- Image by Bettina Tizzy via Flickr
I have to admit, I have NEVER been to a “women’s conference” of anything. Probably a subconscious fear of being isolated, perhaps even vilified as representing all the cavemen of the world. I drove my new wife recently to a three hour seminar she attended with a dear friend about “how to understand men”. That’s probably as close as I’ve ever gotten to a “women’s conference”. I sat at Starbucks and people watched over a Chai latte while I imagined all the horrible things they were learning about all of us knuckle-draggers. This was in San Francisco no less!
That all changed this week. Here I am at my ripe middle age, still pushing the envelope and trying out new things. I attended a Women’s Conference of REALTORS State conference in San Diego. Despite all my fears, trepidation and reservations, I bit the bullet and went along with Anna, who is the President Elect for our local chapter. In selfless show of support, off we went to sunny Southern California.
Now before all my male friends and colleagues think that I may have sold out to the other gender, don’t knock it until you try it! First, there were perhaps five men in the room of what I would estimate to be a crowd of maybe 250 women. Ratios like that are hard to find, yes gentlemen? It reminded me of my buddies who took Women’s Health in college for more than obvious reasons. So here I was, in a ballroom full of professional women and what was the opening presentation about? Gender communication. And of course, I was seated at a table in front, feeling 500 eyes or so looking forward, and imagining they must be looking at me for every reaction to each comment made by the presenter. (Ok, I’m not really that paranoid nor narcissistic, but the thought did cross my mind every so often during the presentation.)
Anyhow, the presentation was terrific and spot on. I had a boss and mentor who used to insist that I attend conferences outside my personal expertise (I was an organizational development guy, so he would send me to an engineering conference, for example). So, being at this conference was the ultimate example of what he taught me…I was as far out of my “expertise” as I could possibly get attending this conference!
Enough joking around. The people I met at this conference were impressive, caring, professionals who want to be the best at what they do. I learned a lot about leadership, service and excellence. We made friends with REALTORS from all over the state, and can now assist OUR clients who are relocating by connecting them to a qualified professional anywhere in California. The real estate industry in California is in good hands with these women at the helm.