I’m surrounded by noise.
You know me, I love hearing, listening, learning, and figured out new things. I’m surrounded by noise because I choose to be. Even when the topic is something I feel I know plenty about, I’ll often go to a class or watch a webinar just to see what I might be missing out on. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – education is huge. We need it, we should have it, and I’m going to get it. I love sitting in a class and hearing something so obvious that I can’t believe I didn’t think of it myself. I love hearing things that are so far over my head that I need to spend hours doing research to understand the basics in order to get the new concept. Love it.
The noise recently has become overwhelming. I’ve always had a problem at restaurants since I can remember. I hear everything. Most of it just becomes noise as I flit from conversation to conversation. Imagine having 100 radios playing different stations, but knowing what each song is. It’s coming at me from a million directions and I have been learning to control the noise. To pick and choose the voices I want to focus in on and eliminate the static that surrounds them.
Social Media Static.
Of course the topic du jour is social media. Define it how you want, but everyone’s talking about it in the real estate world. It’s a big topic when you stop to think about it and can encompass so many different facets of business and personal life. In a way, it has taken on its own life.
Like anything du jour the wolves have come out to feed on the unknowing. You’ve read enough about self-proclaimed gurus and experts here at AgentGenius, but I’m being to see something more disturbing. The other day, I wrote about a case I saw happening before my very eyes here in San Antonio – “Social Networking at SABOR.” It doesn’t seem isolated either. Boards, brokers, and agents are jumping into the fray to offer you the best in social media training. But their “best” isn’t always helpful, insightful, or worth much.
There is a circuit of lecturers, motivational speakers, and teachers who make their fortunes teaching us the ins and outs of our business. Some are amazing, some are rather dull, but they all share one thing in common – they get paid to tell us how to better ourselves. Right or wrong. They are in business to sell themselves and to make a living for themselves. They may have good intentions, but when the world is clamoring for a new class on the hottest topic – you’re going to get a lot of people teaching classes they shouldn’t.
Educating the educators.
I recently attended a seminar on “social media” and of course, Twitter was a big part of the action. Having been on Twitter since Lani told me to get on it and introduced me to just about everyone of you, I’m no expert. I enjoy Twitter and have made some great connections here in San Antonio and around the country. Some are agents and some aren’t. I’ve had some great recommendations, but so far, no actual business from it.
During this speaker’s discourse on Twitter he mentioned his username, so like any nerd, I whipped out my phone and looked him up. What did I find? 11 updates. 76 Followers. 56 following. Now, I’m not here to call the speaker out, but really? Eleven updates and you’re going to preach it to a roomful of agents (four of which are in my office and are avid social media users)? In my book, unacceptable. So what am I to do, when I continue to see this around me?
Call it like I see it. Explain to people what I know and how these types of courses are not helping anyone except the accountants for the teachers. If all of us who enjoy and employ social media as a tool take the time to discuss with our local boards, course providers, and brokers what is wrong with what is going on around us in terms of education, perhaps we can help them understand and hire the right people. Here in San Antonio I could recommend at least six people who I think would put on amazing presentations about social media – that would encompass both beginners and early adopters. Next time you see a class that you know isn’t going to push agents to the next level or is taught by someone who is looking for nothing more than a paycheck, perhaps you should attend. Ask questions. Talk to the organizers. Show your expertise. Maybe next time you’ll wind up teaching, but even if you don’t, perhaps you’ll make one dent in the educational needs of the agents in your hometown.
photo courtesy of z65536