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Philip Michael is a real estate investor, best-selling author, former TV/radio host (NuvoTV, SiriusXM) and entrepreneur. He’s the founder of New York Equity Group, a real estate investment company with over 150 units and $15M in its portfolio. Pre-order Philip’s book Real Estate Wealth Hacking here. Follow him @philip_michael. 

Recently, YEC spoke with Philip Michael about her experiences networking and his advice for others aspiring to improve their own experience. His best advice is below.

Always Think Value First

Identify people in your current network who are what you want to be—and then invite them out to coffee! And find a way to give them value. How can you share, give or be helpful to the person who’s giving you their time?

For one, giving is a great vibrational recipe for yourself. Secondly, if you’re helpful enough, word spreads and people will like you and want to help you.

Find Connections in Unlikely Places 

The most impactful networking connection I have ever made was with my current friend, mentor and advisor Jonathan. We both were in a meeting with someone who was trying to peddle a seminar, wondering what the other was doing there.

Long story short, we connected because we both are sincere people. Since then, he’s been an invaluable resource for me — whether it’s advice, connections or experiences. That connection alone probably single-handedly took us from a $2M asset operation to $10M+.

I make it a core part of my business to connect, have lunch or coffee with three-to-five inspiring people a week. I use Airtable to keep track of contacts, connections, relationships and people I’d like to meet. It’s the networking effect. When I do see people who would be great connections, I don’t hesitate to pair them up.

Pay for Value

Avoid Meetups and don’t waste time on Eventbrite. They are too accessible. You’re better off paying for quality. For real estate, Bisnow has top events, consistently. TechCrunch; The Hustle, events of that nature. Even though it costs money, the experience and the networking is invaluable.

Be Respectful of People’s Time

Don’t talk too much. Get to the point and let the person know why you should care. Don’t talk about all the things in it for you. Simply be sincere, be respectful and offer to help in any way you can. To me, honestly, a sincere desire in others’ well-being is the No. 1 quality of a successful networker — giving without expecting anything in return. Every time someone does well, whether I know or like them or not, I feel so happy. If I had a hand in connecting them somehow, I’m even happier.

If someone reaches out, if I can sense they’re determined, hungry and think big, I’ll take a meeting with them. Because people took, and still take, the time to do it for me.