That's Not What You Said

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

Woman Writing TelephoneDon’t Tell Me Anything You Don’t Want Me To Remember

I have a great memory.  I can remember phone numbers of friends and relatives from when I was a young girl.  I know my driver’s license and credit card numbers by heart.  I can recite dialogue from an episode of a favorite television show that I haven’t seen in years.  More importantly, however, I rarely forget what someone tells me.  

Perhaps It’s A Gender Thing

Guys, you know what I’m talking about.  In fact, I’m fairly certain that most men who’ve ever been in a committed relationship with a woman can relate to the not-so-little-secret I am about to share.  Ready?  Here it is:  We women have the uncanny ability to remember every single detail a man has ever uttered to us during the course of any conversation.  A conversation that could have taken place anywhere.  Any time.  In any decade.  Follow me  I’ll illustrate:


Carie:  Remember when you said such and such?

Him:  Nope.

Carie:  C’mon – yes you do!  Don’t you remember?  We were standing in the lobby during intermission at that play we went to about 2 ½ years ago.  You said blah, blah, blah about this?  Then you said blah, blah, blah about that?  Surely you remember, don’t you?

Him:  Nope.


All Kidding Aside

No matter how good my memory may be, when it comes to anything business related – I document everything.  Including conversations.  Personally, I am not a huge fan of unnecessary drama, dissension or complications.  As we all know, misunderstandings can  potentially lead to mutual heartbreak.  Rather, I would prefer to do my best to maintain a comprehensive communications trail for future reference.  Keeping lists has also become one of my tried-and-true hallmarks.  In my opinion, good documentation not only keeps me organized – it has the ability to quickly and effortlessly refresh the memories of everyone involved.

And, just for the record – I do remember what you said.

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carie shapiro

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Valerie Keener
Cane Ridge, TN
Real estate is my caffeine!
There is a great app called iTalk. If I am in the car, i use it to record conversations, phone numbers, addresses, etc. Its another firm of documentation plus has the added bonus of providing insight into your conversational mannerisms in case they need correcting!
Mar 08, 2013 02:07 AM #109
Marte Cliff
Marte Cliff Copywriting - Priest River, ID
Your real estate writer

Documentation can also keep you out of court - and that's always a good thing!

Mar 08, 2013 02:15 AM #110
Christi Farrington
Dagny's Real Estate - Wilton, CT
~ Your representative in Fairfield County, CT

Perfect!  I have a notebook.  At the beginning of each day, it has the day, date and year - highlighted.  Then I put a time next to each entry:  when an email sent or received, to whom and what it contained.  All phone calls documented.  Anything that transpired during that workday is in writing.  Can't tell you how many notebooks I have at this point.  I have a great memory, BUT it sure helps to have back-up!

Thank you for a good chuckle and the reminder that I love my notebooks!

Mar 08, 2013 03:15 AM #111
John Dotson
Preferred Properties of Highlands, Inc. - Highlands, NC - Highlands, NC
The experience to get you to the other side!

Carie,  I have just started using a Program/App called Evernote.  It is free for the basic, but just $5.00 a month for the sync-anywhere "pro" version.

Looks like it may be a life and time saver.  It even stores your emails without reformatting them.

My old memory ain't what she used to be!

Mar 08, 2013 03:27 AM #112
Grant Schneider
Performance Development Strategies - Armonk, NY
Your Coach Helping You Create Successful Outcomes


I certainly can remember everything and that is why I make notes when I meet someone and what we talked about.  I use my contact manager.

Mar 08, 2013 03:30 AM #113
Brien Berard
Remax Professionals Laurel MD - Laurel, MD
Maryland Real Estate Agents - Laurel Real Estate

Location, location, location and document, document, document!

Mar 08, 2013 03:31 AM #114
Paul David Hiebing
Grampp Realty: Real Estate in the Quad-Cities - Bettendorf, IA
Quad-City REALTOR®, @ Grampp, Realty of The Q.C.

I still have every single e-mail that I have sent, and received, pertaining to my real estate business, since I started in 2000...

I also keep PDF files of every single transaction document (as both a listing and buyers agent....from start to finish) on a secure server...  for easy reference from any computer in the world.. at any time....

Document, Document, Document.... it helps keep you out of court...  and win if you ever do go.

Mar 08, 2013 03:45 AM #115
nobody - Alamance, NT

I use the inside of the folder to affix sheets and more sheets if needed for, well just about anything and everything said and done. "Want to know what time I typed this????" I can tell you tomorrow. Documentation our best friend.

Mar 08, 2013 04:04 AM #116
Chris Hayes
Keller Williams Realty Northwest LA - Shreveport, LA
Your Shreveport/Bossier Real Estate Partner

I remember but don't always document - this is a good reminder to follow through, thanks!

Mar 08, 2013 04:11 AM #117
Debbie Cook
Long & Foster Real Estate, Inc - Silver Spring, MD
Silver Spring and Takoma Park Maryland Real Estate

Funny - But so true.  Everyone needs to document a business transaction, in case our perfect memories fail us at the wrong time.

Mar 08, 2013 06:00 AM #118
Short Sales, Foreclosure & Bank Owned Real Estate


Thank you for great blog post and excellent advice!

Mar 08, 2013 07:13 AM #119
Momentum Realty
North Orange County CA Real Estate Specialists - Yorba Linda, CA
Orange County CA Real Estate Agent

Hi Carie,

Wow, can I relate! I also remember EVERYTHING! It's a blessing and a curse, I believe ; )  I'm sure that others (such as my husband) would say that a blessing had nothing to do with it- HA HA!

I recently had a nightmare client that misunderstood and mistook everything I told her. She was one of those people that remembered things exactly as she wanted to remember them. I believe that if I ever had to deal with her again, I might lose my mind. Needless to say, we parted ways, and I'm not the least bit upset about losing out on that sale. It definitely taught me a lesson, which your post reiterated so well- document, document, document!!! 

Thanks for the reminder and have a great weekend!


Mar 08, 2013 09:57 AM #120
Nancy Middleton
Counselor Realty, Inc. - Excelsior, MN
Nancy Middleton, Counselor Realty, Minnetonka, MN

Great post, Carie. It's critical to document in writing or some other source everything in your real estate or other business relations. I've kept four line, five year diaries since 1946 and am amazed how many times I go back into the books for information I need.

Mar 08, 2013 12:22 PM #121
John DL Arendsen
CREST "BACKYARD' HOMES, ON THE LEVEL General & Manufactured Home Contractor, TAG Real Estate Sales & Investments - Leucadia, CA
Crest Backyard Homes "ADU" dealer & Contractor

That's why I'm a firm believer in increasing my daily intake of zinc! LOL! Cute post.

Mar 08, 2013 01:52 PM #122
Lloyd Binen
Certified Realty Services - Saratoga, CA
Silicon Valley Realtor since 1976; 408-373-4411

Carie, skimming through all the comments above this one made me forget what I wanted to say.  But I have a question, I think I met you and your sister in Southern CA in my teens.  Do you know a guy named Steve Kaufman from So CA?  It may have been one of the beach towns around Laguna Beach, Newport Beach, or maybe the San Fernando Valley.  And it may be my imagination.

Mar 08, 2013 03:30 PM #123
Pete Xavier
Investments to Luxury - Pacific Palisades, CA
Outstanding Agent Referrals-Nationwide
Reminder after reading this post and the responses to get things documented by email or in writing. Also to take my zinc...thanks #123.
Mar 10, 2013 03:58 PM #124
Gene Riemenschneider
Home Point Real Estate - Brentwood, CA
Turning Houses into Homes

I used to have a memory that was very good.  Lately I am finding it not as good as it used to be.  Document - document - document.

Mar 12, 2013 04:17 AM #125
Will Nesbitt
Nesbitt Realty at Condo Alexandria - Alexandria, VA
Nesbitt Realty is a family-run brokerage.

Contact Carie Shapiro for all your Dallas TX real estate needs. Keep up the  good work! Thanks for sharing this interesting article with the active rain community. Have a nice day.

Mar 14, 2013 06:39 AM #126
Larry Lawfer
YourStories Realty Group powered by Castles Unlimited® - Newton, MA
"I listen for a living." It's all about you.

I take issue with your gender bias.  Not all men are forgetfull and not all women have steel traps for memories.  Truth is I find people remember what they want to remember in these situations so your habit of documenting is a note or email is a very good tactic. After almost 25 years of marriage I have to say my wife does have a unique memory for anything that I did wrong over that time and include the 6 years prior when we were friends, but precious little memory for all the good I did. Well, she is still with me and we still love each other so maybe that is confirmation enough.  Good post

Mar 18, 2013 06:02 AM #127
Wayne B. Pruner
Oregon First - Tigard, OR
Tigard Oregon Homes for Sale, Realtor, GRI

My boss says"If its not in the file it didn't happen." I take notes of everything.

Oct 15, 2013 10:56 PM #128
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