Monday, May 13

A logo tattoo for a raise? These workers did

"We call it brand ambassadorship," said Anthony Lolli, owner and CEO of Rapid Realty, a New York based real estate firm that encourages employees to get a tattoo of the company's logo. In exchange for the tattoo, employees receive a 15 percent commission increase for life. NBC's Joelle Garguilo reports.

By Amy Langfield, TODAY contributor
How far would you go for a raise?

Inking a deal with Rapid Realty has a more permanent feel now that the New York City-based brokerage is giving a 15 percent raise to its workers who get a tattoo of the company’s logo.

So far, 40 agents are inked and more are lining up, Anthony Lolli, the CEO of Rapid Realty told NBC News.

One new agent got the tattoo after only a week working for Rapid Realty.

But isn’t that crazy?

“I don’t think so,” Lolli said. “Some people fall in love with the opportunity. They fall in love with the brand.”

It’s actually pretty conservative compared to other people who have tattooed company logos on their person, such as the man who tattooed the web address of a porn site on his face or the woman who auctioned the space on her forehead for $10,000.

A logo tattoo for a raise? These workers did
Rapid Realty

Agents of Rapid Realty in New York City are eligible for a 15 percent increase in commission if they get a tattoo of the company logo.

But at Rapid Realty, there are no regrets yet and all 40 inked employees are still with the company, Lolli said. Some early adopters are even making plans to touch up their colors.

The tattoos can be any size anywhere on the agent’s body to qualify for the bonus. They’re getting the tattoos anywhere they like: on their thighs, biceps, ankles, wrist, behind the ear and elsewhere, Lolli said. Some have only the RR logo, while others have also spelled out Rapid Realty. “They’re allowed to customize it,” he said.

Since all of Rapid Realty’s 1,100 agents work on commission, the 15 percent boost kicks in each time they complete a deal. Most agents start at a 25 percent commission so a company tattoo will bump them to the 40 percent bracket. Some agents were already maxed out at the 40 percent rate, but still got tattoos even though there was no extra pay in the deal, Lolli said.

About two years ago, Rapid Realty agent Adam Altman was the first to make the commitment after he closed a deal for a tattoo parlor in Bushwick, Brooklyn. A video on the company website documents the event, as the bespeckled, bearded agent adds the stylized RR logo to his existing tattoo collection. He already had tattoos on his arms, legs, back and mouth.

“The company’s been good to me. I don’t see myself going anywhere. If I have it on, it’s gonna force me to keep going and working harder, cuz you know I have that logo on, you know you’re not going to give up. It’s there for life,” Altman says in the video .“Rapid for life.Yo.”

So far, Lolli himself isn’t inked, but is grateful for his agents’ devotion. “It’s very humbling. I have an attitude of gratitude,” he said.

He’s considering getting a tattoo when his company hits a big benchmark of 100 offices. Currently Rapid Realty has franchises in New York City, Boston, Philadelphia, Long Island and New Jersey. But with 62 locations, he has some time to consider where he wants his tattoo for the 100th.

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