As a life-long possessor of the minority opinion, I am not surprised that people disagree. That’s fine, our opinions are traditionally defined by life experience and not everyone has had the same experiences.
However, I am always amazed at the lack of tolerance that others can have, when they disagree. Too many people will simply shut down when they hear something they don’t like, as opposed to considering that maybe there is a better way.
In my job as an educator, I can’t help but have some of my personal opinions shadow the topics that I teach. In the past two months I’ve been cautioned by third parties, that two agents were upset. These agents have both made the comments that “If Matthew keeps teaching against dual agency’ -or- ‘If Matthew keeps teaching that on-line marketing is more effective than print media and floor duty’ than no one will come to his lectures and it will hurt his career.”
Am I surprised, no not really. However, I do want to ask a question. If I only tell people what they are comfortable with and don’t try to give light to change and progression than what’s the point? Education is a modality in which someone should be able to change behavior and improve their practices.
Am I worried about these two individuals coming back to classes? No, and here’s why. In both instances these individuals were offended because of their experiences and beliefs. In both instances we’re talking about generational issues. I’m not referencing age; but of the industry. It seems to me that we have entered a new generation of real estate in the past five years or so. Yes, the average age of the Realtor is getting younger (and I am not sure that’s a good thing – more on that in a later post), but I know many, many brokers and seasoned agents (regardless of age) who are adapting to meet the consumer where they are now. Unfortunately there are far too many people who are trying to meet the consumer where they were 10 years ago. I am leaving room for the fact that they maybe right and the talents of open houses and playing solitaire during floor duty maybe back in vogue… but I think it’s unlikely and only time will tell.
I am not clever enough to give a title to the different generation of Realtors, but I know that there is a difference and for too long we’ve been addressing it as physical age and not by a willingness to adapt to a changing industry. Age is beginning to be less of a factor for me. I know many Baby Boomers who are exceptional bloggers and very tech savvy.
So, am I worried that there are some who are unwilling to change? Nope, because for every 1 who is offended there are another 30 who are embracing the change and look forward to another experience to provide services to the client where the clients are now. That is the emerging generation of the industry. I have to concentrate my efforts on those who can be reached and hopefully influence the industry leaders of tomorrow.