5 Lessons I Learned at ICNY This Year

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The standouts from this year’s event

I try to make it a point to learn one new thing every day — a skill, a fact, a life lesson.

And after this week at Inman Connect New York, my brain is overflowing.

Here are the most important things I learned, from my Friday afternoon perspective.

You don’t have to do it all

One of the wisest things I heard all week came from Seth Price, who noted in his digital marketing panel that agents do not need to sign up for every social media tool on the planet. Find something you like and use it, he suggested.

With so many different options available to us today — from the music we listen to and the food we eat to the tools we use to improve our businesses — it’s easy to fall victim to FOMO (fear of missing out) and flit from one thing to another without really taking the time to learn a single platform.

But if you just don’t get it, don’t force it.

Change is happening — so get ready

I know we all get tired of words like “disruption,” but the fact is, it is coming (or has come) to every industry. The fact that “the only constant is change” is an adage makes me suspect that this has been the way of the world since the dawn of time.

What are your options when faced with change? You can prepare for it, watch for it and embrace it, or you can run from it.

Running hasn’t worked out too well in the past. And change always brings an abundance of opportunity with it.

We explored those opportunities in-depth this week, from big data to tech trends to the power that consolidation can bring to the industry.

What you say really matters, even on social media

Sometimes we forget that social media doesn’t just live on the box in our offices or in our pockets. Leigh Brown‘s rallying cry to treat each other with respect did not fall on deaf ears.

It’s 2016. Let’s get over making fun of each other for differences we have little control over (like accents).

‘Normal’ might be gone forever

Seth Godin said that the bell curve outlining normal behavior is “melting” in his keynote speech. That means there’s no such thing as an “average” client anymore — or an “average” agent.

This is another opportunity — the chance to find your tribe of “misfits” and use what you know about those people to bring value to their lives. That’s how you’ll be successful.

We have the best audience on the planet

We had some new faces helping out with ICNY this year, and one of them mentioned to me how lovely it is to have such an engaged, passionate audience.

As a publication, it’s common to “dumb down” certain areas of your coverage or promotion to suit your audience. But that’s not something we have to do — on our website, on social media or in our conference, either.

Your thirst for knowledge and to better yourselves is inspirational. We hope you got a lot out of this year’s program, and we can’t wait to see you in San Francisco in August.


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