5 Questions For Philly's Power Women: Argosy's Sara Doelger
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Argosy Real Estate Partners principal Sara Doelger's career has taken many turns, but two constants have remained throughout: Philadelphia and real estate. Since her time as co-president of the real estate club at the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School of Business, she has not just been a fixture in the industry, but a leadership figure — and a Power Woman.
Doelger leads Argosy's asset acquisition, disposition and management, and her previous gig was leading redevelopment efforts for mall owner PREIT. At one point, she led Taco Bell's local real estate efforts. Among the investments she has led for Argosy has been the private equity firm's Qualified Opportunity Fund, which has already closed three deals in Arizona and Utah.
We asked Doelger and other speakers for Bisnow's Philly Power Women event Oct. 30 at The Rittenhouse Hotel five questions to get a sense of the many different ways one can be a Power Woman. Here are Doelger's answers.
Bisnow: If you could teach women growing in the industry today just one thing, what would it be?
Doelger: There are many different areas of focus within the industry; it never gets boring. Keep your mind open to shifts of your career path along the way.
Bisnow: What is your biggest career failure and what positive lessons did it teach you?
Doelger: I’ve had some tough work environments where I was not happy, even though I liked my job. It taught me the importance of working with the right people and finding a cultural fit in a company.
Bisnow: What accomplishment are you most proud of in your career and how did you achieve it?
Doelger: I transitioned from development to real estate private equity by utilizing my local connections and being open to new challenges. My background on the development and operations side of the business continues to add value to my investment decisions.
Bisnow: How have you seen companies change the way they address wage and gender inequality in recent years?
Doelger: The gender gap is getting more attention in the press, which helps, but we need to make sure that the decision-makers are hearing it and buy in to its importance. Large companies with public stakeholders have been putting in place formal policies and procedures, but it needs to be seen as a priority by smaller firms too.
Bisnow: What is your favorite part of working in the Philly market, and what is the thing about other markets/another one in particular that you envy most?
Doelger: I love Philly real estate because the built environment here has real character and authenticity that you can’t find in many other cities. Philly also has great pedestrian scale, true walkability and good transit infrastructure.
What it doesn’t have, compared to other markets, is significant economic growth. The city and the region need more job and population growth to support a strong economy and long-term real estate investment returns.