maris logo - main. board members stock photo- background imageCongratulations to MARIS

In a press release yesterday, the MARIS Board of Directors announced that two new outside directors have joined their board – Craig Cheatham, CEO of The Realty Alliance and John Mosey, CEO of Northstar MLS. “We are on this quest to be a more member-centric MLS and are seeking diverse perspectives from outside of our marketplace. Having two experienced, highly influential industry icons on our board will be invaluable to our success,” says Tim Dain, CEO.

How to Fuel Your MLS Board with Rocket Power

Developing a truly effective board to monitor the management and performance of a Multiple Listing Service is vital to the success of the company. Indeed, the structure of the board is a cornerstone of a company’s governance. The board composition and term limits require significant deliberation; great boards operate as teams with each member having a role.

Over the decades of providing strategic planning to MLSs, we have experienced an array of healthy and unhealthy boards. We have seen MLS boards make horrible choices that have torn companies apart because the board lost their objectivity. This concern amplifies when Realtor® Associations make poor appointments the MLS board.

Develop Balanced Representation

Some MLS boards commonly lack technology expertise. Others may be too weighted towards representing one segment – i.e. only agents on the board. Having a voice for the broker perspective, team perspective, appraisers, commercial, and affiliates and so forth is a consideration. 

Bring in Outside Directors

Another way to support the mission of a healthy board is to bring in outside directors who do not have the personal or political ties to business that can obscure good decision making. Outside directors can also bring experience. For example, if you want to focus on mergers and data sharing, having a director on the board that has experience helps.

If your governance does not support having outside directors, you may need to consider modifying your governance to permit outside directors or adding non-voting board advisors. Having outside directors or advisors is not only a cure or defense for friction on the board– it is simply great hygiene.

Remember, the goal of outside directors is bringing perspective. WAV Group can perform a director analysis of your board composition to confidentially assess the strengths and weaknesses of the board – contact us today.

From the MARIS press release

The appointment of Craig Cheatham, a well-respected thought leader for the network of the largest brokers in the country, supports MARIS’ dedication to engaging with the broker community in a more meaningful way. Cheatham provides an international perspective on real estate brokerage operations that will help MARIS further evolve MLS services and engagement efforts.

The appointment of John Mosey, an esteemed MLS executive and real estate industry veteran, supports MARIS’ long-range collaborative strategies for the Midwest marketplace. Mosey provides the perspective of a vast breadth of experience within the MLS and MLS Technology vendor domains. As the founder of the Common Data Platform (CDP), an initiative that helps to remove data barriers that hinder regional cooperation, Mosey’s seat on the MARIS’ board will help ensure the success of the company’s long-term regional vision.

About Craig Cheatham: Craig Cheatham is president and CEO of The Realty Alliance, an invitation-only network of the largest full-service real estate firms in North America. In addition to their residential operations — which boast more than 120,000 agents concentrated in 70 companies — the group’s members also operate mortgage, insurance, title/settlement, concierge, commercial, property management and other related business lines. Cheatham is well known in real estate circles, having built his strong reputation during 29 years in leadership roles for a state association of the National Association of REALTORS®, for the international federation of real estate licensing and regulatory agencies (ARELLO) and for The Realty Alliance. Cheatham is chairman of the board of UpstreamRE, a member of the board of both the Broker Public Portal and RESPRO, a member of the Forbes Real Estate Council and a former member of the board of RESO.

About John Mosey: John Mosey is a statesman within the real estate industry and one of the few leaders to have established success in both MLS Technology vendor and MLS executive roles. After 25 years with Moore Data Management, Mosey transitioned to NorthstarMLS where he’s earned the reputation of a thinker-tinker and is often blazing new trails for his peers to follow. Actively involved in the national real estate community, he is a chairperson for BPP and National Broker Portal (Joint Venture), participates in the NAR MLS Executive Advisory Committee and is a founding member of the MLSGrid.