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Quinn Texmo Delivers Rapid-fire TED Talk 6/6/18  06/07/18 3:29:50 PM Printer Friendly VersionPrinter Friendly Version

Quinn Texmo gives a dynamic 10-minute TED Talk at this year’s Commercial Real Estate Summit.

Quinn Texmo Delivers Rapid-fire TED Talk
On Closing Gender Gap in Commercial Real Estate

By Julien R. Fielding
The Daily Record

When people hear or see her name, Quinn Texmo, emerging business group leader, JEO Consulting Group, people often assume she is male. “And when they think of a manager, they think male,” she said during a TED Talk at the Commercial Real Estate (CRE) Summit on Friday, April 6, at the CenturyLink Center.     
Second grade teachers are often thought of as female; doctors as male, she said. “It’s an unconscious thing. We think that people in power are men. It’s what we see and what we know, but it sets up a barrier.”    
To demonstrate this, Texmo explained how one woman, Erin McKelvey, had sent her resume out to 34 tech companies after finishing college in the 1990s, and received zero responses. After talking to a friend, she decided to take a new approach, and “change” her name to Mack. She resent the resumes. This time her response rate was 70 percent.
“We undervalue the work that women do, and when we are promoting employees, we promote men on their potential, thinking if we give them the tools and training, they can succeed,” she said. “But women are different. We promote them based on their achievements. We expect them to demonstrate their skills before we promote them. We have an unconscious bias.”
Working to even out the playing field, in March, Washington State passed a gender pay equity bill with support from the tech industry, she said. The Equal Pay Opportunity Act updates the state’s gender pay law, forbidding employers from instituting policies that don’t allow employees to discuss their salaries, and requiring employers to provide the same career advancement opportunities to all employees in comparable positions. Such legislation is welcome, because nationally, women still only make 78 cents to every $1 made by their male counterparts,” she said.
“At my company, our leadership is training the next generation of leaders,” she said. “Consultants out of Washington State had one requirement: The training class had to be 50 percent men and 50 percent women. I was with four other women. All were phenomenal. There weren’t any ‘token’ women.”
The CREW Network released a study in 2016, which detailed the pay gap found in the commercial real estate industry. They discovered that although there had been some gains, “women still consistently earned less than men performing the same jobs across industry sectors, with the biggest pay gap (33.8 percent) in the brokerage industry, and the smallest (16.7 percent) in finance.” White women fared better than black and Latino women, she said.
Texmo asked the audience how many people had negotiated their first salary increase, then responded that, nationally, 56 percent of males had and only 14 percent of women had. “Women don’t ask for what they should get,” she said, then told a story about how in 2007, she was offered a job and was so excited that she didn’t even ask what the starting salary was. “It was $39,000. I took it.”
With cost of living increases at just around 1.5 percent to 2 percent every year, she said, she should have negotiated to $45,000. “I had already set myself back. There are women who negotiate their salaries, but we undervalue the work they do. We have to make sure there isn’t a pay disparity, and we will see retention. It’s difficult to attract talent. The No. 1 reason that women leave a job is because she feels she can’t go any higher; she can’t be paid anymore.
“Why should we care? All of the data shows that when women are in leadership roles, companies are more profitable; more successful. What does your leadership team look like? To intelligent and capable women – may we employ them, may we promote them and may we pay them.”
Quinn Texmo has more than a decade of experience in marketing and public involvement. Texmo holds a bachelor of science degree in journalism, with an emphasis in advertising and public relations, and a minor in speech communication from the University of Nebraska Omaha. She also holds a master of arts degree in communications, with an emphasis in organizational communication and a research focus in leadership, gender, generations, training and development. Texmo is a member of the Society for Marketing Professional Services, where she served as the chapter president. She also served as chapter president for Commercial Real Estate Women.
Texmo delivered her TED Talk, which was about closing the gender gap within commercial real estate, from 10:15 to 10:25 a.m. For more information about JEO Consulting Group, go to jeo.com. The 75-year-old company has branches in Lincoln, Omaha, Wahoo, Hastings, Grand Island, Nebraska City, Norfolk and South Sioux City; and in Iowa: Ankeny and Carroll.

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