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PODCAST: Marilynn Joyner On Building A Coworking Company, Leaving 'Toxic' World Of Brokerage

On this episode of the podcast, we hear from Marilynn Joyner, a former commercial real estate broker who founded Her Workplace, a startup that offers physical coworking, in-person events, and a digital networking and career resource platform for women and nonbinary people.

Her Workplace founder Marilynn Joyner

Joyner's company has taken over a former space of the defunct female coworking company The Wing at 25 West 39th St. in New York as part of a temporary deal with landlord Thor Equities that runs through to the end of the year.

“Thor approached us about doing more of a shorter-term lease opportunity to take over the space for the rest of the year,” Joyner said on the podcast. “This is really what my ethos and building Her Workplace is all about, obviously not only creating this incredible, inclusive career community for women but also capitalizing on the real estate market and building landlord partnerships.”

Joyner discussed switching from brokerage positions at CBRE and JLL to entrepreneurship and how something like Her Workplace fits into the return to the office. She also discussed why she thinks so few women make it to the top parts of commercial real estate.

"In these male-dominated industries like brokerage, it's a lot easier for men to build relationships with one another. They're on the golf course, they're going out to drinks or they're doing things that men like to do,” she said. “A lot of the more junior-level men are able to build those relationships in different ways than women do — and since there aren't that many women to begin with, especially at the top, it's just really hard for women to play the politics internally and build those relationships.”

Bisnow's audio series, Bisnow Reports, examines every facet of the international commercial real estate industry — from the murky future of retail and office to real estate’s reckoning with diversity to the effects of climate change on the built world, and so much more. You can subscribe on iTunes, Spotify and Amazon Music, or click below to listen in your browser.