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Heather Du Plessis-Allan: Mandatory Culture Lessons at Real Estate Agents Was Wrong

Author
Newstalk ZB,
Publish Date
Fri, 23 Feb 2024, 4:20PM

Heather Du Plessis-Allan: Mandatory Culture Lessons at Real Estate Agents Was Wrong

Author
Newstalk ZB,
Publish Date
Fri, 23 Feb 2024, 4:20PM

The case of the real estate agent being forced to do a Māori culture and tikanga course or lose her job is a case of bad judgment by the Real Estate Authority.

Estate agents have to do courses to retain their licenses. 

10 hours of training a year... mostly they can pick which topics they do  

But a couple are compulsory for everyone.  

And one of them – there's only two compulsory - and one of them was the Māori culture and tikanga course. 

Now an estate agent called Janet Dickson who works for Harcourt's objected to doing it because she says it's a “subject that is only peripherally connected” to her job. 

And she's right isn’t she? 

I mean a compulsory course on money laundering? Fair enough. 

Compulsory course on how to appropriately deal with issues and complaints? Fair enough. 

Sale and purchase agreements? Fair enough.

But Māori tikanga and culture? Hmmm... not convinced. 

Now look... I think your life is enriched by learning about different cultures and different ways of thinking about things... personally... I find this one of the most fascinating things in the world.

But that’s a personal choice.  it’s shouldn't’ be a job requirement for an estate agent 

And certainly not one that might leave Janet Dickson banned for five years from the job 

The Real Estate Authority probably has its heart in the right place but has made a massive error in judgment. 

For all the good they might’ve done in introducing some estate agents to diverse ways of thinking... they’ll have done as much harm in creating resentment amongst others by forcing them to do something largely irrelevant to their work.

Secondly.. By being heavy handed and threatening her with her job, they look like bullies.

This is the kind of red tape nonsense this country doesn’t need if we want to make doing business easier .

If it’s not related to the job, leave it out, no matter how worthy you think it is.

And for the record... It says a lot that that course was compulsory last year... this year... when it’s getting attention... It's now only voluntary.

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