Here’s a small exercise in cognitive bias: think of a construction worker, or a property dealer, or a real estate expert. We’re one hundred percent sure that you visualized a person with the Y chromosome in a construction suit/business suit with a yellow/white hat.
You aren’t to blame: we’re hard-wired to think of anyone in the field as a man, because for years men have dominated the said field. And it isn’t just this field. A study found that only last year in 2018, the total funding received by all women-owned businesses was still less than what one male-owned e-cigarette company received.
And if you think men dominate the ‘business’ sector, think again: more and more women apply to business schools. And the fact that all businesses are still a male-dominated arena is not without its faults. . .
Even as far back as 2011 (some would say #MeToo is a coming-of-age, #2017 problem) there were studies being conducted specifically for workplace harassment for construction professionals. Engineering News-Record reported 66% of the cases in the construction industry—with 2/3rd of the 1,248 responding in the positive.
And it isn’t just the cases of harassment and bullying that are problematic. The more male-dominated a field is, the less safe the women and other marginalized communities are going to feel. This doesn’t just go for the employees and underlings working under the wing of the person who runs the property management firm—it also makes the clients they work with feel unsafe and skeptical.
How Women-Led Business Make Everything Better
If there’s one thing that can be said for sure, it’s that women-led businesses make everyone feel safer. This goes specifically if the clients are also women—a woman investor with multiple rental properties, a single mom with a rental property far from where she lives, so on and so forth. The clients in this case can open up to the property manager and feel like they can share their concerns without fear of mansplaining and condescending behavior from the property management firm.
Having women on the workforce and on the help also ensures that in the unsavory event that a case of bullying or harassment does spring up, the victims will have someone to turn to—someone who will listen to their complaints without trying to stifle their pleas.
Friendlier, better at listening, and the least threatening candidates on the block, women-led businesses—especially those in the conventionally male-dominated construction and property management arena—will make the whole thing a breeze for you.
Interested in Finding a Woman-Led Property Management Firm?
KH Consultants is a woman-led and woman-dominated property management and consultation company based in Brooklyn. You can find out all about them here or get in touch with them for further information.