Today’s Home Work: Leslie Kellogg

[ 1 ] November 14, 2010 |

We love getting to know parents in our community. In our Home Work series, I ask moms and dads how they juggle their work while raising kids, hoping to get some insight on how to better balance our own work/playtime while being introduced to our neighbors and their cool businesses.  Today we meet Leslie Kellogg, a Realtor with Residential Properties in Providence. She focuses on the East Side (where she lives), Rumford, Barrington and East Greenwich and partners w/ agents in other territories to help buyers and sellers throughout Rhode Island and South Eastern Massachusetts.

Leslie-Kellogg-webKidoinfo: What inspired you to start your business?
Leslie: I was looking for something that would allow me to work part time while raising the kids. My husband, Tom, and I had moved 3 times in five years, including a corporate relocation to New Jersey. Tom said he thought I would be a great agent.

Kidoinfo: How did you start your business?
Leslie: Once I completed the licensing class, I realized that I was pregnant! I had 2 boys at home — 9 months and two years old. However, I was determined to go forward with my plans. When I went in for my interview I asked if I could be an assistant or if I should come back in two years. I highly doubted anyone would hire a pregnant mother of two! Luckily, the manager thought I would do well over time, so she took a chance on me. I took phone duty at the office and I hosted many open houses. My sister was moving — so her house was my first listing. It all built from there.

Kidoinfo: How do you balance work and family?
Leslie: Real estate is flexible in terms of hours but it is hard to plan for. It’s like being on call. A buyer may call and want to submit an offer right away. This was tough when the kids were young. My schedule is different every week and I wouldn’t always have a sitter booked when someone wanted to see a house. I often dropped the kids off with their dad at his office. Now that my kids are old enough to be home alone — it is easier to dash off to meet a client or handle a last minute showing. I book 3 solid weekdays where I go in to the office to handle details of deals, scheduled meetings with clients, show houses. I usually book one or two open houses a weekend. I still work on the remaining days —but it tends to be responding to client emails/phone calls or handling a showing. Life with 3 kids a job, a husband and a dog is hectic. Tom and I juggle a lot of the kids activities. We try to carve out time during the week to hang out and catch up w/ each other. It isn’t always easy.

I realize that I am a better mom and agent if I block times for family vs. business. When I am at home w/ the kids in the afternoons I will let calls that aren’t urgent go to voice mail and respond when I can give my full attention. I also focus on a few clients at a time which results in a better experience for the client and a less frazzled wife and mother.

The best part of this business is that I can make my own hours. I am able to attend the kid’s school events and games. Today, I am working from home because my son has a bad cold.

Kidoinfo: Please describe a typical day.
Leslie: I am up by 6 — so I can be alone for 45 minutes and ease into the day. I have a cup of coffee, make my to do list and read the paper. I get the kids up and off to the bus by 7:30. I workout — either running or an intense cardio class- 3-4 mornings. Then I get to work, either at home or at the office. I get back around 3 when the kids get home. I supervise homework, make dinner and shuttle kids to hockey, tap etc. After they go to bed, I respond to emails, tie up loose ends. Then I am in bed with a book by 10.

Kidoinfo: Do you have any time-saving tricks that you could share?
Leslie: Peapod. This online grocery service was a lifesaver when the kids were small and couldn’t be left at home. I used to schedule delivery while I was working. The sitter would have it all put away by the time I got home.

Kidoinfo: What is your favorite children’s book or music CD?
Leslie: I adore any cd by Bill Harley — RI’s Grammy winning storyteller/songwriter. I loved reading the Kate DiCamillo books aloud — especially The Amazing Journey of Edward Tulane.

Kidoinfo: What is the last great non-kid book or film that you loved? What made it so great?
Leslie: I am reading Freedom by Jonothan Franzen. I can’t put it down! It amazes me how he crafts his characters and reveals their pyches, motivations etc. They are complex and their narratives weave together to tell a compelling story.

Kidoinfo: Do you have a guilty pleasure?
Leslie: Oprah —especially this final season with winners like the cast of The Sound of Music, Debbie Boone singing “You Light Up My Life” and Teen Heartbeats — Shaun Cassidy and Peter Frampton — it doesn’t get any better than that! Also, People magazine…

Kidoinfo: How has the experience and on the job training of being a mom/dad prepared or changed you in business?
Leslie: It is a symbiotic relationship. Everything I learn as a parent about schools, sports, pediatricians, local issues etc makes me a better resource for my clients. I know what it is like to move when you have little kids. I know how crazy it can be to fix up a house — both do it yourself projects and major renovations – with kids under foot. I know whom to call to get repairs done. Lastly, I know how important it is to find the right community and the right school for your kids.

Kidoinfo: What is next for you and your business?
Leslie: To celebrate my 10th year in Real Estate, I am supporting education by donating a portion of each sale to the local PTA of the client’s choice.
I am focusing more on technology and the way it continually changes the real estate business.

Category: home work interview


Anisa Raoof

about the author ()

Anisa Raoof is the publisher of Kidoinfo.com. She combines being a mom with her experience as an artist, designer, psych researcher and former co-director of the Providence Craft Show to create the go-to spot for families in Rhode Island and beyond. She loves using social media to connect parents with family-related businesses and services and promoting ways for parents to engage offline with their kids. Anisa believes in the power of working together and loves to find ways to collaborate with others. An online enthusiast, still likes to unplug often by reading books and magazines, drawing, learning to knit, making pop-up books with her two sons and listening to records with her husband.

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  1. Katie Baker says:

    Great interview, Leslie!! You’re a “Super Mom” in the truest sense of the word!!!

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