By Laura Kovacs
What does professionalism in real estate mean to you? Is it someone who is educated? Responds quickly? Is courteous and polite? Manages a transaction smoothly? Where does “professionalism” begin and end? How do we achieve professionalism? Let me suggest that professionalism most likely has a different meaning for every practitioner.
After many hours of discussing the characteristics of how to improve professionalism in our industry, I don’t feel like we are any closer to a solution or an understanding. The National Association of REALTORS® offers us the Pathway to Professionalism which as a companion piece to the Code of Ethics, offers ideals for professional ‘courtesies and behaviors’ when working with public, property and our peers. But the problem is, we have to support it, use it and share it and not every practitioner does. NAR is also working on a new program called “Commitment to Excellence” scheduled to be rolled out at the end of this year—which will hopefully bring us to a new level—and give us an opportunity to assess our skills and competencies, to see where we need personal improvement.
In the meantime, I just want to encourage every REALTOR® to improve their professionalism everyday through their honesty and integrity, offering outstanding customer service, committing to improving their knowledge and understanding of laws and regulations that affect our business, staying up to date with technology, remaining courteous and timely in managing and facilitating real estate transactions, remaining aware of private property rights in your community and abiding by the Code of Ethics.