Stockland development manager Teresa Rados talks about her career and shares her passion for town planning and the creation of communities.
How long have you been in the property industry?
I’ve been in the property industry since 2003 when I started as a student planner in the former Department of Sustainability and Environment (DSE). I was there for six months while I completed my final year of study. A work placement was offered to all final year RMIT students.
Where and what did you study at university?
I studied at RMIT and completed a Bachelor of Applied Science (Planning) – a fancy name for town planning.
Where are you currently working?
How did you come to be in this role?
Following my student planning days at DSE, I moved into local government and worked at Maribyrnong City Council for three years as a town planner. An opportunity arose to return to state government (through a contact I’d met in my six months at DSE) and work as a project manager for Major Projects Victoria (MPV).
I decided to move away from a career in planning and stayed at MPV for six years. It was at MPV that I got a taste for development, working for the state on the Kew Cottages redevelopment in a joint venture with Walker Corporation, as well as feasibility studies on the development of the site known as Federation Square East. After six years I decided it was time to leave government, go to the ‘dark side’ and apply my skills in the private property development world.
Why did you choose to pursue a career in this area?
I’ve always been interested in cities, the creation of them and understanding how they work. Planning was a logical starting point and proved to be a great launching pad into doing what I do now, which is creating places and communities.
What do you think are among the biggest challenges facing the property industry?
There are many, but I believe the biggest challenges are intrinsically linked. Those challenges are: planning (reducing risk, improving efficiency); infrastructure (government planning and funding of future infrastructure to support growth); and housing affordability (the most difficult of the lot).
You received a Young Achiever Award. When was this and what did you receive it for?
I received the Young Achiever award in 2010 while I was working at MPV. The award was made to an individual who had, at an early stage in their professional career, achieved outstanding performance in property by their contribution to their organisation and/or the property industry. It was a state award and I received it for my work on Kew Cottages, as well as managing and delivering a whole-of-government feasibility report and design for the development of the Federation Square East site, worth over $300 million.
How could the API enhance service to members?
It does a great job as it is. Continuing to offer diverse professional development that caters to all parts of the membership is important.
How is the API helping your career? Why do you believe a membership organisation such as the API is important to property professionals?
It is important to be involved in industry associations such as the API. The professional development opportunities are great, but having a forum to integrate with your peers is crucial. You don’t know who you’ll meet or what doors may open.
What would you say to upcoming property professionals?
Develop and maintain a strong network of personal mentors and advocates. They’ll help you navigate through your career path, and they’ll get a lot out of you too.