What to Do About Gen Y and Our Future!

I attended a session today focused on recruiting Gen Y agents. The speaker had real concerns for the future of American businesses if they’re not focused on adapting to different generations, and more importantly, focused on recruiting them. After the session, some friends and I discussed the subject matter and had some really concerning thoughts of our own about what the future of our industry will look like if we don’t start recruiting more young people into the business and make it a top priority.

Here are the reasons for our concerns as pointed out in the 2012 NAR Member Profile Report:

1. The average age of REALTOR® is now 56 years old.
2. Only 11% of all REALTORS┬« are under the age of 40 years old, and it’s a percentage that’s been decreasing since 2010.

And, according to the 2011 NAR Survey of Homebuyer and Sellers, 50% of all homebuyers are now under the age of 44 years old.

Knowing these facts, here are the questions we started talking about amongst ourselves. What are real estate companies going to do to replace their agent base with fewer young people coming into the business, and the realization that a majority of the current agent population will eventually retire in the next 5 to 10 years? What would the structure of REALTOR associations (local/state/national) look like if the population of REALTORS® decreased at the same pace? What would happen to our political clout and homeownership in America, if our RPAC fund decreased at the same percentage? And finally, with Gen Y focused on company culture, team environments, and not entirely motivated by money, how are real estate companies and associations going to change in order to recruit this demographic that is mostly interested in other careers?

As you can imagine, these questions created quite a lively conversation. We also came up with some ideas on how to solve this, but I would love to hear your thoughts as well.

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