#IWD2022: Meet Colleen Doiron

#IWD2022: Meet Colleen Doiron

International Women’s Day is all about celebrating female achievement. So what better way to mark the day than by sharing the story of our top female agent? Colleen Doiron is one of only two members of the Property.ca Inc. 2021 Legends Club – an award that goes to the company’s top sellers. We talked to her about her successful career, finding balance between family and work, and what it takes to compete in the super-hot Toronto market. 

How did you end up becoming an agent? 

I actually started my career in advertising, working as an account director. I liked it, but after a while, I realized I didn’t love it. The hours were long, and I had too much of an entrepreneurial spirit to be happy working for someone else. Plus, my husband Andrew and I were starting a family. Andrew was working as a REALTOR®, and I loved what he was doing. So I decided to join him. 

Making the switch was a very natural thing for me – I’ve always been passionate about real estate and I love design and renovating properties. So Andrew and I started working together, and it has been a great partnership. It has also really helped us to be around for our three boys – if one of us has a showing, the other is with the kids. 

What’s it like being a woman in real estate? 

From my perspective, it’s an equal opportunity industry. To be successful, you need to be driven, organized and personable. And you need to be able to multitask and wear lots of different hats – something I think women are naturally good at. 

Having three young boys at home and a busy real estate business, I have to be able to manage the chaos around me while still doing work – but I love it. It’s definitely not a 9 to 5 job, but there’s a lot of flexibility. And I like the fact that I can work mostly from home. So while I might not be able to give all my attention to the kids while I’m working, I can still be around and see what’s going on.

What would you say to another woman considering a real estate career? 

Go in with your eyes open in terms of how much work is involved in actually making a living at it. Start by talking to agents who are already doing it (and doing it well) to see what it’s like. A lot of people think it’s really easy, that homes in Toronto just sell themselves for millions of dollars, and one commission cheque is going to set you up. That’s not the reality. While I’m not sure of the exact stats, only something like 5 to 10% of agents are actually making a successful living at buying and selling homes. 

Another thing people don’t realize is that you need to have some savings before getting started. As a new agent, you’ll start off doing leases and then it takes time to build up to working with buyer and seller clients. And then once you do sell, you don’t get paid until a property closes, which can be months later. In the meantime, there are a lot of expenses you have to pay for. Not everyone is well-suited to that kind of setup. 

What does International Women’s Day mean to you? 

I’m impressed at the strength women have and what they’re able to do in terms of balancing career and family – and historically always have to work harder to prove themselves. It’s a great opportunity to celebrate what we’re capable of, and to recognize the women who have paved the way. And while there’s still work to be done, we certainly have it a lot easier than generations before us. International Women’s Day is a good time to reflect on that. 

Want to read more? Check out the story shared by Magy Youssab, who recently made the switch from pharmacist to REALTOR®, and is loving her new career.

Happy International Women’s Day to all the strong, driven, amazing women out there! 

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