As CEO of Class Valuation John Fraas had to make massive adjustments to navigate the pandemic over the past 12-18 months. With a team of about 200 people, one of the company’s greatest assets prior to the pandemic was its energetic, hive-like call center where colleagues could partake in daily games and entertainment throughout the workday, developing a family-like culture.
As the pandemic hit, this work environment transitioned to fully remote, and to add to the challenges, the appraisal market hit historic numbers, stretching everyone beyond capacity. Fraas managed to maintain a positive attitude and was insistent on continuing the weekly company-wide meetings remotely to give him an opportunity to share updates with the team and congratulate individual contributors for jobs well done. His blend of positivity and commitment to transparency surrounding the goals of the organization helps keep the team aligned for a common goal and excited to work together to achieve it.
There is nothing Fraas asks of his team that he wouldn’t be willing to do himself. With historically high appraisal volume, the company’s call center message boards are often filled and backed up from the many requests for status updates or other questions. To help the team and get responses to their business partners as quickly as possible, Fraas is always quick to jump in and begin responding to messages to help the team keep up.
Over the past 6 months, Fraas has also been integral in the acquisition of two additional AMCs (Southeastern and Synergy), as well as the partnership with Class Valuation’s new owners, Gridiron.
What has been your secret to success?
“To listen more than I speak and to be comfortable not being the smartest person in the room. At Class we have such a great team of people that know our business and our clients. We function as a high-performing team because we have the utmost respect for each other and value each other’s opinion.”