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Gathering of Eagles: Investing in your profession

Well, the first day of my first Gathering of Eagles is almost over and it was amazing. I’m so excited for the next three days of learning and growth. The value of the event and the exceptional takeaways are so worth the cost of admission — and I can’t wait to get home and start putting them to work.

GOE is a true bucket list event that I’ve wanted to attend for years, yet the event always felt out of reach for me. I’m humbled to be sitting in the room with so many industry leaders. This event is different from any I have attended in the past; as the broker-owner of an indie brokerage, I should have been coming here long ago.

It is clear to me that I will be coming out of this experience a better and more educated leader.

Day one: All about crunching the numbers in your business

Day one has been all about mergers and acquisitions, the valuation of brokerages, brokerage mergers, commission structures and how to model the impact of changes in your business before you make them.

One of the key questions to ask is, “What is your growth strategy?” While we’re all working for organic growth, there is also growth that can be generated through acquisition, whether you’re a brokerage or a team acquiring another team.

There has to be a thought behind your growth. If you’re doing it just for the money, you’ll fail. You must be aligned in mission, vision, values and purpose, especially in today’s market.

When it comes to working with your agents, the refrain that’s playing in their head is “What’s in it for me?” You’ve got to respect the company and culture that you’ve built, but you also have to honor the people you’re bringing on. You do that by helping them to level up and make their business the best it can be.

Conference quote of the day: “Don’t tell anybody until you tell everybody. Three people can keep a secret if the other two are dead.”

— Steve Murray, RTC Consulting

Getting the most out of your next professional development event

What are the expectations that you go into an event with? Do you prioritize meeting new people? Attending the sessions? Catching up with old friends? 

What do you want to learn? Do you look for operational insights? New technology? Do you seek out a high-level industry overview or dig deep on a specific topic?

A lot of people think about the cost and logistics of an event without making a plan for what they’ll do once they arrive. This can be especially difficult if you don’t know anyone there or if you’ve still got all of your attention on what’s going on back at the office.

Here are a few things to keep in mind whether you’re planning to attend Gathering of Eagles or even just going to a one-day development course locally.

Make plans with your office for coverage

Coverage at the office means you can truly be present at the event you’re attending. If you’re working directly with clients, make sure that they’re aware of the days you’ll be gone and exactly who’ll be helping them in your absence. Set specific times to check in with the office so that you’re not distracted by the constant ping of notifications on your phone.

Plan ahead for the event

Look at the materials, session topics, and networking events. Hit up your social media platforms to see who you might know who’ll be there and make plans to connect with them in person.

Spend some time each day journaling

You could also record your takeaways and how they apply to your business. When you’re taking in so much new information, you’re bound to forget some of the Ah-Ha moments you’ve experienced. Getting them locked in in real-time will ensure that you follow up once you return home.

If you’re a content creator

Use the event to inspire your work. Record videos, set up interviews for your podcast, and make notes for your blog. Stay active on social media, tag others who are attending, and be sure to use the hashtags that the event has identified for attendees.

If you struggle with imposter syndrome…

Don’t be reluctant to introduce yourself to others or to speak up in small groups. Remember that you have just as much right to be there as anyone else, and you owe it to yourself to make the most of the opportunity. Put yourself out there and take risks. You’ll be glad you did.

When you pour out yourself for others — your clients, colleagues, agents and family — it’s essential that you replenish that energy. Events like Gathering of Eagles are where you can do that. Make plans today for an upcoming event and make professional development a priority. It will do great things for you and for your business.