Globally, the business ecosystem is evolving and entails a gender perspective into it. Similarly, the real estate sector is not anyway behind in embracing the change to make the environment inclusive.
In the mid of 1800s, women joined the workforce, and after that, women were switching rapidly to fill the occupations of agents and brokers.
Women’s representation dominates worldwide and makes their presence felt in leadership positions. However, women are suffused in the residential real estate sector, and representation, i.e., 64%, is still scanty in commercial real estate (Wedin, 2021).
In almost all facets of the real estate sector, women have exceeded men’s representation and domination. Women found this sector attractive due to its high revenue and the chance to become solo entrepreneurs. For instance, female agents in the US and Australia make up 67% and 48% of the real estate industry (Jonsson, 2022).
There is a paradigm shift in the sale techniques of the real estate sector because of the proliferation of women’s participation.
The formerly assertive and dominant male style worked, but now the client seeks a more empathic female style while discussing the deal. Moreover, market research shows that clients are more convenient discussing property deals with females than males.
Graana.com, in collaboration with the Iqbal Institute of Policy Studies, discusses the pivotal role of women in the real estate sector of Pakistan.
The Gamut of Professional Opportunities
Many firms are nudging and recognizing the benefit of diversity under the concept of ‘she-economy’, which truly alludes to the expanding female purchaser’s showcase.
Thus, female property buyers have increased from 70 to 80%, and companies are slowly moving the needle by encouraging more females to perform their duties in executive roles.
Moreover, companies are creating more opportunities for females in leading roles and breaking traditional barriers.
The current real estate sector provides a vast arena for people to boost their skills and develop new ones. It allows real estate advisors to communicate with a wide array of people, whether owners, developers, or customers, boosting their confidence and bringing different opportunities that help accelerate the learning curve.
Most women today are starting their careers in entry and administrative positions in the real estate sector and swiftly climbing up the corporate ladder with hard work and talent.
As per the study by Deloitte, 46% of companies are focusing on diversity (a deliberate effort to include different gender, race, etc.) while hiring a candidate for leadership and development roles.
For instance, in the UK, around 30% of senior leadership positions in commercial real estate are occupied by females. The gender pay gap is high between women and men. In commercial real estate, it is 27%.
In developing countries, the situation is worse because of low female labor force participation and nonconducive policies for females.
However, with the sector gradually organized, the government has introduced regulations like RERA, technology is making working conditions easier, and many other factors are changing with the new development.
Benefits of Hiring Women
Better Decision making
Diverse teams are 87% better at making decisions because of their wider perspective, broad range of skills, and greater creativity (Larson, 2017). Not only is their decision better, but they can finalize it more quickly than non-diverse teams.
Better Talent Retention
Inclusive and welcoming workplace culture leads to a 22% lower turnover rate and an increased talent retention rate (Deloitte, 2020). Diversity in the workplace increases employee morale, which means employees are more committed and engaged in the business, thus reducing the hiring cost.
Greater Productivity and Profitability
Diversity also increase the comparative advantage and return of businesses. Companies which endorse racial and ethnic diversity are 35% more likely to outperform their competitors, and those with gender-diverse executive teams are 21% more likely to be profitable than their rivals (Hunt et al., 2015).
Improved Reputation and Employer Brand
Companies that promote diversity in their culture are more attractive to talented people. 47% of millennials actively seek companies that prioritize diversity when seeking jobs. The diversified environment positively impacts your reputation with customers, clients, and employees.
Healthier, More Engaged Employees
Around 83% of millennials feel more engaged when working in a diverse and inclusive culture (Smith & Turner, 2020). Workers who feel supported, engaged, and included at the workplace make healthier decisions and have a great sense of well-being, decreasing time lost to sickness and increasing productivity.
Women In Real Estate Sector
The real estate sector is famous for its masculine landscape, where women remain largely underrepresented. However, in the last few decades, there has been a paradigm shift in all business ecosystems, including the real estate industry, leading to the expansion of firms and the inclusion of females.
Now it is no longer dominated by males. Around 30% of women are leading property-related decisions for their families, and approximately 50% of women are joint decision-makers with other family members.
Women are also actively involved in the real estate sector; as per the NAR report 2017, women comprise 56 percent of licensed brokers, 63 percent of full-time sales agents, and 69 percent of part-time sales agents of the entire real estate workforce (Sancheti, 2018).
Many large developers, real estate-focused lending institutions, and even private equity firms now recognize the extra measure of multi-tasking, empathy, insight, and assertiveness that a female brings to the table and boasts of multiple women holding senior executive roles.
Due to large profit margins and revenues, the real estate sector is a market for high competition. Professionalism has increased women’s participation in the real estate sector and brought more sensitivity, intuition, and emotional intelligence.
Women are the new rising star of the real estate sector. Women have a distinct feature of multitasking which has made the real estate business much more efficient, organized, and trusted by the potential buyer and customers.
Real estate is one of the industries that has been male-dominated since time immemorial. However, the industry has witnessed increased women’s participation over multiple years and in various spheres.
It is known that including women in any field tends to increase diversity in the environment as they are enriched with amiable and creative senses.
This article is written by Sehrish Irfan. Sehrish Irfan is a Research Analyst at the Iqbal Institute of Policy Studies (IIPS).