Setting the tone for the 9th annual Cultural Summit, the high-energy Push Dance Company twirled their way onstage to the song “It Takes Two.” The theme “Do the TWO” featured how even the smallest, and most random acts of kindness can make an impact on others’ lives.
Dozens of KW Cultural Ambassadors from around the world were recognized for exemplifying and spreading the KW culture in their market centers, and KW Vice Chairman Mo Anderson, President Mary Tennant, and Co-owner of the Southeast Region and North Florida Region Kay Evans thanked them for contributing to KW’s unique culture.
“Together we can transform our company and communities two cultural acts at a time,” said Anderson. “YOU are the torch carriers for our culture!”
The success of Keller Williams is built on a foundation of culture and will only continue to grow as culture is fostered throughout the company. “Our success couldn’t have happened without our culture coming first,” said Tennant. “It’s going to lead us to greater and greater heights. Culture set the standard and paved the way to the success of KW. You are the reason that the KW culture is stronger than ever!”
KW Mega agents with mega culture, Gene Arant, Laurie Reader and Jesse Herfel were showcased during the Summit and shared how they lead not only by culture, but also by example. The panel discussed the importance of folding KW values into everyday interactions with team members and the life-changing moments experienced since becoming a part of Keller Williams. KW is a people-centered, sharing culture devoted to impacting the lives of agents and everyone who interacts with KW associates. “Come from contribution. Give and you will get so much more back,” Arant said.
During the featured interview, Evans spoke with Will Anderson, Owner of Salemtown Board Co. His hand-crafted skateboard company’s mission is to provide jobs and mentorship to at-risk young men surrounded by gang activity, violence and drugs.
“We want to see a culture shift with the young men who we engage,” said Anderson. “Instead of targeting outsiders, we go after the influencers in the neighborhood with the hope that what they brag about changes.” His first two employees have already made an impact in the community by changing their social networks and friends in positive ways after being offered jobs at Anderson’s company. “The culture of our company has grown and evolved over the past couple of years,” Anderson said. “As the company has solidified, we’ve just become more of a family. It’s a family atmosphere.”
When asked how he became interested in handcrafting skateboards, Anderson replied with a smile, “My mom taught me how to use power tools at an early age. She would fit right in at KW.”
Anderson’s passion for enacting change in his community and pouring himself into meaningful work led him to conclude with: “You have to find something you’re willing to bleed for. Anything in life that’s good takes a lot of hard work.”
To wrap up the Cultural Summit, Nancy Frates, KW agent and mother of Pete Frates who inspired the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge was invited to the stage to share her son’s story. Instead of pouring the traditional ice water seen in thousands of YouTube videos around the world, cannons showered the crowd with glittering confetti. “Culture is action and passion,” said Evans. “In Pete’s words, “Be passionate. Be genuine. Be hardworking, and don’t be afraid to be great.”
At the completion of the event, Evans shared, “It only takes two to make a difference! What are your two?”