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3 Types of Tech Adopters: Which One Are You?

Commercial real estate isn’t the only industry facing the challenges of tech adoption. No matter the industry, technology is a part of it and rapidly becoming a gigantic part of every operation. Recently, Entrepreneur talked about how there are certain traits that typify three distinct kinds of tech adopters: conservatives, pragmatists, and visionaries. Identifying which type of tech adopter you are can help define how these traits relate to commercial real estate and how you do business.

Are you Conservative?

Probably the only industry as far behind as commercial real estate when it comes to tech adoption is the legal industry – largely because of the confidentiality involved and the need for a paper trail. Commercial real estate also relies heavily on confidentiality and paper trails which is one of the reasons why so many tech adopters in commercial real estate are conservatives.

Several factors beyond paper trails have held tech adoption back in the commercial real estate sector including, costs for legacy system upgrades, untested and unproven technology, incomplete platforms, and industry standards that are constantly changing. Usually it’s not until a new technology has completely penetrated popular and mainstream business that commercial real estate pros begin to consider adoption.

While there is a long held belief that it is better safe than sorry – leading to more conservative approaches to new technology – taking risks on advanced technology is leading to astronomical results for small and mid-sized brokerages. Software-as-a-service models are making tech adoption business-wide much easier, even for conservatives.

Are you Pragmatic?

Unlike conservatives, pragmatic tech adopters do not wait for everyone to catch the wave before they do. They just hang back and watch the trends and try to catch the wave early enough to make a difference. Not leading the pack, but not falling behind.

The pragmatic approach in today’s commercial landscape requires a high level of tech adoption. From mobile, to 3D, to machine learning and AI enhanced CRM platforms, pragmatists are more readily adopting new technologies like software-as-a-service models than in the past.

Uncertainty makes business investment hard for any company. For commercial real estate, when there are so many new tech tools coming out all year long, it can be overwhelming to the point of stagnation. However, as new technology continues to revolutionize everyday life in every way, conservatives will have to become more pragmatic and pragmatists will become visionaries.

Or are you a Visionary?

If you’re a visionary, you already know it. You are not just trying to stay with the crowd, you are looking to advance and improve on what is already working. You are more willing to take a chance on a new promising technology. It is the visionaries that are spurring technology in commercial real estate. The proof is in the results – tech is making commercial real estate better.

The Moral of the Story: Do Not Be Afraid to Adopt New Technologies

From our perspective, it is technology that is behind the secret in the secret sauce. By leveraging technologies, the smallest brokerage firm can have an outsized impact here and globally. Fear of tech adoption only holds brokers back. To compete in today’s commercial real estate market, having the best tech tools at your disposal is the number one way to set your firm apart from the pack.