The Q Awards: Brandon Fugal named 2016 Executive of the Year

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As Coldwell Banker Commercial’s No. 1 agent globally, Brandon Fugal is built to last.

As Coldwell Banker Commercial’s No. 1 agent globally, Brandon Fugal is built to last.

You know Brandon Fugal.

He’s the name that hangs on practically every office building on the Wasatch Front. He’s the commercial real estate icon who’s been ranked the No. 1 agent globally with Coldwell Banker Commercial. (Yes, globally.) He’s the trusted adviser who has spearheaded county-changing projects like Thanksgiving Park, Traverse Mountain and the upcoming University Place. And he’s the man who’s worked with local powerhouses like Ancestry.com, Xactware, Fusion-io, Energy Solutions, Franklin Covey, AtTask and RC Willey.

Now let’s tell you some things you don’t know.

In the eighth grade, Fugal read the autobiography of Lee Iacocca — the iconic automobile executive.

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BRANDON FUGAL’S 4 KEYS TO BECOMING No. 1

1. Look for legacy. “I try to align myself with legacy projects — projects and companies making the most impact on our communities. And Gut feelings certainly come into play here. Few people would have guessed that Lehi would become the economic center of the universe.”

2. Do the right thing. “Sounds way too cheesy, but it works. I will never, ever recommend a course of action to my clients that I wouldn’t take myself. I also view life and business with an abundance attitude. Too often people think that in order for a deal to make sense, someone has to get screwed. I don’t believe that. The best outcomes occur when everyone leaves the table as friends.”

3. Dust yourself off. “The best response to adversity, failure or criticism is total, absolute success. Roll up your sleeves and push harder.”

4. Be an example. “Be aware of how much people look up to you. You never know what teenage kid you’ll inspire to be the next business mogul.”

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“It completely changed the way I perceived the world around me,” he says. “I became fascinated by the stories behind the stories. What drove these great people to take the roads they took? What led them to transform our world?”

Fugal launched his commercial real estate career the minute he graduated from Pleasant Grove High School.

“I was probably the only 16-year-old who had a subscription to the Wall Street Journal,” he says.

When Fugal served his LDS mission in Hawaii in 1992, he obtained a “brick phone” in order to periodically check on clients back home in Utah. He scored his first big office building sale as a “missionary greenie,” and he celebrated by taking his companion to a fancy dinner and buying an Armani suit at Kahala Mall.

“Once my mission president learned of my cell phone, he promptly asked me to discontinue use — which I did,” Fugal says with a smile. “And in my defense, there was nothing in the mission rule book that prohibited cell phones at the time. The day after I arrived home from my mission, I launched back into my business.”

By 1998, the 25-year-old was dominating the office market. He co-founded the regional Utah offices of Coldwell Banker Commercial — an office that has been ranked No. 1 internationally (out of 220 Coldwell offices), for 11 years in a row.

“I’m surrounded by the best partners and team in the world — it’s that simple,” he says.

Simple, maybe. Busy? Definitely. Fugal consistently works 18- to 20-hour days.

“I have the most supportive, patient wife.”

But perhaps his biggest claim to fame is that Fugal doesn’t own a pair of jeans — or a pair of tennis shoes, for that matter.

“Scratch that. I own a pair of black Porsche Design tennis shoes,” he says. “That’s about as casual as I’ll ever get.”

In the end, Fugal may not have jeans, but he’s got the genes. His vision, his determination, his workaholic tendencies, and his passion for winning are traits he works to his core.

“I pride myself on being painfully transparent,” Fugal says. “I love surrounding myself with people who are authentic. The best thing people can say about me is that I’m the same person today that I was when I was 25.”

Learn about the other Q Award winners here.

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