In nature, an ecosystem is a biological community of interacting organisms and their physical environment. It involves a complex set of relationships and interconnection between the community and their surroundings. Everything in an ecosystem has an important role.
Typically, a healthy ecosystem has a diversity of inhabitants. Every inhabitant has a niche in the ecosystem that helps to ensure it remains healthy. All the individual parts work together to make a balanced system. If one part of the ecosystem suffers, it affects all other parts of the system. For example, if there isn’t enough water in the soil, then plants die, animals that rely on those plants for food also die and other animals that rely on those animals also suffer.
A commercial ecosystem works on similar principles of symbiosis, where businesses – real estate agencies, suppliers and stakeholders – depend on each other for certain things and work together to ensure survival. Ultimately, all the players in the ecosystem are interconnected and each contributes to a healthy industry and business environment.
Like a rainforest ecosystem, the wider real estate industry – including not only agents and agencies, but also data and technology suppliers, regulatory bodies and other suppliers – come together as a complex web of closely interconnected stakeholders, all relying on each other to not only survive but to thrive.
Changing perspectives to view the real estate industry as an ecosystem has a number of benefits including:
- The real estate industry will be in a better position to influence outcomes, rather than being reactive to change. By embracing the changing environment and being part of the conversation, the industry can be proactive about change – particularly regulatory change –with a strong, united voice.
- Improved education, ethics and professional conduct of agents will raise the standard of service to consumers.
- Working with technology partners will improve the service offering to customers and ultimately achieve better outcomes for consumers.
- It will create a more collaborative environment where all parties contribute to the conversation about best practice, implementing new technology and developing new tactics for the success of the wider industry.
- Working together to innovate will give the entire industry a competitive advantage. Rather than seeing suppliers and other stakeholders as a threat, agents can look for new opportunities.
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