Excellence. Does it still have value?

Does Excellence still have value?

It almost seems like a stupid question. Hell if you had asked me a week ago, I would have told you that it was. Then I was on a widely read internet forum. The particular sub-forum I was on was dedicated to people who practice my trade:


I cruise around there to answer questions from random people who have questions about real estate, discuss industry trends, learn how others do business and so on.

On the particular day that resulted in this column I came across a person who was considering entering the industry…and they wanted to know what all they needed to know to be a good Realtor. I knew my answer immediately, but because I am a good message board citizen; I read the other replies before answering.

Imagine my shock when the replies were almost exclusively, “just enough to pass your state exam and how to network. You will learn what you need to know about real estate as you go.”

My answer on the other hand was “everything you can”. That “you can never learn enough”.  I went on to point out that I learned something new about window construction the previous week and that I had actually made custom windows at one point in my life…just to illustrate how much knowledge it takes to really be good at being a Realtor.

The worst part of the difference between our answers was, most of us Realtors are half ass advertising by using those forums so we use names that make it easy to find who we are IRL. Every agent that said to just learn marketing makes much more money than I do, and 3 of them were top 5 agents in their respective markets.

I would have been impressed if I wasn’t so disgusted.

See I don’t know about you, but good at a job to me means that you do the job well. In a space like real estate, where one serves as advisor and fiduciary; I do not feel that it is possible to really be good at your job unless you can actually give solid information based advice on the purchase people are making.

I mean, I get how you could say that making a lot of money is proof that you are doing a good job….especially in a business where referrals are at least half of every business model. But even if those agents that were giving this advice are truly craftsmen (and women) and they do give excellent advice to their clients… what kind of counsel is that to give someone coming into the industry?

I think we can and should do better.

At any rate, they didn’t change my mind…and I replied to the thread separately to let them all know what a disservice I thought they were doing to that would be agent and to real estate clients in general if they thought that way.

As for me, I will keep learning everything I can; reading, studying markets, and taking more continuing education classes than is required….because whether I ever get to be a top agent or not, I will be the best at what I do and I will know that my clients get the counsel they are paying for when they hire me.

I hope you insist on the same in whatever it is that you do.



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