Jim Wacht, head of brokerage Lee & Associate’s New York office, has worked out how to keep hold of his brokers in an increasingly competitive environment. The firm buys properties for its own account alongside its investment sales brokerage business. “I wanted to make real estate opportunities available to brokers. It makes it harder for them to leave the company,” he said.

Wacht is playing hardball across the board, aiming for a 50% increase in revenue this year from 2013. “It’s aggressive but achievable. We’d [also] like to open a Brooklyn office. We’re very bullish on Brooklyn,” he said.