Dodge Carter of Crow Holdings Capital, Jeff Price of JLL and Jeff Swope of Champion Partners shared their experiences and advice on climbing the corporate ladder with young professionals at our annual Rising to the Top event, moderated by Sara Vilutis of Phoenix Capital Partners.
What was the biggest obstacle you faced while “rising to the top?”
Carter: Patience. Patience is a critical component in getting to the next level.
Price: The biggest obstacle was getting on the radar screen, it took years of being persistent.
Swope: Fear, we all struggle with it.
What daily habits do you believe helped you the most throughout your career?
Carter: Work harder and work smarter; be the first in the office; ask questions
Price: Prayer; find joy in something you do every day; do what works for you; be disciplined
Swope: Get out of bed and show up; learn from others; get over your fear
What early professional experience had the biggest impact on how you approach your work?
Carter: My biggest turning points have been during downturns because you learn how to survive and cover the bills.
Price: Laughlin was my mentor. He taught me how to develop relationships, serve people well and to surround myself with successful people interested in me.
Swope: Being around Mr. Crow. He was a renaissance man and the three hours I spent with him in 1980 is a moment I will never forget.
What would present-day you tell 30-year-old you that would make the most difference in your life?
Carter: Culture matters, it gives you a sense of worth; value your coworkers; value who you work for; no man is an island, it’s a team effort
Price: Be on the edge of your seat; it’s a marathon not a sprint; don’t be afraid to ask for help; on the things that you aren’t the expert in, leave for someone else.
Swope: Don’t be driven by money, really be driven by doing the best job you can and the money will come if you have a passion
Is there any other advice or any final words of wisdom for us Young Guns?
Carter: Be passionate in every component in your life; have balance in your life, give back; be flexible, if you want to make God laugh, tell him what’s going to happen; open your eyes and ears to new opportunities and new challenges; keep your options open because what you think you’ll be doing in many years probably won’t be what you are actually doing
Price: Read Hedgehog Concept, especially chapter seven; don’t worry about how much money you make, be good at it; whatever you do, do it well, even if you don’t like it; don’t think you know everything because you don’t; have a great attitude and work hard
Swope: Satisfaction in life is doing something well; you can’t really be compensated well if you aren’t good at what you are doing; CRE is an incredible industry and it’s a challenge, but it attracts so many smart and talented people; if something knocks you down, find that passion and give it your all; understand your own motivations and once you start unlocking them the business starts getting pretty easy