Harry Culver’s 7 Rules of Success

Chris Wilde next to a “A Moment in Time,” a public art piece in front of the Culver Hotel depicting Harry Culver, his wife Lillian, and their baby Patricia, who would become Wilde’s mother.by Harry Culver’s younger grandson, Chris Wilde

Harry Culver’s dream that became Culver City is inspiring. Young Harry was not rich. But he had a plan. Many said it was risky starting a town in the middle of nowhere. But his idea became reality. Today, Culver City stands proud.

As Harry Culver’s grandson, people ask me if Harry’s success came from some secret technique. The answer is, “Yes.” He often called it the “Culver Way.” He developed a thoughtful marketing strategy plus a set of rules that relied on optimism, honesty and hard work.

Harry Culver’s Rules that Built Culver City

  1. Follow the Golden Rule (Treat others as you’d be treated.)
  2. Always offer a “Square Deal.” (Be honest, be open and fully inform.)
  3. Treat competitors like partners. Share knowledge and praise them.
  4. Understand the buyer’s “worries” better than they do.
  5. It’s better to undersell than oversell.
  6. Smiling will not build relations, but lack of a smile can loose them.

7. Responsibilities are not handicaps. They are stepping stones.

My grandfather would later advance to President of both the California and National Association of Realtors. Many major newspapers in the mid-1900s reported that he continued to promote these same rules across the country.

Harry Culver’s full marketing strategy is a longer story. But just looking at these seven rules reveals Harry Culver’s integrity. It’s easy to see that he truly looked beyond “just selling” and cared about the people and businesses wanting to call Culver City their home.

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