Sell-a-bration 2019: Takeaways

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Another Sell-a-bration has come and gone, and I hope everyone had an amazing few days in Vegas and some strong takeaways.

I wanted to share a couple of the gems I picked up with you in the hopes that you may share yours with me. Most of mine were more personal rather than work-related this time around. CRSs are always great to learn from, but no matter how valuable the lessons are in the sessions, I find that I usually gain even more from the hallways and conversations over dinners and drinks.

So here are my top three takeaways from #SAB2019, in no particular order.

  1. Ten years is too long to wait to share a meal. My friend, Ira Serkes, and I have known each other, according to Facebook, for at least ten (10) years, from way back in the days of Star Power and Cyberstars and we’ve chatted briefly at dozens of events over the years, but we’ve probably exchanged more words on social media than we have in person (sad, I know). Last Friday evening, at Sell-a-bration, we sat down to supper together, and what a pleasure it was to break bread and talk with a friend whom I have admired for so long. We’ve agreed ten years was too long, and we’re not going to wait for another ten before we do it again.
  2. All you have to do to encourage others to share their story with you is just ask. I had the distinct honor of participating in CRS Talks on the main stage on Friday afternoon to tell my story and discuss the importance of storytelling. I ended my talk with: “It’s my hope that, while you’re here at Sell-a-bration, you’ll find me and share part of your story.” And guess what? People did. Not just that evening but all through the next day. What an honor to have so many of you CRSs sharing your stories with me and what makes you different.
  3. REALTORS® aren’t the best at networking — myself included. We can all do better at this. Full disclosure: I always forget my business cards, but I’ve morphed this into a system whereby I write a handwritten note after the event, including my card, and say how nice it was to meet that person…that way, my card doesn’t get lost in the shuffle and find its way (inevitably) into the trash can with all the others. However, I saw a lot of handing out of cards and not a lot of connecting going on, which is fairly normal for these conference reception scenarios. We’re too focused on getting the next referral and not focused enough on connection and engagement. I applaud the (small) number of us REALTORS® who plan ahead, seek out those they want to meet in person for the first time, and plan coffee and lunch meet-ups — it’s a lesson we can all learn from. Let’s connect better with each other…and let the referrals and business opportunities grow authentically from there.