Christina Hill thought she could never do her mother’s job (her mother is Edie Hill, another of our Women Of FIRE honorees).
She studied marketing and public relations at Fitchburg State College. It wasn’t until her daughter was born in 1992 that she joined E.A. Hill & Co., the firm her mother had founded, as a sales associate, starting out part-time and eventually becoming full time.
Today, she holds multiple real estate designations, as well as an MBA from Boston University.
Hill moved to Austin, Texas in 2000. She intended to stay there, even when Edie Hill broached the subject of selling E.A. Hill – which she did, to Coldwell Banker, in 2001. But over the years, the tug of family became too strong.
“You can’t be an ‘Auntie’ in Texas,” Christina Hill said. “It is important to me to be involved in the little things in [children’s] lives because it’s the little things that really matter — family dinner, soccer games, ballet recitals. This was not possible from Austin.”
She returned to Massachusetts in 2003. She followed her mother to Coldwell Banker as a sales associate, and became a top-producing agent while balancing life as a single mother, according to her daughter, Katherine Vaillancourt.
During her years in Austin, Christina Hill became impressed with the firm Keller Williams, which was “prevalent” there, she said. Its leadership-based culture is based on helping associates achieve their goals, she noted. In November 2007, she and her mother opened a Keller Williams office in Concord and she became Team Leader.
“I saw the hours my mother spent on her clients,” she commented. “It’s like having kids and wanting the best for them, to do everything possible for them.”
She particularly likes working with first-time homebuyers, walking them through the process. She had to give up the sales side to become team manager, but enjoys it because of the ability to help employees get through obstacles. It’s an outlook highly similar to her mother’s.
Like Mother, Like Daughter
Like mother, like daughter in more ways than one: Christina nominated her mother, Edie, for a Women of FIRE award, and Vaillancourt, nominated her mother, Christina Hill.
Vaillancourt noted the high regard her mother has for Keller Williams and its open attitude toward giving agents the tools they need to be successful. She added, however, “I would argue instead that it is my mother who gives these women these tools.”
Christina estimates she has trained more than 100 sales associates. One of her favorite classes is business planning. Sales associates identify their dream life – if they could have anything five years from the present, what would that be? They then determine what that life would cost. They are shown how to identify their business costs and set a budget, with the cost of their dream life plus their business costs becoming their financial business goals, Christina Hill expalained. They create ‘dream boards’ to stay focused on why they set these goals. Then, they are trained and coached on the specific activities they need to do on a daily basis to reach their goals.
“When coaching and training people, it goes beyond just teaching a class, it is about helping them dream, and inspiring them to believe in their own greatness,” Christina Hill commented.
She sits on the board of directors for Domestic Violence Services of Central Middlesex, speaking out against violence against women. She is also a member of the School Business Partnership Committee of the Middlesex West Chamber of Commerce.
“She continues to amaze me as she puts in countless hours and personal resources into helping others empower themselves in the world of real estate,” Vaillancourt stated.