How are we going to link the Gen X & Y REALTORS® with the older, yet extremely knowledgeable population of REALTORS®, who have had success in Real Estate for 20, 30 and even 40 years?
The more I think about this question, I can’t help but think about the office where I work and its demographics. Many of the REALTORS® at my office have been in the Real Estate business for many years. A good number of them have had great success in selling homes and commercial property for, quite frankly, more years than I have been alive. How do I connect with these people?
I am 28 years old and have sold real estate for 5 years; in their opinion I am “as green as a gourd.” They have watched me and newer REALTORS® like me walk in and out of the office daily for years. Some of these new REALTORS® have had success. Some, however, have never even had the chance to learn the office phone number before the business has gotten the best of them.
Really, how do I (and you) connect with an experienced REALTOR® who has fought countless real estate battles, sold homes at 16% interest rates, and at one time, could tell you where every pay phone in the city was?
The younger generation needs to take a good look at this. There were no mobile phones, no lockboxes — and no down payment meant one thing… no sale. What do experienced REALTORS® think when they hear me talk about Facebook? Where does their mind travel when they overhear me say to a fellow agent on the phone, “I will just scan the contract into my email, send it over to you, and if you don’t get it, text me.”
These people are experienced and the best asset we have as Gen X &Y REALTORS®. I think I know how to access their knowledge: Earn their respect. Let them teach us their ways. Work. Listen. Let them see that we are actually working, not hiding behind an afternoon of Facebook “prospecting.”
If you talk to enough experienced REALTORS®, they always seem to say one thing: “If you stick to the basics of the business,” you will have success. The basics such as door knocking, keeping in regular contact with past clients, networking (shaking hands) and lead generation always seem to be near the top of the list.
Is new technology necessary in today’s real estate environment? It is imperative! Am I saying that things like Facebook, Twitter and blogging are not important? No way! But what I am saying is that a good firm handshake with good eye contact will never go away. We need to learn from the people who have shaken the hands of many. Why not mimic what the older generation has done to become successful first, and then enhance it with what technology has given us?
Perhaps, going “back” might just be a great way for us to bridge the gap with older REALTORS®, and if we play our cards right, this practice could quite possibly lead us to a more abundant “future.”