OAR’s Big Ideas Discussed in Washington

OAR President Mary Terry will be presenting OAR’s big ideas at the REALTOR® Party Convention and Trade Expo during the State Leadership Idea Exchange May 13 in Washington, DC. These things are happening now at OAR and we’re excited to spread the word!

Be a Trusted Education Partner

featured-image-Chris-BirdWe are developing a new website where statewide trainers and instructors—and possibly national speakers—may be listed for use by local boards and members who are looking to hire someone. In a crowdsourcing approach, it will include reviews, a rating system and will be searchable by topic and other factors. We want this to be a valuable resource to increase the quality and accessibility of real estate education throughout the state.


Raise the Standards of Professionalism

Oklahoma is one of a handful of states that has taken on the role of providing Professional Standards services for their local boards to meet the NAR organizational standards requirement.

We currently service about 90% of our members and have lifted the burden of locals having to find hearing panels of impartial peers. Financial responsibilities and telephone calls are now funneled to the state, making us the main resource for ethics complaints.

Being that central silo, we’re also able to compile a list of article violations, helping us shape Code of Ethics training in the best direction throughout the state.

Make Advocates Out of Your Stakeholders

realtor-dayOklahoma has contracted with a firm to flesh out members who have relationships with elected officials and staff at the state legislature. In a year like this when we have a major legislative campaign for the sake of private property rights, this is a critical step to reaching key decision makers.

Personal relationships are fundamental to effective advocacy, and our organizations are full of them. Casting a wide net in a Call for Action is in certain times less effective than utilizing a small group of credible, willing volunteers using their influence to forward our agenda.

Take the Show on the Road

For several years now, Oklahoma has hosted meetings with local members in locations among the five districts. It’s partially a Town Hall forum for information to make its way up and down the pipeline; and in years past, we’ve brought education based on a hot topic, like a new broker relationships law.

district meetingsThis year we brought in some fantastic facilitators for the REALTOR® Leadership Program 200 and 300. The participants appreciate the personal touch for one, but they feel valued in having a national program with excellent content brought home to help them that will raise awareness of how the association structures function and improve the operation of their local organizations.

Another part of this concerted effort to reach out to local and state leaders was to provide a full day’s worth of leadership training for our Board of Directors (which includes local presidents), featuring information on the nuts and bolts of governance, association management trends, ethics and more.

Gain Information That Makes You an Authority

In late 2012, beginning with finally securing permission from all local MLSs to aggregate their market data through a RETS Data Feed, we realized we had a gold mine of information. That made us the single leading source of credible housing data for the state of Oklahoma.

Channeling this new asset, we hired a PR firm to help us grow from a predominantly internal trade organization to one that is also being seen publicly as an expert and thought leader, further augmenting value to members.

We’ve built on the momentum by refreshing our brand, designing a modern logo, creating a new responsive okrealtors.com website, increasing regular contact with our legislators and controlling a record number of messages seen in the media.

Now we are creating a comprehensive, informative data visualization promoting quality of life in Oklahoma. The concept and distribution plan have been presented to the state economic development council to host it as a download on their member websites, to fund printing of poster-sized infographic for their use and for all state and federal legislators, and to serve as an outreach to other partners like the Oklahoma Tourism and Recreation Department and the Department of Commerce for an even wider distribution.