Over the past year, Columbus REALTORS® Raise the Bar Task Force has been finding ways our association and our members can help raise the bar of professionalism in the industry. Getting more members aware of and participating in NAR’s Commitment to Excellence (C2EX) program, which explores professionalism and its application to professional life, helps fulfill that mission.
C2EX came from a strategic planning aim to look at what the REALTORS® of the future would look like. Professionalism needed to increase across the association and across the country to keep the industry strong. C2EX gives members a voluntary pathway to the highest level of professionalism in ten key areas of the business. Nationally, there have been 19,000 members who have signed up so far.
The program was designed for REALTORS® at any skill level to come in and learn key points from the ten areas. When you first take an assessment, the program puts together a personalized learning path based on the knowledge you already have and the knowledge you need to gain from the ten areas to be endorsed.
One of the goals of the C2EX program is raising the bar and raising the goals for REALTORS® around the country. Professionalism is all thinking about the end user and being prepared in each action to make sure the transaction goes smoothly. It is meant to help improve everyone in the profession, not just those who are new.
Some of the traits that C2EX covers include: client service, professional reputation, and trust and integrity.
Client Service includes making sure the client has copies of all the documents they should sign, and going over the contract with them. Communication is another aspect of professionalism. Getting to know which communication medium your client prefers will go a long way. Take the time to understand how your client best communicates and use that throughout the process. It is also helpful to have one day a week, or something set in stone, to catch the client up on what happened that week.
Reputation is another facet of professionalism. We don’t often get a chance to redeem ourselves when it comes to our reputation, but we have to keep it in mind so that we keep it untarnished. We have our experience, time, and reputation to offer for our clients. Having a good reputation in your market positively impacts the experience of your client. To manage your reputation online, be careful about what you post. You represent your clients in addition to just yourself. You want to make sure your reputation paints you as someone who is considerate, someone who understands our code of ethics.
The Commitment to Excellence program is split into smaller sections, so members can tackle them one at a time. It becomes a lifelong learning tool. You might receive a notification to review a certification if something in that realm has changed.
Trust and Integrity are incredibly important for professionalism. Our clients trust us with one of the largest financial transactions they will have in their lives. As agents, we need to look for ways to build trust by staying on top of communication, being prepared, and sharing all options with your client. Put building trust at the forefront of your decision-making when it comes to your client. You also want to develop a sense of trust with your clients, so they feel like you’ve also listened to them.
Some final thoughts on professionalism: Make sure that the voicemail you leave reflects you as a professional. Be respectful of your other colleagues in the business, as we’re all working toward the same end goal for our clients.
Choose to be the best you can be in the business. This program will help you sustain your business in a professional manner!
Start earning your C2EX endorsement - log in at www.C2EX.realtor