Ambition shouldn't be viewed as a dirty word for women in the real estate industry, according to a former high profile politician.
Anna Bligh, former premier of Queensland, told a packed room at this week’s Real Estate Institute of New South Wales (REINSW) Women in Real Estate Conference that “ambitious women” were often seen in a negative context.
“We all have an 'angel in the house' that is holding us back, telling us to be more agreeable,” she said.
“When sometimes you have to argue and you have to stand up for what you believe is right.”
Ms Bligh, who was the key speaker on the day, spent more than half an hour taking questions from the audience of over 300 female real estate professionals. One participant asked how the politician juggled family life with her heavy workload.
“I always find it funny that women get asked this question when many of my male colleagues who have more children and work longer hours do not,” she answered.
“But to be honest, the family life and work balance does not exist, they are two of the most unbalanced things in my life. But you make it work.”
The crowd was then inspired to set goals and achieve them by Sebastian Terry, founder of 100things.com.au.
“Everyone has at least one thing they have to do before they die. Some even have a list. But how many goals and dreams on this list are actually achieved?” he asked. “We need to commit to our goals.”
Other speakers on the day included Veronica Morgan, co-host of TV programme Location Location Location Australia and Margie Warrell, CEO of the Global Courage Institute.
One participant said the event was a great chance to bring her female dominated team along to bond and team build.
“This is my fifth time at the conference and it just keeps getting better,” Vicki-Ann Green, the senior property manager at Alliance Real Estate told Real Estate Business.
“It has given me new ideas and is a great way to encourage team building amongst the girls."
“Women aren’t recognised enough in this industry, but we are getting there and this conference is a good start.
“I have just gone from running my own business to now looking after someone else’s rent roll, so there has been some big transitions in my working life at the moment.
“This conference has really reminded me I have the courage to step in this new direction.”
First time attendee Elissa Johnston, of Laing+Simmons Bondi, said the event was a great way to take time out and focus on herself.
“It has been 100 per cent worth the time and money coming here, you don’t often take a day for yourself to think about what type of person you are and what type of person you want to be,” she told Real Estate Business.
“Usual CPD training is in and out and it’s very impersonal. I’d definitely come back [to this event].”