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Key Idea: Commit to Improve Your Industry

Ebby started her  real estate business in 1946 and helped to define the entire industry. After watching this video and reading the Q&A (case study guide), you can go to the homepage  for this episode or click on the Key Question  for other insightful answers.

Key Question:


Jump to the head of the class.  In other words, lead the pack and you may even be able to make the rules for your entire industry.  When Ebby started selling houses for a developer in 1945 there were no licensing requirements. She told us all you needed back then was a pulse.

Q: What did Ebby do early in her real estate career?

A: She took a leadership role and was instrumental in defining the playing field for the entire industry. Ebby's story is the story of free markets and capitalism. It is a perfect example of why things get better. She and a few pioneers believed that real estate agents should be required to follow a strict code of ethics and a specific set business processes. She was part of the group who jumped ahead of government regulators and today The National Association of Realtors is the regulating body for the industry.

The rewards are tangible and intangible. Being the "old guard" means some business comes your way. You have an enormous reserve of trust built so customers choose you. No home buyer or seller in Dallas, Texas would ever wonder if they will be treated fairly and legally when they do business with Ebby Halliday. She established the establishment!

The "establishment" in any industry chooses who to recognize and reward, right? Virtually all trade associations give awards of many types. They do this because they recognize the benefit to their members. Most awards are given through a self-nomination process but you can always write the application and ask a customer or colleague to submit it on your behalf.

A walk through Ebby Halliday headquarters reveals that this company has won every award that could be won in its industry and even in the community. A commitment to your entire industry is a way to educate yourself, grow the entire business and win recognition. That's what we call three for the price of one!

Think about it

What is the current state of the industry in which you operate? What could you do to help it improve?

Clip from: Ebby Halliday built a business and a legacy.

Dallas: Ebby Halliday is a legend in this city.  She started her business in 1946 with nothing but the love of her family. Classic Americana, this is a rags to riches story. She went from the Great Depression to create a multi-billion dollar business.  She is truly one of today's pioneers and quiet heroes. .Today she has over 1500 independent realtors, hundreds who have become millionaires on her watch.

Ebby  will tell us how she broke through the gender barriers long before there ever was a feminist movement, how she found the person who replaced her at the top and why she gave the company to her employees.

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Ebby Halliday Real Estate

Ebby Halliday, Chairman

Visit our web site:

Business Classification:
Real Estate

Year Founded:

Commit to Improve Your Industry

HATTIE: (In the Studio) Hi. I'm Hattie Bryant. If you want to understand how businesses are built and how they grow, stay with us for the next 30 minutes. You'll learn about businesses and the people who build them. Every week here you meet a new American hero, the founder of a growing business, the brains and brawn behind work and wealth creation.

This week is unusual because Ebby Halliday is not only a hero, she is a legend who has helped define her industry. Breaking the gender barrier before there was a feminist movement, she has run her real estate business since 1946. If you need a hero, Ebby can be that for you. Heroes are people who bravely confront adversity while doing for others. What the real estate busines is today is partly because Ebby was there to establish the standards and pave the way for others. Now she is a legend, the new American hero, Ebby Halliday.

HATTIE: What is it? I mean, she's like this--she's got this magic.

PETEY PARKER (Heads Relocation Department): Yeah, she does.

HATTIE: What is it?

PETEY: It's that magic.

LEONORE BERGERT (Accounting Department Supervisor): She's the world's greatest salesperson.

ROBERT DOYNA (Halliday employee): She's a legend in her own time.

HATTIE: (Voiceover) Who is she? She's Ebby Halliday, but everyone in Dallas already knows that. Unidentified Photographer: (From ceremony) You gonna open it up and show it to us and be proud.


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