Family Reunion is a convention put on by Keller Williams Realty. It’s their largest and offers something for everyone.
The format consists of big room sessions in the morning such as Gary Keller’s session, with a look at where the market is going and where the company is going.
The evenings are a great time to connect with friends, network with colleagues, and meet new people. Keller Williams puts on events at night such as Red Bash and agents also hold their own social gatherings.
Here are some of my tips to make the best of your family reunion.
Don’t get so drunk that people remember you
asthe drunk rather than the social giant that you are. I remember meeting more than a few people and thinking, man I would love to be able to refer to them and then 2 hours later I was thinking, please someone find them a cab so I never have to see them again.
From the opening ceremony on day one to the inspirational morning on the last day, you don’t want to miss all of the action of Keller Williams Family Reunion.
Lori Ballen @loriballen Use the Twitter Hashtag #KWFR for Keller Williams Family Reunion. Keller Williams also uses #KWRI. They will often display the tweets on a large tweet board, so get SOCIAL with the #KWFR Hashtag!
When you arrive at the convention and check in, you will be given a guide with these sessions as well. Generally, only the presenter is mentioned so it’s hard to know where your favorites will be on panels during the sessions, which is why I suggest going with topics you want to learn more about.
Sometimes in these convention centers, there’s a lot of floor to cover, and it’s easier to pop into a closer session than cross large areas to get to another. I’ll do it though for my “must attend” sessions.
I tend to have a goal in mind for learning. I ask myself “What do I need to learn more about?” and I go to every topic I can find on that subject. It’s easier to retain information when you are hearing more content on that one topic.
There are times when I will go to a presenter, even though I know the subject well because that presenter inspires me. I always take away one thing from the presenters I most respect and admire in the industry.
Lori Ballen’s Tips for KWFR: Here are some best practices for everything from packing to networking!
1. Pack Right
Being prepared is going to allow for a more comfortable convention. Yes, you want to look great, but limping around on feet that have been in heels all day is not at all attractive.
If possible, alternate shoes because even when you have comfortable shoes, they can become painful in certain areas when walking for long periods at a time. Best to alternate at least every other day if possible.
I like to take a picture of mine all together and even hang a plastic ziplock bag with my coordinating jewelry in it over the hanger (or attach to outfit). Once you arrive at KWFR, it’s a whirlwind of meetups and classes, speakers, and dining, and you will not want to have to think about your clothing.
Sarah Herda from Boxford, Massachusetts
Wear pants. You never know when you will be sitting on a floor in a packed breakout session!
I haven’t used it yet, but many women swear by packing dry shampoo, for those hurried mornings. Bring hair ties and pins for the “oh my gosh I’m late” morning.
No matter what the weather is outside, it’s typically very cold inside those rooms, so bring a sweater. Bring extra batteries for your technology, as our phones tend to scan for internet signals all day and will drain fast in that environment (course some carriers are worse than others… like Mine!).
Beth Torrence Packing Lists
2. Eat and Drink
I’m always under hydrated and underfed at Family Reunion because I’m hurried. If possible, carry a water bottle and healthy snacks with you at all times in your bag.
Typically, the wonderful team at Keller Williams gives us a book bag or backpack to carry our items in, so it’s good to consider nuts, granola bars, and other snacks to carry along. While there is lunch for sale at the convention center, as well as Family Reunion lunch events, many leave the convention center.
Family Reunion is all about relationships. Sure, I love the learning, but I learned year one that the true return on this investment of time, money, and energy is in the networking.
I have built AMAZING personal and business relationships from this event, and I understand that I need to be seen in order for that to happen. In the evenings, I attend the networking events and then find the most “happening” bar and plant my feet in the front of the bar for maximum exposure.
Is it always comfortable? Honestly, no. But it’s purposeful and if you are not there, you can’t meet whoever the universe is wanting you to meet.
4. Have a database after plan
Know in advance how you are going to connect with people once you have their card and enter them in your database and collect a business card from everyone you meet. Have one place where you drop all of your cards when you get back at night.
5. Have a Recent Picture
Hopefully not too late, if your picture is on your business card, MAKE SURE IT LOOKS LIKE YOU. It should be updated, not overly photoshopped, and professional (not taken out back by your hummingbird feeder).
People do look at the cards after Family Reunion. Consider matching your Facebook Profile pic with your business card picture so when people look you up on Facebook, they will make the connection.
6. Get Away from your Market Center
OK, that sounds worse than intended, but I still mean it. This is a networking opportunity, and you can’t get referrals and meet new people while hanging out with the people you already know!!
Get outside of your comfort zone and get into places where you don’t know anyone and make friends. Everyone is here to network. Introduce yourself. We won’t bite.
7. Bring Plenty of Business Cards
8. Attend Events
Red Bash is a fun event where everyone dresses up in their favorite “Red” gear. You’ll see everything from Las Vegas Style Show Girls, to Super Heroes in Red Capes. I’ve seen it all!
There’s food, fun, and music, but the food is more “appetizers” so I do not suggest going in hungry and lines are sometimes very long at the tables and the bar, so come prepared! There is usually a talent show followed by Gary Keller’s Band.
I cried the entire time last year, so be prepared with tissue. It’s uplifting, inspiring, and a great way to cap off your reunion. Get in EARLY for a good seat.