Over the summer several colleagues and I were fortunate to attend the inaugural GlobeSt. Women of Influence (WOI) Conference in Colorado, where we engaged with 100+ colleagues across the spectrum of commercial real estate services. We discussed current and future trends we face as part of the profession, what it means to be a woman in business today, and how we are doing our part to not only promote, but accelerate diversity and inclusion (D&I) across the board. 

Some of the stories told on the stage and in the hallways of these journeys alternated between humorous and so shocking it would make your hair curl. In some ways, simply attending this conference represented a step in the right direction for some individuals and firms less mature in their D&I journey, while other firms who sponsored and/or were keynote speakers shared resources and sage advice regarding their comprehensive leadership programming, support and lessons learned.  In the end, the resounding chorus – elevate women to a level of parity in leadership roles, salaries, teams, share of voice, and overall fair treatment – had universal contribution by all attendees, contribution that echoed loudly throughout the halls of the Omni Interlocken.

During some downtime between sessions, I discussed with some of my Newmark Knight Frank colleagues their personal take about the growth and development of women in CRE. Here’s what they had to say.

This event solidified my personal commitment to elevate the game when it comes to D&I. My hope for this industry is match in kind – to elevate the investment in diverse talent, supportive programming, learning and development opportunities, and hiring and retention practices, at a national and global level. Let’s be a leader among not only CRE peers, but among professional services firms worldwide. Industry evolution demands it, and current and future talent, clients and investors are watching with keen interest who exactly is paying attention.