On March 8th, in celebration of International Women’s Day, the Brookfield Women’s Network hosted a virtual fireside chat featuring some of our influential and inspirational female leaders.
The chat was led by Stephanie Brager and featured Stacie Herron, Kirsten Lee, and Annette Prater (bios below), and engaged the participants in conversation surrounding their experiences as female leaders in the retail real estate industry. And we couldn't help but slip in some fun conversations about work-from-home fashion, motherhood woes, and the importance of leaning on each other during times of need. Here are some of our favorite highlights — and takeaways — from the discussion.
Stephanie: What advice do you have for new mothers or women who are contemplating motherhood? How can they achieve a work-life balance?
The key is to be intentional about work-life balance. I am a firm believer that you can have it all, but you can’t have it all at the same time. Ask for what you need to make it work. And don't assume because it's not offered to you without asking that no one wants to give it to you.
Stacie Herron,Brookfield Properties
Stephanie: How can we advocate for — and support — other women in everyday interactions and in their careers?
Kirsten Lee's approach to advocating for yourself and others:
1. Find a mentor – identify people who you admire and whose goals align with yours. These people will be able to advise you along the way.
2. Become a mentor – reach out and help others along their career path.
3. Raise your hand – if you want more responsibility, whether it be a promotion or more visibility within the workplace, it’s up to you to articulate your wants and take charge of it.
Stephanie: What changes have you seen for women in the workplace over the years?
This is a really exciting time to be in our industry. Real estate is turning into a customer-centric business, with platforms, innovation, and ESG at the forefront. Women’s skills, generally, are aligned to these areas and it’s an opportunity for women to accelerate their careers within the industry. Now, more than ever, women have an opportunity to lead loudly and normalize changes in our work environment.
Annette Prater,Brookfield Properties
This chat was an introduction to Brookfield Properties' Women's Network, launching this year along with a suite of Employee Resource Groups (ERG). “Our ERG program focuses on achieving further alignment and agility with activities that reflect and better serve our employees while increasing productivity, engagement, and promoting an inclusive culture," said Vernon Johnson, Director, Human Resources.
We hope you can take some time this month to celebrate the amazing achievements of women around the world. For resources and ways to get involved, visit internationalwomensday.com