December 05, 2008 // Franchising.com // Morris Plains, N.J., – Weichert Real Estate Affiliates, Inc., recently launched GEN-Y-KERT, a program to help young real estate professionals succeed within the industry as part of the Weichert® organization. The program is specifically geared for sales associates under the age of 35 who are members of Generation-X and Generation-Y.
"There is a real generation gap in our industry today with the average agent being nearly 20 years older than the largest demographic of buyers – adults age 25 to 34," said Martin J. Rueter, president of Weichert Real Estate Affiliates. "Young professionals are the bridge to this next generation of homeowners and the lifeblood of our industry so it is important we invest in their development and growth."
Not surprisingly for a program aimed at young professionals, the Internet and new media play a big role in the GEN-Y-KERT program. Weichert Real Estates Affiliates (WREA) has created a dedicated Web site (www.genykert.com) to give members a destination online where they can post their own blogs, discuss real-estate related topics in forums, share video clips and more.
Training is another major component of the program. Weichert offers a wide curriculum to further young sales associates' personal and professional growth. These educational opportunities are offered through a blend of live and online training. Select courses are also available for download to a personal digital assistant (PDA) or other device. WREA will also host a GEN-Y-KERT social networking event at its annual convention in Orlando, Fla., this upcoming April.
Membership in GEN-Y-KERT is open to all real estate professionals, not only those affiliated with Weichert, who are interested in furthering the development of today's young sales associates and better understanding the next generation of buyers and sellers.
"Gen-Y buyers are more tech-savvy, more peer oriented and forward-thinking, and they prefer to operate at a fast pace. Today's young professionals want a similarly stimulating work environment to be successful. Through GEN-Y-KERT, we offer a collection of valuable tools, resources and information in a way that appeals to the interests of the next generation agent," added Rueter.
The program is headed by Amber Olson and Wade Hanson, business development consultants for WREA. Prior to joining WREA, Olson had a successful sales and management career in the Weichert Lubbock, Texas office and was a top 200 agent in 2001 according to the National Association of Realtors. Hanson owned a successful real estate brokerage and was one of REALTOR Magazine's 30 under 30 in 2005.
WREA, the franchise arm of Weichert, Realtors®, launched its first franchised office in January 2002 and currently serves more than 300 markets in 36 states.
Weichert has nearly 18,000 sales associates in more than 500 company-owned and franchised sales offices in key markets throughout the U.S. A family of full-service real estate and financial services companies, Weichert helps customers buy and sell both residential and commercial real estate, and streamlines the delivery of mortgages and home and title insurance.