It’s a family business at Caton Commercial Real Estate Group. But it hasn’t always been this way.
Bill Caton founded the business in 1984. Though his son and daughter worked at the company as teenagers, they didn’t immediately follow in their father’s footsteps.
“I saw both of their personalities,” said Bill. “There was no way you could push them into anything, so I didn’t. In fact, I just pushed them away. And they both came back.”
Steve started working at the company in 2002, and Christina came on board in 2006.
“I was very protective of my dad and this is a tough business. It’s, [as] I said, trust comes in a lot and I wanted to be here to help sort of say no,” said Christina. “I say no a lot, but it’s because I want to protect what dad has built and all the efforts and what Steve has put into it.”
The brother-sister duo have both learned a lot from their father over the years.
“Sit in a room and watch my dad listen, while I used to talk mostly during a meeting. And then ask the right questions and really turn it back around. Really use my ears more than my mouth,” said Steve. “And you don’t have to understand everything that’s going on in a particular moment, or deal, or analysis to read the room. And that’s always been something I constantly continue to learn from my dad and I appreciate that.”
Bill also had to hurdle some learning curves when his kids joined the business since he was used to making all the decisions.
But now, this trio is a team.
“My favorite part is I get to spend time with these two on a regular basis. And also being a proud father, seeing them grow both professionally, and the evolution of their skills,” said Bill. “And taking the platform that I originated to a much higher level.”
Watching his kids shine is one of the best perks for this proud dad.
“We go to a commercial venue and there’s a panel. Whenever Steve is up there and he’s talking and relaying his experiences and everybody in the room is zoomed in on that, those are proud times,” said Bill. “Whenever my daughter is head of the Chamber and she’s speaking at events, I choke up like I do now.”
“It’s because I’m his favorite,” said Christina.
Naperville News 17’s Aysha Ashley Househ reports.
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