For the past few weeks, seemingly the entire world has participated in countless fantasy football drafts. In fact, according to Wikipedia and The Fantasy Sports Trade Association, approximately 41 million people participate in fantasy football leagues. Personally, I participated in four drafts. One was old-school, in person, with grown men yelling their picks and arguing over who picked the better team. The others were all done online. I even let the “computer” do one of the drafts on autopilot.
When fantasy sports started, all drafts were done in person. Scoring was done by hand. You actually had to wait for the newspaper (remember those) to come out with the box scores. Even the scores weren’t available online because online really didn't exist.
Now it's all done online.
And so I ask, when will real estate and technology catch up with fantasy sports?
What tasks that we've always done either in person or over the phone can be improved and streamlined by technology? Can someone develop a program to read a lease and prepare an abstract? What about a tool that reads a proposal and prepares a financial analysis?
Can someone develop a tool that can streamline the lease negotiation process? I hope so. Can someone develop a tool that can audit operating expenses?
What other time consuming tasks need a better, more efficient process?
If you don't think more tools and hopefully disruptions are coming, you simply haven't been paying attention. Hightower, VTS, and others are leading the way in taking back time that we previously spent on mundane tasks and providing us with a better process.
And what about Apple? I'm actually writing this blog post using Siri while driving in the Lincoln Tunnel.
Millions of dollars are being invested in tech companies serving the real estate community, but few are making an impact. If you are developing a new tool or looking to try one, ask these questions:
Will it help make people more money?
Will it help people save time?
Will it makes people’s jobs easier?
If the answer is yes, then sign me up.
As I mentioned previously, two of the fantasy football drafts that I participated in were at the same time. One was in person and one was online. I was able to give my full attention to both at different points. Some may call that multitasking, while some would say I simply used technology to my benefit. Technology allowed me to essentially be in two places at the same time. If I win both leagues, it helped me make more money; it also saved me time, and made my life easier.
I look forward to being able to use more and more technology in the coming years to benefit my business. The overall goal is to provide clients with a higher level of service by using those tools, spending more time with them, and giving them thoughtful advice. Others might use the tools to create more time on the golf course. Either way, it’s coming. At least, I hope so.
By: Jeremy Neuer
Senior Vice President | CBRE New Jersey