“My personal path to leadership is a case study in what is possible when individuals feel welcomed, supported, and challenged, and we’re passionate about how diverse teams create better business outcomes and better long-term business resilience. We’re excited to make progress as a company, and in so doing, help transform the industry overall. AEI’s approach to DEI and pay equity has been developed with the help of our DEI Advisory Council and CREW Network, and we’re excited to deliver on the 6 components of the Pledge.”
“The CREW Network CRE Pledge for Action is a relevant, meaningful and actionable initiative that aligns well with the significant transformation currently underway globally,” said Wendy Mann, CREW Network CEO. “CEOs from leading commercial real estate companies understand they must be proactive and quickly act to address this fundamental issue in the workplace. CREW Network applauds AEI Consultants for joining us, and we encourage and urge more firms across the CRE industry to be a part of this ground-breaking initiative.”
A growing body of research reveals that stronger business outcomes directly correlate with diverse teams and inclusive workplaces. According to CREW Network, the leading producer of research on gender and diversity in commercial real estate, in the last five years, very little progress has been made in creating more diversity within the CRE industry.
In commercial real estate, the COVID-19 pandemic presented new challenges for women and stalled their progress in the industry. Yet it also presented new opportunities to change the industry culture and remove persistent workplace barriers. CREW Network’s latest industry research paper, A Catalyst for Change: COVID-19’s Impact on Women in Commercial Real Estate, examined the pandemic’s impact on women globally and in the industry, especially women of color.
The following insights were taken from CREW Network’s July 2021 survey of 1,018 commercial real estate professionals across more than 25 specializations and more than 10 sectors in the United States, United Kingdom and Canada:
- 54% said they missed out on deals
- 23% said compensation decreased
- 78% said they were forced to leave jobs
- 38% believe the pandemic stalled progress for women
- 50% said their career priorities have changed
- 70% of companies created new employee work policies as a result of the pandemic
The 2020 CREW Network Benchmark Study: Gender and Diversity in Commercial Real Estate, conducted in partnership with the MIT Center for Real Estate, had found that:
- Women earn 10% less than men in base salaries and 56% less in commission and bonuses annually
- Women occupy 37% of the industry
- Women hold just 9% of C-suite positions
- Only 16% of CRE workplaces have 25% or more staff that are from diverse backgrounds
Understanding these disparities and the lack of progress for women and all forms of diversity in commercial real estate, CREW Network is asking pledge signatories to take action, and in turn, improve performance, drive growth, and enhance employee engagement. The pledge supports the advancement of women and other individuals in underrepresented groups including but not limited to race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, ability, religion, and age.
AEI Consultants has committed to adopt the following six goals:
- Partner with CREW Network to support its mission to transform the industry by advancing women and begin your efforts now to make change.
- Close the compensation gap in the CRE industry by conducting a pay equity study in its company.
- Increase inclusion in its company through senior executive sponsorship of women and/or other individuals in underrepresented groups within the company.
- Advance women to its company’s top roles to achieve gender diversity in leadership.
- Increase diversity in its company and in the industry through intentional recruiting and hiring of individuals from diverse backgrounds.
- Implement accountability strategies in its company to measure progress.
The CRE Pledge for Action is a step toward advancing women and DEI in the commercial real estate industry. For more information, visit the pledge landing page at crewnetwork.org.