Diversity and gender inclusivity have been much-talked-about topics recently as the need to maintain a diverse workforce becomes a norm. The real estate sector is one of the slowest to embrace this concept due to the nature of the work it entails. However, in modern times, with the imperative of diversity and inclusion being paramount and people of all genders holding their own when assigned work, the real estate sector must also foster such a shift in policy. Gender diversity in the real estate sector can be the harbinger of innovation, resilience, and sustained growth as new entrants bring their own experiences into the industry.

To rectify this imbalance and harness the full potential of talent available, promoting gender diversity has become a pressing need. The initiative aligns with the principles of equality and enriches the real estate sector with new skills and shared experiences. There are all too many benefits that diversity can bring to the real estate sector for it to not make the shift to increase gender diversity. An inclusive environment is better for employees and clients looking to deal with real estate companies. Real estate awards categories that encourage diversity should be a norm in the industry to promote a positive culture. Here are some other ways:

1.     Equal Opportunity Employment Policies:

The first step towards making the cultural shift towards a more gender-diverse environment for the industry is implementing and enforcing policies that promote equal opportunities for all genders in hiring, promotion, and compensation. The mere formulation of such a policy shouldn’t be the aim here, as its enforcement should also be a top priority. It is here where the most pushback or resistance is faced by stalwarts of the industry who want to preserve the status quo. Taking small steps to ensure no discrimination based on gender and punishing such work ethics can go a long way in establishing an inclusivity policy.

2.     Diverse Hiring Practices:

The hiring process allows you to teach significant changes to help achieve a gender-diverse environment. It should be a company policy to give more weightage to include diverse candidates in the recruitment process. Thus, actively seeking out various candidates during recruitment can help achieve the right mix of gender diversity. Also, you should implement blind recruitment practices to eliminate unconscious bias in hiring decisions.

3.     Education and Training:

When adopting an environment that promotes gender diversity in the company, training programs can play a massive role in changing the workforce’s mindset. A shift towards a more inclusive environment is only possible when the workforce at each level embraces this change as a positive one, and, resultantly, their traditional biases that didn’t promote diversity can be forgotten. The training is essential to remove any unconscious bias for all employees and treat everyone based solely on merit. You can also offer mentorship programs to support the professional development of women in the industry so that they feel more welcomed and motivated.

4.     Flexible Work Arrangements:

A flexible work schedule removes the traditional hindrances that benefit the ascendency of one gender in the workplace. You will come across talented individuals by instituting a policy promoting remote work and hybrid options. With constraints such as traveling, given the opportunity to work remotely or join on a hybrid schedule, talented individuals can increase the innovation and productivity of the company as a whole. Moreover, it promotes a positive work-life balance, and employees are more motivated to work for such a company. Consider family-friendly policies such as parental leave and on-site childcare facilities to help individuals feel more welcomed at the workplace.

5.     Leadership Development:

There should be different mentorship and leadership programs to promote genders other than men for quicker growth across the industry. These programs should be catered to encourage women to apply for leadership roles and to allow them to showcase their skills as leaders of different teams. Leadership roles should be afforded regardless of gender; to encourage this behavior, women should be awarded more leadership positions. A culture of meritocracy should prevail, as individuals with the most exceptional results, regardless of gender, should be awarded top positions.

6.     Networking Opportunities:

Men are usually the more dominant gender when attending seminars, conferences, and industry events. Shifting this trend to increase participation by women at such events shall not only increase networking opportunities for the marginalized gender but also open up new and exciting avenues of growth. Networking is an integral part of the real estate trade, and women can take a more proactive role in such events to bolster their growth in the industry.

7.     Partnerships and Collaborations:

Collaborations with other institutes have become a norm in many industries, and the real-estate sector is no different. Cross-industry linkages, as well as academia-industry linkages, are essential factors contributing to the growth of the industry. Collaborate with educational institutions and organizations that promote women in real estate. Collaborating with institutes that encourage gender diversity sends a solid message to the real estate industry stakeholders about the importance of gender diversity and inclusivity.

By implementing these strategies, the real estate sector can create an environment that encourages gender diversity, fosters inclusivity, and maximizes the potential of all professionals, regardless of gender.