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Joanna Royston - "Self-reliance Creates Opportunities"

Joanne Royston is a business owner, licensed agent and auctioneer and in a tough industry this enables her to be self-reliant. “If needed, I can manage every stage of the sales process from beginning to end and this has created opportunities for me.”

At twenty seven, Joanne Royston was something of a rarity as a woman in the real estate industry. She was the Director of her own agency and one of less than a handful of qualified female auctioneers in Victoria. Joanne describes going to Directors’ Conferences at this time and sometimes being the only woman in a room full of men.

Over a decade later, today Joanne has a team of eight, six of whom are women. She thinks women are attracted to work with her not because she is a woman, but because she has built her business around a workplace model that promotes and supports lifestyle balance. As a busy parent, Joanne is a strong advocate for creating opportunities for women to build successful careers in what can be a six day a week job, while juggling the demands of children and family around those commitments.

“Equality in the workplace is about creating a flexible environment that enables full participation by everyone in the team, male and female. Being supportive and open minded about the demands of people’s chosen lifestyle has to be part of any genuine commitment to achieving equality.”

Joanne cites her combined experience as a business owner, licensed agent and auctioneer, as having enabled her to very self-reliant in a tough industry, “If needed, I can manage every stage of the sales process from beginning to end and this has created opportunities for me.” Her decision to become an auctioneer has been a key factor in her success. “Calling auctions has helped me to create a unique and recognisable profile as a woman in what is still a male dominated profession, at least at a senior level. It’s been really important in building my profile and my business.”

Joanne is rightly proud of her auctioneering skills and the results she achieves. She acknowledges that while acceptance has come slowly, these days it’s rare for anyone to raise an eye when she takes centre stage calling an auction and when people do comment, nowadays it is most often with praise for her skill and support for her role.

Asked for a tip about how anyone should go about building a career in real estate, Joanne says “Seek out great role models and mentors, they are invaluable when navigating the challenges that exist in the profession.”