Do Required Ethics Classes Affect the Behavior of the Unethical Agent?

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Education & Training with Glasswork Media Arts

Do Required Ethics Classes Affect the Behavior of the Unethical Agent?

 

Adding to the old adage that the only sure things in life are death and taxes, those of us that are members of RAYAC (Realtors assoc. of York and Adams Counties) can add ethics classes to that statement. Every two years the assoc. requires that each agent attend an ethics class. Of course to a person every realtor in the assoc. likens the classes to a fine tuned form of torture. I am sure that there are those that feel the classes are necessary, however I have yet to hear from any that feel the classes are value added. I personally do not understand the logic. Does the leadership of the assoc. think that unscrupulous agents are going to change their tactics upon completion of the class? Let's be honest, since I was a young man I was well aware when I was doing something wrong, or even "on the edge".  To add insult to injury, the classes are the same year after year, with little or no changes or additions to the presentation. While I have no animosity towards the unfortunate instructors, my anger and frustrations lie with the powers that be that continue to require this exercise in futility. Year after year the same agents that you know you have to keep an eye on throughout a transaction operate in exactly the same manner, even after satisfying the ethics class requirements. So what real value is being acquired by the class?

 

Maybe some tweaking of the requirement is in order. Wouldn't it make more sense to require the class for any agent who is found to have violated the code of ethics that we all are expected to adhere to? Those agents that have consistently shown to be reputable, ethical, and professional agents should no longer be forced to endure the wrath of those classes to pay for the sins of the few unethical agents operating our there.

 

I look forward to comments from those in the RAYAC assoc. as well as those around country on this subject. Thanks in advance for your comments.

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Rainmaker
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William J. Archambault, Jr.
The Real Estate Investment Institute - Houston, TX

Gerry,

Great question!

The answer is no! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No! No!

So what?

The important thing is they make the good people think! Ethical conduct like much of life requires spontaneous behavior, most people are not by nature unethical, but rather inexperienced. These classes make us think about situations we may run into so that we're prepared to behave ethically when the situation presents it self.

Good post.

Bill

Oct 29, 2009 01:50 PM #1
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Gerry Michaels
Glasswork Media Arts - Gettysburg, PA
GettysburgGerry Social Meida

Bill,

Good point, this is precisley why I asked the question. I knew it would inspire some good debate. Thanks for the comment

Oct 29, 2009 01:57 PM #2
Rainmaker
250,366
David Monsour
Coldwell Banker Select Professionals - Gettysburg, PA
ABR - www.realty-insights.com

I'd rather be drawn and quartered than sit through this class, but I actually learned a fair amount this year.  The web is really changing a lot of what we have to do in terms of disclosure.  Disclosure in Email, Blogs, should we disclose we are an agent in text messages?  What about Branding on listings that are IDXing out to the various other places on the web.  Now generally speaking I think that the class isn't going to make someone that is unethical begin to practice ethical real estate, but I did realize that there are some things that I should be doing but wasn't.  The only reason I wasn't doing them was ignorance, not because I was trying to pull one over one anyone.   Thought provoking post. 

Oct 29, 2009 02:28 PM #3
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Gerry Michaels
Glasswork Media Arts - Gettysburg, PA
GettysburgGerry Social Meida

Thanks Dave, i think both side of this issue have validity

Oct 29, 2009 02:32 PM #4
Rainer
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Douglas Fischer
East Oahu Realty - Selling Honolulu, Hawaii Condos - Honolulu, HI

No, it just makes them sneakier.  And, I've noticed that most ethically challenged agents don't recognize an ethics issue when they're in the middle of it.

Oct 29, 2009 03:29 PM #5
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Tony Marriott
Haven Express @ Keller Williams Arizona Realty - Scottsdale, AZ
Associate Broker, REALTOR

Unethical and downright dishonest behavior is a hot topic for me right now.  It's incredible and appalling how some agents that are clueless when it comes to Short Sales boast of hundreds of transactions and high closing ratios - neither metric being supported by the MLS, apparently in the hopes of leading unsuspecting homeowners to financial disaster.

Sep 03, 2010 08:57 AM #6
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Gerry Michaels

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