• Lisa A. Pektor, PennCap Properties

Know your strengths and don’t be afraid to admit your faults and weaknesses

What was your most notable project, deal or transaction in 2015?

In 2015, PennCap achieved 94% occupancy. Since inception we have captured over 100,000 sqft of tenants new to the Lehigh Valley area and we have seen over a 10% growth of existing tenants.

Who or what has been the strongest influence on your career?

Working with the Capital Trust and Blackstone teams as partners in PennCap provided me with great guidance and institutional investment insight, as well as patience and discipline. It was a great partnership that was a mix of Wall Street meets Main Street that helped create a solid foundation in my career.

What challenges and/or obstacles do you feel you needed to overcome to become as successful as you are today?

Finding my way out from under my father’s shadow was certainly a challenge. I began my career working for Ashley Development in 2006 and since then transitioned over to PennCap Properties and managing ALT Realty.

What was the most defining moment for you in the profession you are currently in?

Since I began my career I have closed over $330 million in financial transactions. Given that a majority of my career has been spent during a recession where the lending climate has not been the easiest, being able to quantify an aggregate number in the hundreds of millions of dollars has definitely given me some benchmark and frame of reference to define my career.

Do you feel being a woman is an advantage, disadvantage or no advantage in today’s business world? Why? Why not?

People’s motivating factors can be very different based upon gender, but also conditional upon other aspects relevant to that individual which may over ride decisions founded on gender. There is certainly an argument as to if women or men are more level headed, but having a team with members of both genders can provide a well-rounded approach to solving a problem or completing a project. Therefore a company as a whole can gain an advantage by embracing both genders and playing off of individual’s strengths when combined as a group.

Do you feel there are any differences in the way that men and women develop business relationships and if so, what activities or venues do you participate in?

Generally speaking, both women and men tend to prefer transacting business with friends, but working with someone of the same gender may provide a greater opportunity to find common ground to foster a friendship therefore causing people to favor working with constituents of the same gender or age or marital status.

What activities do you enjoy during you free time?

In my free time, I like to shoot archery. In the world of commercial real estate, where deals and projects can take months or years to complete, archery provides me with instant feed back and gratification. In addition, I enjoy farming or working in my garden or on the tree farm.

What word of advice would you give to a woman about to go into your allied field?

The advice I would give to any person entering any family business is that you will “pay your dues” longer than anyone else entering the business. You need to be confident in your abilities and know your strengths and not be afraid to admit your faults and weaknesses and work to correct them.

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