Real estate and ego: do you need one? [Coping with the cool]

Ego has long been a trait synonymous with the stereotypical vision of real estate agents. But does an agent need a solid ego to be good at what they do? Or can an ego get in the way and cause clients to find it difficult to relate to their agent?

Industry expert, Lisa B, explores ego in real estate, drawing on her knowledge and experience to determine if it is a must-have or a must-lose for those who want to make it to the top.

It would be great if your income and success were based on how good you THINK you are, but in reality, they are not.

In the real world, success is based on solid results. And while results may be affected positively or negatively by how good you project yourself to be, if you can’t deliver to the standard you promise, return on investment in self-promotion will be minimal.

So, should you avoid self-promotion and get that ego in check?

As far as confidence goes, it’s not a bad thing to know, without a doubt, you are good at your job.

There are some people who are terrible at what they do and yet they promote themselves everywhere.

There are some people who are great at what they do, and yet they don’t let anyone know how amazing they really are.

Both are equally as damaging.

The challenge, like most things, is to find the right balance.

Ego and confidence 

We can’t confuse ego and confidence.

By definition, ego is related to your sense of self-esteem and self-importance. Confidence is a feeling of trust in your abilities.

While both relate to the other, they are not the same. Unlike confidence, the word ‘ego’ can have negative connotations and people with egos can be viewed in a poor light.

Despite this, it is healthy to be confident, it is healthy to have an ego and it is also very healthy to know your value.

But one point I want to make is without ego, many people would not get out of bed in the morning. For some, ego, and the intention to live up to the projected image of themself, is a motivation and something that drives them.

It’s how big that ego is, what it looks like to others and the intention behind it that influences its impact on success.

If someone has a healthy ego, keeps it in check and derives their energy and enthusiasm from it, most people around them won’t necessarily view it as an ‘ego’ and may even envy their self-confidence.

If someone has a HUGE ego, generally we are saying they are projecting a personality where they have too much self-admiration and it’s all about them.

It is not often we say this statement in a positive way.

A huge ego can have a lot of downsides, outside of poor external perception. Most notably, those with big egos can be seen as ‘know-it-alls’ and can impede themselves from learning new things.


On a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being the highest, where are you on the confidence spectrum in your role as a real estate agent?

We need to have confidence and belief in ourselves. If we are lacking in this area, it’s important we focus on ways to build ourselves up.

Give yourself a pat on the back for small wins. With some wins behind you, your confidence will be based on what’s real and what’s earned.

In life, we have those who are trying to show people how good they are, or how good they could be, while not really believing it themselves.

We have others who are hugely confident, but don’t have the skills to back it up!

Those who do know what they’re doing are often the people who don’t have to hire a band to play their song for them, their work speaks for itself. They know exactly how to tell their story with sophistication and the right, relatable levels of confidence and humility.

I’m not saying to never engage in self-promotion if you’re not in that last group of people.

It’s ok to promote yourself.

Have your name and photo on a billboard. Have your name and details on a flyer. Promote the heck out of yourself. I’m all for that. You want to be top of mind for people who live in your area.

But do it in an honest and genuine way. You can ‘enhance’ without creating a story of a legend that is actually unachievable.

There will be some who are reading this who have only just started in real estate. You are attempting to show you can be successful without the results or the confidence behind it. Go for it. But make sure you balance the mix. Have some self-promotion and then some promotion that is totally aimed at your potential clients.

It’s a fine line between getting out there, positioning yourself and pushing your own agenda in a way that might ultimately do you damage.

How we promote ourselves 

If you are great at what you do, then I believe you have a duty to tell others. What’s the point of being great, if you don’t get to ‘be great’ as much as you should! What’s the point if you aren’t taking care of people as much as you should.

I heard a fantastic saying once, something along the lines of, ‘When you are marketing yourself, come from your heart, not your pocket’.

In other words, think about your customers, what do they want to know? What do they need? Don’t always make it about you! When we do too much of that, the public sees you are just trying to line your own pockets.

What does Ego Advertising mean? 

Ego advertising is when you are either giving the perception you are better than others or you are putting others down to achieve that standing. Basically, in my words, you look like a bit of a dill.

When we are looking to promote ourselves in the world… Think!  Are we making this all about us?

Are we looking down on or ridiculing others while we are trying to elevate ourselves?

Are some of the marketing strategies we see irrelevant to anyone when it’s totally focused on trying to portray how great the agent looks?

Ask yourself these important questions and reconsider your approach if you find yourself answering ‘yes’ as you read along.

Lisa B 
EAC Industry Reporter
Real Estate Coach and Trainer
0412 210 558

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