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conventionI’m writing this column shortly after returning home from the annual RE/MAX R4 convention, a four-day extravaganza of education, fun and networking with nearly 6,000 top brokers and sales associates from all over the world. To me, events like this are invaluable investments in your business. The ROI can be profound.

Conventions provide a sense of where things stand and where they’re heading, and I’m extremely encouraged by what I heard and saw at R4 this year. There was passion. Curiosity. Generosity. And ample reasons to be optimistic about the people in our industry. A few examples:

1. The energy of young agents 
In looking around the convention hall, I loved seeing so many dynamic agents in their 20s and 30s. I spoke to lots of them, and I was impressed.

These young professionals aren’t sitting at a desk waiting for the phone to ring, or counting on others to shoulder all the heavy lifting. They’re charging forward with bold ideas, fresh perspectives and the understanding that success comes through preparation, practice and effort. They’re out doing the work—in creative ways that tap the best aspects of modern technology and social media.

One particularly refreshing trait in these competitive young entrepreneurs is their drive to be great, not just average. They want to learn from the best and do amazing things themselves. I have no doubt they will. The future is bright in their hands.

2. The generosity of experienced agents
If the energy of younger agents is one side of the coin, the generosity and professionalism of more experienced peers is the other. I’ve always been pleased by how open our top producers are with their best ideas. They love to share strategies and help others achieve their goals, and that attitude turns an event like R4 into a giant mastermind group.

Elite performers model winning behavior without even realizing it. They build on their success by staying current with technology, embracing professional development and exploring innovative ways to update their systems to add sales or save time. That sets the tone for others and builds a culture of productivity and continual improvement. Complacency? Nowhere to be seen.

3. The spirit of global agents
You couldn’t miss the vibrancy of the international agents at R4, especially those from Portugal and Argentina. The convention drew spirited attendees from over 60 countries and territories, and the different languages, styles and perspectives added a global feel to the entire week. There were flags waving everywhere, and it was awesome.

Global attendees soak up everything they can at an event like R4, taking the best tools and practices back to their countries. Many of them are revolutionizing the industry back home. Setting the bar higher. Redefining customer expectations. Getting involved in their communities. Changing lives. And having a blast while doing it. Their spirit was contagious.

In the end, a convention like R4 is a massive idea incubator, with the world’s top consultants trading their greatest strategies. It’s the best recharge you can imagine, with an instant impact on the attitude and business of every attendee.

So look at the calendar and find an event to get to sometime this year. If nothing seems to fit, consider coming to the 2017 R4, Feb. 27 to March 3 at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas. We’d love to have you join us.

Geoff Lewis is president of RE/MAX, LLC.

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