Having friends is good.
This topic is talked about all the time – the value of any relationship. Whether it’s our clients, our agent friends, our vendors, or the people we “meet” online, there is a value to having them. If there’s no value, then perhaps they shouldn’t be our friends – real or perceived. I got to thinking about how I value the different people in my life on two separate unrelated cases in the past few weeks. Who are my friends? Are my clients my friends? Are my online friends really my friends?
The true value in any relationship is care. Caring about the other person on some level that creates an interest, a desire to know more, and a connection between the two people that for one reason or another gives them both returns, whatever they might be. I might be friends with one person for different reasons than another, but having a relationship with that person provides me (and them) with something.
Many of you are my online friends. We talk, we joke, we ask questions of each other. I’ve known some of you for almost a year now (my first article on AgentGenius, “Will the real Matt Stigliano please stand up?” was written on September 22, 2008) and many of you have become great friends to me. Kim Wood is one such friend. I knew we were friends long ago, but recently I realized just how much our friendship meant. Kim was feeling a little sick and went to the hospital, when I heard the news, I was worried. How can I worry about someone I never met?
I think many of us can attest to the care we feel for our online friends. The relationship is real. It’s discussed constantly in real estate circles, but I know it for a fact. I worried about Kim until I received more news that she was doing better. I sent her a card, one which didn’t make it to her. I sent it again and it made it finally. She had sent me a note on Twitter that said “I’m sure it will show up just when I need it.” It did and I was thrilled.
Kim and I had a secret competition in writing here at AgentGenius. We both posted on the same day (Wednesdays – yes this is a day late!) and would try to beat each other to get our article in before the other. Although the competition was about who was first, it was really more than that. I love her writing, so knowing that I was in direct “competition” with her for eyeballs made me push myself to write better posts. I miss having Kim’s posts here every week to compare my own to. She’s getting better, but I still miss that friendly competition – even though there was no prize other than bragging rights. Get better Kim, I need you back!
I’ve had a busy week of closing and phone calls have been non-stop daily trying to wrap up the final details and get things done. Yesterday, I called my client – we’ll call her Sue (which is funny, because I don’t think she should be named Sue at all, just doesn’t fit her for some reason). I needed to get a few details from her to expedite the closing process and when I called, I was met with a newsflash. Seems my client was having some heart trouble. Feeling palpitations that scared her to death. I forgot why I even called her. Sue and I spoke for about 20 minutes and I didn’t even think to ask her the questions I had called her about. She’s been an awesome client since the day I met her and I was genuinely worried for her. I wanted her to be better. I didn’t care much about talking shop with her. I had a job to do, but it could wait while we discussed what was going on in her life.
Sue’s okay, I spoke with her last night. They’re doing the usual tests and such. She sounds great and she wanted to talk business. I was there at 9 PM (which isn’t all that late for an agent) going over facts and figures with her before the documents were sent out to her to sign (she’s now out of state). We talked for quite awhile about business and life. She gets excited when I have new clients or closings. She wants me to succeed and is always boosting my confidence.
By forming relationships with both of these people, I have benefited. I gained confidence, fun, knowledge, and plain ‘ol good feelings. When they are down (but not out!), I am there with them – rooting them on to a successful recovery. Hoping to speak to them soon when they’re 100%. Sending them my best thoughts and wishes, just because I took a few minutes to get to know them. When we open ourselves up to getting to know the people around us, good things come from it. Not every agent is a referral and not every client is a paycheck. They are our friends and we can receive value from those relationships that far exceeds and referral agreement or commission check we’ll ever receive.
photo courtesy of hojusaram