Name: Francesca Loftus
Title: CEO and Co-founder
Address: 163 W18th Street, New York, NY 10011
Year that you entered your current field? (Startups/Tech) 2010 (ReTech) 2013
How did you get your start in your current field?
I co-founded hOM in the end of 2013 and it was my big leap into real estate tech. At first, hOM was providing wellness instructors to amenity managers and we pivoted into being a full community management solution when we saw how many buildings couldn’t afford an amenity manager or couldn’t dedicate ample square footage to built-in amenities, but had underutilized lounges, or temporary vacancies that could be activated with programming. I knew programming and operations well, having run a 14,000 s/f performing arts space on the Upper West Side for years and having brought techmeetups.com to five cities in N. America.
How do you motivate or inspire your colleagues?
I’d like to think my willingness to jump in anywhere and experiment in the art of possibility (a great term for breaking rules) inspires my colleagues. hOM’s whole philosophy is collaboration over competition and I feel like in every conversation, when I speak very plainly it drops barriers. I believe that catalyzes a sense of win-win with colleagues in the industry. My cofounders and I believe strongly in the power of partnership.
Who or what do you attribute to your success?
I’m not sure what came first, the chicken or the egg - but the company culture
and the hOM-team. It’s become obvious to me in the time I’ve run hOM that a great idea cant get anywhere without the right people. Early on, we made mistakes in hiring that really drove that home, so now - we’re really picky. I can honestly say every hOMie is just plain good people : everyone is very open to learning and empathizing. We do a ton of continued education workshops, about half are lead by someone inside the team, and they always blow my mind. The level of thoughtfulness and focus they all give to each other, the work, the customer; it demonstrates so much care.
How do you manage the work/life balance? As a mother (currently 6 months pregnant with my second!) and wife, balance is forced. I’m coming home to responsibilities, so I’m not able to ignore personal life the way I could when I started the company. The work in balancing nowadays is in dedicating focused energy to where I currently am. If I’m picking my son up from daycare or walking my dogs, or cooking with my husband, being there and not being focused on whatever fire I was in the middle of putting out at work is an constant practice.