Months don’t come much harder than August 2005 did for Dubuisson. First, his mother—who was also his real estate partner and mentor—died of kidney disease. Just 21 days later, Hurricane Katrina hit, destroying 75 percent of the homes in Hancock County, where Dubuisson works and lives. Safe with his wife, Heather, and father, Herbert Sr., in Tallahassee, Fla., “we were watching the news and seeing our towns and lives being destroyed,” he recalls.
Keep on pushing: After the storm damage forced the closure of three of his company’s five offices, including the Bay St. Louis one where he worked, Dubuisson invited all 23 practitioners to use his dining room as an office. Despite the adversity, Dubuisson posted $6.3 million in sales on 59 transaction sides in 2006. “If you go to work every day, work hard, and take care of people, you’ll be able to make a living,” he says.
A baby Sweathog: Dubuisson’s ability to sell, whatever the circumstances, may come in part from the secondhand motivational training he got riding in the backseat of his parents’ car. Floyd Wickman’s Sweathogs topped the hit parade for his mom and dad, both of whom sold real estate. “The core of my 90 percent referral business is what my mom and dad taught me—take care of people when you represent them,” he says.