Each year, Midwest Real Estate News runs its Midwest Commercial Real Estate Hall of Fame issue, highlighting the careers of the top CRE pros in our region. This year, we are also running these profiles online. Today, we look at the success of Jim Damiani, executive managing director of the Minneapolis office of Newmark Knight Frank.
Years in the business: 30
A sterling reputation: During his more than three decades in commercial real estate, Jim Damiani, executive managing director with Newmark Knight Frank, has earned praise for his integrity, commitment to his clients, vast market knowledge, mentorship and strong work ethic.
High growth: Damiani joined Newmark Knight Frank in 2017 to co-launch the company’s Minneapolis office. During this time, he has helped to grow the staff and resulting service lines by more than 500 percent in just 18 months.
This success isn’t surprising to anyone who’s watched this CRE veteran’s career. Damiani has worked with more than 2,500 clients since entering the commercial real estate business, and has saved these clients from 20 percent to 75 percent on their occupancy costs. These clients include Larkin Hoffman, Opus Corporation, US Bank, Weber Shandwick, Berkley Risk and Daugherty Business Solutions.
“I most enjoy the people and helping my clients make the right decisions for their space and business needs,” Damiani said. “Clients may move once every five years or only once in a career. Either way, crafting an appropriate and comfortable work environment is an important business decision, and clients cannot afford to have a misstep.”
Giving back: Known as an advocate for his industry, Damiani volunteers his time to industry groups and individuals. This includes everything from leading brokerage classes to participating in industry speaking events. Damiani teaches an annual class on client relationships for MNCAR and produces and emcees the annual MNCAR ROAST program.
Working with the right people: Damiana credits much of his success to the people with whom he’s worked.
“I surround myself with great people who do excellent work,” he said. “When a team works tirelessly toward the shared vision of enhanced client experience, which mine does, the rest takes care of itself. Additionally, I have been methodical, yet nimble, throughout my career. I listen to client needs to identity their current and desired realities. Then, together, we craft a plan to get them where they want to be.”
Awards: During his long career, Damiani has earned several key industry awards. In 2016, the Twin Cities Business Journal named him one of its 100 People to Know. The Minnesota Commercial Association of Realtors named Damiana Broker of the Year and Volunteer of the Year in 2012 and 2014. He also received the Transaction of the Year award from the association in 2016.
Out-of-office hours: When not working, Damiani loves to travel and to be active. He lists some of his favorite things to do as running, hiking, golfing, boating, lifting weights and walking his dog.