Celebrating Women’s History Month: Sandy Holton

by | 27 March 2019

This Q&A series celebrates Women’s History Month and the dynamic and inspiring women of Colliers, who discuss advice, accomplishments, the importance of inclusivity and more.

What advice would you give to women new to the commercial real estate industry?

Young and totally inexperienced, starting out in the CRE industry was scary for me at the time! I learned very quickly that you have to stick to who you are and be passionate about what you do. It’s so important for women to remember to have a voice—don’t be afraid to speak out and never be sorry for your mistakes, because we must understand that failure is not the opposite of success, it is part of success.

What is your proudest accomplishment?

I would have to say that I am extremely proud of being able to navigate a successful career while raising 3 boys (4 if you count my husband…note: this is a work in progress!)

Who is a woman you greatly admire and why?

There are a lot of amazingly talented and admirable women out there. One that I have grown to really admire is Sara Blakely, founder of shapewear company Spanx. One of the qualities I like most about her is that she was able to find success through failure, which is a great life-learning lesson. She failed as a comedian, failed at becoming a lawyer and even failed auditioning for a role at Disney World. She spent 7 years getting rejected selling fax machines. Yet, she never gave up on her true dream of designing, manufacturing and marketing an apparel prototype, one day to be known as Spanx. Being underestimated is something that she talks about a lot and I too have felt that way many times in my career. This is something that women can learn from. She proves that passion drives results.

How have you helped to foster an inclusive environment here at Colliers?

I learned at a young age from my father that work ethic and respect for others is paramount to success. Also similar to my father, it has always been pretty easy for me to build personal and business relationships. I’ve had many people tell me that I can talk to anyone about anything. Having these traits has helped me to be accepting and inclusive of every idea, person and opportunity. Sometimes the best ideas come from the quietest person at the table!

What inspires you?

A lot of things inspire me! Of course my kids inspire me. New adventures inspire me. Completing a difficult challenge inspires me. Being a part of a team where I can see others collaborate and succeed inspires me. And sometimes just sitting around a campfire, in a beautiful mountaintop location with good family and friends (and a good glass of wine) inspires me to appreciate what’s most important in life.

Read more in: