Congratulations to Rachel D. Jaffe for being featured on Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW) New York’s Member Spotlight. Rachel’s practice largely consists of affordable housing and community development, not-for-profit law, real estate finance, and Housing Development Fund Corporations (HDFCs).

How many years a CREW Member?

Fun Fact:
I love to garden, especially roses. Our backyard in Brooklyn has seven mature rose plants of different varieties, including climbing roses that will soon cover a pergola on our deck.

What are some of the tools in your skill-set which have been critical to you in your career?
An important skill to bring to any workplace today is the ability to adapt quickly to change. Whether it’s accommodating evolving digital innovations or hybrid work schedules, I’ve found that getting comfortable with change–instead of resisting it–has made day-to-day work easier, I’m more productive and I may even feel happier. The other skill critical to my career is honing my communication skills–oral and written–with colleagues, clients and my firm’s leadership. Whether I need to discuss a concern or a question, how I present my thoughts can have a big impact on how the information is received.

What is a skill you learned when you were younger, that you still use today?
When I was younger, I learned to talk to many different kinds of people, and this skill has proven to be valuable at work and in my personal life. I’ve found that listening carefully as people talk and asking questions, find common interests or values and have an open mind. Whether I speaking to a prospective client, a co-worker or a stranger, being able to talk to anyone with ease has been a vital skill in my life.

What is something you believed earlier in your career, and now think differently about?
Earlier in my career I thought that formal education was important. Now I think that some of the most successful professionals in CRE actually have little formal real estate education and have learned by doing, taking risks and trying different approaches. A successful professional is self-aware enough to recognize what they do not know and willing to takes the initiative to seek out answers.