Women In Business And Real Estate (Fire Up Seminar)
It was all women power at the Corinthia Palace Hotel last Thursday 20th June, with over 50 women who attended this very informative seminar, aimed at women in business and real estate. The seminar took the form of 4 panel discussions, all centred around the woman’s role in today’s working world, the rewards and challenges faced by today’s working mums, as well as the opportunities available within the real estate sector, particularly within Frank Salt Real Estate.
The panel titled ‘Re-imagining the workplace for the modern parent’, was moderated by Vanessa Macdonald and panellists were some of Malta’s top-rated successful business women and mums, namely Joanna Spiteri Staines, Claudine Cassar, Maria Bartolo Zahra, Mikela Fenech Pace and Angelica Micallef Trigona.
On the topic of women returning to work after having kids, this is what some of the panellists had to say:
Mikela Fenech Pace “We don’t realise what a lot of support there is out there”. This was in reply to Vanessa Macdonald’s statement “40 years ago when I started working, there were no childcare facilities. The next generation will have fewer obstacles and will be able to seek a career”.
Maria Bartolo added “An element of flexibility helps a lot”
“When we talk about a network, it could be a network of friends and network of family”.
Angelica Micallef Trigona “Any flexibility and back-up is crucial in today’s society.”
Amongst others, topics discussed included ‘Preparing yourself mentally before embarking on a new career or before returning to work as a working mother and overcoming the difficulties of balancing family and work life.
“For business women, femininity can be an advantage or a detriment” was Ariadne Massa’s introduction to the third panel. What makes a successful brand and how can one stand above the crowd? Jo Caruana defined her brand by saying “reliability, never say no to clients, creativity and an attitude of yes we can”.
Charlene Mercieca builds her argument on trust, “trusting a label is very important so I have to gain the trust of my clients, by giving them a good quality product. I like to put a personality to my business because people relate to a face”.
Of course, being a female entrepreneur can be an upward struggle at times. Moira, who is a well-known TV personality and animal activist, admits that her biggest challenge is dealing with politicians – to get them to listen to her and trust her.
“I cannot be at the shop all the time. You have to teach others how to do your job so learning to trust other people, can be very challenging. Thankfully, I do come across people who do it because they love it,” commented Charlene, owner of Soap Café.
In his opening statement, Grahame Salt, Director of Frank Salt Real Estate said, “We run an organisation where a job is earned based on merit and nothing else. The real estate industry is one where women generally do extremely well. In fact, out of a workforce of approximately 200 people, we have almost 90 women working for us in different roles. Some of our top performing sales and letting consultants are women.”
Female members of the Frank Salt Real Estate team also participated in panels titled ‘Different models of career success in real estate’ and ‘The aspirations of the Millenials’ where each of them discussed their own experience working in real estate within Frank Salt Real Estate. What makes real estate ideal as a career option; why is real estate ideal for women who are looking for a dynamic career which also provides a platform for constant learning and self-development; what does it take to make it in real estate?
“We also offer great opportunities for working mums who need to work around their equally important schedules of looking after their kids”, added Grahame Salt.