During the latest Fried On Business show I enjoyed the presence of two very classy and accomplished ladies.
Each brought to the microphone a level of expertise that made it a pleasure to share their insights with my audience.
First up was Beth Azor, founder and owner of Azor Advisory Services. AAS owns and manages five shopping centers in Florida, and Beth travels the country consulting with, brokering deals for and training associates in the commercial real estate industry.
Beth joined Terranova as a rookie leasing agent, when the company had a total staff of 11. When she left, she was president of the firm, and it had 149 people.
So she knows her stuff.
Her advice to young people considering a career in the real estate business is this: Shadowing leads to internships, and internships lead to jobs.
Shadowing means spending time with professionals in many different aspects of the industry.
“It’s not who they know. It’s who knows them,” she said.
Here are some ways to make yourself known, according to Beth Azor:
– Bring coffee to the office.
– Offer to work for free for a period of time.
– Arrange very short meetings – even five minutes can be valuable.
I can attest to this. I try to pick up the phone for everyone, and I like to believe it’s always been a benefit to the person on the other end of the line.
And to me, as well.
Beth shared more time-tested advice:
– Don’t say no for the prospect. Don’t assume you know what somebody else is thinking. Let them tell you. And don’t be afraid to call a prospect – be it an employer, a tenant, a bank, etc.
“People are afraid of rejection. So what? They’re just going to say no. Move on,” she said.
– Set goals. You have to write them down. Then follow up.
Beth added that Facebook – yes, Facebook – is an incredible resource for leasing agents. Let’s say the potential tenant is a leather furniture store. Go on their Facebook page and private message them. You’ve bypassed the gatekeepers and, hopefully, gone directly to the owners.
You can do 10 to 12 of these a day, but that’s 50 to 60 messages a week, she said. You can canvas and cold-call the rest of the time.
Also, Facebook ads are inexpensive and targeted, Beth added. Highlight details that serve the prospect and their customers.
Keep stats on your outreach efforts – weekly, monthly, quarterly. You can’t improve what you don’t measure, she said.
I think of it this way: You need to make sure you’re doing the basics – the “blocking and tackling.” If you do this – if you actually do the activity involved in blocking and tackling – it will work.
Click here to listen to the full interview with Beth Azor of Azor Advisory Services.
Victoria Rogers is Vice President of Arts for the Knight Foundation in Miami. The Knight Foundation funds projects in technology and the arts, and Victoria came aboard to talk about Knight New Work Miami, which will invest $500,000 in innovative works in dance, theater and music.
Artists, choreographers, composers and playwrights who work with a Miami-based organization are encouraged to submit ideas for brand new works.
You can submit online at kf.org/newworkmiami no later than 11:59 p.m. on Aug. 31. Be prepared, however, to demonstrate your qualifications. The Knight Foundation takes vetting seriously.
“We’re looking for artists. They can be emerging or established, but we’re really looking at people who have some experience in the field,” she said.
Foundation was created through the largess of newspaper publishing giants Jack and Jim Knight about 65 years ago, Victoria said.
Over the last decade, Knight has invested more than $125 million in the arts in South Florida, she added, funding such facilities as:
– The Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts
– The Phillip and Patricia Frost Museum of Science
– The New World Symphony
– Frost School of Music at the University of Miami
“We have not only supported the creation of art, we have supported the institutions that support artists. So you’re looking at developing an ecosystem. We do that because we believe that the arts contribute to the communities. They are essential for creating vibrant communities here in South Florida – and across the nation,” Victoria said.
The Knight Foundation is active in Akron, OH; Charlotte, NC; Macon, GA; Miami; Philadelphia, PA; Detroit, MI; San Jose, CA; and St. Paul, MN – all cities where the Knight Ridder media company publishes newspapers.
“We’ve been doing this for over a decade now. New Work Miami is just an extension of what we’ve done in this community for organizations, for individuals, for small and emerging groups of artists,” Victoria said.
“We are celebrating the heart of our city. We’re celebrating the really rich diversity of our city as seen through the lens of an artist. It doesn’t get better than that. Art connects us to each other. It helps to create empathy, and it connects us to this city.”
Click here to learn more about Knight New Work Miami.
Click here to listen to the full interview with Victoria Rogers, Vice President of Arts for the Knight Foundation.