Heba Khalil, Managing Partner, RAY Labs
The real estate sector has been the common denominator across Heba’s jobs, which led her to explore market dynamics from multiple angles. From being involved in research and recommending publicly listed real estate companies to institutional investors; to becoming a financial advisor for governmental entities and private companies operating within the real estate sector, Heba has found her inspiration to grow in this industry.
“One of my key takeaways about the sector is that it is in fact in dire need of making quick and measurable digital strides while engaging further with the community, an element that is quite overlooked. Accordingly, this inspired me to enter the PropTech industry via RAY Labs, where we develop property and community management platforms for enhancing areas of inefficiency and increasing community engagement,” she added.
Heba is actively involved in overseeing business development and product management. “Translating client needs into relevant product features and capabilities is key for any product success. However, what’s more important is envisioning what can make our platform a great fit for our clients by predicting their future needs and solving problems they did not think of addressing but instead chose to adapt to their existing ways of doing business. Achieving the latter is what has always made me proud of assuming my role,” she added.
Barriers to female leadership
Heba says that there is a rise in the female’s participation in leadership positions in the Middle East. However, she noted that challenges still exist. “I believe the most significant barrier relies in being accepted at work without gender-related prejudice. To achieve that, females need to be overachievers while continuously proving to be reliable,” she said.
“Success is independent of your gender, so don’t let it limit you. My ultimate advice to you is to never stop learning. Widen your network and keep it diverse. Learning from other’s experiences is as important as onthe- job experience. Finally, always envision your next career move and ensure you work towards it.”