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Challenge is Inevitable

Updated: Jul 15

Defeat is optional.


On a walk this week, I was thinking about challenges as a common thread in my early life. Nothing was ever given to me, so I worked extremely hard and developed grit and hustle. I learned at a young age about struggles and obstacles, so “figure it out” became my mantra.



When I was nine, I had a paper route. The papers got delivered – by me 🙂 – even in the rain, wind, and snow. In the Army, I was in a logistics branch. We had to make things work because people’s lives were on the line. While in college, my parents were not there to pay for tuition, books, rent, or speeding tickets 🤫, but I graduated. From nine on, I worked my ass off – literally – to figure it all out. My life experiences – some positive, some negative – helped me develop strengths.


In commercial real estate, every deal has a challenging puzzle to figure out. Some people hit one road block, and they think a deal is over. Not me. Here are five things I’ve learned to help me get deals done:


1. Issues and problems will come up. Because of my past, I’m able to zoom up and see things from all directions. This allows me to be prepared, confident, and not frozen or stuck when they appear.

2. Simplify the problem. What’s the essence? By pinpointing the issue, I can push the distractions aside and focus on what matters. It helps me deliver logical solutions and reduce emotional decision-making. It keeps me solution-focused and efficient.



3. Develop a plan or road map. It’s a broker’s job to show clients how to move forward. That means be prepared and direct in your communication. Clients should have a clear understanding of all parts of the deal. As a broker, I need to have it mapped out first.

4. Trust your intuition. It’s a knowing, instinctive feeling that comes from experience and trust. Your mind rapidly sifts through all those life experiences, good and bad. I find that intuition (mostly positive) helps me predict and prepare for what will happen next, and that helps solve problems more quickly to get a deal done.

5. Look for lessons to learn. By not having an easy go of things, I’ve learned to appreciate all my experiences as lessons. Sometimes it takes me a few tries before I get it 😉, but that’s all part of the ride. That ride makes me a better broker.


One of the important reasons to hire a broker is to handle problems and obstacles. It’s a given in commercial real estate, so you want to make sure you have someone on your team that can stay the course, solve them, and get the deal done. I’m here to help if you have any questions (612-788-1552 or jeff@CEGspaces.com).



Jeff Salzbrun is the owner and broker of Commercial Equities Group (CEG). As a veteran-owned real estate brokerage, CEG has been involved in thousands of sale and lease transactions, ranging from single offices to 250,000+ square foot buildings. At CEG, we get your deal done. We know space, and we know the CRE business.


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