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Opinion Editorials

Share Your Thoughts on the NAR Video Podcast

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In case you might have missed it, the 2008 NAR President, Dick Gaylord, published a video podcast entitled, “10 Tips to Boost Your Business.”

If you watched my video above, you know how I feel about the video. I’m interested to know what YOU thought about it. I think that this type of thing is most definitely a step in the right direction for NAR, so I want all of the good folks here at Agent Genius to leave a comment and offer insight, feedback and constructive criticism. I’m not interested as much in what you thought of the content as what you thought of the execution. Is it effective? How could it be better? Are some topics better suited for this than others?

I think that NAR deserves some credit for stepping up and showing some leadership by example when it comes to podcasting and the use of video. What do you think?

Believe it or not, NAR is paying attention, so now is a perfect opportunity to be heard.

I'm a REALTOR, basketball referee, happy husband, and Community Manager (in no particular order). I have a passion for the real estate industry and officiating, a passion that I try to turn into inspiration on my blog, The Real Estate Zebra. I am also the Community Manager at Inman News. When I'm not blogging here on AG or the Zebra, you can usually find me on Twitter.

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6 Comments

6 Comments

  1. Benjamin Bach

    April 15, 2008 at 4:14 am

    I liked the video, it’s the right forum for NAR to communicate with their members on a topic like this.

    Daniel, what camera are you using ? I picked up a webcam which *sucked* (never spend a little less than you think you should 🙂

    I want to get the Flip Ultra, but can’t find them in Canada. I think i’ll just grab one off the ‘bay. What is your reccomendation ?

    Be Great!

  2. Laura S Flournoy

    April 15, 2008 at 8:36 am

    Daniel,
    I liked it (them). The set felt standard. I don’t want to see distracting hand movements, or feel there is a need for walking/pacing. Was it stiff, yep. But lets give Dick 10 (+/-) podcasts and he will be totally at home. Constructive criticism. That’s they way to make a difference. Great!….. thank you.
    Hay ~ going to talk about the book in this forum some?

  3. Daniel Rothamel

    April 15, 2008 at 10:45 am

    Benjamin,

    Funny you should mention the Flip– that is exactly what I used to make this video! I happen to like it, but reviews are mixed, for the most part. I didn’t know they were withholding them from our good friends up north. 🙂

    It is a decent camera, but if you are on a Mac, the downloading can sometimes be kludgy. There are digital still cameras that can record video of pretty much the same quality, it all depends on your needs.

    Laura,

    That is great feedback. I agree with you that, with practice, Dick will get even better. Actually, I thought that he looked pretty darn good in this one. With regards to the book, I don’t know. I hadn’t considered it. The first post will be next week, so we’ll see what people think!

    Laura–

  4. Danilo Bogdanovic

    April 15, 2008 at 11:03 am

    I’m totally with you on the living room/fireplace thing. It was 82 degrees here in the DC metro area when I watched it, but I guess it’s still cold in Chicago.

    The point about his hands was right on. As the video went on, the more he moved his hands and was leaning forward. Looked like he was itching to get up.

    It’s great to see NAR embracing technologies that engage members other than the ones that just read newspapers or magazines. It’s a good step in the right direction and I hope they keep it up.

  5. Matthew Rathbun

    April 15, 2008 at 11:21 am

    Well… It was better than Saul Klien’s 🙂

    I actually liked it, I am more a content guy, than I am an ambiance guy. I would have been OK, with him getting up.

    I am very happy with what NAR has done here. They’ll get better over time and I am am sure that all of you will agree that the mere fact that NAR is responding to feedback is a great start.

    The issue with content is that it won’t always fit everyone’s specific market. But, I think that NAR did as good a job as anyone could giving global guidance.

  6. Greg Cremia

    April 16, 2008 at 7:24 am

    I guess I have gotten spoiled by the instant gratification of receiving my info instantly on the net. Part of this is my ability to scan the info to see if it is worth my full attention. Plus, scanning allows me to pull the info I need from the piece, whether it is at the front, middle or back of the piece, and move on.

    Both of these videos looked good but when I tried to scan (fast forward) I lost sight of the material that was forwarded over. Consequently, I had no idea if either of these videos was worth my time and I did not make it through either of them. I wanted to watch both of them in their entirety but my “internet attention span” got in the way and I clicked the “next” button.

    Internet consumers follow this same scanning pattern when they go looking for something. Very little is read in its entirety on the net. If what you want them to see is important but they can only find it by watching an entire video it might be getting overlooked. There is nothing unique on the internet. Everything can be found in multiple locations. If you put an obstacle in the way of the info they will move on and find the info elsewhere.

    I was shopping for something the other day and this person popped up on my screen trying to sell me on their site. It looked like a good site but this person annoyed me so much I just hit the “next” button. This site may have been the best one out there but the site itself got in the way of me scanning it and once again my internet attention span kicked in. NEXT.

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Opinion Editorials

Declutter your quarantine workspace (and brain)

(EDITORIAL) Can’t focus? Decluttering your workspace can help you increase productivity, save money, and reduce stress.

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decluttering

It’s safe to say that we’ve all been spending a lot more time in our homes these last few months. This leads us to fixate on the things we didn’t have time for before – like a loose doorknob, or an un-alphabetized bookshelf, or that we’ve put off ‘declutter’ on our to-do list for too long.

The same goes for our workspaces. Many of us have had to designate a spot at home to use for work purposes. For those of you who still need to remain on-site, you’ve likely been too busy to focus on your surroundings.

Cleaning and organizing your workspace every so often is important, regardless of the state of the world, and with so much out of our control right now, this is one of the few things we can control.

Whether you’re working from a home office or an on-site office, take some time for quarantine decluttering. According to The Washington Post, taking time to declutter can increase your productivity, lower stress, and save money (I don’t know about you, but just reading those 3 things makes me feel better already).

Clutter can cause us to feel overwhelmed and make us feel a bit frazzled. Having an office space filled with piles of paper containing irrelevant memos from five years ago or 50 different types of pens, has got to go – recycle that mess and reduce your stress. The same goes with clearing files from your computer; everything will run faster.

Speaking of running faster, decluttering and creating a cleaner workspace will also help you be more efficient and productive. Build this habit by starting small: try tidying up a bit at the end of every workday, setting yourself up for a ready-to-roll morning.

Cleaning also helps you take stock of stuff that you have so that you don’t end up buying more of it. Create a designated spot for your tools and supplies so that they’re more visible – this way, you’ll always know what you have and what needs to be replenished. This will help you stop buying more of the same product that you already have and save you money.

So, if you’ve been looking to improve your focus and clearing a little bit of that ‘quarantine brain’, start by getting your workspace in order. You’ll be amazed at how good it feels to declutter and be “out with the old”; you may even be inspired to do the same for your whole house. Regardless, doing this consistently will create a positive shift in your life, increasing productivity, reducing stress, and saving you money.

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Opinion Editorials

Online dating is evolving and maybe networking will too

(OPINION EDITORIALS) How has the online dating industry been disrupted during the pandemic? And can we apply a few pointers from this evolved model to networking?

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Woman networking through Zoom video call with two other women.

We are often reminded that hindsight is 20/20 – a proverb that means “it is easy to understand something after it has already happened”, and how ironic that is since we are in the year 2020 and not sure we can fully comprehend all we are learning and what hindsight this will bring.

Reflecting back to six months ago, there were many of us that didn’t have much of a clue about what the rest of 2020 would look like and how we would have to adjust to a more virtual world. We’ve updated our ways of working, connecting with colleagues, socializing with friends, networking with those in our industry, or looking for a new job.

Microsoft suggested that we have seen two years’ worth of digital transformation in about five months. For example: MS Teams, Zoom, and Google Meet have become the new way to host networking sessions, work meetings, and “chats” with colleagues; Tele-med appointments became the norm for routine or non-911 emergency doctor appointments; curbside pickup at grocery stores and food to-go orders via online ordering became the new normal (they existed before but saw tremendous growth in number of users).

We also had to learn how to create engaging and interactive ways to connect solely through a screen. We are already Zoom fatigued and wondering how online meetings have zapped our energy so differently than in person. It turns out, looking at ourselves and trying to talk to a group is a lot for our brains to process.

The Atlantic shares a great article about why the Zoom social life might feel so draining, saying that “Attempting to translate your old social habits to Zoom or FaceTime is like going vegetarian and proceeding to glumly eat a diet of just tofurkey”. No offense to vegetarians, of course.

You could argue though, that we’ve all been interacting via screens for years with the dominance of social media channels – whether it was posting our thoughts in 140 characters on Twitter, or sharing photos and videos of our artisanal sandwiches/cute kid/pet pictures on Facebook. But this seems different. Times are different and we will not be going back soon.

In this interim, many people are trying to make the best of the situation and are figuring out ways to connect. We will always need human connection (and without the germs, even better).

What about our single friends? If they don’t have anyone in the house to already drive them crazy, then where can they go to meet new people and/or possibly love interests?

While many experts are trying to predict the outcomes of this global shift, it may be hard to know what will change permanently. We know many industries are experiencing major disruptions – online dating apps being one of them.

According to Digital Trends, Tinder still ranks as one of the top dating apps. However, now that people are sheltering in place and/or social distancing, there’s a new app taking over as a way to “meet” someone a little faster, while also allowing you to stay behind the screen, sans mask.

Slide is a video dating app that changes your first-date frustrations into real connections and instant chemistry. Explore video profiles, go on first dates via Video Calls at your fingertips, and find that chemistry before dating IRL.”

So, while Tinder, Bumble, and Hinge play quarantine catch-up, Slide is stealing their market share.

How? With video.

Slide recognized the massive success of short-form video platforms like TikTok, and have translated it to dating. They focus on features like:

  • “Vibe Check”, which gives you the option to video chat immediately after matching with someone to see if there’s chemistry. This will save you from long or misinterpreted text conversations and money you may have spent on that first date.
  • A video-first approach that lets you see the real people behind the profiles so you can pass if they aren’t really who they say they are.
  • AI-assisted creation of “future bae” profiles that help suggest your best matches and spare you extra swipes. If Netflix can find similar suggestions…

As of August 2020, the Department of Labor and Statistics estimates about 13.6 million people are currently unemployed and searching for a new j-o-b. Is it possible that some of these newer ways of connecting online could be included in how we network for a new job/career opportunity?

For example, instead of sending a connection or networking request on LinkedIn, what if we could send a quick video about our story, or what we’d love to learn from that person, or how we’d like to connect?

Would that create a faster, better, possibly more genuine connection?

This would seem worth exploring as many job connections are created by in-person networking or reaching real people vs. solely online applications, behind a screen. Some other formats that have seen increased use are Marco Polo for video chats (you don’t have to both be available at the same time) and FaceTime group calls.

It might be worth exploring how short-form video platforms could assist job seekers in networking, outreach, and connecting with others. These are just some ideas as we continue to watch this digital transformation unfold.

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Opinion Editorials

Minimalism doesn’t have to happen overnight

(OPINION / EDITORIAL) Minimalism doesn’t have to mean throwing out everything this instant – you can get similar benefits from starting on smaller spaces.

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Minimal desk with laptop, cup, books, and plant.

Minimalism. This trend has reared its head in many forms, from Instagram-worthy shots of near empty homes to Marie Kondo making a splash on Netflix with Tidying Up with Marie Kondo in 2019. If you’re anything like me, the concept of minimalism is tempting, but the execution seems out of reach. Paring down a closet to fit into a single basket or getting rid of beloved objects can sometimes seem too difficult, and I get it! Luckily, minimalism doesn’t have to be quite so extreme.

#1. Digitally

Not ready to purge your home yet? That’s fine! Start on your digital devices. Chances are, there are plenty of easy ways to clean up the storage space on your computer or phone. When it comes to low stakes minimalism, try clearing out your email inbox or deleting apps you no longer use. It’ll increase your storage space and make upkeep much more manageable on a daily basis.

It’s also worth taking a look through your photos. With our phones so readily available, plenty of us have pictures that we don’t really need. Clearing out the excess and subpar pictures will also have the added bonus of making your good pictures easily accessible!

Now, if this task seems more daunting, consider starting by simply deleting duplicate photos. You know the ones, where someone snaps a dozen pics of the same group pose? Pick your favorite (whittle it down if you have to) and delete the rest! It’s an easy way to get started with minimizing your digital photo collection.

#2. Slowly

Minimalism doesn’t have to happen all at once. If you’re hesitant about taking the plunge, try dipping your toe in the water first. There’s no shame in taking your time with this process. For instance, rather than immediately emptying your wardrobe, start small by just removing articles of clothing that are not wearable anymore. Things that are damaged, for instance, or just don’t fit.

Another way to start slow is to set a number. Take a look at your bookshelf and resolve to get rid of just two books. This way, you can hold yourself accountable for minimizing while not pushing too far. Besides, chances are, you do have two books on your shelf that are just collecting dust.

Finally, it’s also possible to take things slow by doing them over time. Observe your closet over the course of six months, for instance, to see if there are articles of clothing that remain unworn. Keep an eye on your kitchen supplies to get a feel for what you’re using and what you’re not. Sure, that egg separator you got for your wedding looks useful, but if you haven’t picked it up, it probably has to go.

#3. Somewhat

Sometimes, minimalism is pitched as all or nothing (pun intended), but it doesn’t have to be that way. Just because I want to purge my closet doesn’t mean I’m beholden to purging my kitchen too. And that’s okay!

Instead of getting overwhelmed by everything that needs to be reduced, just pick one aspect of your life to declutter. Clear out your wardrobe and hang onto your books. Cut down on decorations but keep your clothes. Maybe even minimize a few aspects of your life while holding onto one or two.

Or, don’t go too extreme in any direction and work to cut down on the stuff in your life in general. Minimizing doesn’t have to mean getting rid of everything – it can mean simply stepping back. For instance, you can minimize just by avoiding buying more things. Or maybe you set a maximum number of clothes you want, which means purchasing a new shirt might mean getting rid of an old one.

The point is, there are plenty of ways to start on the minimalist lifestyle without pushing yourself too far outside your comfort zone. So, what are you waiting for? Try decluttering your life soon!

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