Keeping it Real Estate with Jhanine Jackson
Jhanine Jackson is the Assistant Manager - Sales & Leasing, Real Estate Department, Sagicor Property Services.
AW: What was your first job?
My first full-time job was at Sagicor Property Services as a clerk in the estate management department in 2010. I had previously worked in investments (now group treasury & asset management) on contract after just graduating from the University of Technology, Jamaica with a bachelor's in finance. Before then, I had worked a few summers with other financial institutions in clerical roles. My tasks in those positions were very administrative — a lot of filing and so on — but I didn't mind, because I knew that my dedication and tenacity would take me far.
AW: What would you say is your best career achievement to date?
In early 2013 I was selected by my department to study for the real estate licensing course, which was being offered by the University of Technology, Jamaica at the time, and I was successful in that, which led to me becoming licensed to sell real estate. I was also promoted to sales and leasing officer, where I oversaw all the rental and renewal of all the buildings that we had under management. I later became the assistant manager, which is the role I am now in. Completing that real estate course has been one of my biggest achievements, and I am happy that I was given the opportunity to achieve it.
AW: When would you say you have worked the hardest?
One of the most challenging periods in my career has been during the past two years, especially in 2020, when the pandemic hit. COVID-19 was a big challenge for many business operators, and other tenants at properties that we manage. Being the middle person between Sagicor Property Services – which in this case would represent the landlord – and the tenants was difficult. My team members and I had to work very hard to negotiate the best compromise between both parties. In the end, however, I can see where it sharpened my negotiation skills, and going the extra mile during hard times also strengthened my relationships with my clients.
AW: What do you love the most about the world of real estate?
What I am doing now is very dynamic. I find it very exciting and fun because no two days are alike. Of course, there are some tough days, because there are emergencies from time to time. In general, we must manage the expectations of both the landlords, as well as the tenants. On the sales side, it's a very competitive market, and when I help a client to put in an offer, especially on a hot property, and they get accepted, I still do backflips. Further down the road when the sale finally closes, that's another backflip moment. It can be a lot to manage, but I wouldn't have it any other way, because I love change and novelty, so the dynamic environment is great for me.
AW: What is your advice to young women who are looking to pursue a career in the world of real estate?
Be authentic and true to yourself. It may sound a little cheesy, but the more authentic you are, the better off you will be. It doesn't mean that you should say everything that's on your mind, but you can be respectful and stand your ground. Also, follow your passion. Find what you're truly happy doing and find a way to get paid to do it. Before I even started selling real estate, I had fun just scrolling through and matching people up with houses. And never forget that you can have more than one passion, and money isn't all. Make time for fun.