Lou Klein // Retail Specialist, NAI Friedland

Lou Klein is nothing if not empathetic. “I can relate to every single tenant I talk to,” says Klein, a retail specialist with NAI Friedland in Yonkers. “I’ve dealt with every type of person.”

One thing that’s aided Klein’s success is that he takes the peaks and valleys in stride, a mark of his even, unflappable disposition. He’s not easily impressed, either. “Say, hypothetically, that I get a call from CBS,” says Klein, who leased about 75,000 square feet of retail space last year. “Well, you don’t fall over yourself [just because they’re a major television network.] You work with them just like you do anyone else. Otherwise, they might sense your eagerness and try to take advantage of it.” By the same token, he says, you might hear from another client “who isn’t exactly the flavor of the month, but you have to give them the same time and respect you would the, quote-unquote, ‘big guy.’ I don’t fall out of my chair when Enterprise calls, and I don’t get rattled when Hertz is after the same property as them.”

Klein maintains his calm demeanor even when circumstances around him are anything but. “I never get rattled, no matter what’s coming at me or how many things are going on at once. I was in the advertising business when we were making cash hand-over-fist. You’d pick up the phone, and before you had a chance to dial, there was someone on the other end asking to buy [ad] space. When it got that crazy and everyone else would get swept up in it, I would slow down, relax, talk about what we were dealing with, and do it correctly.”

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Everyone, he says, “likes to hurry up: ‘Let’s do this, and let’s do that.’ It might be just a lease, but it might go back and forth for months, and I might not get paid for a year. But I have a lot of patience for doing the right thing and a lot of impatience for the wrong things, when people aren’t paying attention to detail.”

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