Usually, the Rookie Award is handed out by the previous year’s rookie. Due to a down market, our association hadn’t given the award in four years. Neither 2007’s nor 2008’s rookie could make it to the awards so the job fell to the most recent one. Yep, you guessed it. Me, 2006.
It wasn’t anything weird when they asked me to do it, until I received the script with the 2013 Rookie of the Year’s name on it. Brad Copeland. My brother.
I had huge tears well up in my eyes. What a very special honor!
In July 2012, I called my brother and asked him if he would consider coming to Nashville to “learn the trade.” A full-time minister of music in our hometown of Clinton, TN, I knew it would be tough with his schedule.
He committed to the idea and showed up every week to learn. In December 2012, I obtained his license in Tennessee and started his move to Nashville. Most rookies of the year have a few more months or even an entire year to prepare for technically their rookie year, the first full year of licensure. Brad jumped immediately into his first full year and never looked back.
While nothing would make my huge ego happier than to say, “Well, it’s all because of me,” I have to admit, a mentor is only as good as his mentee’s willingness to put ideas into action.
Brad took one client that I was struggling finding time for and turned them into a Nashville renovation success. When Sundays rolled around, he was the first to step into an open house and be his normal charming self. His first open house garnered six buyers, one of which became his first closing. He took that relationship and turned it into a referral stream.
He dove headfirst into the association, immediately volunteering on committees and graduating from Leadership GNAR. He even stepped up to the Sterling R RPAC level after only making a few thousand dollars in the industry. He was that confident that IT mattered.
He jumped into the education arena, attending every class he could get in to, even starting the prestigious Council of Residential Specialists (CRS) designation courses.
He treated this independent contractor job into a systemized, serious, scheduled career. When I walked into the office early in the morning, he was already there. When I left, he was still there.
Ultimately, I’m proud of my brother. He proved that the work ethic our parents, Virgil and Teresa, instilled in us matters. The message to any new (or even not new) agent is anyone can be successful with the right formula:
2. A serious schedule
3. Involvement in the association
4. A heart for education
5. A compassion and care for people
It’s that simple. Brad mastered it, and tonight he was honored for it. Proud of you, Bubba!