A few weeks ago, I was searching for a photo to accompany an earlier blog post. It didn’t surprise me, but it was a little disheartening to find that images of female real estate agents were hard to come by.
Finding concrete statistics on how many women are involved in commercial real estate is hard to come by. We know that in the residential side of the real estate industry there is certainly a fair representation of men vs. women in the field.
In Saskatoon, our smaller market makes it rather easy to compile quick numbers for the agents specializing in commercial real estate.
Women agents make up approximately 16 per cent of the Saskatoon industry. That is not to say that I’ve included female property managers, which certainly represent a higher percentage.
With any sales directed career, networking is a significant component of creating a name for yourself. While most traditional business networks are open to both genders, this is where women can get a bit of an upper hand by reaching out to the “girls only” clubs.
I have been a member of Business and Professional Women of Saskatoon for a number of years. The group is centered on the three pillars of leadership, advocacy and education. BPW Saskatoon is part of a much larger picture with national and international ties.
BPW International includes over 100 groups on five continents and holds a permanent seat at the United Nations. The national vision of the group is to improve the social and economic status of working women. They also encourage women to pursue political office, and as a group of influence, lobby all levels of government for positive change.
I’ve gained valuable support from the women in this organization and the connections to female decision makers in local business.
Another great resource new to Saskatoon is the Commercial Real Estate Women’s network. Again, this is an organization with farther reaching ties. Founded in 1989, CREW now includes 9,500 members in 70 major markets in North America.
The focus of CREW includes business development, leadership development, industry research and career outreach. They host a number of conferences available to members and non-members several times a year.
So what am I?
I am a saleswoman. Or a salesperson. Because my skills and abilities are the same as a salesman but I’m proud to represent a part of our industry that can offer a uniquely different perspective.
I enjoy working with all sorts of industry professionals, but I get a special buzz when I’m able to deal with female business owners and other female brokers.
Posted by Kelly Macsymic