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Women in Real Estate

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The real estate game has traditionally had just a few issues with gender equality. In short, it’s been a highly male-dominated industry.

What do we mean by male-dominated industries? The general rule is one that has less than 25% female employees.

So, back to real estate. It’s an interesting situation. Up until 10 years ago it was heavily male oriented at higher, more powerful, or influential positions. Women generally were only involved in the administration side of things. Women did account for about 65% of the real estate industry, though, but this was definitely not the case in upper management. Only a handful of ladies were working in the top jobs.

But it is also a success story of how things are starting to change.

A male dominated industry no more 

Well in QLD anyway. The industry’s peak body in QLD – the REIQ – released some commentary in the lead up to International Women’s Day in 2020 that showed the extent to which the industry’s landscape has changed.

“Across the Queensland real estate landscape, it isn’t hard to see that the gap of gender inequality is shrinking at a rapid pace. What was once a man’s world is equally a woman’s world too, which is reflected by the number of women in positions of power and success.” – REIQ

While this is just one section of the market, it’s good to see a start.

What does it matter?

What does it matter if an industry is male-dominated? It actually makes a lot of difference! The Australian Government outlines that the upsides of gender equality for women working is male-dominated industries:

Female managers in male-dominated industries are more likely to earn salaries that are closer to their male colleagues.

Performance incentives and additional remuneration are greater in male-dominated organisations and industries.

The downsides of male dominated industries are that:

Male dominated workplaces have a similar number of part time employees and full time employees work longer hours. This can be harder for females if they have family responsibilities.

The good news is, however, that according to the Government there has been a substantial increase in the number of females working in male dominated managerial positions in male-dominated industries. This was up over 8% from 1998 to 2018 and is likely higher now.

What are the barriers?

Barries to entry into male-dominated industries can be really varied. Generally, though, the consensus is that pressure from family and wider society regarding gender stereotypes.

It’s assumed that you should excel at some things or are not able to do certain things based on your gender. This may be the case in some instances, but in others, we all stand to be surprised.

In real estate there seems to be a bias against gender equality in sales, and too heavily weighted towards the “back end” of the business. The barriers are that women can be seen as too nurturing and soft to success in a sales driven, high pressure environment.

What is the way forward?

In Australia, women’s involvement in civil engineering and software programming has grown steadily over the past decade. So much so that they are now outpacing men.

As we have seen above, real estate has a similar success story in equality. It’s about living to break down the barriers. To be amazing. With the right attitude and determination, us girls can take on the world and win. Let’s do it!

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