WHY Don’t We Care About Training for Rookie Real Estate Agents? Seriously, I’m asking!


posted by on Especially for Rookies

From time to time I post a blog about the abysmal state of rookie real estate training in America.

Do I have an agenda? Eh, maybe. Yeah, I sell books about real estate training and I even have boot-camp type program specifically for rookies, but that alone doesn’t inspire the contempt, yes, SWS Rookie Schoolcontempt I have for the real estate training industry.

I’m disgusted by the “fake it til you make it” attitude. I’m annoyed by the focus on prospecting competence over, well, COMPETENCE competence. I’m frustrated by the stories I hear of promises made during the recruiting process that are broken as soon as the rookie shows up to work. I could go on and on.

But today, I’m asking. WHY? Why is it this way? It occurs to me that if 80-95% of our new agents fail within the first year, then something isn’t working and maybe we ought to try something different. Like… training? REAL training, not some fluffed up, time-wasting, sales-pitch-disguised-as-education to promote some product or another?

Here are the reasons I’ve heard for NOT training our new licensees.

1.       Not a good use of resources. Since the majority of new agents will fail, it’s a waste of money and time to implement a decent training program.

2.       Not a good use of resources, Part II. Since the agents who do not fail will likely leave their first broker in search of a better deal elsewhere, why would Broker 1 spend time and money training the rookie to be his future competition?

3.       That’s the way it IS. This is a sink or swim business. If you don’t have the drive to learn the business yourself, you shouldn’t be here at all.

4.       That’s the way it IS, Part II. “We” didn’t have our hands held and we somehow survived.

5.       Real estate agents are competitive; therefore, there’s no real motivation to help someone who will become your competition.

It’s easy for us Old Fogies to brush off the need for training – after all – we don’t particularly want any more competition. And besides, “we” didn’t get formal training and we came out okay. But then in the next breath, we complain loudly about “the guy (or gal) on the other end of the sale who doesn’t know what he’s doing and is screwing up my deal.”

Maybe it’s just that we’ve forgotten how much there is to learn in your first year and how complex the process really is. I talk to rookies every day, so I’m reminded of their pain and confusion… and their utter frustration with the lack of support they receive from the broker or trainer.

So I’m sincerely asking – WHY do we seem to care so little about quality training in our industry?

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