Women in Real Estate

2013 Women in Real Estate Conference

“Don’t wait to be noticed as you might miss out on an opportunity.”

This was one of the many nuggets of wisdom from media mogul Ita Buttrose AO, OBE as she gave the keynote at this year’s Women in Real Estate Conference.

Over 200 real estate professionals from across the state travelled to attend the event, held in the Crystal Palace Ballroom of Sydney’s Luna Park on Tuesday, 22 October 2013. Shaynna Blaze of Selling Houses and The Block held MC responsibilities.

Paper Giants
Australian of the Year Ita has become somewhat even more well known since Asher Keddie depicted her in the ABC’s TV show Paper Giants: The birth of Cleo, lisp and all. Her impressive career encompasses editing Cleo, Women’s Weekly, The Daily Telegraph and The Sunday Telegraph – making her the first female editor of a metropolitan newspaper in Australia.

“When I landed my first job as a copy girl at Women’s Weekly, I used to make tea and coffee for 40 people in the morning and afternoon. I later found out that I’d been marked as a copy girl to watch as I had brought in a tea towel from home,” she laughed.

More recently Ita was named Australian of the Year largely for her extensive charity work, including her roles as National President of Alzheimer’s Australia and Vice President Emeritus of Arthritis Australia. She has also lent her considerable support to raising awareness of breast cancer, HIV/AIDS and prostate cancer.

She applies the same commitment in her charity work as her professional career, and is currently in rehearsals for a new morning show on Channel 10.

“You have to put your hand up,” Ita told the crowd.

“Nobody will know what your ambitions are if you do not tell them.”


Take a risk
The sessions leading up to Ita’s keynote were packed full of motivating advice from a series of experts.
Heather Swan, the only woman in the world to combine high altitude mountaineering and BASEjumping, kicked off the event with a rousing account of her experience achieving the world record for the world’s highest BASEjump in a wing suit from 6604m off Mt Meru in the Indian Himalaya.

Once delegates had recovered from the sweaty-palm inducing session, speaker Jen Harwood presented her seven keys to confidence, followed by a revealing Q&A with Laing+Simmons General Manager Leanne Pilkington.

“Love your job and love what the job gives you. Say yes to opportunities and shake your life up. You need a cheer squad to believe in you,” Jen said.

Guests then had a breather, of sorts, when they were taught meditation techniques by Peter Bliss, during his mindfulness and multi-tasking masterclass.

The packed day finished with networking drinks overlooking the Harbour. Guests mingled with speakers, including Ita who happily posed for pictures, and inspected the contents of the day’s goodie bags.

Expect to see lots of red lip-sticked women across NSW in the months to come.

Ita Buttrose AO, OBE
“There’s only one way to prove yourself and that’s sales.” 
Heather Swan – BASEjumper and world record holder
“Just by changing the way I thought about something, I could change the outcome.” 


Jen Harwood – International business speaker and small business expert
“We do not have to be down and broken to change our lives.”
Leanne Pilkington – General Manager at Laing+Simmons
“I think there’s probably a lot of people out there like me who have no idea how capable they are. You’ve got to take feedback on from people, but you’ve also got to be careful who you take feedback from.”

Peter Bliss – Lifestyle solutions coach and owner of Business is Bliss
“There’s no need to say anything at all unless you improve on the silence.”