Name: Catherine Barnum, RPA, MBA
Title: Owner, Managing Director
Company Name: SVN | Realty Performance Advisors
Real estate associations or organizations that you are currently a member of:
In the past year, what project, transaction or accomplishment are you most proud of?
This year we opened two new offices, in Buffalo and Syracuse. Now, SVN Realty Performance Advisors Commercial Brokerage Franchise serves all of Western NY. We also acquired an HOA management company in Buffalo and two more commercial property management contracts in Syracuse, which increased our management portfolio to over six million s/f.
What steps have you taken to ensure the continued success of your firm?
By expanding into the Buffalo and Syracuse markets, we have ensured the success of our firm and offer our clients the national reach that a franchise like SVN provides bringing outside investors to Western NY.
Why should women consider a career in commercial real estate and related services?
Women should consider a career in commercial real estate and related services because, unlike residential real estate that often involves working weekends and evenings, most commercial transactions and business is conducted during normal business hours. Commercial real estate allows for flexibility for women to make their own schedules allowing them to be present in the other aspects of their lives.
How have you adapted and changed in the last 12 months?
With all the COVID restrictions, the major challenge in the last 12 months has been staying connected with our employees, advisors, and clients. Embracing new technology has played a major role in helping us to stay connected.
How do you keep your team motivated despite conflicts and obstacles?
I have kept my team motivated through regular team meetings, one-on-one meetings, and phone calls during COVID to help ensure that they know I can be reached at any time to help with conflicts or issues.
Women have made significant progress in the last year towards equality in the workplace. How do you advocate for your fellow women in real estate?
I advocate for my fellow women not only in real estate, but in all aspects of life by reaching out to them on both a business and personal level to show support, whether it be promoting their projects on social media, or sharing their successes with my contacts.
What books or social media influencers would you recommend to other women?
One professional book that influenced me is “Winning Ways in Commercial Real Estate: 18 Successful Women Unveil the Tips of the Trade in the Real Estate World” by Gwen Mackenzie. This book provides great insight from women who have navigated successful through the commercial real estate industry.