I attended a real estate conference in
What I found interesting about the conference was the upbeat mood most, if not all, of the attendees exuded over the course of several days. With the chance to attend several seminars and network over several days of meals and events, I found myself embraced by a community of professionals that was not just willing to show those embarrassing scars, but to teach those around them the lessons learned through those battles.
My reluctance to attend another rah rah conference in the midst of fire and brimstone falling from the sky left me feeling like I should be working over my leads (again!) versus getting on the plane and heading out of town for the next 5 days. But walking into that room on the first evening, I was suddenly gripped by the warmth and passion for my profession…shown by those very same people that shared the very same feelings I had earlier that day as I boarded the plane.
After the usual networking introductions, the night began with stories. Tales told of years ago and days of old when there simply were not enough homes to satisfy the sheer number of buyers we were experiencing. And with every story, came another…better than the last. One guy told of a purchase offer that had been written on the back of a cocktail napkin, while another told of private plans and yachts half way around the world.
Everyone had a story to tell. But as the night wore on, the stories turned to more present day events and occurrences. The stories became those of war torn battles, the evident days of glory long past. Heart wrenching tales of people losing their homes from right underneath them, or those that chose to simply walk away from their dream.
Amongst these people, like an ancient village, sat the ‘elders’, those agents that have been in this business twice or three times the group’s average. Though quiet at first, these people began to share their own war stories, but not recent stories. Their stories started in the early 1970’s and continued through the early 1990’s. Their stories sounded oddly familiar yet took place almost twenty years ago.
In their experience, however, they learned a lot. We can argue the world moves faster now for us than it did back then, but they will tell us the lessons have all remained the same. What they taught us that evening was to embrace what we are experiencing today and take it with us as we continue to pursue our business opportunities. What we learn today will strengthen us for tomorrow. The end result was a concurrence by all that our business is all about cycles…the ups and downs of our market, and that whatever we are experiencing now, has already been experienced in the past.
Winston Churchill once said that if you find yourself going through hell…”keep going!”. I learned that that week that there are those that bury their head in the sand and pretend what is happening out there is, well, not really happening at all. But for the rest of us reading the newspapers, watching the news, or even attending real estate conferences, we should learn what that past experience has shown us.
Yes, it may be hell now, but things are gonna change…eventually.