At the young age of 30, Klara Matić MRICS, is already head of investment, valuation and advisory services at Colliers International in Zagreb, Croatia. She entered the real estate world by chance during the economic crisis that affected Croatia in the early 2010s, but the opportunities for career development in the sector ensured that she never left.
I'm head of investment, valuation and advisory services at Colliers International - one of the leading global commercial real estate consulting companies. I started here as a junior analyst, five and a half years ago.
I now oversee a department of six full-time employees plus two students. Our core services include valuation of properties for different purposes, conducting studies for new projects such as pre-feasibility studies, HBU analyses, marketability studies, and market research reports.
My department also provides investment brokerage services for commercial real estate, acting on behalf of either the purchase or selling side. In addition to Croatia, our Zagreb office also cover markets in Slovenia as well as Bosnia and Herzegovina. So, there is quite a lot of exciting work for my team!
After receiving my Master of Business Administration from the Zagreb School of Economics and Management, I saw a job advertisement for a position at Colliers – from the description I thought there was a chance to use some of the knowledge I had gained from my university specialisation in finance. In addition, the job position and the commercial real estate industry sounded really interesting.
Of course, only when I started working in the industry did I realise how dynamic it was and how much significance real estate has both in our domestic economy but also globally. Furthermore, I learnt that the corporate real estate sector offered amazing potential for professional growth and development. There are constant learning opportunities and diverse roles, which was a crucial factor in attracting me to build my career in this sector.
Being a MRICS allows professionals to take direct responsibility and sign off on the valuation reports. It was therefore imperative for me to achieve Chartered Member status in order to advance my career.
Klara Matić MRICS
The RICS qualification means a lot in the valuation world. As valuation is one of the core services our company offers, I wanted to demonstrate to our clients and to the market that I am working to the highest international standards, professionalism and ethical values.
In addition, being a MRICS allows professionals to take direct responsibility and sign off on the valuation reports. It was therefore imperative for me to achieve Chartered Member status in order to advance my career and ultimately to become the head of the department.
It is great. I think real estate is a fantastic sector for women and men who want to learn constantly, work in a dynamic industry, and have a chance for professional development and achieving expert knowledge. In my opinion, talent cannot do much for you without hard work, perseverance and a positive attitude at work.
In particular, when you have people management responsibilities too, you need to complement talent with organisation, open communication, delegation skills and work to create an exciting and inclusive office atmosphere.
To be honest I was very lucky to start my real estate career at Colliers and their Zagreb office. Colliers invests a lot in employees both globally and locally and is an inclusive company, and our Zagreb office is led by a powerful woman leader. From the beginning of my career, I was exposed to many various assignments and I had the opportunity to take on more responsibility quickly and advance my professional growth with strong encouragement from company leaders.
Choose a company where you can develop as a professional and not the one that pays the highest salaries to juniors; it will pay off in the mid- to long-term.
Always give your best; consistency is better than occasional overexertion.
Be professional and have fun at what you do; have a positive approach to any situation. Be curious, kind, respectful to everyone, and never stop learning.