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Networking through education could change your game.

 As a mortgage professional, nurturing your referral network is key.

Whether chatting with fellow mortgage pros, seeking out real estate agents , or even connecting with potential clients, tending to your network can truly make or break your business. In fact, research shows that professionals with strong networks tend to both earn higher salaries and enjoy more promotions!

But how exactly do you break into the networking game? Where do you go? What do you say? Educational opportunities like workshops and seminars could be your first step toward success.

 These events tend to attract the best and the brightest attendees — people who are passionate about the industry and dedicated to continuous improvement. They might also feature inspiring, high-level speakers and leaders who could propel your career to the next level.

Long story short: They provide a great opportunity to grow both your knowledge and your network. If your interest is piqued, let’s dive into the types of events you might want to explore plus our top tips and tricks for making the most of them.

Networking Through Education

If you’re looking to get your brand out there via educational opportunities, you’ll probably find a few common types:


Workshops are structured and interactive sessions aimed at leading a group toward a shared goal. They usually include hands-on activities, group discussions, roleplay exercises, and more. The key here is interactive groupwork — this isn’t your grandma’s boring, old lecture.


A seminar is usually a longer educational event centered around one specific topic or subject. They might offer presentations, group discussions, or breakout sessions, all with the goal of growing attendee understanding. Seminars can vary in duration, lasting anywhere from an hour to a whole week.

Lunch and Learns

Lunch and learns are educational meetings, presentations, or training opportunities that take place during — you guessed it — lunch. So, at a lunch and learn, food and beverages are typically served to attendees while a topic or skill is discussed. Think of them as a fun, educational alternative to your traditional lunch hour.

Other Educational Opportunities

That’s just the tip of the iceberg! Keep an eye out for any other interesting educational opportunities that might pop up: panels, trainings, mentorship groups, and more.

Our Top Tips and Tricks to Make the Most of Networking

Whether you choose to attend a workshop or a seminar, you’ll want to follow a few general tips to truly make the most of it:

Plan Ahead

You don’t necessarily need to know where you’ll be every minute of the event. But you should have your top priorities nailed down before you walk through the door. This way, you can avoid any feelings of overwhelm and ensure you get what you came for.

 So, are you hoping to connect with a specific contact? Or would you rather establish yourself as a thought leader by asking meaningful questions during a specific educational session? Or maybe you’d like to give out a set number of business cards?

Whatever your answer may be, you’ll want to determine your goals and set your plan well before the start of the event. Then, all you have to do is follow it!

Come Prepared

When the day arrives, you’ll need to be ready.

Ensure you have plenty of pens and paper handy. That way, you can write down the names of any contacts you’d like to follow up with, as well as any points you’d like to discuss with them.

 A folder or small pouch for business cards might be a good idea, too.

 Oh, and how’s your elevator pitch? You might want to practice a bit before the event. This way, you can nail the first impression and blow both the hosts and attendees away.

While you’re at it, give your social media pages a once-over. These should always be up-to-date, on-brand, and compliant, but that’s especially important when actively networking.

Don’t forget to bring plenty of business cards, either. You just might be handing them out like candy!

Get Creative

Keep an ear to the ground for unofficial group lunches, coffee breaks, and other get-togethers too. You never know who you may meet outside the “classroom”!

Staying at a hotel for the event? Who knows, you might just strike up a conversation with someone great at the pool, in line for your continental breakfast, or just waiting for the elevator.

Follow Up Afterward

Your work isn’t over when the event officially concludes.

You’ll want to read back through your notes, highlighting any action items. Maybe you need to follow that one real estate agent on Instagram or forward an article along to that new mortgage contact. Or maybe you just need to mark your calendar for next year’s event!

Whatever the case may be, make sure you follow through to the end.

Final Thoughts: Prioritizing Education for Your Referral Network

Networking through educational opportunities is a win-win: you’ll walk away with some exciting new contacts and you’re sure to learn something new, too.

Trust us. Both your mortgage business and your referral network will be so much better for it!

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