All About Business: After earning her MBA from American University, Rachel Valentino had a tough choice to make: accept a lucrative offer with IBM or pursue her dream to become a leader in the real estate industry. She had previous work experience on Wall Street and as a product analyst at a large corporation in Washington, but working in a traditional office environment was no longer appealing. "I loved the idea of being able to use both my marketing and my entrepreneurial skills," Valentino says.
Top performer: Valentino took her business savvy to Long & Foster, where in 2007 she earned her office’s "Rookie of the Year" award. In 2008, she sold just over $13 million in homes and closed 36 sides.
Knowing her niche: Valentino goes after a demographic she thoroughly understands: Generation X and Y buyers. She’s developed a sleek Web site to attract her target audience and walks clients through every step of the transaction. "I understand the complexity and the psychology of the purchasing cycle," Valentino says.