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  • Writer's pictureReal Estate Today - New Zealand

Property Industry Heavyweights Host First Canapes and Conversation event in Auckland


On Tuesday night, close to 100 women headed to the iHEART Lounge at NZME for the first New Zealand Canapes and Conversations networking event hosted by the Leading Ladies of Real Estate initiative.


Leading Ladies of Real Estate was started to encourage and empower women from across the entire industry. This event in Auckland is one of five held in New Zealand and Australia across November.


Ray White Head of Marketing, Larissa Tuhaka, was the MC for the event that was headlined by Nerida Conisbee, Chief Economist for the Ray White Group.


“I’ve been involved with Leading Ladies since its inception two and a half years ago,” Larissa said.


“For those of you who are here for the first time, Leading Ladies is a community to support and inspire (not only women but men too) in the industry to chase their potential - both personally and professionally.


“We want to bring everyone together to form connections and opportunities for peer mentoring.


“This year we’ve launched a number of channels to extend the reach of Leading Ladies and share the wonderful resources that we’ve been collecting.”

Introducing Nerida Conisbee, Larissa remarked that she’s one of the most ‘highly regarded economists in Australasia, with specific expertise in residential and commercial property.’


“Nerida is the most quoted property commentator in Australia. Her insights and opinions are highly sought after in the media, and she is a prolific public speaker, writer, and columnist and an absolute pro on TV and radio,” Larissa said.


Nerida spoke about her career journey, and how pivoted from value of life calculation to property economics.

“Over many years as an economist I’ve changed focus and subject matter several times, but the opportunity to be asked by Dan White to head up economics at Ray White has been life changing,” Nerida said.


“It means I’ve had the opportunity to be properly media trained and excel in that area which has meant being able to communicate with the wider public about economic matters that affect their daily lives.”


Nerida spoke about her first trip to New Zealand in the late nineties and how much it had changed since then.

“Population, infrastructure - it’s all come so far in New Zealand”, Nerida said.


“But it has a long way to go - there needs to be much more housing built as we’re in a rental crisis. The National government’s election will likely focus on getting housing back on track.”

The panel was next, which consisted of Ray White Concierge CEO Kelly Tatlow, business owner at Ray White Whangarei, Vanessa McKensize, and Ray White Mt Eden Chairman’s Elite salesperson, Rachel Berry.


The panel tackled questions like: what makes you a great communicator? How do you build and maintain a good culture in business? What inspires you to keep raising the bar? How do you stay adaptable in a constantly changing real estate environment?


Kelly Tatlow, who’s been in charge of Ray White’s customer services arm Concierge for nearly 20 years talked about shifting culture.


“Making those one per cent improvements has shifted the culture so positively,” Kelly said.


“Even something as simple as having high energy music when walking into the foyer at Concierge has made a huge difference.”


Kelly said communication was key to instilling a good culture into her team.


“We teach them how to communicate well, putting an emphasis on empathy, transparency and love,” she said.


“We use zappy words like fabulous and excellent - and it can really change how you make people feel.”

Rachel Berry spoke about the process of building a high performance team.


“I was given permission to build my own team, and the habits we’ve created together have made all the difference,” Rachel said.


“We have a team of five and we’ve committed to our own routine starting at about 6:00am before dropping the kids to school; we all get to work at around 8:30am - 9:00am. We also have no open homes on Saturdays (only Sunday open homes), and make sure we prioritise our family time on Saturdays”.


When Vanessa McKenzie was asked about how her business has been so successful, especially in the last couple of years she put this down to “process. Particularly our auction process. It’s my job to make sure that everyone is on board with the process, our systems and the way we conduct our business”.


She explained that they’ve put a lot of energy into this and the culture of the team.


“So if you were to attend an open home at any of Ray White Whangarei’s listings you would get the exact same level of service,” she said.

Nerida’s talk and the panel were so well-received by the room that extra time had to be allocated for more questions from the audience, who were incredibly receptive on the night.


“The event was filled with so much inspiration and energy. Nothing beats getting together with like-minded people,” said Jess Henderson of Moving Hub.


“It’s always great to immerse yourself in events like this because it makes you feel really motivated to implement and apply learnings straight away,” Jess said.


Billy Kerrisk of Ray White Golden Bay was equally as enthused.


“The networking with other people across the industry was great and the speakers were top notch! They were so professional, relatable and experienced,” Billy said.


“A well rounded selection too so that there were incredible insights and learnings for everyone in the room. I often don’t get the opportunity to do things like this being in Golden Bay so this was really enjoyable and special for me.”


“I loved the variety of speakers and perspectives, yet they were all very relatable,” said Emma Moyle from Ray White Swanson.


“It’s inspiring to hear from women who are absolutely killing it in our industry, yet they still make that time for their families and personal lives,” she said.


“A common theme was building and finding the right culture and how important that was to the success of each of the speakers. Lots of great take-aways and I can’t wait for the next event.”

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