epers. “Organizations can take action in many ways. They could rework job descriptions to be more gender-neu - tral, implement blind interview processes, ensure fair pay and salary negotiations, and more. This would help level the playing field.” Such actions can help continue the momentum of women ascending into powerful seats in real estate. And ultimately, this would help build a healthier industry. THE POWER OFMENTORSHIP & REPRESENTATION I find this statistic noteworthy: 89% of women set more ambitious life goals when in the presence of awoman they admire. “Support and mentorship from women in leadership positions will ensure the success of more women in real estate,” attests Amanda Dean. “I advise women in real estate to stay true to who they are. Don’t be afraid to be a woman. Stay fearless. Have passion for what you do. The results will come,” adds Dean. While we understand the value of mentorship in real estate, our indus- try and most workplaces in gener - al have to close the gap. Research shows that, while 67 percent of wom - en place great importance on having a mentor, 63 percent of female work - ers have never had a mentor. To get more women into leader- ship positions in real estate, we must develop and/or encourage more men - torship programs for women. Such efforts can have a huge impact, and would benefit real estate as a whole. For example, leaders can encour - age and facilitate connections outside the workplace. There are lots of great organizations, such as the Wom -

en’s Real Estate Investors Network, that connect professionals. Industry events can be better utilized to build such connections as well. Within the organization, real estate companies should encourage and promote men - tor-mentee relationships. This can be done in a number of ways, from one- on-one training sessions to career development roundtables. “Representation is very import - ant,” attests Claudia Schiepers. “When you see people that look like you doing the things you want to do someday, it motivates you. When those same people work with you as a mentor, it can guide you to a more successful career. This is why I believe all leaders should use their positions and privilege to uplift oth - ers through mentorship.” THE ROADAHEAD IN REAL ESTATE Today, let’s celebrate the success - es of women at DLP Real Estate Capital and other companies. They’re a true motivation for the next gener - ation of real estate entrepreneurs. It’s on us to continue the momen - tum we’ve seen in recent years. That means having the right culture and processes, broadening our perspec - tives and overcoming biases, and uplifting others through things like mentorship programs. In the end, we’ll all benefit. Because with more talented wom - en making waves in the real estate investing world, we can build a more prosperous future. •

At DLP Real Estate Capital, our female leaders drive performance across a diverse set of key roles. Team members like Schiepers, French, and Dean directly determine the success of the company. “As a woman working in the mul- tifamily real estate and construction industry, I am proud of my accom - plishments,” exclaims Melanie French. In the past five years, French has helped complete more than 40,000 interior renovations and grow a management company from 9,000 to 50,000 units. “We all want to work hard and be successful, but at the end of the day, it’s about people. Highlighting the individual accomplishments of wom - en in this space is vital,” continues French. The movement of women into pow - erful seats in real estate shows that the glass ceiling has been broken. Though the industry is historical - ly dominated by men, women have been making waves in real estate investing. And it’s making the space much more prosperous. Over time, the success of wom - en should do a lot to break down lingering biases and help even more women get a fair opportunity at the table. To help get us there, we must first broaden our perspectives. “We can’t box ourselves in. It doesn’t matter who you are. If you have passion and work ethic, and are given the opportunity, you can succeed in real estate,” says Aman - da Dean. Such insights can be put into tan - gible action. We must ensure those with potential get the opportunity. For this to happen, we must work to prevent hidden and unconscious biases from affecting how we hire and promote. “We all have biases. The key is to recognize, understand, and take steps to overcome these biases,” says Schi -

DonWenner is Founder and CEO of DLP Real Estate Capital.

32 | think realty magazine :: march 2021

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