After 15 years in commercial real estate, Kristin Geenty credits the training she received in restaurants for laying the foundation of her sales experience.
In 1999, Geenty transitioned from the restaurant business, which had helped put her through college, into commercial real estate brokerage. In her first 10 years in the commercial brokerage business she served as the first female president of the New Haven Area Commercial Investment Division of the Greater New Haven Board of Realtors. She also earned the many qualifications to be a candidate for membership, as a designee, in the Society of Industrial & Office Realtors (SIOR), an elite international society of commercial real estate professionals with 3,000 members worldwide. Geenty and her father, Kevin, are only the second father-daughter team to be members in SIOR’s history.
“I don’t think of my participation in SIOR at the higher level of the Connecticut Western Massachusetts Chapter as groundbreaking,” she said. “However, being only the second father-daughter team to be members of the Society Worldwide – as there are dozens and dozens of father-son teams – is pretty cool.”
Geenty serves on several SIOR committees of the global society as well as currently serving as the secretary/treasurer of the Connecticut/Western Mass. Chapter.
“I think that my SIOR designation is more representative of my work ethic and commitment than of breaking ground,” she added. “The women who achieved the designation – there have been three in the Connecticut Western Massachusetts Chapter before me – and those who have been elected as president of the international SIOR organization are the real groundbreakers. I am the beneficiary of their tenacity in the commercial real estate field.”
As part of that father-daughter team, she works closely with her father, founder of The Geenty Group. She noted that the adoption of technology at brokerage represents the agency’s biggest challenge.
“Anyone working in a family business will tell you that it is a balancing act,” she said. “Working with my father in the commercial brokerage business, more times than not, is representative of the industry as a whole. Commercial real estate brokerage has always been late to technology, and in our office, the adoption of technology is the greatest divide between my father and me.”
Her father has nearly 50 years of experience, she noted; translating those 50 years into a digital world is both challenging and rewarding.
Editor’s Note: This article has been edited since it first appeared in the August print issue of The Commercial Record.