Connect with us

Opinion Editorials

Without My Blog, I Wouldn’t Still Be a Realtor

The truth is – I am far more tied to this profession now than I was four years ago, thanks in large part to the knowledge and relationships I have gained and developed from writing nearly every day, and I hear similar anecdotes from more people every week. … If real estate blogging were just about hanging out with other realestistas it’s be cool, but not that cool .    Blogging accomplishes several things, perhaps most of all a conveyance of transparency and honesty in a world of consumers who are desperately seeking both: Thanks for taking a couple minutes to speak with me.

Published

on

200812230955.jpg

Photo courtesy


“It would be a lot easier to walk away if it weren’t for the blog.”

Especially this year.

That’s what a friend and fellow real estate blogger said to me a few weeks ago, and I agreed wholeheartedly.

The truth is – I am far more tied to this profession now than I was four years ago, thanks in large part to the knowledge and relationships I have gained and developed from writing nearly every day, and I hear similar anecdotes from more people every week.

Self-gratification and validation is nice, but more importantly – consumers are more tied to their favorite real estate bloggers because of their blogs. If real estate blogging were just about hanging out with other realestistas it’s be cool, but not that cool.

Blogging accomplishes several things, perhaps most of all a conveyance of transparency and honesty in a world of consumers who are desperately seeking both:

Thanks for taking a couple minutes to speak with me. I am so relieved to find that there is a realtor in the Charlottesville area that realizes that Charlottesville is not immune to the ups and downs of the market. I have talked to several agents thus far, most of whom giving me the speech that Charlottesville’s real estate market is steady and should hold solid regardless of what is happening on the open market.

Emails and conversations like the above as well as the constant innovations and lessons learned from friends around the RE.net, and provide the sustenance to continue.

Blogging allows one to differentiate oneself from the chaff. Those of us who have been doing this for a while know this; those who are just entering the real estate blogging world may need encouragement and validation that consistent writing is rewarding.

The blog ties one to one’s community in a public, persistent and sticky way that makes extrication much more difficult – and this is a good thing.

What’s the takeaway? If you’ve been doing this for a while, keep doing what you’ve been doing – look up to the leaders of our world and copy their successes at every opportunity. Having just finished Made to Stick, this statement stuck with me –

“We don’t want to be first, but we sure as hell don’t want to be third.”

If you’re new, do the same.

Dad, Husband, Charlottesville Realtor, real estate Blogger, occasional speaker - Inman Connects, NAR Conferences - based in Charlottesville, Virginia. A native Virginian, I graduated from VMI in 1998, am a third generation Realtor (since 2001) and have been "publishing" as a real estate blogger since January 2005. I've chosen to get involved in Realtor Associations on the local, state & national levels, having served on the NAR's RPR & MLS groups. Find me in Charlottesville, Crozet and Twitter.

Continue Reading
Advertisement
12 Comments

12 Comments

  1. Jayson

    January 20, 2009 at 3:55 pm

    Definitely true Jim, a blog makes it harder to just quit and walk away “what about the readers what would they think” it makes your footprint in the industry larger. As you mentioned, consistent writing truly pays off – it’s like anything else in life, practice makes perfect.

  2. Andrew Olson

    January 20, 2009 at 6:02 pm

    I have been a big proponent of blogs for real estate professionals but this is one area that I haven’t covered much. The illustration of “burning the ships behind you” through blogging about your goals, ideas, etc. is definitely something that can help you persist when you might otherwise have given up.

  3. Chuck G

    January 20, 2009 at 9:36 pm

    Jim,

    I feel the same way about blogging. I started my main blog about a year ago, and I don’t need to tell you that blogging is a mix of fantastic highs and unbelievable lows. But when I get emails from clients who have taken the time to ask ME questions about real estate, schools, development programs, etc… I almost hear the voice in my head saying “You absolutely can’t walk away from this now..” No matter how bad the market gets.

    It has become the centerpiece of my marketing, and the very first thing I do every day when I wake up.

    Sounds like there may be a 12-step program in our futures…

  4. Chris Lengquist

    January 21, 2009 at 10:02 am

    Wow. I’d never stop to think it through but I just have to agree with about every word you said. Great post.

  5. Jim Duncan

    January 21, 2009 at 3:15 pm

    Thanks for the comments, folks. Everyone hears how important it is to write down goals – this is a way to publicly display one’s dedication and commitment to the business, profession and the community.

  6. David Pylyp

    March 9, 2009 at 6:40 pm

    Where can I get a summary of those 12 steps again?

    Thanks for the smile!

  7. Steve Babbitt

    January 5, 2010 at 5:09 pm

    Thanks so much for your example to us old guys!!(32 years in the business) who are learning new tricks!
    I’ve been trying to write for the past year and it is just now starting to make sense and be a little easier. Thanks for setting the pace!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Opinion Editorials

Strong leaders can use times of crises to improve their company’s future

(EDITORIAL) In the COVID-19 crisis, some leaders fumbled through it, while others quietly safeguarded their company’s future.

Published

on

strong leaders

Anthony J. Algmin is the Founder and CEO of Algmin Data Leadership, a company helping business and technology leaders transform their future with data, and author of a new book on data leadership. We asked for his insights on how strong leaders can see their teams, their companies, and their people through this global pandemic (and other crises in the future). The following are his own words:

Managers sometimes forget that the people we lead have lives outside of the office. This is true always but is amplified when a crisis occurs. We need to remember that our job is to serve their teams, to help them be as aligned and productive as possible in the short and long terms.

Crises are exactly when we need to think about what they might be going through, and realize that the partnership we have with our employees is more than a transaction. If we’ve ever asked our people to make sacrifices, like working over a weekend without extra pay, we should be thinking first about how we can support them through the tough times. When we do right by people when they really need it, they will run through walls again for our organizations when things return to normal.

Let them know it’s okay to breathe and talk about it. In a situation like COVID-19 where everything was disrupted and people are adjusting to things like working from home, it is naturally going to be difficult and frustrating.

The best advice is to encourage people to turn off the TV and stop frequently checking the news websites. As fast as news is happening, it will not make a difference in what we can control ourselves. Right now most of us know what our day will look like, and nothing that comes out in the news is going to materially change it. If we avoid the noisy inputs, we’ll be much better able to focus and get our brains to stop spinning on things we can’t control.

And this may be the only time I would advocate for more meetings. If you don’t have at least a daily standup with your team, you should. And encourage everyone to have a video-enabled setup if at all possible. We may not be able to be in the same room, but the sense of engagement with video is much greater than audio-only calls.

We also risk spiraling if we think too much about how our companies are struggling, or if our teams cannot achieve what our organizations need to be successful. It’s like the difference in sports between practice and the big game. Normal times are when leaders game plan, strategize, and work on our fundamentals. Crises are the time to focus and leave it all on the field.

That said, do not fail to observe and note what works well and where you struggle. If you had problems with data quality or inefficient processes before the crisis, you are not fixing them now. Pull out the duct tape and find a way through it. But later, when the crisis subsides, learn from the experience and get better for next time.

Find a hobby. Anything you can do to clear your head and separate work from the other considerations in your life. We may feel like the weight of the world is on our shoulders, and without a pressure release we will not be able to sustain this level of stress and remain as productive as our teams, businesses, and families need us.

Continue Reading

Opinion Editorials

7 sure-fire ways to carve out alone time when you’re working from home

(EDITORIAL) It can be easy to forget about self-care when you’re working from home, but it’s critical for your mental health, and your work quality.

Published

on

Woman in hijab sitting on couch, working from home on a laptop

We are all familiar with the syndrome, getting caught up in work, chores, taking care of others, and neglecting to take care of ourselves in the meantime. This has always been the case, but now, with more people working from home and a seemingly endless lineup of chores, thanks to the pandemic. There is simply so much to do.

The line is thinly drawn between personal and professional time already, with emails, cell phones, and devices relentlessly reaching out around the clock, pulling at us like zombie arms reaching up from the grave. Working from home makes this tendency to always be “on” worse, as living and working take place in such close proximity. We have to turn it off, though.

Our brains and bodies need downtime, me-time, and self-care. Carving out this time is one of the kindest and most important things you can do for yourself. If we can begin to honor ourselves like this, the outcome with not only our mental and physical health but also our productivity at work will be beneficial. When we make the time to do things we love, our mind’s gears slow down that constant grinding. Burnout behooves nobody.

Our work will also benefit. Healthier, happier, more well-rested, and well-treated minds and bodies can work wonders! Our immune systems also need this, and we need our immune systems to be at their peak performance this intense season.

I wanted to write this article because I have such a struggle with this in my own life. I need to print it out and put it in my workspace. Last week, I posted something on my social media pages that so many people shared. It is clear we all need these reminders, so I am paying it forward here. The graphic was a quote from Devyn W.

“If you are reading this, release your shoulders away from your ears, unclench your jaw, and drop your tongue from the roof of your mouth.”

There now, isn’t that remarkable? It is a great first step. Let go of the tension in your body, and check out these ways to make yourself some healing me-time while working from home.

  1. Set aside strict no-work times. This could be any time of day, but set the times and adhere to them strictly. This may look like taking a full hour for lunch, not checking email after a certain hour, or committing to spending that time outdoors, reading, exercising, or enjoying the company of your loved ones. Make this a daily routine, because we need these boundaries. Every. Single. Day.
  2. Remember not to apologize to anyone for taking this me-time. Mentally and physically you need this, and everyone will be better off if you do. It is nothing to apologize for! Building these work-free hours into your daily schedule will feel more normal as time goes on. This giving of time and space to your joy, health, and even basic human needs is what should be the norm, not the other way around.
  3. Give yourself a device-free hour or two every day, especially before bedtime. The pinging, dinging, and blinging keep us on edge. Restful sleep is one of the wonderful ways our bodies and brains heal and putting devices away before bedtime is one of the quick tips for getting better sleep.
  4. Of course, make time for the things you absolutely love. If this is a hot bath, getting a massage, reading books, working out, cooking or eating an extravagant meal, or talking and laughing with a loved one, you have to find a way to get this serotonin boost!
  5. Use the sunshine shortcut. It isn’t a cure-all, but sunlight and Vitamin D are mood boosters. At least when it’s not 107 degrees, like in a Texas summer. But as a general rule, taking in at least a good 10-15 minutes of that sweet, sweet Vitamin D provided by the sun is good for us.
  6. Spend time with animals! Walk your dog, shake that feathery thing at your cat, or snuggle either one. Whatever animals make you smile, spend time with them. If you don’t have pets of your own, you could volunteer to walk them at a local shelter or even watch a cute animal video online. They are shown to reduce stress. Best case scenario is in person if you are able, but thankfully the internet is bursting with adorable animal videos, as a backup.
  7. Give in to a bit of planning or daydreaming about a big future trip. Spending time looking at all the places you will go in the future and even plotting out an itinerary are usually excellent mood-boosters.

I hope we can all improve our lives while working from home by making time for regenerating, healing, and having fun! Gotta run—the sun is out, and my dog is begging for a walk.

Continue Reading

Opinion Editorials

The one easy job interview question that often trips up applicants

(EDITORIAL) The easiest interview questions can be the hardest to answer, don’t let this one trip you up – come prepared!

Published

on

Women sitting nervously representing waiting for a remote job interview.

A job interview is tough, and preparing for them can seem impossible. There are some questions you can expect: what is your experience in this position? How would you handle this situation? And so on.

bar
But what about this question: what makes you happy? Though it may seem straightforward, getting to the right answer is not such an easy path.

Work engagement

According to research, less and less employees feel like they are truly engaged at work. Some blame the work environment but truth be told, it is not a company’s responsibility to make you happy.

Without a passion for what you are doing, you will never enjoy the job.

It is the best case for everyone. More engaged workers are more productive in addition to feeling like they serve a purpose.

Do your due diligence

So before finding yourself in an interview where you have to take an awkward pause before answering this question, the best thing is to do some research. It all starts with the job search.

When looking for a job it is easy to get caught up in high profile company names and perks.

For instance, although “Social Media Coordinator” may not be your thing, the position is open at the cool advertising agency downtown. Or perhaps the company offers flexible hours and free lunch Fridays. The problem is that these perks aren’t worth it in the long run. Working for a cool company can be exciting at first, but it is not sustainable without passion for the position.

It’s important to pay attention to is the position you are applying for.

Is this work that you are passionate about? Take a look at the job responsibilities and functions. Besides figuring out if those are things that you can do, ask yourself if they are things that you want to do. Is this an opportunity that will match your strengths and give you purpose?

Let your passion protrude

With all things considered, when asked “what makes you happy” at the next interview, you will be able to answer honestly. Your passion will be apparent without having to put on an act.

Even if they don’t ask that question, there is no downside to knowing what makes you happy.

Continue Reading
Advertisement

Our Great Partners

The
American Genius
news neatly in your inbox

Subscribe to our mailing list for news sent straight to your email inbox.

Emerging Stories

Get The American Genius
neatly in your inbox

Subscribe to get business and tech updates, breaking stories, and more!