A real estate broker kept colleagues connected with Facebook live ‘nightly news’ during the pandemic

For the 2022 Top Workplaces report, we’re shining a spotlight on some of the people who helped their employers and colleagues survive and thrive during the past two years of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Sarah D’Angelo became Keller William Capital District’s de facto leader on all things COVID on the first day of the pandemic shutdown back in 2020.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo specifically cited real estate agents in his announcement, saying they wouldn’t be able to show units.

D’Angelo was the company’s point person for any questions.

“You can imagine my phone was ringing off the hook,” she said. “Clients were calling me, brokers were calling me. How do I get to everybody?”

She made a wild decision.

“I went entirely out of my comfort zone … I just went into our (private) Facebook group and went on Facebook Live,” she said.

2022 Top Workplaces in the Capital Region

For more than 10 years, the Times Union has partnered with Energage to rank the top workplaces in the Capital Region. This year, more than 15,500 employees rated their workplace culture — and the results are in. Check out the honorees:

Large employers: 300 or more employees
Midsize employers: 100 to 299 employees
Small employers: Fewer than 100 employees
Special honors: Highlighting specific survey scores

This year’s leadership awards went to Carver Laraway of Carver Cos., Sonny Bonacio of Bonacio Construction and Morgan Ruthman of The Spinney Group.

Learn about the survey methodology

It was a hit. She started broadcasting live every night at 7 p.m. The firm called it their “nightly news.”

“She became this amazing newscaster,” said CEO Carrie Weiss. “She gave so much back to our associates.”

She would summarize state announcements, changes in rules and new systems developed – like video tours for buyers and, later, arrangements in which at-risk brokers in the company could set up deals and younger brokers would run the actual tour.

Her boyfriend, who is in a band, provided music for an intro song. Brokers started joining the broadcast to discuss various issues.

“We started to have fun with it. It was a really good way for us to all stay really connected. We were just like, ‘How do we do this from our couch?,’” D’Angelo said. “During that time frame, I think we really all came together, the whole leadership team. It morphed from that piece of doing the nightly news. Agents were successful, feeling loved, feeling supported, knowing we were there for them.”

The leadership team bulk-ordered boxes of gloves, masks and even full suits, which they dropped off on brokers’ doorsteps.

Headquarters: Latham
Founded: 2007
Ownership: Private
Business sector: Real estate agents/brokers
Employees: 400 
Years named a Top Workplace: 6
Website: kwcapitaldistrict.com

“We knew how important it was for our people to be able to feed their families,” Weiss said. “We had to pivot and we had to be fluid. We told people it’s going to change from day to day and we don’t know what’s going to happen.”

Their efforts worked.

“We sold more houses last year than ever before,” she said.

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