Paula Matlock’s 20 years at Marshall White

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A trailblazer for women in real estate

22 May 2024

As a pioneering figure in the real estate industry, Director of Property Management, Paula Matlock, has made a significant impact on the sector throughout her remarkable 39-year career. Her commitment to integrity and excellence has solidified her position as a role model for aspiring professionals, particularly women seeking to make their mark in the field. With an impressive 20 years at Marshall White, Paula's wealth of experience and dedication to her role have been instrumental in shaping the company's success and reputation as a leader in the industry. 

What are the most significant industry changes you've observed over the past 20 years, and how have they impacted your work at Marshall White? 

Throughout my 39-year tenure in the industry, I have witnessed significant transformations that have profoundly impacted our sector, such as the RTA changes in 1997 and the introduction of GST in 2000. Over the past two decades, the rapid advancements in communication technology have heightened expectations for fast and efficient service, making our availability more critical than ever. 

The implementation of 130 amendments to the RTA in March 2021 marked a significant milestone in ensuring fairness and safety in the rental property market within Victoria. These amendments expanded the responsibilities of residential landlords, now referred to as "rental providers," and introduced additional safeguards for residential tenants, now known as "renters." Consequently, property managers have faced increased pressures to conduct compliance inspections and maintain properties in adherence to these regulations. 

Undoubtedly, the COVID-19 pandemic posed some of the most challenging times in my real estate career. Balancing the financial challenges faced by both renters and rental providers demanded an immense amount of effort and emotional resilience from our team. 

What core aspects of real estate have remained constant throughout your career, contributing to your success and longevity at Marshall White? 

Absolutely, maintaining transparency, honesty, and a personable approach in all dealings with clients and colleagues has been crucial throughout my career. These core values are at the heart of everything I do, ensuring that I uphold integrity and build lasting relationships based on trust and respect. 

Reflecting on your 20 years, what memorable moments, achievements, or challenges have shaped you personally and professionally? 

One of my proudest moments is witnessing the professional growth of my team members as they ascend to high-level management positions. I consider myself fortunate to have many team members who have been with me throughout the journey at Marshall White. I am surrounded by professional and compassionate leaders who, in turn, mentor and foster the development of the team. 

Additionally, serving as a Financial Director at Marshall White and fulfilling my role as a trustee of the Marshall White Foundation are deeply fulfilling aspects of my work. 

What advice would you give to someone starting in real estate, and what qualities or skills are key for long-term success, particularly at Marshall White? 

One piece of advice I consistently share with new team members is the importance of communication. Even when there may not be substantial updates to share, it is crucial to communicate that fact transparently. Avoiding hiding behind emails or messages and adopting a personal approach can significantly contribute to building rapport and trust with clients. Furthermore, I emphasize the significance of following through on commitments. Doing what you say you will do, when you say you will do it, demonstrates integrity, accountability, transparency, and honesty, all core values that underpin our client relationships. It's a simple principle, yet it resonates deeply with our ethos and guides our actions in all dealings.