Inman Connect San Francisco 2016
August 5, 2016, Emeryville, USA
Inman Connect San Francisco 2016
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How Being a Punk Rocker Taught Me Everything I Needed to Know to be a Successful Agent
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About speaker

Jenelle Isaacson
Founder & Owner at Living Room Real Estate

A person who is a master in the art of living makes little distinction between their work and their play, their labor and their leisure, their mind and their body, their education and their recreation, their life and their religion. They hardly know which is which and simply pursue their their vision of excellence and grace, whatever they do, leaving others to decide whether they are working or playing. To them they are always doing both.

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About the talk

Topic: Business

The rough and tumble world of musician life was a road map for navigating a career in real estate.

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Welcome to the stage Jenelle Isaacson, from Living Room a little bit about Janelle is that she would be a textile professor if she hadn't chosen real estate. So let's hear some exciting things from Janelle. I started a punk band with three of my girlfriend's named Spread Eagle. Yeah. It's not that I liked punk rock music. It's just all we can play. None of us had played our instruments before. We see the beauty of punk rock music. You don't have to have much skill. You just have to have something to say and it's the courage to get up in front of an audience and scream it at them.

And what would seem like a detour from the life of a successful brokerage owner for me with the beginnings and the foundation. At just 22 years old. I was negotiating contracts are band went out and toured nationally and I did the PR and the marketing and I learn to manage extremely tight budgets. Like in business, I had to continually negotiate sexism and I gained the confidence that I could Rock anything in heels. This experience gave me the grit and the skills and confidence that I could rock any business and when the band finally broke

up the van broke down and I found myself in, Portland, Oregon. I decided with the kind of hustle that I'd learned I get my real estate license. And I feel a real estate career on the people that I've met along the way as my in my life as an artist and a musician. I was the punk rock realtor of our town. I add another band we play shows I can get help off stage go to the bar and I can tell people that's what you don't have to get evicted for playing your drums too loud anymore. I'm going to tell you how we're going to fix that problem. And I quickly Rose to the top of my

industry. I was in the top ten percent of sales in my company. but all the marketing that I saw and Industry in the audience that I saw us as Realtors talking to I didn't relate to and I didn't know I was in a made-for-tv realtor obviously and my client did not resemble that good looking straight white couple with a picket fence and a glossy brochures and sending out I actually don't know any of those people and I thought rather than get frustrated that it seems like my people are invisible. I thought wow, this is cool. I think I finally

found my stage again. I think I can turn this job that I love into enormous art project exposing the way people really live and thought start my own brokerage. The year was 2009 and things in my life were different. I could no longer live in a van with three of my girlfriend. I had a mortgage to pay and the sole income provider for my family and I just given birth to my second daughter. I had two babies under the age of 18 month old. Everyone told me I was crazy.

I could not find any money or any support for this idea. Go to work even the radio is against me. They only story that played on NPR was about how it was the end of us as an industry. So I turn NPR off and turn Eminem up. Success was my only option. Punk rock safely Tommy you can't wait for permission and I refuse to sit back down every person that told me maybe you should wait maybe the kids should get a little bigger. Maybe you should wait and see if the others Market shakes off. I just thought

inside I'll show you. I think it's like even a better time for me. When Din Tai Fung Graphics. Can I put together a business just like I'd put together the band. I needed a good name. I needed awesome people that I can Slug It Out in the market with and most importantly I needed that message and the courage to get up in front of an audience and scream it Adam. So the name yo punk rock movement and I knew I wasn't going to create a movement with the rallying cry Isaacson real estate

who wants the name of my dead Norwegian ancestor is on their business card. What does that mean? So I thought what's a name? That means something what is the movement and I thought of all of my clients wear for them Living Room is about finding room to live to thrive to create to create Community to connect. It's not a place that you put the couch as like, there we go. That's my name Living Room And also I wanted to create a movement of business where anyone can be the leader Anarchy

be able to grow far beyond my name far beyond my reputation because the business person it was important to me that not only I would give this business life, but I could raise it to Independence. I got into real estate in the first place for the autonomy in the freedom and I'll be damned if I was going to give that up so I can see my name written on a door or sign Somewhere In My City. So next step I got to put the band together. Well, luckily on Crock-Pot me technical

proficiency is overrated cousin 2009. I could not judge and agents current market Productions as any indicator of their future success. So I had to look for other things. So I look for people who are giving back to their Community. I look for people that I thought had the courage to say something and most importantly I look for people wide Smiles on their faces cuz if they can find the joy and that job at that time. I knew they wouldn't survive and I couldn't afford to be around them financially or spiritually I had those agents have gone on to such great success

come back to me and say how did you know I was going to be successful. Why'd you take the chance on me? I've looked at them. I saw a sure thing how many fully tattooed agents are there in our Market how many agents have skate ramps in their backyard? How many agents have been Faithfully bartending lesbian arm wrestling night. true Can you have the trust and the authenticity of an entire community of people that no one in our industry was talking to before

you. An amplifying these voices empowering them to tell the stories of each of their client is and continues to be the secret to Our Success. Great art isn't censored. Everyday on the front of our website is one of these stories no Photoshop or airbrushing and sometimes the titles make me blush. There is it's a gay gay World Festival courthouse in Portland. OR my ass might melt in the seat of my Prius. It's like Inside I know I'm just screaming. Yeah, these are the hit songs. These are the titles and the post that get shared hundreds and thousands of

times on social media. They're the reason that without the advertising dollars or marketing budgets of my competitors Math More Facebook likes than anyone else. They're the reason in four years are sales went from 35 million to 350 million. Thank you showing real people in real houses who would have known and it's exactly what my competitors were in about. If you leave to go work for Living Room Realty, you're going to alienate the higher in Market alienate other client. But you see when you come to our website and you see yourself and the story of two

women who bought the perfect house with a garage to convert into a spa. You're not thinking about the price point you just feel like your needs felt seen and understood and there is humor and Humanity in that and there's a level of connection that you create so you don't get from looking at listings on Zillow. Listen. Because the anti Punk that's a poser in punk rock. There is nothing worse than a poser and I cringe when I hear industry start talking about attracting Millennials are attracting the higher in Market Common the year they were born.

Thank you guys still have dream Market that they've got money people want to be seen as individuals a really great example of a punk rocker at my company is Lauren. She was a stay-at-home mom with three kids and she started her own at home sewing business. She transitioned to real estate and we were talking back to me successful just be yourself. She's like, all right, so she shows up to the office and an outfit that she's found herself in the intakes photos of herself twerking. 7500 Instagram followers

and you know who they are wealthy women who have the time and the money does so and they love her style and being punk rock like Lauren doll means Having the courage to piss some people off. She's not speaking to everyone but she has rabies fans in the laundry Market. And I think being this kind of punk rocker is willing to say something is the only way. An agent like Lauren or a company like mine has any hope of being seen? Is unless your Zillow or Trulia or Redfin real estate and so you better be willing to say something.

Rather risk owning queer punk rock real estate or women who stole her own clothes real estate then risk owning nothing at all, and I asked you today. What do you own? What do you own? What can you say and what can your agent stay? Zillow can't and I know if some of you quit now might be thinking good for you to know. I've been to Portland. I know that punk rock and Tattoos will work in Portland. But how does this scale and how does this relate to me? But I feared you're asking that question. You may be missing the point because their

recent Living Room looks like it does it's simply because we held up a mirror to our clients in our community and we let them shine. And Living Room looks like a lot of things depending on where you live and how you live and I'm guessing in Carmel Indiana Living Room looks a lot more like Christian basketball games and the chaos of raising four kids, but I have a vision to see Living Room Realty in every city in America because everyone has a story to tell everyone wants to feel seen and connected and they have a right to

love where they live and we do this by asking where is your Living Room and then celebrating the answer regardless of what it looks like? Back in the day with the band. We got done with the show. I'd come out as a lead singer. I play guitar I come out and say I want to thank you all for participating. You guys are a little more time. I still still feel that way and I come to work and I know that we've told over a billion dollars worth of Real Estate. Telling the stories of thousands of people that are authentic and real

and true and I am certain. That punk rock fantasies do come true. Thank you.

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