Keller Williams has already set the standard for the real estate industry and now, through KW Young Professionals, is setting the industry standard for young associates. The KW Young Professionals Division is preparing the future leaders of Keller Williams to carry forth the company mission while preserving and strengthening the unique company culture. During a lunchtime program at Mega Leadership, the five founding members of KW Young Professionals, Alex Frank - Phillip Gazca - Kelly Henderson - Melissa Krchnak - Matthew Maier, were recognized by Dianna Kokoszka, Mary Tennant, Mark Willis, and Holly Priestner in front of a standing room only crowd.
It all began at Family Reunion in 2013 when a group of ambitious young associates got together for a social gathering. A few weeks later the group established a presence on Facebook and quickly gained followers. At Family Reunion 2014, despite the convention center losing power and the location being moved last minute, they hosted a social event to celebrate reaching 1,000 members. “We weren’t letting anything stop us,” Maier said. Today, they have gone beyond a social media group and are now an official division at Keller Williams.
Gazca saw a trend of people moving into leadership roles at much younger ages and believed resources and training could help them succeed. “It is amazing that we started with just 50 people on a balcony who were together because we wanted to share ideas and help change the industry for young professionals,” Gazca said.
KW Young Professionals will cultivate future leaders by developing leading-edge events with an emphasis on sharing innovative techniques, encouraging growth into leadership and supporting key advocacy issues for the industry. “Everything rises and falls on leadership,” Willis said. He shared the story of how Frank came to him with an idea and asked what Keller Williams was doing for the young agents. “Create it!” Willis told him. And that’s exactly what he did.
Attendees were invited to join KW Young Professionals for a discounted rate of $150 for the remainder of 2014. Additionally, all who sign up in 2014 will be founding members. Nicole Veenendaal of Twin Falls, Idaho, joined KW Young Professionals because, “as an age group we represent only 2% of the real estate industry. It is important for us to get together and show the power we have.” Chris Dahl of Katy, Texas, also joined at the event for the networking opportunities available to members. Other benefits of membership include:
- Monthly one-hour live webinars with Keller Williams executives or MAPS coaches (including an upcoming session on Recruit-Select with Willis);
- Monthly video segments featuring top producing young professionals who are sharing their keys to success (Lisa Archer was announced as the first featured mega agent)
- A monthly wellness video segment with MAPS Health and Wellness Coach Nina Rowan Heller interviewing a featured young professional on the role wellness plays in peak performance;
- Members-only programming and networking events at Family Reunion featuring Keller Williams executives and top producing young professionals;
- Members-only networking events at Mega Camp;
- International networking and referral opportunities;
- KW Young Professionals t-shirt;
- And a members-only online community (coming in 2015)
KW Young Professional member Matt Aitchison of Aitchison & Adams in Roseville, Calif., shared this advice with those who are considering joining: “You are the sum of the people you hang around and there is no better group to be around than those who are pushing the industry forward."
To join KW Professionals and receive the special Mega Camp discount, check out the KW Store at Mega Camp or visit KWYP.org and enter code “KWYP” at checkout.