What was your first job in the realty industry? Realtor, specializing in first-time homebuyers and sellers.
Where did you grow up? I’m a native Atlantan. I’m also known as a “Grady Baby,” a term natives proudly use to represent their city.
Growing up, what did you want to be? I wanted to be a psychologist. I wanted understand the human mind – what makes people tick, why and how the mind works, etc. Most of all, I wanted to understand and help people.
What do you do to relax when you’re stressed? I use meditation to relax when I’m stressed. I find that meditation is the best way to find clarity.
If you could have lunch with a well-known figure (living or not), who would it be and why? My short list would be the Obamas, Oprah, Maya Angelou and Langston Hughes.
Where is your favorite place to hang out? In the city with my guy – we love to frequent some of the local restaurants and bars in the North Highland area. We also love to entertain friends and family at home.
What do you love most about the industry? I love that it is forever changing. Change creates growth and competition. This business is never static, even when we’re in a down market. You either have to GROW or GO HOME! I love that.
How do you distinguish yourself from the crowd of agents? I specialize in new construction, community service workers and first-time homebuyers. I always have a campaign running pertaining to these different groups. I combine niche marketing with technology and constantly get buyer and seller leads. Having a niche and using the latest technology is what distinguishes me from the crowd of agents who chooses to shy away from technology and cast a wider net.
What is the most difficult aspect of your job? Working with untrained, unseasoned and sometimes unprofessional agents. It makes our job harder when agents do not return telephone calls, do not properly update their listings and sometimes are rude and unprofessional. The industry takes a blow when we get negative feedback like that. Unfortunately, one bad apple spoils the bunch.
Where do you go to network and meet new clients? I’m part of several networking groups around Atlanta that are both real estate related and non-real estate related. We also host a bi-monthly “Dinner with Friends,” where we invite eight people with all different backgrounds. It’s fun hosting these events and bringing new people together.
What has been your greatest accomplishment? My real estate career has led me to other amazing opportunities, like opening the Interactive Real Estate Academy, where I train agents on how to be more productive, more professional and how to build a profitable and sustainable real estate practice, and while getting their CE credits. I’ve also opened an online school, The Savvy Agents Academy, designed specifically for agents who would like to focus on technology and real estate.
What was the last good movie you saw or book you read? Start with “Why,” by Simon Sinek. It’s an amazing book that helps you to determine your “WHY,” and use that to market and promote your “What & How” in business. Most businesses sell the “What,” i.e. “I sell real estate.” But, you should start with why you do what you do. For example, “I believe that everyone can achieve the American Dream if they truly want it. It takes offering the right services to the right clients. My real estate firm meet people where they are by utilizing the right technology and providing excellent customer service that goes above and beyond. I am a real estate broker, coach and trainer. I specialize in working with community service workers to build a sustainable community.” Now, doesn’t that sound better than starting with the “what?” And, it’s more memorable.
What is your favorite restaurant? Desta, an Ethiopian Restaurant in Atlanta. The food is amazing, very affordable and healthy, and uses fresh ingredients. I can eat there almost every day.
Architecturally speaking, what is your favorite building in Atlanta? I love Atlanta, and we have some amazing architecture here in the city. Some of my favorites are the High Museum of Art, The Four Seasons, The Bank of America Building and The Mandarin Oriental Hotel in Bulkhead. I have a long list, but those are my favorites.
What kind of car do you drive? I drive an Acura MDX. I’m a huge fan of Acura. They are reliable and just overall amazing cars.
Smartphone or paper? Smartphone of course. There’s so much I can do with my smartphone, including taking notes, texting, taking photos, sending/receiving emails, checking my bank account, listening to music, accessing listings, shopping online and so much more. I cannot do all that with paper.
What is your favorite city after Atlanta? New York. It’s so much to do, so many things to see and the city NEVER sleeps. Thats my kinda town.
In 10 words or less, what is your advice for someone new to the industry? Create a niche. Embrace technology. Invest in training and customer service.
What’s your favorite real estate iPhone/Android app? iPMT is my favorite iPhone app. Its the most comprehensive payment calculator on the market. Unfortunately, its no longer available in the app store. I use it everyday when quoting payments.
Who are your favorite people to follow on Twitter? Deepak Chopra, Oprah, Forbes, Melanie Duncan and byRegina.
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