South Florida’s Caroline Fleischer was recently honored by the South Florida Business Journal as a 2016 Influential Business Woman, an honor that highlights the region’s women who excel in a variety of business sectors, while also spotlighting the numerous efforts they lead to help improve their local communities.
We wanted to hear from Caroline herself on women who have made an impact on her, how she made her first dollar and how her perfect day starts and ends.
Q: What women have influenced you professionally?
My aunt, Stephanie, who was an executive for Nationwide Insurance’s headquarters in Columbus. She was a key strategist for the company in overcoming many corporate obstacles in an effort to make the staff, the business platform, and morale better. Stephanie was definitely in a man’s arena, as an executive woman in her field in the 1980s and 1990s. She gave me hope and inspired me to get out of my comfort zone in an effort to become accomplished and climb the corporate ladder. She says many times, “Know your own self-worth.” Be confident and always put your best foot forward.
Also, Tere, my former managing director. Tere has experienced great success in commercial real estate as a woman. She is known as one of the top female brokers in South Florida and continues to mentor young brokers. She was a good role model for me starting at Cushman & Wakefield 10 years ago. If I had a tough client or challenging negotiation, I’d always reflect on “what would Tere do in this situation?,” and try and emulate her. I greatly admire her many accomplishments.
Q: If you didn’t work in commercial real estate, what would you be doing?
I cannot think of a single vacation I’ve taken where I didn’t notice office buildings, who represents them, what is the anchor tenant/s. That is my idea of sightseeing. For fun, I’ve taught spinning class – I enjoy the fitness arena. I actually thought about opening an Orange Theory Fitness with my husband who also enjoys working out and staying fit. Not only did I want to own one (or more) BUT I could see myself being one of the top trainers with the best, most challenging classes. I love seeing people reach their fitness goals and potential.
Q: How did you make your first dollar?
Almost all young females have babysitting jobs, which I did of course. I also worked at Handel’s ice cream, which originated in Youngstown Ohio, scooping and selling ice cream the summer I visited my grandmother, when I was 14 years old. I’ve worked most of my life, from the age of 12.
Q: What tenant rep trend are you seeing right now in Florida?
I’m seeing many submarkets tighten up with lower vacancies. As a result, some are looking to recast their leases early in an effort to hopefully mitigate rising real estate costs. I’m seeing tenants renew versus relocate as a result of less concessions being offered as well as construction costs rising, affecting rental rates. Most notably as a tenant rep, I’m seeing much focus placed towards workplace efficiencies. Tenants are looking to more densely populate their offices with shared workspace concepts. Many tenants are embracing “hoteling” concepts for their employees rather than dedicated, designated, areas.
Q: Your perfect day starts with ___.
My “perfect” days starts with a 20-30 bike ride up and down A1A in Boca Raton. A typical “good to perfect” day begins with a well-rounded workout of some sort, i.e. Orange Theory class, resistance training combined with HITT cardio.
Q: Your perfect day ends with ___.
Q: How do you take your coffee?
I prefer an iced latte with coconut milk.
View the Full List of Honorees
Caroline serves as a Director of South Florida’s Tenant Advisory Group in the Fort Lauderdale office and has been with the firm since 2007. With more than 20 years of experience, she is known as one of the top office producers in the region and has been named CoStar’s Power Broker for four consecutive years. Her specialties include market analysis and evaluation of leasing trends / strategies to assist her clients in achieving the best deals in the marketplace.