You Don't Look Like A Real Estate Broker?!

Real Estate Broker/Owner with North Shore Suburbs & Chicago Real Estate

Creative ProfessionalismRecently, while engaged in conversation with a taxi driver, I was asked the obligatory question, “What do you do?”   “I’m a real estate broker,” I answered.  “Wow, you don’t look like a real estate broker,” he replied.  "Hmmm, what exactly does a real estate broker look like?” I asked.  “I don’t know – I just wouldn’t have guessed that you were a real estate broker,” the driver said.  Finally, feeling neither flattered nor insulted by the driver’s viewpoint, we continued our discussion until we reached my destination.  And yet, although I'm quite confident the taxi driver's comments were harmless in nature, I couldn't help but wonder about the power of misconception.

Personally, I can remember a few occasions when I was judged solely based on incidental traits or personal attributes.  In retrospect, I believe I was inaccurately assessed by individuals who knew absolutely nothing about me.  The truth is, we are all judged at one time or another – encountering those individuals who've developed preconceived opinions based upon our age, our religion, our height and weight, our hair color, our profession – whatever.  In fact, being a far-from-perfect-person myself, I too have been guilty of “judging a book by its cover.”  Not surprisingly, though, I typically have discovered that my judgments were unsubstantiated and flawed.  Which begs the question:  Is judging people an inevitable and unavoidable common case of human nature?

We all have a story – and I’m pretty sure most people would be shocked to hear mine.  Suffice it to say, I have endured and survived my fair share of trauma and adversity during the course of my lifetime.  I don’t talk about it much.  I don’t blog about it at all.  Besides, I am frequently reminded that I have plenty of company.  Yet, there is one significant point of which I am positively certain:  Labels and external characteristics do not define who I am.  So, other than forming the opinion that I look fabulous for my age (a sentiment I will gladly accept all day long,) here is my plea:  Get to know me first.  Within a professional context, allow me to prove what I know and what I can do.  Let me show you why you should invest your time in me.  Permit me to demonstrate how my experience, talent, and expertise will benefit you – and how knowing me will undoubtedly change your life for the better.  Simply stated, please give me chance.  Then you can judge me.

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carie shapiro

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Re-Blogged 2 times:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
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  2. Debbie Reynolds, C21 Platinum Properties 02/05/2013 01:50 AM
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Carla Muss-Jacobs, RETIRED
RETIRED / State License is Inactive - Portland, OR

The only judgment I allow myself to make is: nice and not.  I don't care about anything else at this point in my life.  I want to be around and work with nice.  Cute post!

Feb 05, 2013 05:48 AM #45
Carie Shapiro
North Shore Suburbs & Chicago Real Estate - Evanston, IL

Don:  Thank you ... I appreciate what you said very much :)

Sergio:  You're right ... when we judge others, we are eventually proven right or wrong!  And, putting your professional foot forward at all times  ... always a good idea!

Joanna:  Thanks!  And, like you, I prefer to behave and live my life by the Golden Rule standards too :)

Ridhi:  I love your attitude :)  Ignore the negativity, be true to yourself, and don't let wrong judgments give you a bad day.  I like it!

Deb:  Hey, that gives me an idea for a contest.  If a movie was made about you, who would you want to play the leading role and why?  Hmmmm :) Anyway, I loved your last statement ... to be the best me I can be.  Excellent!

Richie:  Ha!  That could be all of us, for sure!

Bryant:  OMG!  That photo is hilarious ... thank you for posting it and making my day!  I can't stop LOL!!  Plus, I would love to hang out with you anytime ... you have a great attitude and I like your style :)

Tamara:  You are so right ... success has no "look."  Over the years, I've been acquainted with a few megasuccessful folks and you would never know it!

John:  You can't please everybody ... that is so true!  Your comment reminds me of an Eleanor Roosevelt quote (she had so many great quotes) and it goes something like this:  "Do what you feel in your heart to be right ... for you'll be criticized anyway."  John, you have a wonderful outlook on life ... thank you for sharing it!

Diana:  Er, um, well ... I did kind of have that poofy hair back when I first got my license in the 80's :)  And hey, I'm with you ... love animal prints too!


Feb 05, 2013 06:04 AM #46
Carie Shapiro
North Shore Suburbs & Chicago Real Estate - Evanston, IL

Tammie:  "I just want the opportunity to compete" ... so well said!  Thanks, Tammie.

Eve:  Awww, shucks ... thanks Eve :)  That really did make me smile!

Beth:  Exactly!  What does a real estate broker look like?  And yes ... judgement in our society is, as you say, a fact of life.

Eileen:  Who knows what the answer is?

Gene:  You're absolutely right!  It doesn't feel good to be lumped into one broad category or having others generalize about us.  We're individuals possessing unique and special qualities -- all of which can be easily conveyed if given the opportunity.  As always, thanks for the thoughtful comment, Gene!

Jimmy:  You're making me blush ... thanks :)

Richard & Beth:    Thank you!  And, I believe your answer is correct too ....

Jon:  "That's just the way it is" ... yes, I think your statement pretty much sums it up!

Carla:  I want to be around and work with nice too!  Thanks, Carla ... I like it :)



Feb 05, 2013 06:23 AM #47
Gary Woltal
Keller Williams Realty - Flower Mound, TX
Assoc. Broker Realtor SFR Dallas Ft. Worth

Carie, I don't know what IMAGE they are thinking of for a Broker, as we are all diverse, types of people and of course ages and backgrounds.

Feb 05, 2013 06:54 AM #48
Pam Miller
Realty Associates - Conroe, TX
Broker Associate - Water Crest on Lake Conroe

Carrie - I'm not sure what a Real Estate Broker looks like.....maybe we look like taxi drivers:)

Feb 05, 2013 07:21 AM #49
The Temple Team
THE TEMPLE TEAM - Mooresville, NC
Specializing in Lake Norman/Charlotte/Charleston

Hmmmmmm .... Interesting indeed!!!  I wonder what "WE" are supposed to "LOOK LIKE"!!!!

Feb 05, 2013 09:34 AM #50
Nancy Milton Holtzscher
RE/MAX Alliance in St.Louis' Illinois suburbs - Edwardsville, IL
Edwardsville/Glen Carbon, Illinois Broker, REALTOR

I was told last week that I didn't look "flamboyant" enough to be a real estate broker. 

Feb 05, 2013 09:51 AM #51
Kelly McGovern
Realty Concierge International - Bellingham, MA
Working with Kelly is a good move

I hate when someone says something without thinking which makes us ultimately overthink what they said lol.  It was innocent enough I'm sure.  To me you look like a highly successful and friendly real estate broker!  :)

Feb 05, 2013 11:08 AM #52
Christina Sanchez Hood
Palo Alto, CA
#SiliconValleyHOODS | Inspired Living

Carie, congrats on your feature.  It is true that despite our desires to be non-judemental, we still are human.

Feb 05, 2013 11:11 AM #53
Digital Digital
Alachua, FL
full service
Hi Carie, I've been told that looks are deceiving, so it's always a good idea not to pre-judge. Have you heard about people going for an interview and being rude to a stranger in an elevator only to find out that same person will be conducting their interview :)
Feb 05, 2013 11:13 AM #54
Christine Donovan
Donovan Blatt Realty - Costa Mesa, CA
Broker/Attorney 714-319-9751 DRE01267479 - Costa M

Carie - I'm not sure what a real estate broker looks like, and I've seen a lot of them ; )


Seriously, we do get judged and judge even when we know better, and we need to do our best to look past this until we actually know people.

Feb 05, 2013 01:31 PM #55
Cindy Jones
Integrity Real Estate Group - Woodbridge, VA
Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News

Interesting comment.  The perception people have about our profession and what we do every day is interesting.  You are right though we all make judgements everyday good or bad often without all of the facts.

Feb 05, 2013 09:14 PM #56
Carie Shapiro
North Shore Suburbs & Chicago Real Estate - Evanston, IL

Gary:  Yes, we are definitely a diverse group, for sure!

Pam:  Maybe?

Kent:  I wondered the very same thing!

Nancy:  Not flamboyant enough?  Who told you that?  Just curious ....

Kelly:  Hey, thanks!  And, I know what you mean ... far be it from me to overthink something :)

Christina:  Thank you and I agree ... we are only human.

Wandanna:  Yes, I have heard that before.  That's why I believe following the Golden Rule wins every time!

Christine:  You're right ... we need to do our best not to judge, especially if we don't want others to judge us.

Cindy:  Our profession certainly has its share of misperceptions and stereotypes, that is for sure!

Feb 05, 2013 11:50 PM #57
Patricia Kennedy
RLAH Real Estate - Washington, DC
Home in the Capital
Carie, judging from the Active Rain mug shots, it is not easy to generalize about what real estate brokers look like.
Feb 06, 2013 12:05 AM #58
Lisa Von Domek
Lisa Von Domek Team - Dallas, TX
....Experience Isn't Expensive.... It's Priceless!

Hello Carie,

Great post - it is so easy to judge a book by its cover, and the assumption can be so wrong(!)

Feb 06, 2013 05:58 AM #59
1~Judi Barrett
Integrity Real Estate Services 118 SE AVE N, Idabel, OK 74745 - Idabel, OK
BS Ed, Integrity Real Estate Services -IDABEL OK


I can so relate to this.. I have been told many times that I do not look like a real estate broker or sound like one on the phone.. I'm not sure what one is supposed to look like or sound like! 

Feb 06, 2013 09:13 AM #60
Connie Harvey
Pilkerton Realtors - Brentwood, TN
Realtor - Nashville TN Real Estate

Carie,I don't know how I missed this post. But like I said last week, you write brilliantly. I think it's human nature to judge. They say we form an opinion, right or wrong, within the first 30 seconds of meeting someone.  I certainly made a bad impression showing up so late!

Feb 12, 2013 03:52 AM #61
Joni Bailey
101 Main St. Realty - Huntsville, TX
Your Huntsville / Lake Livingston Area REALTOR®

I've been told that I didn't look like "Your typical REALTOR®"  before. I laughed OUT LOUD. Not sure what that was supposed to mean, but I thought it was funny. I think it may have had something to do with my fat baby boots and blue jeans, but that's okay with me. I live in Riverside, Texas (Population 510) and I have no idea if I am going to hike 50 acres or show a $300,000 waterfront home on Lake Livingston. I come prepared for both! By the time we found their home and closed on it, they liked my Gaudy Country style -- and the small town life of Riverside, Texas! :) 

Feb 12, 2013 10:16 AM #62
Janis Borgueta
Key Properties of the Hudson Valley - Newburgh, NY
LIC RE Salesperson

Evidently I don't look like a realtor. I had a client ask me why I broke the mold of his sterotype and how did I ever get into the business. I have always thought that comment to be funny. I think that we do judge a book by its cover, but with our opinions  based on personal experiences. We are a sum of everything we do. YOU are a special lady. It is amazing how people do judge first and make mistakes. Great Post as always Carie. You have such a fabulous turn of phrase.

Feb 18, 2013 10:48 AM #63
Donna Foerster
HomeSmart Realty Group - Parker, CO
Metro Denver Real Estate Assistant

Carie~ Interesting. I wonder if the general public thinks I look like a Real Estate broker. I would guess not.

Feb 19, 2013 08:56 AM #64
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