Addressing Mental Health Struggles of Early Career CRE Professionals
September 13, 2023
Commercial real estate professionals, particularly younger ones, are facing mental health challenges while looking for success in notoriously demanding commercial real estate professions.
A report from Baylor University categorized the industry’s stressors deriving from strenuous market cycles, negotiating, long hours dealing with emotionally tense clients, and uncontrollable external factors affecting transactions.
During the early period of the pandemic, when deals evaporated and working from home caused strain and isolation, many employers implemented additional benefits, employee support, and a greater awareness of mental health and work-life balance. However, these gains are at risk of being lost during this period of job losses and belt-tightening.
According to new joint research by Cambridge University and University College London, roughly one in four workers in the sector suffers from mental health problems. Amy Calandrino, founder of Beyond Commercial, experienced career burnout and depression while aggressively growing her boutique commercial real estate firm. She discovered that setting boundaries around time and being selective about who she worked with helped relieve stress without sacrificing much business.
Generational differences also often make it difficult for younger workers to speak up about mental health concerns. While society is generally shifting to more open communication about these issues, the instinct for older people remains to be quiet and toughen up.
Most therapists recommend that leadership throughout the organization become more comfortable talking about these issues, recognizing struggling employees, and getting them the attention and support they need.