Monika Rajska-Wolińska from Colliers International became the Influencer of the Year, and Jadwiga Kuczewska from EPP gained the greatest popularity in the online voting. Capital Park was recognized as the most effective company supporting women’s ambitions, while the best women’s team can be found in the AXI IMMO Group. The full list of 13 winners can be found here: https://www.topwoman.pl/znamy-laureatki-top-woman-in-real-estate/
“Business does not distinguish between the genders. Ambitious women can be as successful as men. We need less modesty and more courage in reaching for higher positions.” This is the conclusion of the Top Woman in Real Estate gala, during which successful women of real estate success were honoured in Warsaw’s Marriott Hotel on 24 May.
The event was honoured by the presence of 300 guests holding managerial positions in real estate companies. Uniquely for the industry, the floor was dominated not by suits, but by beautiful dresses. “Women have the power to support each other. The success of any women encourages and motivates others to act,” said Krystyna Swojak, the organizer of the Top Woman in Real Estate Competition. “Compared to last year’s edition, we observed much greater courage and openness of the participants in talking about their own achievements. I think that this is the greatest measure of the success of our project,” she added.
Those who inspire the most
The special category of this year’s edition was the Influencer of the Year, i.e. a woman who had the greatest impact on the real estate industry. The award went to Monika Rajska-Wolińska from Colliers International. It is of particular importance as it is granted by the Programme Council on the basis of criteria such as recognition in the real estate market and outstanding achievements, active involvement as an expert, as well as participation in initiatives of social and non-governmental organizations for the development of women in business. “I am glad that the sight of an entrepreneurial woman on the position of a managing partner or a director of a large company is less and less surprising. In my work I find it tremendously important to emphasize the competences and merits of women in business, not only to tackle stereotypes, but also to promote self-confidence of young women,” commented Monika Rajska-Wolińska from Colliers International.
The Pro Women Company category, in which Capital Park won the award, was also of symbolic importance. “Most of the departments in our company are managed really effectively by women who are specialists in their fields. We are in the vanguard as even the Development Department, considered to be a “masculine” department, is run by Sylwia Filewicz, who was also awarded in this year’s competition. The number of applications and the scale of the event show that such competitions are really needed. Top Woman in Real Estate is conducive to building a more sustainable world and fosters professional development of women,” said Kinga Nowakowska, member of the Management Board of Capital Park.
Something to show off, something from the heart
A nice surprise during this year’s edition of the competition was the fact that it was strongly supported by men from the very beginning. Key figures of the real estate sector, such as Nicklas Lindberg from Echo Investment, Hadley Dean EPP, Maciej Tuszyński from Griffin and Jeroen van der Toolen from Ghelamco, were involved in spreading the idea of supporting women in business.
The key point of the gala was the handing over of awards and statuettes of Top Woman in Real Estate. The gala was hosted by Wiktor Doktór, President of the Pro Progressio Foundation. The official part of the ceremony also featured a ballroom dance show. The award ceremony was followed by an auction for a foundation that is building a house for underage mothers. “We managed to collect 17,000 zlotys, which will be of a great help to us,” said Agnieszka Sikora, the President of the “Po Drugie” Foundation.
The event then went on to the networking part, marked by a highlight funded by the sponsor – Casino Royal by Hillwood. There was also a special surprise waiting for the guests – the Gentleman’s Lodge offering a collectible whiskey tasting session.
The openness and cordiality with which women share their experiences inspired the announcement of a new project by the Competition Organizer – a mentoring programme for women who want to achieve success in the industry. The program is prepared so as to provide an opportunity for an elite group of 25 women, up to 33 years of age, to draw on the knowledge of the most outstanding people in the real estate industry – presidents and managing directors of the largest companies in Poland.”We will start accepting applications soon, but the program is to start in September and will last until June next year,” said Krystyna Swojak. “One of the important elements of this programme is the fact that we will welcome young women who have been recommended by their companies. Several winners and jurors of the previous edition have already confirmed their willingness to take part as mentors. We would also like to invite the winners of today’s edition and the men supporting the initiative to share their knowledge. It is all about the willingness and openness,” she added.
“I hope that Top Woman in Real Estate will be inseparably connected with the programme to support and educate all those young people, full of energy and initiative, who see their future in the real estate market. I will gladly share my experiences, ideas, and passion for working with people,” said Jolanta Nowakowska-Zimoch, the winner in the Business Management category.
Jeroen van der Toolen, Ghelamco, said, “51 percdsnt of the employees of our company are women. Everyone is equal regardless of their gender. That’s why we’re proud to support an initiative that promotes talents and accomplishments of women on boards and in leadership positions. They are an example to follow, showing us how to combine substantive knowledge with professional ambitions, without sacrificing their lives and families. We men are often envious of that skill.”
Anna Banaś, St Paul’s Developments Poland, commented, “St. Paul’s Developments supported the organization of the Top Woman in Real Estate competition this year with the greatest pleasure. As the president of the company in which women make up 100% of the team, I think that it is extremely important to appreciate their knowledge, skills and talents, especially in such a male-dominated and difficult industry as real estate. I am glad that thanks to this competition we – women – have the opportunity to meet, get to know each other, exchange experiences and congratulate ourselves on our professional successes so far. I would like to express my congratulations to all the winners and I hope that next year we will meet in an even wider group.”
Jolanta Nowakowska-Zimoch, Greenberg Traurig Grzesiak, said, “First of all, I am deeply convinced that I owe the award primarily to the great team, which I have the pleasure of managing at Greenberg Traurig. And the best way to prove it is this well-deserved award for Agata Jurek-Zbromska in the Legal & Tax category, whom I would like to congratulate. Secondly, I find the award extremely satisfactory as an evaluation of my long-term work in the real estate market in Poland. Thirdly, every such award makes you more eager to go to work and return home less tired.”
Nicklas Lindberg, Echo Investment, said “More than a half of Echo Investment’s employees are women. They are excellent specialists and experienced managers who find fulfilment, are promoted and succeed in finance, sales, HR and marketing, as well as in leasing, valuation, construction, IT and design. I decided to be a member of the jury because I believe that diversity is very important for both Echo Investment and our industry.”
Monika Rajska-Wolińska, Colliers International, commented, “The award in the Influencer of the Year category is a great honour and, at the same time, a great responsibility. Every day, many eyes turn to women in the real estate industry. In my work, find it tremendously important to emphasize the competence and merits of women in business, not only to tackle stereotypes, but also to promote self-confidence of young women who can achieve great success. It is getting easier and easier, as there is no shortage of entrepreneurial women in our industry. Many of them deserve this title as well.”
The Top Women in Real Estate Competition has been organized with the active involvement of real estate market leaders and the representatives of the key industry organizations, such as: RICS, Pro Progressio, PZFD, Ladies First, WIREP, SARP or PLGBC. Those willing to participate in the Competition can apply personally or be registered by a company or industry organization. The choice in each category is made by the Jury, whose members can be found here: https://www.topwoman.pl/#jury