The economic environment has shifted. Amid
changing consumer demands and an array
of industry disruptions, build career staying
power by embracing an entrepreneurial
approach to your work. By Meg White
To Innovate is. . . Human
You know the world has changed and that today’s real estate
industry is vastly di;erent than it was a decade ago. The tools,
processes, and mindset that used to define the business may
no longer keep you at the top of your game. So how do you meet
the needs of a new generation of consumers, manage a shifting
career path, and contribute to an industry where hard-driving
new players are showing up every day? Your mission is to adopt
the traits of a smart entrepreneur while staying true to your
market and your industry.
But what does an entrepreneur even look like these days?
Linda Rottenberg, CEO of Endeavor, a global organization ded-
The Buyers and Sellers of Tomorrow
icated to supporting entrepreneurs, and the author of Crazy Is
a Compliment: The Power of Zigging When Everyone Else Zags,
says the media’s skewed portrayal of the typical entrepreneur
has the ability to stop innovators in their tracks. “People have
this image of the swashbuckling entrepreneur, when in reality
most entrepreneurs are doing everything they can to minimize
risk,” she says. “The biggest obstacle to doing anything entre-
preneurial is getting out of your own head.”
She notes that, though we hear a lot about young alpha
males like Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg and Tesla Motors’
Elon Musk changing the world overnight, in reality the fastest-
growing segments of new business owners in the U.S. are
women and baby boomers over age 55, which is, statistically
speaking, the demographic profile of today’s typical REALTOR®.
“You may think, ‘I don’t have the next huge idea.’ But microsteps
are often the things that make the biggest changes,” she says.
“You can be an agent of change without mortgaging your family
and maxing out your credit cards.”
Customers are changing the way they buy and sell, and entrepreneurial thinkers are the ones asking why and how. Kit Yarrow,
a psychologist and expert on consumer trends based in San
Francisco, notes that because millennials are driving consumer
markets right now, understanding how they feel about home
ownership is vital. Part of the reason they are wary is an after-e;ect of the recession, but Yarrow notes there are other explanations for why they remain disproportionately on the sidelines
compared to previous generations of young adults.
“They saw foreclosures. They saw their parents worry,” she
acknowledges. “But this generation also has a fear of commitment that’s huge.” Yarrow says the trend of helicopter parenting—where baby boomers (mostly) tended to be overprotective
QUIZ: REALTOR® Magazine worked with Linda Rottenberg to tailor a quiz for real estate practitioners who want to learn how to
leverage their entrepreneurial style and take smart career risks. Find out what kind of innovator you are at realtorm.ag/riskquiz.