Believe it or not, summer is just around the corner. With the mercury set to climb and the humidity ready to soar, we thought it would be a good time to take a look back at many of the great Four on Friday Q&A’s we’ve conducted so far in 2014.

Below are excerpts from and links to — you guessed it — four interviews from the first four months of the year. They are good examples of the insight into the commercial real estate markets, and the personalities that help shape those markets, that we try to provide every Friday.

1) Patti Pearlberg of Coro Realty Advisors

HS: What are the primary challenges facing women in commercial real estate today?

Pearlberg: In many respects, commercial real estate is still a predominately man’s world, but women are making great inroads. I think the biggest challenge for young women coming into the industry is finding a mentor to help show them the ropes. Men, those with many years of experience, don’t typically mentor young women, and, quite frankly, there just aren’t enough of us “more seasoned” (not about to say “older”) women around.

In addition, women still face the challenge of work-home balance more so than men, but technology is certainly helping with that. Real estate has typically been slow to latch onto new technology, but we may find women leading that charge as a way to grow their careers and manage their home life too.

 

2) Jeff Miller of RCG Ventures

HS: As we enter the spring, what's your overall assessment of the health of the retail real estate sector?

Miller: It depends on the market. We see markets that are incredibly tight from a space availability perspective and then we see other markets where the tenant interest level is weak. We are seeing more and more cases where tenants have been unable to get into new markets, resulting in new development.

 

3) Bob Godard of Compass Real Estate

HS: What led you to decide to found Compass back in January 2003?

Godard: Prior to starting Compass, I had the pleasure of working with some of the smartest real estate entrepreneurs in our region. They taught me the business of institutional real estate investment and development and remain good friends today.

I had a genetic predisposition to start my own business at a young age, following in the footsteps of virtually every man in my extended family for the past several generations. I was blessed to have a solid foundation and the support of friends and family, which allowed me to launch this business. There was a period during the market correction when I questioned the wisdom of my decision, but we survived the downturn and have bounced back with both a stronger company and a smarter approach to the business.

 

4) Bryan Carter of Cox Communications

HS: What song gets the most play on your iPod?

Carter: I’m kind of all over the place when it comes to music, but it’s safe to say that I’m a Top 40 guy. Justin Timberlake, Bruno Mars, Lorde, and Macklemore & Ryan Lewis are all likely candidates to be playing on my iPod right now.