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Bay Area Power Women: 5 Questions With Wilson Meany’s Sarah MacIntyre

This limited series profiles Bay Area Power Women who have helped shape Bay Area cities, neighborhoods, businesses and lifestyles. These women will be honored at Bisnow's Bay Area Power Women event in San Francisco on May 30.

Wilson Meany Director of Asset Management Sarah MacIntyre has over 20 years of commercial real estate experience and has worked in all aspects of the business. Prior to joining Wilson Meany, she served as portfolio asset manager at Kilroy Realty in San Francisco and was responsible for the leasing and management of a 2M SF Class-A office portfolio consisting of new and existing properties in the South of Market District. She has worked at EOP, JLL and CBRE and is a member, former director and past president of the Building Owners and Managers Association of San Francisco.

Wilson Meany Director of Asset Management Sarah MacIntyre with her family: Grace Doherty, Will Doherty, Nora Doherty and Alice Doherty

Bisnow: How do you describe your job to people who are not in the industry?

MacIntyre: Sales, marketing, design, construction, operations, human resources and legal all rolled into one. One day, I can be walking job sites in boots and a hard hat and the next making a suit presentation to future clients. I can’t resist the versatility; it draws me in year after year. From colleagues to consultants, I get the pleasure of working with talented, engaged people. There are plenty of bad days with short deadlines, missed deals, over-budget jobs and busted pipes. That just makes it more interesting.

Bisnow: What is the biggest business problem you have faced and how did you solve it? 

MacIntyre: Navigating through personal perceptions whether that is about me or by me. It can be challenging to bridge gender, cultural and generational gaps. We are in a relationship business, so you have to figure it out. My solution is to keep true to myself, but try to identify common ground in whatever the situation. It can be as small as a shared love of traveling to having the same customer in a different market. Creating connections with people different from yourself is a process and requires patience. Play the long game, because it’s a small town.  

Bisnow: What is one thing you think companies can do to address wage and gender inequality?

MacIntyre: It starts with acknowledging that even with the best intentions, we all have unconscious biases that impact our decisions. Leaders need to give hiring personnel (outsourced or in-house) directives to seek out diverse applicant pools. That is particularly true for leadership positions. Annual salary reviews and subsequent salary leveling are essential for wage equality. Leaders must be bold when policies and culture require change. However, it is also incumbent upon the individual, not just the company, to advocate for equal wages.

Bisnow: What piece of advice do you give others entering the industry?

MacIntyre: Get your foot in the door, prove your work ethic and connect with the greater CRE community through organizations like BOMA and NAIOP. Having wide-ranging experience has served me well, so I encourage people to take measured risks to develop new skills. That may require asking your supervisor for new opportunities or finding a new organization to join. Trusting and believing in yourself can be the hardest part. Bring your passion and sense of adventure, you are going to need it!

Bisnow: What do you do to unwind when you’re not working?  

MacIntyre: With three young girls and two working parents, it’s hard to find time to do anything but the necessities. A few years ago, my friend dared me to do a Sprint Triathlon and I signed up on the spot. Now I do two to three races a year with friends. I started alone on a bet and now there are six of us. Training is sandwiched in before work, after bedtime or at lunch. It’s a great way to blow off steam, stay in reasonable shape and enjoy competitive spirit.  

Meet Wilson Meany Director of Asset Management Sarah MacIntyre at Bisnow’s Power Women event in San Francisco May 30.