Don Hess - Meet and Welcome Him to Active Rain

Real Estate Agent with Keller Williams Elite RM423455
Don Hess joined our Keller Williams Office and I have learned that he is a guy who is open to learning. He has entered his retirement years, but is clearly open to technology. I work with a number of people much Don Hessyounger than he who resist any change which comes down the pike.
As you read his comments, if perceptive, you will hear his dry sense of humor. He is a great guy and I hope you continue your great Active Rain welcome. One of the things that has impressed me most about Don is that he is a published author. He has written To Catch a Fox. If you are in Lancaster, you may want to attend his book signing at the local Barnes & Noble. Read and enjoy.

  • How did you learn about Active Rain?
During classes I took that Mike Perry was teaching.
  • What drew you to this blogging platform?

Mostly discussions I had with Mike and numbers he gave me that corresponded with previous numbers I had concerning utilizing social media as a marketing tool.
  • Are you experiencing any difficulties with AR?

Sometimes I find it slow. I should say that my daughter being an IT professional keeps me updated with the latest “stuff” that best works for what I have to do, so I don't think that problem lies with my equipment or software. Also if you don't have the time or money to attend the seminars you really have to know someone more experienced than yourself to learn how to use Rain to the maximum advantage. I'm still learning.
  • Tell me something about yourself.
    • Background

Attended Franklin & Marshall College and Lancaster Theological Seminary. Studied Business Admin and computer programming at F&M and of course Theology at the Seminary. I was working full time and raising a family while doing this so I spent a total of 12 years in higher education. I studied the courses I needed to advance at the time and because of constantly switching disciplines I never achieved a degree. One of my regrets.


I spent most of my career in the custom cabinet business. First as a partner in my father's custom shop for ten years. (We never employed more than 5 people and most were part time or sub contractors.) There I did everything: design, sell, build, finish, and install. Then I worked with various large custom houses in service, sales and management. I've worked in and managed Customer Service Departments. I've been a Regional Sales Manager where I recruited dealers (retail showrooms) helped them with business plans and marketing, and fired a few that weren’t producing. During that time I traveled three weeks out of four. In management I was a division vice president of customer service for one company. Customer Service, Engineering and Traffic were the department heads that reported to me. In between I acquired my Real Estate license and practiced for several years.
    • Family

In April of 2012 I'll be married for 44 years! (To the same person! My wife Pat.) We have two adult children, Cristene age 40 (I probably shouldn't have said her age and YES that's how I spelled her name. I was celebrating with a couple of beers but my wife did give her blessing to it.) and David age 34. We have three grandchildren, two girls aged 13 and 8 and one boy age 9. These are my daughter's as David hasn't seen fit to commit to anyone just yet.
    • Hobbies

I like to write. During those many evenings alone in a hotel rooms I wrote my first novel which was published this past November. It seems to be selling in line with the marketing plan and while most likely won't see the New York Times bestseller list it's on pace to make a modest profit for the publisher. If it does, I'll be allowed to publish a sequel which I am 200 pages into.
    • How long have you been in the real estate business?

I acquired my Real Estate License in 2000 and practiced until 2003 when I received an offer from a custom cabinet manufacturer that I couldn't turn down. During the time I was with the manufacturer I maintained my license in “referral” and met all the continuing education requirements. Upon my retirement in 2010 from that company I decided to continue pursuit of my Broker's License as I had started down that path before leaving the business. I had to hustle as my original credits were scheduled to begin expiring September of 2011. I just made it and passed the exams. Now that I have three years to apply for the Broker's license I'm waiting for renewal of my current license to avoid “double charging”.
    • A history of your business experience, i.e. what brokerages have you been with, why did you choose the path you have chosen, etc.

In 2000 as a new licensee I decided to go with Homesale Services Group, then a Coldwell Banker franchise. I chose this route because my research indicated that they were a good group to learn the business with. They make it pretty easy for a new agent as they do a lot for you automatically. However there is a price for that in their commission structure and the manner in which you gain or lose in your split with them. This was a good move for me as my eventual office manager was Mike Perry who also became my friend and mentor. Mike gave me the guidance to hit the ground running in my Real Estate career. After being out of the business for nearly eight years I hooked up again with Mike as he was teaching several of the Broker classes that I required. He persuaded me to come out of retirement and join his team at Keller Williams Realty in Lancaster, PA. That's where I am now.
  • What are your goals for 2012?

Modest. I consider myself semi retired so I don't plan on working the 70 hour weeks that I did the first time around. I find the prospect of  social media and internet marking fascinating and my business plan for 2012 is geared heavily toward them. I'm figuring that if I stick to my business plan I should begin seeing results within 6 to 9 months. Here's hoping as I would like this to supplement my retirement income.
  • How can I help you achieve those goals? How can Active Rain assist you in achieving those goals.

As I mentioned earlier, there are folks that don't have the resources or time to attend seminars. In my case as a semi retired individual I'm strictly budgeting the amount that I plan on spending so that I attain a modest profit from limited business. In other words, I'm looking for all the free help that I can get. I'm writing that with a smile on my face.
Posted by



Living in Lancaster Group


An agent who places your interests as his first priority. 
Cal Yoder

Your Homes for Sale in Lancaster Agent

Keller Williams Realty Lancaster

1630 Manheim Pike

Lancaster, PA 17601

Office Phone: 717-735-1145

Cell Phone: 717-413-0744

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Andrew Mooers | 207.532.6573
Northern Maine Real Estate-Aroostook County Broker

Thanks for the introduction Cal! Best of success in the rain! You are the best for guidance in a kind, helpful way.

Jan 14, 2012 08:41 AM #1
Roy Kelley
Realty Group Referrals - Gaithersburg, MD

Don will love the free webinars on ActiveRain and Zillow. 

A post like this is an outstanding way to introduce a new agent in the office.

Have a wonderful weekend and be sure to have your camera in hand to capture those special moments.

Dahlias at Brookside Gardens IMG_5833


Photograph by Roy Kelley

Roy and Dolores Kelley Photographs

Jan 14, 2012 09:01 AM #2
David Spencer
Keller Williams Northland - Kansas City, MO
Show Me real estate in Kansas City

I welcome him to AR, but more importantly to KW.

Jan 14, 2012 09:39 AM #3
Joni Bailey
101 Main St. Realty - Huntsville, TX
Your Huntsville / Lake Livingston Area REALTOR®

WONDERFUL introduction post. Welcome to the rain, Don! You deserve an award for making it 44 years with the same person. THAT is something to brag about! ☺ Looking forward to getting to know you. Any friend of Cal's is a friend of mine!

Jan 14, 2012 10:04 AM #4
Cal Yoder
Keller Williams Elite - Lititz, PA
Homes For Sale in Lancaster PA - 717.413.0744

Andrew, thanks for your affirmation, I do appreciate it. People like you have made this a great community to which to belong. Thanks for pointing the way on video and creative ways to market listings, etc.

Roy, will do my best to have my camera ready. I need to learn a whole lot more about photography. You are a shining example that is for sure.

David, Don is a great guy and will represent AR and KW very, very well. Check out his book. I need to get my copy and look forward to reading it.


Jan 14, 2012 10:08 AM #5
Cal Yoder
Keller Williams Elite - Lititz, PA
Homes For Sale in Lancaster PA - 717.413.0744

Joni, you are the absolute best. You are a great welcoming person to the Rain. Thanks for stopping by and offering your warmth to Don.


Jan 14, 2012 10:09 AM #6
Sharon Parisi
United Real Estate Dallas - Dallas, TX
Dallas Homes

Call, this is an amazing detailed introduction to Don Hess! 

Jan 14, 2012 10:51 AM #7
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Homes For Sale in Lancaster PA - 717.413.0744
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