Episode 260 – Rebecca Jensen, President and CEO, MRED
Our guest took a non-traditional route to reach her success today and was able to work her way up to be the CEO of MRED in Chicago, IL. Joining us is Rebecca Jensen, the President, and CEO of Midwest Real Estate Data, or MRED, an MLS company providing services to the Chicagoland area. Rebecca truly is making "industry magic" happen in the real estate world.
In this episode, join Rebecca and me to hear how Rebecca's choices led her to be the leader of one of the largest MLS companies in the country that provides services to over 45,000 brokers and appraisers. We also discuss the numerous ways in which Rebecca offers her expertise to real estate organizations across the country!
Rebecca Jensen's Advice for New Agents
"Understand why you are now in the business. There are part-time agents that think that this could be a supplemental part of their income, and then there are people who think that… might see real estate as an easy way to change a career. It's not as easy as HGTV or some of the programs might have you think."
"If you're going into the real estate industry as an agent because you've lost your job, and this is going to be your new job. Make sure that you treat it like a job. Don't expect ten hours a week of work to give you the forty-hour a week paycheck. It's not how it works. You need to put in a ton of work, especially in the beginning for new agents. Don't think it's just some easy career path; it might look like that on the outside, but it takes a lot of time, effort, and discipline to create an actual business for yourself."
"I want to stay at the top of my game. My goal is to serve brokerages. I do a lot, as much as I can, to not just reach out and let people know what is happening but also to hear what the pain points are, what are the problems that need to be solved. I am motivated by the big, hairy, audacious goals." – Rebecca Jensen [24:30]
"I am a huge advocate of having a very disciplined planning process that takes not just what's happening in the industry, but you have got to have at least a three to five ear outlook on where things are going to go. That's what I did with RESO. I knew data standards weren't just going to pop out in two months. Now, look at where RESO was… and now it's a sold-out conference held globally with people all over the world being engaged." – Rebecca Jensen [29:16]
[00:48] Meet Rebecca Jensen – MLS Aficionado
[02:05] Born and raised in Salt Lake City
[05:32] Taking the Alternate Path in High School to Reach Success
[07:13] Working on Up – Help Desk to CEO
[13:40] Rebecca Jensen's Projects and Developments at MRED
[16:59] Working Alongside a Board of Directors
[18:47] The Transition from "Small" Lake City to Chicagoland
[24:24] The Importance of Volunteering in the Real Estate Space
[26:54] MRED-Shaped Strategic Planning for Brokerage Clients
[30:05] The Impact of 2020 on MRED
[33:41] Rebecca's Advice for New Agents
[35:29] Connect with Rebecca
[35:45] Closing Thoughts
Today, Joining us is Rebecca Jensen, President, and CEO of Midwest Real Estate Data, or MRED, an MLS company providing services to the Chicagoland area's brokers and appraisers. Born and raised in Salt Lake City, Utah, Rebecca spent her childhood outdoors enjoying the terrain that Utah offers.
Rebecca Jensen's dreams in high school were on the non-traditional side as she decided to drop out of high school at the age of sixteen as she believed she could go to college and start her career path now. Rebecca never received her high school diploma or obtained a GED. Instead, she enrolled at her local community college and began taking college courses at sixteen years old. Instead of taking the traditional path, Rebecca described that she looked at all her possible paths and decided the best way for her to get to where she wanted to be would be receiving a degree in general studies.
Rebecca received her Associate Degree in General Education from Salt Lake Community College. She worked as a freelance trainer for Wasatch Front Regional MLS (WFRMLS), now known as the UtahRealEstate.com. Rebecca had dreams of working in the technology field, and after getting her foot in the door at UtahRealEstate.com, she applied for a help desk job helping unhappy realtors with their transition to technology use. During this time, Rebecca went back to school to receive her Bachelor of Science in Computer Science from Westminster College.
Rebecca Jensen worked her way up from the help desk to become the CEO of UtahRealEstate.com in 2007, where she stayed for over seven years. During this time, Rebecca received her Master's in Business Administration and Technology Commercialization from Westminster College. Rebecca had goals to bring technology to the real estate industry using her degree experience and professional work experience. At UtahRealEstate.com, Rebecca was thus involved in the technologies to build a successful MLS and the building of a front-end website, consumer website, and the correct office infrastructure needed for MLS.
Rebecca Jensen began to take on more industry-related roles when she became CEO of UtahRealEstate.com and realized that Salt Lake City wasn't delivering everything that brokers needed. Rebecca became part of the ground floor of the Real Estate Standards Organization or RESO. Being with the organization for over ten years now, Rebecca has Board Chair and Board Member experience. She facilitated the development and implementation of long-term strategic plans in the real estate industry.
These connections led Rebecca Jensen to Chicago, where she took the job as President and CEO of Midwest Real Estate Data in 2015. Rebecca believes volunteering, especially in the real estate space, is crucial as it allows you to stay at the top of your game and further serve brokers. Rebecca shows this in her work on multiple boards of directors. Currently, Rebecca is a Board Member for Broker Public Portal, a Board Chair for the MLS Grid, and, most recently, a Board Member for the California Regional MLS, CRMLS, the nation's largest MLS.
Rebecca Jensen's advice to new agents is to understand why you are now in the business and know that it is not as easy as it may look. Rebecca shares that, especially at the beginning of your real estate career, you must put in a lot of hard work to create the business you want for yourself!