This International Women’s Day we find out what fuels the property valuation passion for one of the inspirational women in the Acumentis team - Director Training, Compliance & Standards, Laura Taylor.
Laura started her study in Agriculture before finding a passion for property valuation and carving out her successful career. Through hard work, dedication, and saying yes to all the opportunities that came her way Laura has moved around the country valuing property, she has worked across multiple property sectors and now leads Training, Compliance & Standards throughout the Acumentis network.
Awarded the overall champion for embodying the Acumentis guiding principles at our recent staff awards, Laura is an incredible mentor and ambassador for our industry.
Find out more about Laura’s journey and how she is helping #breakthebias
Why were you named Laura?
“I was named after the character Lara in the movie Dr Zhivago, one of my parents’ favourites.”
What was a defining moment in your life, and what did you learn from it?
“Obviously, becoming a mother and being a wife, but a major defining moment was becoming qualified as a valuer. I was seven months pregnant at the time and reflecting on it, it was a significant moment for me. I am a mum, and I am a wife, but first and foremost I am me. This qualification is something that I achieved for myself and that I am really proud of. It is a hard road to get it but it has opened a lot of doors for me, and it was epic to achieve.”
“What I learned from it was to make time and space for yourself and doing the things you enjoy.”
What led you to the property industry and property valuation?
“Originally, I studied agriculture, another industry I am passionate about. I was working for a finance broker who specialised in rural loans, and as part of that process, I was reading valuation reports.
In reading and reviewing those valuation reports for finance purposes I found them really interesting.
Everything about a particular property is there, the report stands alone. It tells a story about a property at a moment in time. It is all bundled together, neat, and tidy. They have pulled in data from here, there, and everywhere they have evaluated it. It is all the facts and then industry knowledge on top of that.
I really liked the idea of valuation as a career.
We moved to Wagga Wagga for my husband’s work, and I approached a local valuation firm. They took me on, helped me get through my study and qualify as a valuer, and the rest is history.”
If not property valuation, what would you be doing?
“Something in rural and agriculture. It was soils, cropping, livestock and management of farming that was of interest to me.”
Which woman do you admire most?
“I always find this to be a bit of a tricky question because there are plenty of amazing women out there. The person that comes to mind would be Jacinda Ardern. Every time she handles a crazy situation, she is amazing.
I am also going to mention the Queen. For her whole entire life, she has been steady, stable, steadfast, doing her role and serving the world. She is pretty amazing!”
What are you most proud of doing?
“Raising three kids, maybe 4 if you want to include a husband in that!”
What did you dream of doing when you were a little girl?
"Like a lot of children, I wanted to be a vet.
Long story short, I did work experience in year 10 at a vet surgery and fainted on day one. So, my aspiring career as a vet was over!"
What do you tell your kids about achieving their dreams?
“I am real with them and tell them to try your best in whatever you do. It does not matter what marks you achieve, if you still want to take a certain path, you just need to work really hard and you will get there. There is always a way.
Also, grasp the opportunities, and sometimes you will have to create them yourself"
Final question, what is in your handbag – spill the contents?
“Well, there is a lot of makeup, because I do my makeup in the car on the way to work.
I mean a LOT of makeup, like everything, is in there.
Never a pen. I can never find a pen!
At the moment there are also about 3 masks. And there is always a spare pair of earrings – I don’t want to feel naked!
Also, my wallet, keys, phone, and that sort of stuff. Oh, and a few teabags. Chai teabags!”