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Updated: October 18, 2020 C-Suite Awards 2020

Adams builds top workplace at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices

As a young mother selling and then buying her first house, Candace Adams couldn’t believe how difficult the process was. In that experience, she saw an opportunity.

“It was very, very stressful,” Adams said. “I remember saying to myself that this is a hard thing to do but I’d love to get involved in it because I think I could make a difference in people’s lives and really help them.”

Now CEO and president of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices in New England and New York, Adams has taken the lessons she learned both as a customer and real estate entrepreneur to her role leading New England’s largest real estate company.

Only two years after that difficult first homebuying experience, Adams formed her own real estate firm with a partner and set about building a company that would allow parents to maintain a healthy work-life balance. She hired fellow parents of young children and set up on-site child care to support family life in the workplace.

“It was a really cool time, to be able to allow women to work and maintain that balance,” Adams said.

The family-friendly policies helped the company to grow and thrive; it was eventually bought by Prudential, where Adams rose up the executive ranks.

Warren Buffet’s Berkshire Hathaway acquired Prudential’s real estate unit in 2012, and Adams was named CEO of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties soon afterward. She also now leads the company’s divisions in Westchester and New York City.

Throughout her rise, Adams has retained her commitment to family-friendly policies and making the selling and buying experience easier for clients.

As the boss of 150 employees and 1,800 agents across the region, Adams focuses on empowering her staff.

“I let them maintain as much autonomy as employees as they want and need,” she said. “I trust them and let them do what they do best.”

That trust extends to the radical shifts in the work environment and work-life balance that have been needed during the COVID-19 pandemic. Luckily, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices had invested in the training and software platforms needed for remote work by the end of 2019, just before the pandemic hit.

“We had positioned ourselves as a very digital, technologically advanced company,” Adams said. “We executed immediately on all of those platforms, making sure we were there to support our agents and bringing that to our clients. We did it seamlessly — we didn’t miss a beat.”

Now the company is dealing with a rarity in these difficult times — a surge in business. “Crazy busy” is how Adams describes regional real estate right now, as New York City sees a pandemic-driven exodus.

Due to tight inventory, agents in Connecticut and Westchester are especially busy as homes outside of the city attract multiple offers. Meanwhile, other clients are seeking second homes on the shoreline or snapping up Big Apple bargains.

Along with the company’s pandemic response, Adams is especially proud of recent recognition of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices’ nurturing work environment. The company has been named the state’s top workplace in several recent surveys.

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