For as avid of a reader and podcast listener as I am, I don’t listen to books very often. Audio books are hard for me to get into because I tend to listen and do at the same time, be it commuting, traveling, or working out (yes, I listen to podcasts while I run. Go ahead and giggle). And if something else grabs my attention, be it a neighborhood dog lunging for my apparently delicious tennis shoes or an announcement of a train delay, I can’t just trace back to where I was in an audio book like I can on paper.
However, when Macmillan Audio contacted me about the audio release of Ann Leary’s The Good House, I accepted their offer of a review copy. I did not regret it.
Leary’s novel about a middle-aged New England real estate professional is a darkly funny yet touching portrait of a woman and her community. Hildy Good is an alcoholic who is (sort of) in recovery, dealing with a slow business year and her fair share of interpersonal relationship problems. Her inner monologue skewers everything from townie weirdness to politically-correct educational methods to East Coast WASPiness with a wry sense of humor. Yet Hildy’s own vulnerabilities keep her brash observations from taking over the story. And as the novel delves into the literary worlds of mysteries and thrillers later in the story, Hildy’s voice is a constant–if unreliable–witness.
For how down-to-earth and practical Hildy is, she has a whimsical side. The undercurrent reference to her persecuted female predecessors, whether they are victims in the Salem witch trials or her misunderstood bipolar mother, puts an interesting twist on Hildy’s “mind reading” parlor tricks and her perceived second-class status as a recovering alcoholic. Continue reading »
Back when her life ran smack into the foreclosure crisis, Stephanie Alison Walker started blogging. It didn’t stop offers from evaporating or credit scores from plummeting. It didn’t keep her and her husband out of bankruptcy court. But it did turn out to be a great little love story.
Walker strung together her blog entries and created a book called Love in the Time of Foreclosure. You ride with her and her husband, Bob, down the rocky path that millions have traveled since the start of the housing crisis. Originally they had put 20% down on a 30-year, fixed-interest loan, with the income to back it up. Then, Bob lost his job and their dream house wasn’t too far behind.
Here at the Book Scan blog, we’ve covered the real estate + romance novel mashup. But Walker’s story isn’t about poofy blouses or forbidden trysts. This memoir is about how to keep a marriage together and romance alive under one of the most stressful situations a couple can go through together. And this isn’t about the perfect couple that can handle any of life’s problems, either. Stephanie and Bob have almost broken up before. What’s to say the end of homeownership might not also be the end of their union? Continue reading »
By Erica Christoffer, Multimedia Web Producer, REALTOR® Magazine
How did they do it? How did they achieve and maintain such an inspiring level of success? There are many lessons these bands can teach real estate professionals and other entrepreneurs.
In the same vein and a great piggy-back to our video interview with “Come Together” author Richard Courtney, this short documentary features David Meerman Scott and Brian Halligan at the Gathering of the Vibes Festival last year. It offers a captivating (and musically delicious) inside look at their recent book “Marketing Lessons from the Grateful Dead.”
The Dead knew how to get in front of people, as is pointed out in the book and this short film. They toured nonstop throughout their career, reaching out to their fans, creating personal connections and lasting relationships. Plus, they had a recognizable brand that they stuck with. Sounds like key elements real estate practitioners can implement in their careers.
Check out the book, check out this video, and share your thoughts: How can you be more like the Grateful Dead of real estate?
By Stever Robbins
The best-known books on personal productivity are The 4-Hour Work Week by Tim Ferriss, and Getting Things Done by David Allen. Tim’s book helps people build a financial engine to give them the life they want. David’s book helps achieve a peaceful, Zen-like mind by creating a system that handles everything in your life. The Get-it-Done Guy Book builds skills to make any pursuit less work. You can use it to work less and do more while building the financial engine that revolutionizes your life.
You can also use it to do your existing job faster and better. One step of the Get-it-Done Guy system involves clearing your mind and life of clutter, but it doesn’t address inboxes; it addresses physical clutter and streamlining job demands that can lead to information overwhelm such as having to track several projects at once. Task management has already been presented in Getting Things Done, which is the system I have used for the last several years.
The book’s nine steps build a foundation for streamlining how you get what you want out of work (and life). The material is based on ideas I learned or developed during my years coaching, both coaching tools and techniques to help clients work less and do more.
The Nine Steps
Step 1: Live and work on purpose
If you’re anything like me, a lot of what you call work has very little to do with getting anything important done in life. Like when I compulsively check my social media sites every hour. That kind of thing must go.
Step 2: Stop procrastinating
What is procrastinating except the very art of not doing the very stuff you know is most important? We’ll cover how to nip this in the bud, or at least arrange for someone to kick you into action when you’re delaying. And just in case you’re someone who claims being kicked into action doesn’t work for you, we’ll get out an Ostrich feather and tickle you into action instead. Continue reading »
By Melissa Dittmann Tracey
If you’re not one of those people who naturally oozes charisma, communications expert Mark Wiskup has good news: Being likeable is learnable. In his book, The It Factor: Be the One People Like, Listen to, and Remember (AMACOM, 2007) Wiskup doles out advice for perfecting your elevator pitch, mastering small talk, giving good compliments, and steering clear of annoying patronizing patter. The advice may not be groundbreaking, but this quick read’s practical scripts and sample scenarios are great refreshers before any client meeting, party, or networking event. Buy the Book
FROM THE BOOK: 5 WAYS TO BE MORE LIKABLE
In real estate, being a “people person” is core to your job. You must forge relationships quickly and earn the trust of those you meet. Say the wrong thing, and you can kiss that first impression goodbye. Wiskup offers these ideas for boosting your likeability factor in almost any situation:
1. Be specific with compliments. Vague, lackluster praise (“I’m really happy to meet with you today”) comes across as insincere, insensitive, and can even leave the other person feeling resentful. Make your compliments stick by being descriptive and showing that you did your homework. Instead of: “Great job on the marketing report. Keep up the good work,” try “Good job on the marketing report. The third-quarter demographic stuff really helped me focus on where the money is for us. I was really impressed with your analysis of the competition.” Continue reading »