For Literacy Day this year, we celebrated with five of our Managing Brokers and learned about how education champions one of Oakwyn’s core values – “Pursue Growth and Learning”. To further our reflections on growth and learning at Oakwyn, we want to spotlight an initiative built from that value; Oakwyn University. To celebrate how education is truly setting Oakwynites up for success, we wish to look at the initiative, why it is important, and how it exemplifies Oakwyn to its very core.
Putting the ‘You’ in University
Oakwyn University offers our agents structured foundational learning from the moment they join the brokerage. The 12 segment real estate 101 program is taught by Oakwyn partners and Managing Brokers and was founded the moment Oakwyn opened its doors.
“We combine in-depth contract and compliance requirements with practical hands-on role play scenarios, as well as homework,” explained Oakwyn Managing Broker, Shelly Smee, who is referred to as “the Dean” of Oakwyn University.
The course runs twice a week and is compulsory for our new agents, offering the chance to immediately break away from the pack with functional, practical knowledge of how to truly excel in real estate. The curriculum has been curated to provide new agents with 3 key deliverables; The Business Plan, The Listing Presentation, and The Buyers Presentation.
“It is very satisfying to witness the "Lightbulb" moment, when you know that someone has grasped a concept, or when a student makes a great contribution to the class that everyone, including me, learns from” Shelly Smee, Managing Broker
Elevating Standards Through Education
Oakwyn was founded from a desire to elevate the standards of real estate, and one of the ways we were determined to do that was by building a brokerage that supported its realtors. Oakwyn University is that message incarnate.
When realtors first enter the industry they do not have the practical skills to know how to succeed right away, and that paired with the competitiveness of the traditional real estate industry can make starting off in real estate an overwhelming process. “It is a steep learning curve, there are no shortcuts,” Shelly explained, commenting on how Oakwyn University is designed to create a more streamlined entry for Oakwyn agents.
It’s important we’re supporting our agents as soon as they join the brokerage, which is why Oakwyn University is an invaluable resource for, not just our new agents who are learning the ropes, but for our more experienced agents wanting to brush up on skills, and the wider company in general. It ensures the quality of our work is not just up to par, but far exceeds it.
Oakwyn University, and our commitment to educating our agents, is one of the reasons that 1 in 5 of our agents is Medallion, a statistic far above the industry average.
Collaborate and Listen
“Having a cohort of agents at the same stage of their career would have been awesome” Shelly commented, noting the ways in which Oakwyn University, if available to her, would have elevated her early career.
Oakwyn sets new standards by championing a collaborative approach to learning. Oakwyn University classes are held (pre-COVID) in our main boardroom and (post-COVID) over zoom, where now there is no limit to the number of students we can have in each class. We wanted to create an environment that was collaborative rather than competitive and offered our agents the chance to grow, learn, and support each other, whilst paving out careers in real estate.
The collaborative environment encourages our agents to leave their ego behind, and truly engage in professional growth, learning with their peers, and leveling up in the industry one class at a time. This collaboration doesn’t stop at our agents, the leadership team also makes sure to collaborate in order to make Oakwyn University better. Every semester our students are asked how we can improve the syllabus, course structure, and deliverables. Each new semester is bigger and better than the one before, marking a year on year growth of support for our agents.
By providing agents with this expectation of support and community right from the beginning, we hope to see an end to an industry mentality that lends itself to competition, rather than community, and individualism instead of collaboration. Each day at Oakwyn, we take a step closer towards that becoming a reality.
“The change in confidence level is the most noticeable improvement, and that comes with doing the work” Shelly Smee, Managing Broker
Pursue Growth and Learning
“When we look at our 7 core values, Oakwyn University embodies all of them,” Shelly explained, noting that Oakwyn University truly exemplifies the qualities that make Oakwyn so unique.
The pursuit of growth and learning is something that is exceptionally important at Oakwyn, because it is what ensures Oakwyn is staying on the pulse, adapting to change, and bettering ourselves and the wider industry.
This starts with Oakwyn University. The course and subsequent culture sets a precedent for true and honest improvement in the workplace, setting our agents up to have all the skills they need to succeed, so that one day, they will be able to relay those skills to the next generation, and so on. Through education, Oakwyn is helping set a path to a better and brighter industry.
Oakwyn University currently operates 3 times a year. For more information on Oakwyn University, how to get your hands on Oakwyn University swag, and to learn about any of the other learning opportunities we offer, visit our website.
Work hard, stay humble, and keep learning with Oakwyn.