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Old School & New School

Agents // Jan 07, 2011

Real estate brokers have the reputation of being elusive.

With their buyers, with their sellers and generally with their clients.

A rogue economist might rationalize this behavior by saying that agents have an incentive to conduct themselves and their business in this manner. I say no! It is counterintuitive. I argue that agents have the incentive to be transparent, build a reputation of accessibility and be a conduit for free flowing information. In their bestselling book Freakonomics, Levitt and Dubner compare real estate agents to the Ku Klux Klan. A little excessive, but they certainly got my attention and made a point to the millions of readers who made this book a national bestseller! (Thanks for helping our reputation, Fellas).

What I don’t understand is why some real estate agents (in this day and age) still have the incentive to be elusive to one another. This behavior breeds contempt within the industry and within a company, and is toxic. This is why we are strong proponents of a team mentality and maintain a strong culture of transparency within our company. The power of sharing that leads to personal and professional growth is inspiring.

I’ve observed two schools of thought in the industry:

Old School and New School.

– Old School believes that information is power that should be safeguarded. New School knows that information is everywhere and easily accessible to all.
– Old School believes that protocol and hierarchy create strength. New School knows that a layer-less environment creates free flowing ideas which lead to growth.
– Old School believes that business-as-usual in a historically successful company is a formula for success. New School knows that change is a constant and a requirement for success.
– Old School believes that ideas and leads are owned and controlled. New School knows that the collaboration of ideas create growth which leads to innovation.
– Old School thrives on a culture of privacy. New School thrives on a culture of transparency.

I have discovered that New School and Old School philosophies are not defined by age, past success or failure. They are defined by vision, culture and common sense. They are a part of the DNA that makes up an individual and company at its CORE!