Elizabeth Greer Napolitano
29, Sales and Leasing Associate for Divaris Real Estate
How do you see your generation (millennials)? How do you think older generations define millennials?
Millennials were raised on technology, and we have adapted this into our way of life. We are constantly connected and therefore always engaged. We are multitaskers and can accomplish some tasks quicker than older generations. A common misconception from prior generations labels millennials as lazy and entitled. However, we can adapt quickly to new technologies and don’t get stuck doing things the same old way. This allows us to complete work in a more efficient and sometimes easier manner.
In what ways does having younger employees add to a company’s success?
Younger employees bring bright and new ideas into a company. We are current with the latest trends in technology and can help educate older employees on these platforms, which can increase productivity.
What have been a few keys to your success so far?
Mentorship is undoubtedly the key to my success in and out of Divaris Real Estate. I am surrounded by experienced and driven individuals who not only encourage me but challenge me to be the best version of myself. I am blessed to work under some of the best brokers in our industry, and I am learning something new every day. I have been inspired since my first day of employment by my colleagues and their individual efforts to grow their business.
Is there anything that you would change about your generation as a whole? If so, what?
I would not change anything about our generation. We are molded into who we are today based on the environment in which we were raised. The next generation to come is going to be completely different than mine based on their situational attributes. We cannot change who we are, and we cannot help who we have become. Past generations need to become accepting of the fact that people are changing, just as the world around us.
What do you look for in a job/company?
It is very important to work for a company that has inspirational leaders. I enjoy being motivated by my colleagues and supervisors. By working under exceptional people, it not only helps the day become more interesting, but it also allows me to learn something new. I look forward to coming to work daily, knowing that I am surrounded by driven individuals who encourage me to be the best person I can be both inside and outside of the office.
What kinds of digital platforms do you feel you have benefited from in your career?
I avidly use Twitter to receive and share market news. This keeps me current on the trends in the region, while allowing me to also share articles to my followers. I use my Twitter page as a resource for up-to-date real estate market information both regionally and nationally. Through LinkedIn, I connect with colleagues and clients and maintain these relationships via posts and updates. I use my Instagram account to share more personal moments but also to promote my upcoming charitable events and projects.
What do you feel are some of the biggest perks of living in Coastal Virginia? What changes do you think the region should implement to continue to be a draw for millennials?
Coastal Virginia offers (somewhat) easy access to many destinations and attractions. I can leave the oceanfront and arrive in the mountains within hours. However, our local transportation system needs improvement. To draw millennials to the region, we need a mass transportation system such a light rail. It’s an eco-friendly option and will help reduce the number of cars on the highways. Not only would light rail promote regionalism through physical connectivity but it would provide economical options for workers to travel between the region’s main business centers.
Tell us about some of your favorite ways to do worthwhile networking.
I enjoy meeting people through organizations with a cause. While happy hour with other young professionals is always an exciting way to network, I feel that more personal relationships are formed by working with someone side by side for a common purpose.
How are you contributing to life/community outside of the workplace?
Outside of the office I am involved in a variety of young professional groups. I am vice president of Generation MOCA, where our annual ARTini event raises funds for the museum and their educational programs. I am membership chair of the Downtown 100, which advocates for the Downtown Norfolk Council. Through the DT100 I have volunteered for Better Block, First Fridays and Adopt a Student. I am a member of the Central Business District Association and their sister organization, the CBDX. The CBDX raises money for Junior Achievement through our annual Casino Night. In addition to these young professional groups, I am a member of the Aloha Circle of the King’s Daughters, which is a group of motivated young women who fundraise for the Children’s Hospital of the King’s Daughters.
What advice would you offer to other millennials or recent graduates about getting their careers to take off?
Work hard, be patient and get involved. Many people in my generation think that once they start a job, they are immediately entitled to a large paycheck. You must work hard and prove to your superiors that you are worthy of that salary (we have a sigma against us, remember?). This takes time; so, while you gain experience, get involved in the local community and build a name for yourself. There is a sense of pride in knowing that your accomplishments are due to your own hard work.
From her nomination:
“Elizabeth is one of the hardest working and driven young professionals that I have come across in commercial real estate. She has brought a refreshing vitality and an out-of-the-box approach to solving the community’s long-term issues. She knows that the region cannot continue to thrive in the same old fashioned way, and she is dedicated to making a difference, all with a remarkable attitude.”
—Alexander Divaris, coworker