explained his tried-and-true strategies for setting, and meeting, business goals.




RE/MAX Affiliates may share this article, provided they do not charge for it and this notice is included. All other rights reserved. Katharine Davis, RE/MAX Editor