Today's Headlines - Realty Times
Posted On Sunday, 20 June 2021 00:00 Written by


JacArbourHeadshotJac Arbour graduated from Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine, where he was initially tracked for a career in dentistry. By the end of his sophomore year, Jac understood that his true passion was firmly rooted in the financial industry. Jac followed this calling and soon became nationally recognized as a top investment and insurance advisor. 


Jac qualified for the Million Dollar Round Table his first year in the industry and has done so each year since. Jac continues to win accolades for his acumen in financial planning, estate planning, fee-only investment advisory, insurance, and is now in demand as a professional speaker. 

CEO of Proceeds Press and the author of two books — May You Drink from the Saucer: Timeless Truths for an Extraordinary Life (Fall 2013) and This Little Piggy; The Tale of an Extraordinary Piggy Bank (2021),

Jac makes numerous speaking appearances each year. His clients include high schools and colleges who are interested in giving their students a powerful message about personal development, financial advisors who are looking to enhance their businesses and increase their flow of prospects, and the public, who comes to hear Jac speak about a array of personal finance topics.

As a speaker, Jac has been mentored by some of the best in the industry and credits much of his development to his attendance at National Speaker’s Association and the people NSA has introduced. The voice Jac brings to the podium is a refreshing one and as Don Hutson says, "Jac's words of wisdom belie his years." Jac is a graduate of the Bill Gove Speech Workshop and looks forward to his next talk with your team.

Posted On Friday, 18 June 2021 00:00 Written by

Even before the National Football League established the Rooney Rule, the Pittsburgh Pirates (MLB) was hiring players from diverse backgrounds. In 1969 the Pirates employed a player from Panama named Renaldo Antonio Stennett Porte. His teammates called him Rennie.  He was born in Colon, Panama, played second base, stood about 5-foot-11 at 160 pounds.

The NFL’s Rooney Rule was created from the influence of Dan Rooney, owner of the Steelers and chairman of NFL’s diversity committee. It was also the result of the firings of Tony Dungy, head coach of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Dennis Green of the Minnesota Vikings. The Rooney Rule’s purpose was to ensure that minority coaches, especially African Americans, would be considered for high-level coaching positions. It has been expanded to apply to jobs for all NFL senior football operations. Incidentally, both Dungy and Green worked for Steelers head coach Chuck Noll. Further, despite what some may think, Eugene Chung, New England’s 1st round draft choice in 1992, qualifies under the Rooney Rule.

That’s not to say that Stennett’s employment was ensured by the Rooney Rule (or such equivalent MLB rule). The “barrier” for African Americans had been broken on April 15, 1947 when Jackie Robinson was put on the field by Branch Rickey of the Brooklyn Dodgers. But what made Stennett so special was that he was the leadoff hitter in MLBs first all-Black and Latino starting lineup. That day came on  September 1, 1971, 24 years after Robinson’s debut.

You probably heard of a couple of others in that lineup that Stennett led off -– Roberto Clemente and Willie Stargell, both in the MLB Hall of Fame.  On September 15, 1975, Stennett went 7 for 7 at the plate in nine innings. No player has matched that since. In 1977 Stennett’s batting average of .336 helped the Pirates win the World Series. And he followed that in 1979 helping the Pirates win another World Series.

All three have passed away with Stennett dying just last month at the age of 72. Pirates President, Travis Williams, eulogized Stennett saying “Rennie symbolized what it meant to be a Pittsburgh Pirate.”

While the present Rooney Rule does not quantify characteristics of integrity and work ethic, it would be prudent to use Stennett as a good example of both.

Will you choose wisely in hiring others to shape and grow your organization?

Posted On Friday, 18 June 2021 00:00 Written by
Posted On Thursday, 17 June 2021 00:00 Written by
Posted On Thursday, 17 June 2021 00:00 Written by


JulieJulie Timms began her real estate career in 1979 in Hilton Head Island, SC and in 1985 opened her first brokerage, a Coldwell Banker franchise. In 1998, Julie and her husband, Bernie Timms, decided to downsize and open a small independent brokerage. In all those years Julie’s has focused on one thing – the success of each individual client. Julie’s desire for excellence in her business has led her to achieve the following real estate designations and certifications: ABR, CRS, CCIM, CLHMS, e-Pro, GRI, RSPS, TRC.

Posted On Thursday, 17 June 2021 00:00 Written by
Posted On Wednesday, 16 June 2021 00:00 Written by

I am seated backstage this very moment with enough time to write a complete blog while I am on call and at an event.

That is rare.

In 12 hours today, and 5 tomorrow, I will take the stage at least 30 times over this day and a half, totaling less than 15 minutes of total “on stage work”.

This is my first HUGE production event back to “normal” (besides the temp checks, masks, social distance signs on chairs, and having to take a COVID test and passing as negative to get in), and there are nearly 1,000 people here in this massive ballroom with almost 3,000 chairs set up.

The Client booked me half a year ago to be Emcee.  Thrilled with the work (even though, as of this date, I’m not accepting Emcee jobs anymore and just doing Keynotes), I jumped at the opportunity, booked the contract, and the date was moved a few times until it landed on this moment, Spring 2021.

On our first conference call, the getting-to-know-you, after signing contracts, I had a most unique experience.

Usually, the Client is excited to integrate my many talents throughout their event and want to talk through when and where I will sing, do impressions, have a comedy segment (or 10), share some or all of The Promise Keynote, as well as act as Emcee in the traditional ways: bringing people to stage, being the common thread of the event, and running awards.

Being Emcee usually entails me almost working myself to exhaustion over 3 days of running around from 6am-midnight, creating bits, saving the day with things the client forgets, and filling in as Keynote and Entertainment show (having done so many times through the years for celebrities who didn’t show up, airplanes that couldn’t get out of bad weather, even once when a band member of a headlining act had a heart attack from a near drug overdose backstage – “Jason!  Kill some time.  Drummer needs to be revived!”  True story.).

I used to LOVE doing Emcee work, as clients would have me back year after year as a kind of “Event Insurance”, since they knew I could handle pretty much anything, and would eventually not even bother hiring a Keynote or evening Entertainment, and just have me do it, on top of Emcee work.

Now, in the Emcee role, whenever hired for a new Client, I expect the same, since that is my Signature Move, being known and solely hired because I am a Triple-Threat: Emcee, Speaker, Entertainer (and thus my reason to not take these jobs anymore, except once in a blue moon – or at least, every pandemic or so).

As the call began, I just listened to what they needed me to do, expecting us to craft and create the show-flow together while integrating my performance pieces.

Having written their script out, they asked if I preferred bullet points to teleprompter, to which I answered either is fine, but usually I just ad-lib a ton because I have so much freedom and time to fill, between singing, audience interaction pieces, motivational stories, etc, it leaves things free-flowing.

I asked, “So, do you want to give me 5-minutes to open with a few great music numbers, and then like 10-minutes later with some comedy, and then I can do some of The Promise message and a powerful story for 7-minutes…”  

I saw the furrowed eyebrows of the client and production team staring back at me.

“What do you mean by ‘doing music and singing’?  Why would you do that?” they asked.

I was surprised, because usually that’s one of the only reasons I’m hired.  It’s what I’m known for.  It’s what makes me different.

I responded, “Oh, well, if there’s not time for that then we can just mix in some of my comedy, impressions, and the funny stuff to keep things light throughout the day whenever you need…” (as I did my rabbit nose wiggle – to no laughs).

I could feel the tension through the Zoom call screen.

They replied, “To be honest, this scripting we have is pretty much exactly as we need it, to the second, and there’s not any time to have you do comedy, or music, and that’s actually not what we want or need.  We just need you to Emcee and introduce our people and keep things on time.  Does that make sense?”

Deer in the headlights on my end.

I don’t EVER recall in my career being hired to NOT:

1. Be Funny
2. Sing
3. Do Impressions
4. Do Parodies
5. Share a Message

They just wanted me to bring people to stage, introduce their needs clearly, and keep it all on time.

That’s it!

Once I realized my place, and that they’d clearly made up their minds, I said, “Of course, happy to do whatever you need!”

I then tried to salvage anything of my talents for them to possibly partake of my promise to the world to bring all that I have to offer – at least it might help me win over the audience to enjoying my time on their stage:

“So, I have an idea.  What if we at least have my iPod set up in case something happens last minute and you need me to fill in for someone, say your Keynote Speaker falls ill, I can fill in for them,” I suggested.

“Why would the Keynote not be there?  We have everything planned out perfectly and all of our shows are timed to the minute.  It will go exactly as we have it planned.  And what do you mean that you can be the Speaker?” they asked, as if I were trying to hijack the event.

Clearly, they know very little about me, my innocent yet helpful intentions, my capabilities, my…normal.

I lobbed a little accolade about myself, “Well, I’m one of the youngest in the Speaker Hall of Fame, and have performed in every Casino in Las Vegas, usually I am asked to Emcee and do more than introductions only…”

They searched for what to say.  I could SEE IT!

“Ok, if you want to have your iPod plugged in…we guess that’s fine, but…why again, for what purpose?” they asked quizzically.

I said, “Well, one time, the Keynote Speaker’s helicopter didn’t land in time, and while I was introducing him on stage the stage manager needed me to stretch the time…I did 45-minutes of my Keynote before their celebrity Speaker, Chuck Norris, showed up.” 

The client looked back at me, blinked, and said, “Our Keynotes will be on site, we are good, but if you want to set up your iPod that’s fine.”

~

Ladies & Gentlemen – This has NEVER happened to me before.

No music.

No comedy.

No impressions.

No dancing.

No ad-libbing.

No winging it.

They didn’t event want one bit of it.

Not one Jason Hewlett Signature Move.

REALLY glad I didn’t accidentally throw a Raptor face at them or I’d have been fired on the spot.

“Stick to the Script & Keep us on Time” were my full orders.

I finally accepted, acknowledged, and allowed myself to step fully into my needed roll.

I said, “I know exactly what you need me to do.  Happy to serve any way you want to utilize me.”  

And here I am…

Backstage at an event where perhaps my 75th talent down the list of my Top 100:

– READING a TELEPROMPTER –

is the only talent this client wants or needs from me.

Hey!  It’s a gig and a chance to get back on stage and be a part of a cool event!

And let me tell you: This Client is dialed in!  They have it all covered.  In fact, I felt foolish setting up my iPod the first day as I knew it would never be needed.

But – to their credit, and without belittling me – they acknowledged that it seemed important to me, so if I needed the iPod near the stage and plugged in, then that’s fine…

All I could hear in my head was:

“Is this good, little emcee fella?  Do you like your iPod here?  Anything else?  

How about a clicker?  Want to touch a clicker?  That’s a neat thing our real speakers get to do….how about a green room?  Have you seen a green room before, young man?  It’s not actually green, we just call it that because that’s important to people backstage.  THIS is a backstage!  Have you ever seen a backstage before, little buddy?”   

Hahahahaha.

The Client didn’t say that, I just felt that way because well –

I’ve NEVER done a gig without music, singing, comedy, voices, stories, any bits, my routines, or my iPod, and just like Gene Wilder in the original movie version of The Producers, “Gimme my Blue BLANKEEEEE!”.

So it was a weird thing to not have my usual level of being needed at this one.

Now I have finally done a gig without my iPod, without doing one voice, one song, one story, one moment that was special to win over the crowd with my uniqueness.

The equivalent of my blue blanket.

And yes, they are paying me handsomely to do my 75th best talent, sans iPod.

Ok.

Some might argue – “You’ve broken a Promise to Yourself in taking that gig!”

To which I would retort – “I am THRILLED to do anything that is not unethical for a client who needs whatever services they feel I can provide!  Even if, when, and most certainly, this isn’t the best use of my gifts, as long as they get what they feel is worth paying for and contracting, and I know I can deliver, then let’s do it!” 

~

Have you ever been in a situation like this?

Have you ever been completely under-utilized in your work?  On the team?  I mean, the only time I would love to be under-utilized might be sometimes at church and a lot of times at home!  LOL.

I believe everyone has felt to some extent or another, whether it’s a new project, an old system/process, or an opportunity to serve, that we have ideas, talents, intelligence to do more, and heavens to betsy we are being under-utilized!

The Promise is to:

1. Do what is needed for the role as determined by the Leader/Client
2. Make sure they know you have more talents, gifts, ideas, skills that are available to be utilized
3. Be ok, and confident enough, in said role, to be quiet and do the job you are asked to do, at your highest level of ability

Truth is this:

I am in NO WAY a GREAT Emcee without all those other things I can do in my back pocket.

I am good, capable, and what is needed to fill a role in this capacity.  Good enough to be paid to do it, as most people are not comfortable on a stage with 1,000 eyeballs on you.

I wish there was time and desire for me to do more, which would help me win the crowd over with music or comedy, and I really feel would make this a more fun event for the attendees…but it is literally not needed, wanted, or thought of as an asset in this situation.

To me, that’s as disturbing as choosing to go on a joyride on a tricycle when you have a Lamborghini in the garage…but also, oddly…refreshing.

When was the last time I just got to be completely dialed in to exactly what the client needs, and provided, and desired, nothing more of my improv, creativity, personality, or capability?

I have added a few touches here and there, a quick quip, a cliff-notes story that was 15-seconds, instead of some of my more laborious and long-winded moments on stage when introducing a theme, segment or person.

Instead, today it’s: ENTER * Read what’s there with flair! * EXIT

There will always be times we have more to offer, something to say in the meeting, a moment or engagement that left us saying to our colleagues, “Man, if they only knew how many great ideas I have…”

The secrets of The Promise, when we find ourselves in this position, are as follows:

1. Know Your Role
2. Be 100% Dialed In and Focused to Be Awesome
3. Buy-In to The Vision of The Leader/Team/Client
4. Be Incredibly Prepared
5. Offer Any Insights to the Role that will Enhance your Delivery
6. Be Ready at Any Moment to Offer More if it’s Needed
7. Don’t Complain
8. Be Grateful for The Work
9. Don’t Promote All They’re Missing Within the Organization or Experience
10. Write in Your Journal Your Thoughts & Feelings

This has been a powerful experience for me and I’m very grateful for it.

From what I understand, the client, and next to no one in the audience have ever seen my web site, know my history, read my book, or know anything about me other than that I am a person who is good on stage.

What this has proven to me is that there is a place for all of our talents, even when we don’t place them at the top of our list of what we offer, it very well may be the TOP of the list of what your Client needs!

“One man’s garbage is another man’s treasure!”  (Ok, maybe that’s not the best quote for this post, but it kind of dementedly fits, too. )

Funny enough, I did receive a message on TWITTER in the middle of the first of my 2 days on stage.  I guess I have a “fan” here – or, see: had!  He tagged me and, as if he were yelling in a TWEET, wrote the following, along with my best reply to at least acknowledge his question and still honor the client:

And for those of you that are reading this entire article and completely confused as to why it’s an article at all – meaning: you are ALWAYS under-utilized and FINE with it!

Well, I’m curious about your process and frame of mind in doing your work consistently in this realm, as for me it’s been difficult, and I’m sure there are many sides to the coin.

I really PREFER to share as many gifts & talents, skills & Signature Moves as I possibly can in every performance…and I’m bummed when that’s not needed or wanted!

But, since it’s not, I am doing what has been instructed.

Most importantly, we need to always Keep the Promise in every role we find ourselves in!

Posted On Wednesday, 16 June 2021 00:00 Written by



JG2John Giaimo is CEO of Bring it Home Communities, Inc, Rewards Call Center, LLC and the real estate news organization Realty Times, Inc.

In the early 1990s, as founder and CEO of publicly traded HomeSeekers.com Inc., John was the first to place an entire multiple listing service home listing database on the web as he pioneered and implemented the infrastructure still used in today's online real estate marketplace. This included MLS, broker, and agent website development.

John pioneered the technology platform and interface to display listing walk- throughs of real property through the use of video. He produced the weekend cable and satellite TV shows The Real Estate Home Show, Search Homes on TV and Realty Times TV.

Drawing on his 30 years of real estate and technology expertise, John’s unique understanding of how technology can meet the needs of consumers continues to drive change in the Real Estate Market; he will continue to write the rules and set the pace for years to come.

 
Posted On Wednesday, 16 June 2021 00:00 Written by
Posted On Tuesday, 15 June 2021 00:00 Written by

While many have solely thought of Bitcoin when the term “cryptocurrency” is referenced, today it is the system they are built on that is disrupting many entities in the financial industry and beyond. Bitcoin and other cryptocurrency are programmed on a system called blockchain. This system facilitates a peer-to-peer transaction network that operates directly between users without an intermediary. And even though Bitcoin and other types of cryptocurrency are a Soft Trend—one whose future is open to influence—the existence of the blockchain and the concept of cryptocurrency is definitely a Hard Trend. It is here to stay with abundant applications.

The rapidly evolving technology of blockchain holds enormous promise for game-changing disruption across any number of industries and fields; it just takes some understanding to figure out how you and your organization can use my Anticipatory Organization Model to leverage this disruptive Hard Trend to your advantage.

Blockchain Broken Down

For those who may be unfamiliar with the term, the blockchain is made up of a system of decentralized transaction records called blocks used to create a transaction without any input from any sort of controlling entity.

Banks and financial institutions are the most known examples of said controlling entities, especially given the common application of blockchain in the financial world. Currently, most people store their savings in a bank account at a bank, and said bank makes money by charging overdraft fees if need be and interest on loans.

The blockchain effectively eliminates the need for the bank in this example by using peer-to-peer connectivity for a secure, direct connection between all involved parties.

Many wonder just how secure peer-to-peer transactions could be, as I’m sure many are remembering the peer-to-peer networks of music sharing in the very early 2000s and the warnings of how it could make your computer susceptible to hacking. However, the blockchain is far more secure in that it utilizes cryptography to keep exchanges secure and a decentralized database of transactions, known as a “digital ledger,” that everyone on the network can see.

Essentially, if someone tries to tamper with a ledger entry, the rest of the network will disagree on the integrity of that particular transaction and will not incorporate it into the larger blockchain. In and of itself, that’s a genuinely revolutionary form of security.

Multiple Uses of Blockchain

I have spoken at length about blockchain technology and how disruptive it can be in the financial industry; however, other applications of blockchain technology are ready and waiting to be leveraged by the right Anticipatory Organization or entrepreneur.

Most are stuck in the current paradigm of cryptocurrency and even the future potential of digital currency implemented by the Federal Reserve. This is likely because, in their minds, a physical, tangible thing that blockchain facilitates is currency exchange, which they are already used to in some capacity with their banking apps or even Venmo.

However, here are some new applications of blockchain technology that can and will significantly disrupt the associated industries:

1. Communication – In early 2020, the world’s first blockchain-powered smartphone was debuted by a company called Pundi X. The beauty of this device is that all of the apps and services involved are decentralized on the blockchain, allowing users to switch to “blockchain mode” to control their own data usage. 
2. Food  During CES 2020, the IBM Food Trust was introduced by IBM to the food industry. This system was built to facilitate authentic records in the food supply chain, allowing companies to accurately trace the specific origin of ingredients. Imagine how this can scale to help those with very specific dietary needs and maybe even help identify areas where cross-contamination of allergens potentially occur.
3. Healthcare – Whether it has to do with processing insurance or admitting patients to a hospital, blockchain technology can greatly improve antiquated processes in the healthcare industry. HIPAA laws are strict, so decentralizing data that only the patient and doctor can access is tremendously secure. 
4. Personal Identification – This goes hand in hand with voting and even paying taxes. If we have our height, weight, Social Security number, voter ID, or any other information on a decentralized network, imagine how easily we can authenticate who an individual is in any case and, likewise, prevent identity theft more quickly. This may even expedite the long process of legal immigration.

Our Digital Footprint 

Given the fact that up until this point, the most notable use of blockchain technology has been in the financial industry with cryptocurrency and now digital currency specific to a country, one must use an Anticipatory mindset when considering other valuable applications of the software.

Essentially, blockchain technology creates a virtually unhackable ledger of transactions; an undisturbed digital footprint in place for accountability. The debut of the Internet was similar to the Wild West; right away, parents and educators pleaded with children and young adults to “not believe everything they read on the Internet,” as it could so easily be altered and fabricated. The blockchain is what the Internet should be, and applied to the antiquated and dangerously unreliable systems of yesterday corrects much of society for the better.

Understanding this simple concept, we can keep our disruptive opportunity antennas up while we look into how blockchain can positively disrupt a multitude of industries beyond the four previously mentioned.

The blockchain is a definite Hard Trend; it is here to stay and will continue to disrupt. The question is, how will you or your organization leverage this profound Hard Trend while it is still in its infancy stage and either pre-solve any problems it will cause your industry or determine how it can fix problems your industry faces.

Undoubtedly, the phrase “check it on the blockchain” will eventually be as commonplace as “let me Google that.”

Posted On Tuesday, 15 June 2021 00:00 Written by
Posted On Tuesday, 15 June 2021 00:00 Written by
Posted On Monday, 14 June 2021 00:00 Written by

I spoke last week about important economic information that was coming out in the last six days. Jobs report last Friday, and the inflation data today for May. Neither report was very encouraging, but the markets are taking the information in stride and buying into the theory of “Don’t fight the FED!”

The Federal Reserve has dismissed higher inflation as “transitory” and that prices will fall as the economy recovers and people go back to work. Their statements indicate that everything is related to the supply chain being restricted and that once all the workers go back to work, supply will return and that prices will fall. I’m not so sure everyone believes that, but we all know you can’t fight the FED!

Today the key number was that year over year inflation was 5%. That is the highest year over year number since January 1992. Certainly, well over the FED target of 2% to 2.5%. The market reaction was that it barely moved the needle at all. The 10yr treasury moved a few basis points higher following a really solid bond auction yesterday; and the UMBS 30yr 2.5% coupon fell from 103.67 to 103.58. A move lower, but not all that much for now. Keep in mind if you follow the charts, resistance on improving rates is about 103.75; and declining rates sits where we currently sit at 103.58. A significant push below that level could see a sharp increase in mortgage rates, but I believe the key will be the market believing the FED and the FED continued purchasing on a grand scale.

It might be good to watch the 30yr treasury auction this afternoon and the market response to it; but for now, nobody wants to fight the FED and the Kool-Aid continues to flow until otherwise noted. So as always, if you like it, lock it; if the client wants to gamble, be sure they know it’s all on them.

Questions or comments: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Posted On Monday, 14 June 2021 00:00 Written by
Posted On Monday, 14 June 2021 00:00 Written by
Posted On Sunday, 13 June 2021 00:00 Written by
Posted On Sunday, 13 June 2021 00:00 Written by
Posted On Sunday, 13 June 2021 00:00 Written by
Posted On Saturday, 12 June 2021 07:50 Written by

In the movie “Finding Forester” William  Forester (played by the late Sean Connery) asks Jamal Wallace (played by actor Rob Brown) if, at the end of his high school championship game played in Madison Square Garden, when Wallace had two free throws, which he missed, but would have won the game, “Did you miss ‘em or did you miss ‘em?” as if on purpose. For Wallace, it was a matter of integrity.

Let’s pose the same question for our professional athletes. Did the professional athletes miss not having fans in the stands while the pandemic kept them sheltered in? Or did they miss them? While it was widely said that NBA players and professional golfers would prefer to have the stands and fairway sidelines packed with fans, were they really missed? Did the players play with less intensity or effort without the fans? Is this an integrity issue as the one faced by Jamal Wallace in the aforementioned movie?

Let’s make the case that it is an integrity issue! Why is that? Did the raucous golf crowd at the PGA Championship in Kiawah Island make it uncomfortable to compete fairly for Phil Mickelson or Brooks Koepka on the walk up the 18th fairway? Yes, you can make the point that although Mickelson was leading and did win. How uncomfortable were they in a crowd that, at least on television, looked out of control? Were the fans entitled to be on the course?

It’s been a U.S. Open policy to allow fans (most PGA golf tournaments do not) to follow the leading golfer(s) up the 18th on the final round. This “mob” (as the late sportscaster Jack Whittaker would have said) appeared to be out of control. The players were even jostled as they walked toward the 18th green. Surely, that U.S. Open policy is being examined.

On another fan issue. The Philadelphia Sixers ejected a Sixers fan and later denied his admission to the Wells Fargo Center, the home arena of the Sixers, for throwing popcorn at and onto Russell Westbrook of the Washington Wizards as he exited the game. The Sixers lost that game.

Further, a disgruntled fan threw a water bottle at Kyrie Irving, Brooklyn Nets star point guard as Irving was leaving the playing floor following the Nets 125-119 win over the Celtics at the TD Garden, home of the Boston Celtics. Whether the fan was angry at Irving for stomping on the Celtics logo or not, throwing objects at players is way out of line!

Will you log-in about the entitlements of fans at sporting events?

Posted On Friday, 11 June 2021 00:00 Written by
The late orator and patriot, Dr. Kenneth McFarland, used to say that “The salesperson is the gas and oil of the free enterprise system.” I suppose today we would need to extrapolate a bit and say that “The salesperson is the gas, oil, green energy, and solution providers of the free enterprise system!” Still, the salesperson’s role in our society is as important if not more so than ever before. Things have changed dramatically, and the most skilled sales professionals are thoughtful change agents who are intensely focused on delivering the greatest value to each client. Anyone who is trying to sell as they did 20-30 years ago is being left behind.
 
I coined a phrase that I used in my last book, Standing Out From The Crowd, which I think is sound philosophy: Become known for the problems you solve. The best salespeople out there today focus on that very thing. The degree to which a salesperson thrives today is largely correlated to their problem-solving capabilities. This requires thinking out of the box and being the facilitator of new ideas and solutions, which might be jointly crafted with the customer who is desperately seeking the comfort of a creative solution to his most glaring problem.
 
The big picture is that just about everybody is now in sales. The problem solver of today’s workforce wants his ideas readily accepted and wants to be articulate in presenting the solution he/she foresees to a given problem. That is sales, even if their business card says they are an engineer, lawyer, or a physician. Most of those people don’t want to be called a salesperson because of the peddler image that prevailed decades ago, but the truth is that we all need to have sales acumen in our quiver to reach success today.
 
The employment data of the U. S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reveals a shocking fact: One in nine employed American workers is in sales! And the number is growing. Doesn’t it behoove us all to know the basic and advanced skills of professional selling today?
 
Are we busy learning the rules of personal engagement? For most buyers in the marketplace, their image of a vendor company is customarily developed through their contact with one person… the sales professional who calls on them. So the role of the salesperson is more sophisticated and critical than ever.
 
My friend, colleague, and co-author of our book Selling With Style, Dr. Tony Alessandra, says “If two people want to do business together, the details probably won’t get in the way; But, if either of the two does not want to do business with the other, the details will seldom lead to a sale!”
 
I concur. That is how important building trust is today. I think trust and stress are inversely proportional in business relationships. It has been said that the best way to build trust with prospective customers is to talk about them, not you or your product. That can come later. Let’s develop the engagement skills and emotional intelligence to get inside the head of our prospect, identify with them, carefully define their problem, and develop a solution that makes a real difference!
Posted On Friday, 11 June 2021 00:00 Written by
Posted On Thursday, 10 June 2021 00:00 Written by


Ruby Photo 2019Under her nearly 20-year leadership, WFGM has served as a backbone organization in the city promoting philanthropy, fostering leadership and supporting program services for women and families. WFGM’s impact and programs are nationally recognized, proving the power of place-based, strategic fundraising and grant development for intergenerational impact. Since 1996, WFGM has invested more than $30 million over 600 programs involving more than 100 local non-profits, including investments in advocacy and research.

Bright’s numerous awards include the 2015 Super Women In Business Award, 2017 National Organization of Black Elected Legislative Women (NOBEL Women) Shining Star Award, and the 2017 Girl Scouts One Smart Cookie Award, 2017 Memphis Heritage Trail Trailblazers Award. Bright also services on the Memphis Challenge Board of Directors.

Posted On Thursday, 10 June 2021 00:00 Written by
Posted On Wednesday, 09 June 2021 00:00 Written by


Betsy Cameron Headshot 1A fourth-generation Dallasite with more than 20 years of experience in the residential real estate industry, Betsy Cameron offers proven leadership skills and industry expertise as the Vice President of Business Initiatives for the Ebby Halliday Companies. In addition, Betsy is the Sales Leader of Ebby’s iconic Little White House Office and Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate’s Lakewood Office.

As the Vice President of Business Initiatives, Betsy works alongside the executive team to offer strategic vision to drive the company’s profitability and produce high-quality offerings and services to its sales associates and consumers.

Betsy is passionate about the real estate business and the professional relationships that she is privileged to enjoy as she serves our valued clients and agents. As a licensed real estate agent, Betsy became a trusted advisor for clients and is, by her own admission, “over the top” on details. This precision has served her well in both leadership and management roles.

Posted On Wednesday, 09 June 2021 00:00 Written by
Posted On Wednesday, 09 June 2021 00:00 Written by
Posted On Tuesday, 08 June 2021 20:58 Written by
Posted On Tuesday, 08 June 2021 00:00 Written by
Posted On Tuesday, 08 June 2021 00:00 Written by

During this unique period of technology-driven transformation, the education sector has so far been slow to embrace the power of digital tools that can be used to accelerate learning. Institutions spend time, energy, and money protecting and defending conventional teaching methods while casting aside new, transformative ways in which we can adequately prepare young children and even adults for the ever-evolving world in front of us.

While the stimulations of digital connectivity have certainly shortened the attention spans of the young and old alike, generating quite a challenge for educators in both K-12 and university-level teaching, there is actually something positive about this. Human beings have developed superhuman powers in multitasking and an insatiable desire to be in control and hands-on in what they seek out.

We Are Hands-On Multitaskers

A given smartphone user checking any one of our four or five screens for emails, messages, and notifications every few minutes is, in some ways, evidence of the ability for that person to use their brain exponentially. What educators and administrators need to do is look beyond the mere physical emphasis of using technology and view it instead as a tool showcasing how individuals want and need to learn in more interactive ways.

Essentially, instead of teaching students how to use a computer, of which many are already experts at, we look at the technology just as common as a carpenter views a hammer and find interactive, exponential ways to use that technology in refining an already-exponentially functioning mind. And one of the more common ways that I’ve discussed in the past is with gamification.

Why gaming? Simple: gaming is hands-on, is interactive, and further fosters critical and exponential thinking. An individual must problem solve and find a solution when challenged to do so, and after the activity is over, an educator has the ability to prompt their student to use an Anticipatory mindset in figuring out how they could solve those problems presented in the game or activity before they occur.

Soft Skills and Socialization

I recently wrote a blog about the art side of science and math, which refers to the “soft skills” that human beings can leverage to stay competitive in an ever-increasing autonomous society.

To briefly recap that concept, in Bloom’s Taxonomy of the Cognitive Domain, human beings will need to excel at creation, innovation, and elements of socialization that machines cannot do, while machines are fast mastering the math, science, and even programming end of tasks at companies. Gamification in education can greatly improve teaching the soft skills, as using technology as a tool for gamification allows an individual to interact with said technology in human ways.

In a common real-world example, think of fitness equipment like Peloton or Mirror that generate fitness challenges for you to participate in. While you exercise, they handle the math and science of these interactive workouts. Without them, you would be counting how many reps you do yourself, having to potentially write them down in longhand, or remember them while you move on to other exercises.

Seems cumbersome for you to do it all, right? It is, which is why Peloton and Mirror handle that part of the equation, allowing you to focus on the physical element of your workout alone; the part that there is absolutely no need for a machine to do even if it could.

Gamification also facilitates a social element to education, which is desperately needed as the world becomes more virtual. There is certainly nothing wrong with the Hard Trend of remote work, which has been accelerated due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the need for us to be virtual workers where applicable. However, we mustn’t forget that we as humans work with humans also, not just faceless computers.

When you play a game or engage in a hands-on activity, there is a social element combined with a competitive element that forces you to both engage and concentrate. That powerful combination makes education and training fun and interactive, and the competency one receives from it is an understanding of how to work together and communicate, no matter what digital device sits between us.

Anticipatory Educators

As we work the powerful concept of gamification into our curriculums, both in schools and at organizations, Anticipatory Leaders will look to new, disruptive technology and how it can be utilized as a tool and not as a replacement for a person.

Ironically, gamification in education is often viewed as a gimmick, much like how certain disruptive technologies like artificial intelligence (A.I.), machine learning (M.L.), and others were viewed before they upended whole industries. Gamification is certainly something that will only increase in benefit as exponential digital disruptions increase more every year.

Educators should use my Anticipatory Leader System to pay closer attention to the Hard Trends shaping the world, especially outside of the classroom, and find interactive ways to use digital technology to gamify their curriculum in innovative, interactive ways. This effort helps better teach students both how to use the technology and how they can think and work with it exponentially as a human with soft skills in the equation.

Posted On Tuesday, 08 June 2021 00:00 Written by

We need to take a minute and talk about the news we hear and the reaction there might be from it. We also must be very careful to look at the facts and the analysis by a variety of sources to be sure we have a clear view of what things actually mean and how they might impact the markets we serve.

I say this because we all know there is a significant media bias against the housing market. No matter what happens, there is always some outlets who are going to frame everything in the most negative light, even when an obvious upside is staring them in the face. The best example continues to be the complaint about inventory of homes for sale. YES, the number of homes on the market is falling, but that hasn’t stopped record numbers of home sales in 2018, 2019, & 2020. How can there be record breaking sales if there isn’t any inventory? Just yesterday there was a number of articles about falling purchase mortgage applications and a 3% drop in those mortgage applications accounting for lower home sales. Well, that may be true, but in this case, it isn’t; there were actually more contracts last week as there was a HUGE increase in the number of homes sold for CASH! Cash buyers don’t apply for mortgages!

Now, there is some pending data that will be reported tomorrow, June 4th, and next Thursday, June 10th, that you just need to be aware of. June 4th we will get the May jobs report and June 10th we will see important inflation data. These two reports could impact the interest rate markets either good or bad, depending on the news and how that news is viewed. I say this not to create fear or to say what will or won’t happen, I say this because you need to be prepared if any or all of the data puts pressure on interest rates, the possibility of wild fluctuations could be very real. So be prepared, and as always, if you like it, lock it; if the customer wants to gamble, get it in writing that they chose to float and accepts the outcome of doing so.

As always, questions or comments can be directed to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Posted On Monday, 07 June 2021 00:00 Written by
Posted On Monday, 07 June 2021 00:00 Written by
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