Irena Ashcraft

Irena Ashcraft

Irena is a freelance writer who works with innovators, educators, explorers, and changemakers. From brave nonprofits to frontier-straddling startups, she helps clients connect with their biggest fans through writing that's fresh, relatable, and fun.

Recent Posts by Irena Ashcraft:

Paperclips, Seinfeld, and more: 4 ways to recharge your motivation

You don’t know why, but the days just seem to drag on. You’re not as excited about this job like you once were, and you’re wondering if this is the beginning of the end for you as a broker. Sound familiar?

Whether it’s a genuine career slump or just a brief dip in motivation, what you’re feeling is normal—and it happens to the best of brokers. But  you don’t have to stay stuck. Today, we’re bringing you four fresh ideas for summoning up that extra get-up-and-go when your tank’s nearly empty.

Topics: Best Practices

Where do the best leads come from? 5 brokers weigh in.

Where do you find great leads? Recently, we asked brokers about their go-to strategies for drumming up new business. Some confirmed that tried-and-true methods—like picking up the phone—worked best for them. And some surprised us with fresh ideas we hadn’t considered before.

Here’s what we discovered:

Topics: Interviews

Your scariest CRE horror stories, pt. 2

Following last week’s CRE horror stories, we’re bringing you more spooky tales to start your Halloween off right.

Kick back, relax, and enjoy a good scare!

Topics: Interviews

Your scariest CRE horror stories, pt. 1

If ghosts and goblins don’t get your heart thumping, these CRE stories will. We reached out to brokers across the country to ask about the one time in their careers that things went horribly wrong. And they responded with truly terrifying tales sure to give you chills…or at least a good chuckle!

Read on for the best of our CRE horror stories, and leave your own in the comments!

Topics: Interviews

Last-mile distribution: 6 things to know about how it’s affecting CRE

E-commerce may be thriving online, but people forget that its success depends entirely on physical space: the distribution centers that keep things stocked and ready for delivery.

With online shopping on the rise, the demand for last-mile distribution space is growing—and it's ushering in a boom for the commercial real estate industry. For example, in the Bay Area, consumer demand for near-instant delivery has led to a 10% price increase for warehouse space. That’s in just two years.

So what does the future hold for brokers who hone in on this major opportunity? Here’s what you need to know.

Topics: Industry News

7 ways to lift up your local community (and your business)

You spend a lot of time actively chasing new business. But how much time do you spend getting to know the people in your community and actively helping them out?

Whether you’re coaching a little league team or organizing a donation drive, community involvement is a great way to make a positive contribution and meet new people. It also has the power to boost your business as people get to know you, trust you, and spread the word about what you do.

Today, we’re sharing seven simple ways to show your community a little love (and maybe get a little love back in return):

Topics: Best Practices

The hurricane effect: How extreme weather impacts CRE

It’s been a hurricane season unlike any other, with four major storms hitting U.S. shores within weeks of each other: first Harvey, then Irma, Maria, and Nate. In the calm between the lashing wind and rain, we’re stopping to ask: What exactly does this all mean for CRE?

Today, we’re taking stock of the impact these storms have had on commercial real estate in three affected regions. Here’s where things stand:

Topics: Industry News

3 strategies for women to succeed in CRE: An interview with Joanna Chango-James

We recently explored why having more women in CRE can be a very good thing for business, and how brokerages can make themselves more attractive to women. Today, we’re taking a look at it from the opposite angle, with thoughts on how aspiring female brokers can position themselves to be more successful in the field.

For today’s insights, we turned to Joanna Chango-James, Phd., a psychologist and leadership consultant who helps women maximize their potential in the workplace. Here’s what she had to say.

Topics: Interviews

Who’s getting Amazon’s new HQ? Here are our predictions.

Last month, we got the big news: Amazon’s scoping out a second headquarters that could bring $5 billion in new construction and up to 50,000 new jobs.

Since then, cities have been fervently vying for the chance to land “Amazon HQ2,” submitting their bids ahead of the October 19th deadline set by the company.

So what’s in it for cities willing to offer up tax incentives, relocation subsidies, donated land, and more—like renaming themselves Amazon? If the past is any indicator, Amazon HQ2 could be a success story similar to Seattle’s, where the company has generated an estimated $38 billion in indirect investment between 2010 and 2016.

Could your city be the lucky one to land HQ2? Let’s take a look at who’s got the best shot, who’s in the running, and who may ultimately win.

Topics: Industry News

Notes from the field: 4 tips to survive your first year as a broker

It’s a tough world out there, especially for new CRE brokers. You’ve got to build up a business from scratch, hear “no” about a thousand times before you ever get a “yes,” and live without a payday for what feels like forever. It’s why so many brokers don’t make it past that first crucial year.

But the brokers who do are a special bunch: they’ve been there, done that, and have the battle-tested insights to prove it. Recently, we turned to them for the #1 survival tip they’d give to newbie brokers. We asked what they wished someone had told them when they were starting out, and here’s what they had to say:

Topics: Best Practices Interviews