What it’s Like to be an Introvert in an Extrovert’s Industry
I think that being an introvert offers a huge advantage for me in my profession.
When you think of the “typical” personality traits of someone that works as an advisor in commercial real estate, “introvert” does not come to mind for most people. To test that theory, I recently asked some friends and family to come up with their idea of the “typical” personality traits of real estate brokers and they came up with this: extroverted, outgoing, good networkers, and confident, among many other things.
However, “introvert” is exactly what comes to mind for me, because I am one. I am reserved, quiet, shy in large groups, and I have a particularly difficult time with small-talk. From those attributes alone, one would think that I am in the wrong industry and that I would not be a successful real estate advisor. I do not agree with that mind-set.
I have worked in real estate for 16 years and I pride myself on my work. I think that being an introvert offers a huge advantage for me in my profession. I believe that my clients get to know the real me, instead of the “salesperson” side of me. I listen intently to their needs, I process things very meticulously and carefully, I am always prepared for whatever may come, and I think about the long-term successes of my clients. When I have conversations, they aren’t small talk; they are meaningful, goal driven, and considerate of the person I am speaking to.
With that said, being an introvert also presents challenges for me. I am often put in situations, like networking, that make me more than a little uncomfortable. I look around and see all the people casually floating about the room like it is their job (because is essentially is), and I have to take a deep breath, prepare myself, and dive into the unknown…not where an introvert wants to be.
Although there are hurdles, I handle them with the faith I have in my abilities as an advisor. My unique approach brings diversity to our clients and offers an original perspective on their individual goals and problems.