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YP of the Month – Bethany Warntjes

First and Last Name:  Bethany Warntjes

Hometown: Fond du Lac, WI

Educational Background: Bachelor of Arts Degree, Double Major in Psychology and Human Social Services from Wisconsin Lutheran College ’16 in Milwaukee.

Describe Yourself in Three Words: Achiever. Helper. Detailed. If you’re into the Enneagram, I’m an Enneagram 3w2 with some strong Type 1 Tendencies.
Place of Employment and Position: Independent Contractor as a Realtor with Adashun Jones Inc.

What do you enjoy the most about your current position? My people are my passion – I love building connections with my sellers and buyers and helping them reach their goals – My relationships are built through education, connecting on a personal level, problem-solving, cheering for them, empathizing with them, helping them prep their homes to be market ready (for sellers), guiding them step-by-step through the process, giving a meaningful closing gift, and staying in touch when a deal is done. This career has brought the warm and fuzzies and happy tears many times over –  it is truly rewarding! I also really love the marketing aspect (using my unique modern approach), the detail orientation/mental challenge of paperwork/home valuations, consistently growing my knowledge, and being a guru on everything local. I love so many aspects of this career so much! 

What is the one thing you would do if you knew you could not fail? Run a Marathon.

How has YPF contributed to your personal and/or professional development? YPF has expanded my network, led to new friendships, fueled my optimism about the future of FDL (Thanks to meeting other young passionate individuals!), and provided the opportunity to lead and give back to my community. 

Who or what is your source of professional inspiration? I am so grateful to be at Adashun Jones! As our company trainer Chris Renderman has impacted my life immensely – He taught me so much, and continues to always be there to answer questions or talk through situations. He has always encouraged me, believed in me, and helped me grow. He has brought out the best in me and I am so thankful for him! I also would love to shout out Alissa Jenkins, Katy Caldwell, and Chelsea Petersen – they’ve truly pushed me to be my best! I am better because of the people who have nurtured me!

What are some of the professional and volunteer groups you participate in? I joined YPF in March 2021. In 2022, I committed to being more involved. I joined the Membership Engagement Committee, Volunteered at the YPF Sturgeon Spectacular Booth, Am Co-heading a Video Sub-Committee showcasing the YPF Experience via video, and am currently in the thick of putting the final touches on the Youth Leader Breakfast which I am so excited about, where high schoolers and local young professionals will come together! Something else I’ve started on my own within our community is a series called Work Here, Live Here, Play Here: Telling Fond du Lac’s Story and Supporting Local. I interview fellow local FDL County citizens and pair it with a giveaway to my interviewee’s favorite local place to “Play.” Besides sharing with me their local occupation, why they love their location/favorite home feature, and their favorite place to “Play” in FDL, I ask them how/why they chose FDL as home and why they would encourage others to choose FDL as home. All of these videos are on my social media platforms (You’re welcome to check them out – Facebook, Instagram, and soon to be on Youtube)  –  Besides showcasing our community in a positive light and supporting local, I’m accumulating these videos so that people considering FDL can hear testimonials from everyday citizens themselves. It’s an innovative form of leading that’s really fulfilling, and I’m not stopping! 

What is your favorite thing to do in the Fond du Lac area? There is so much about the Greater Fond du Lac area to love. Let’s start by admitting that getting ice cream at Kelley Country Creamery is a regular occasion in my life. I bought their advent calendar this year so I can try ALL of their Christmas flavors! I’m planning to share the flavor everyday on my IG @realestatewithbethany so come follow along in my stories! It’s no secret that I love ice cream. If you are new to town, I’m definitely telling you to make a stop here. My husband and I also enjoy walks to Gilles and DQ. There is more to life than ice cream, though! I am a nature/outdoors lover –  I enjoy walks with my hubby at Eldorado Marsh off of the Dyke road parking lot, year round  – in my opinion it’s the best local place to catch the sunset! If we boil it down to the basics, I enjoy anything local involving food or nature (:

Where do you see the Fond du Lac area in 5 years? Thriving and Growing with Continuous Improvement which is driven by the passionate individuals of this community. The biggest reason I love being a part of Young Professionals of Fond du Lac is because I love meeting other young individuals who are passionate about making FDL the best it can be and who care about its future – through the people I’ve met, I have a stronger optimism about FDL’s future.

What words of wisdom do you have for other young professionals working in Fond du
Lac? There is so much to love about our community and so much to do here, You just have to look for it. A good place to start is the Destination Lake Winnebago Region Visitors Bureau, Downtown FDL partnership, Young Professionals of Fond du Lac, and Envision Greater Fond du Lac – Go find their social media pages! I’m also always happy to recommend local places based on your interests, just ask me!

What’s a work lesson you learned the hard way? Burn Out!  After graduating college in December of 2016 I worked some very emotionally intense positions in the Social Work Type Field. What pushed me to make the switch into real estate? This is long-winded but let me explain…

In October 2017 I was attending a work conference at the Heidel House. I was employed by Forward Service Corporation as The Independent Living Specialist for youth ages 16 to 21 aging out of foster care for FDL, Green Lake, & Waushara Counties. (I was 22!)

The Speaker at the Conference was Cory Bouck – Regional Business Director for Johnsonville Sausage. His presentation brought my lightbulb moment.
He used an analogy about our careers. He asked “Are you on the right spot on the bus?” Meaning, within your field or organization are you in the right position? Then he asked, “Or are you even on the right bus?” Meaning, are you in the right field? My mind thought through the positions in my company as well as other opportunities in my field, & that day I said to myself – “You know what, I’m on the wrong bus!”

Within 2 weeks I talked to 3 real estate firms, picked Adashun Jones Real Estate Inc. as the place I wanted to be & started my real estate course.
For a month straight I’d come home from my Full time Job & do a few hours of my Realtor Course. I was motivated because it was the light at the end of the tunnel. In Mid-December I took my test, passed on my first try & put my 2 weeks in for my job.

And in January 2018 I began my Real Estate Career.

Don’t get me wrong, I LOVED & CARED for my kiddos & was excelling in my career. But you see, Burnout, especially in the social work type field, is real. I was 22, trying to be everything to “my kids” who were 16 to 21 & in constant crisis. My brain never turned off. I lost myself in helping others, nonstop problem-solving, & disappointment that as hard as I tried I couldn’t completely fix their lives. I lost me. Happy, Bubbly, Energetic, Motivated Bethany was no where to be found. I was broken & burnt out.

Real Estate was something I had thought I’d do later in life, not right now. But that day at the conference made me realize the time was now.
Trust me, it’s hard to be the Double Major Straight A student who is Excelling in your career & walk away. Was all that college for nothing? Who would be disappointed in me? But I knew my well-being mattered, & I needed to do what was best for me.

You see, those personality tests you take in high school had actually always pushed me to business, & I just ignored them because I wanted to help people. I probably should have listened.

Real Estate has been the most amazing fit for me. I DO get to help people, build relationships, & change lives. Just in a different way. My problem-solving skills & ability to be resourceful translated well into real estate. Staying calm in crisis & handling stress are an asset. My attention to detail, ability to manage transactions, educational approach, excitement over analytics, contracts & putting together home valuations, thirst for knowledge, & love for the fun I find in marketing – I’m just so thankful I found real estate 💕

This is your encouragement to not be afraid to get off the wrong bus & on to the right one. Even if it’s scary. From the other side, I’m telling you, it’s worth it!

What is your favorite winter activity in Fond du Lac? Go anywhere with a fireplace to feel cozy like Stone Oak Coffee Haus or Ziegler Winery. Also, take walks/hikes outside and enjoy the beauty of nature in winter – Hobbs Woods is just one of the many good places for this! 

What is your favorite winter beverage? When the weather turns cold I start drinking hot tea (I get cold easily, so I drink it to stay warm!) but like I just mentioned above I enjoy Lattes or Wine paired with a fireplace at our local Stone Oak Coffee Haus and Ziegler Winery. I’m a sucker for Hot Cocoa and Apple Cider, too.

What was the strangest or worst present you’ve ever received? Every year my ladies from my high school friend group and I do a White Elephant Gift Exchange/Gathering. One year, I received an air freshener with my friend’s face on it. It rode around in my vehicle with me for a while and gave me a good laugh.

In your opinion, what is the most underrated holiday film? Joyeux Noel. In a world of so much decisiveness, it is a reminder of our common humanity.  I’m 100% the person who cries just by watching this movie trailer. If you haven’t seen it – I recommend it. It’s a war movie – so probably not for your little ones!

What is your favorite holiday guilty pleasure? Eat a Christmas Cookie anywhere they are offered – public businesses like a bank/store/hair salon, at a gathering, in the office – If they’re up for grabs – I’ll have one. I really enjoy trying all the different fun kinds of Christmas cookies out there! I’m a sucker for sweets!

Bethany Wartjes