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International Women’s Day: Reflecting on Women in Real Estate Management

March 08, 2016 | Nancye Kirk

March 8 is observed in many parts of the world as International Women’s Day. In some countries, particularly throughout Eastern Europe, it is an official holiday. In many places, the date is observed by men giving flowers to the women in their lives — their mothers, wives, sisters, female colleagues.

For IREM, International Women’s Day creates an opportunity to reflect on how women are represented within the real estate management profession. And they definitely are!

According to the U.S. Department of Labor, in 2015, 50.9% of all property, real estate, and community association managers were women. Within IREM, this percentage is much higher. According to research published by IREM in 2014, women represent:

  • 50.1% of CPM Members
  • 61.8% of CPM Candidates
  • 73.2% of ARMs

Within the commercial real estate industry as a whole, real estate management attracts more women than other commercial specialties according to CREW (Commercial Real Estate Women), which regularly publishes a research study on women in commercial real estate. The last published CREW report was in 2010, which showed that the percentage of women specializing in asset/property/facilities management was higher than in the other commercial real estate specialties:

  • Asset/property/facilities management: 56% female
  • Brokerage/sales/leasing: 36% female
  • Financial/professional services: 43% female
  • Development/development services: 36% female

What’s more, according to CREW’s report, the percentage of women in real estate management rose in the decade from 2000 to 2010 — going from 47% to 56%. During this same 10-year period, the percentage of women in brokerage/sales/leasing remained at 36%.

A number of real estate companies are working to attract more women to the profession. For example, CBRE has a formal Women’s Network and annually hosts a Women’s Networking Forum. And at SVN (formerly Sperry Van Ness), President and CEO Kevin Maggiacomo, at the annual SVN national conference last month, spoke of his company’s commitment to attracting talent and specifically bringing more women to the company, noting that “Having more successful women on our teams will make all of us more successful and generate exponential value and more profits.”

We applaud these efforts. And we want to know: What is your company doing to attract women — especially young women entering the workforce — to your property management team?

About the Author
Nancye Kirk, in her role as IREM’s chief strategy officer, supports real estate management businesses, helping them address the big issues with which they are wrestling – issues related to business strategy and growth, talent management, and best practices. 

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