Calling all real estate NextGenners to share your views on barriers to entering the industry and inappropriate workplace attitudes and behaviours

News / 13.11.2023

Real Estate Balance and our NextGen Committee are urging all under-35s and people in the first ten years of their real estate careers to contribute to our growing body of research on the experiences of up-and-coming property professionals.

Now in its third edition, the Real Estate Balance NextGen Survey 2023 will capture the views of younger people on a range of equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) issues.

These include how to widen access to the sector, the types and frequency of inappropriate attitudes and behaviours, and also what organisations should be doing to improve their cultures.

For the first time, this year’s participants are also being asked to share information on their social backgrounds to help us paint a picture of privilege in UK property.

The anonymous survey is open until Friday 15th December and can be accessed here.

It only takes ten minutes to complete, and we are asking everyone to share it far and wide to make the research as representative and impactful as possible.

All under-35s and people in the first ten years of their real estate careers, regardless of which company or organisation you work for in UK real estate, are invited to share your views.

Get involved!

The most-recent version of the research confirmed the 2020 findings that real estate is a ‘secret sector’ – difficult to access socially and economically.

The vast majority (80%) of participants first heard about the industry either through chance or via a friend or family member employed in it.

Participants also suggested a range of remedies to reduce barriers to entry and widen access.

These included more strategic awareness raising for the industry overall, earlier interventions with school pupils and their parents, more apprenticeship schemes and also the widespread adoption of inclusive hiring practices.

The findings also included data and insights on inappropriate attitudes and behaviours in the workplace, including that although sexism, classism, ageism, transphobia, racism, ableism and mental health stigma were still sadly still present in UK real estate two years ago, the number of people witnessing them had fallen since 2020.

This research is designed and delivered by NextGen, a group of younger individuals at Real Estate Balance members who meet regularly to discuss EDI issues and solutions relevant to the next generation of property professionals and leaders.

As well as the NextGen Survey, members of the Committee also contribute to Real Estate Balance’s popular speed mentoring initiative, appear regularly on panels and in the media to further the movement for a diverse and inclusive industry, and advocate for EDI in a myriad of other ways including on International Women’s Day and during Black History Month.

Commenting on the launch of the NextGen Survey 2023, Carolyn Milligan, Real Estate Balance NextGen Committee co-Chair and Senior Associate at Herbert Smith Freehills, said:

“Our findings in 2022 were illuminating and shared with the Real Estate Balance membership and more widely across the entire industry.

Although many companies are able to take pulse surveys with their own employees on some of the topics we are aiming to tackle, our research is pan-organisational and enables us to track year-on-year progress and share EDI best practice across the industry.

“That makes it truly valuable, and we need everyone’s support to make a difference, either by completing the survey yourself or by sharing it with others who you think will be interested in taking part. The survey is open to everyone under-35 or in the first ten years of their career in real estate.”

Sue Brown, Real Estate Balance managing director, said:

“The views of younger people are absolutely vital to Real Estate Balance as it gives us a mandate when we are advocating for change in the discussions we have with the senior leaders and CEOs across our 123 corporate members.

“The NextGen Survey findings also act a conduit for progress as we know some decision-makers at companies are not always able to have these kinds of conversations with their own NextGenners simply because of time pressures.

“I am particularly looking forward to the insights on the socioeconomic backgrounds of participants because social mobility and opportunities for career progression regardless of an individual’s upbringing are central to what we believe in at Real Estate Balance.”

The results of the Real Estate Balance NextGen Survey 2023 will be published at the beginning of next year.

Please click here if you would like to delve deeper into the 2022 findings.

You can also keep up to date with everything NextGen by joining their LinkedIn group here.