Whether it’s vegetable gardening or ballroom dancing, according to The Agency’s CEO Mauricio Umansky, it’s easy to make authentic connections through your hobbies and interests.

As a luxury real estate professional, you probably already know how important networking is when it comes to expanding your business. But did you know that your personal interests and hobbies can also be valuable assets in building your network?

When you embrace your passions, stay authentic to yourself and act from a genuine place, believe me, people respond. Here are five ways you can leverage your interests and hobbies to expand your network and grow your business.

Embrace your passions 

Think about what you love to do outside of work and find ways to incorporate them into your networking efforts. For example, if you enjoy golfing, join a local golf club or participate in charity golf tournaments. This will not only allow you to connect with other golf enthusiasts but also potential clients and business partners who share your passion.

One of my favorite games to play is pickleball. We actually have a weekly game where several of our agents get together and play, and have even held events through The Agency tied to the sport. We have an upcoming golf and pickleball tournament being held at our Annual Global Forum. It is the best way to have fun, network and develop relationships.

What’s great about embracing these personal hobbies is that you can invite potential clients or partners to join you, say for a  round of golf, a dance class (one of my newfound passions) or a wine tasting. This can be a fun and effective way to build relationships while expanding your network. 

Attend events related to your interests and hobbies

Whether it’s a cooking class, art exhibition or book club, events provide a more relaxed and casual setting for networking while also introducing you to new potential clients and business prospects. You can strike up conversations with other attendees about your shared interests and build genuine connections that can translate into business opportunities down the line.

And, in my opinion, it’s always easier to talk with new potential clients and colleagues when there is an activity that serves as a central focus. 

Use social media to your advantage

Platforms like LinkedIn, X (formerly known as Twitter) and Instagram can be powerful tools for networking when used in the right way. The main rule of social media that I abide by is to stay authentic and genuine.

Sharing your hobbies and interests on your profiles is not only a natural extension of your life, it can help you engage with others who have similar interests. You never know who you might connect with and how that could lead to potential business collaborations.

Be open to learning about new interests and hobbies

In the luxury real estate realm, I often work with clients from diverse backgrounds who have varying interests, and I make a point to ask them about their hobbies. Not only is this an essential way to build a genuine relationship with anyone, but by being open-minded and curious, you can expand your interests and potentially meet even more new clients and partners along the way.

Get involved with like-minded organizations 

Getting involved locally is such a great way to meet folks with similar passions and allows you to give back to your community. Do a little research and see what local organizations align with your interests and how they are supporting causes that are meaningful to you. 

For example, at The Agency, we donate our time and funds to Giveback Homes, which is a community of real estate professionals who are committed to creating social change by helping build homes for deserving families around the globe. Several of our offices hold build days where we work together to help build a home for a family in need.

This effort combines our passion for real estate with our drive to help the local communities in which our offices are based. There are truly so many ways to support great causes; get creative and see what’s out there.

It’s vital to always be building and refining your unique brand and growing your network—and your personal interests and hobbies can be valuable assets in expanding both. By incorporating them into your networking efforts, attending related events, utilizing social media and being open to new interests, you can build genuine connections and potential business opportunities.

So don’t be afraid to embrace your passions, and let them take the lead. 

Mauricio Umansky is the founder and CEO of The Agency in Los Angeles. Connect with him on Instagram.

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