“I started my career in real estate because it gave me the opportunity to be my own boss from day one.” Meet this month’s #SheShines feature, Libby Levinson, Broker Associate with Kentwood Real Estate & Blogger/Owner of Lifestyle Denver. From a young age, Libby always had a passion for real estate and loved seeing how people live. This childhood dream soon became a reality. Through her career in real estate, Libby has been able to expand upon her goals, taking on the title of blogger and entrepreneur. Read how Libby was able to take control of her career, turning a dream into a reality.
Broker Associate with Kentwood Real Estate & Blogger/Owner of Lifestyle Denver
BA in Communications with a minor in Business Administration, University of Colorado – Boulder
Let’s start from the beginning. What prompted you to start a career in real estate? What is it about the industry that still lights your fire?
I started my career in real estate because it gave me the opportunity to be my own boss from day one. As a child I loved to see how people live and have always been a student of design, so the ability to show properties speaks to one of my earliest interest. I also have a large network of friends, so it’s been a dream being able to work with my friends which helps make every day enriching. I’ve been able to grow at my own pace in time helping my client’s friends and family move into their next homes.
I’m continually growing and learning every day which continues to light my fire. I have taken on new roles such as a blogger for Lifestyle Denver and have become more involved in the Realtor community via the Denver Metro Association of Realtors and National Association of Realtors. Each additional role has challenged me and has taken me in new and exciting directions I never thought I would go.
What business or career moves lead you to create your own real estate venture?
I am thankful that I found real estate very quickly upon graduation from college. I briefly worked for a small business planning events, which showed me the freedom and joy of owning your own business. I didn’t love giving up my weekends at that time, but now I embrace it because it’s my business and I’m able to set my schedule. I then worked in the non-profit sector which helped me understand what I need in a work environment to feel successful at work. While this wasn’t the right fit for me, it did help me understand that I wanted to work for myself and have the flexibility during the day to give back to my community.
How did you know you were ready to branch out and start your own blog and company?
I was invited to join Lifestyle Denver four years ago as a co-contributor because I was becoming more and more involved in social media marketing making me a great new addition. I’ve since taken over Lifestyle Denver and am working on growing it and expanding the readership. Writing doesn’t come naturally to me, but over time I’ve found my voice and have really enjoyed engaging with the community and writing about new and different topics. In the process, I’ve learned how to write for SEO and web traffic, become more comfortable and savvy with social media marketing and now act as a Denver tour guide by highlighting different events and insights for our readers.
What is your favorite or most rewarding thing about running Lifetyle Denver?
While I’m a Denver native, I’m constantly learning about Denver and all of the events happening around town. It makes me proud to call Denver home, especially watching all the changes and growth we’ve experienced over the years. I also did a redesign of the site two years ago and absolutely love the creativity of revamping the design and coming up with fresh topics to address to grow the readership.
What has been the biggest learning curve you’ve faced as a business owner and Lifestyle Denver blogger?
The biggest learning curve has been finding what topics get traction for the readership and really speaking to what the audience finds interesting. The other is finding the time to stay consistent with posts.
Do you have any advice or secret sauce for other future lady bosses considering making their side hustle dream or passion projects their full-time reality and career?
I would recommend staying consistent and to keep working at it. I find that there’s generally a tipping point when you feel like it’s not working and consider quitting, that’s usually just about the time when things really take off. Throughout my career, I have stayed professional, consistent and honest. Those three pillars have helped my business grow immensely. It was slow at first, but it really does start building on top of itself slowly but surely.
How do you stay inspired and motivated in your career?
I like to attend classes because I know there’s always more to learn and room to grow. I find myself continually reenergized after every learning opportunity because it inspires me and reminds me to focus on my systems to help streamline my productivity.
We absolutely love the way you styled your Body Bark piece. How would you describe your overall look/style?
I have a very classic style that I continually play with. I absolutely adore dresses and skirts and am so thankful the weather is warm and can start dusting off some of my favorite pieces.
We know you’re a (rare) Denver native – what is your favorite thing about Denver? Any hidden spots you love? Tell us what your ideal Denver day would look like…
I’m thankful to live and work in my favorite part of Denver – Cherry Creek. My favorite day would to grab brunch with friends and then head out to one of our reservoirs for a little kayaking wrapped up with dinner at one of the new restaurant around town.
My dream vacation is…
Australia, New Zealand and Fiji. This has been on my bucket list for years!
When I’m not working you’re most likely to find me…
Meeting friends around town checking out new restaurants and coffee shops, traveling whenever I can or walking my 14-year-old dog around the neighborhood.
My all-time favorite lady boss mentor is…
My Mom and my grandmother. My grandmother graduated from the University of Denver and made having an education and career a priority before settling down with my grandfather. My Mom worked as a VP of a bank, went back to get her master’s degree while I was in college and then transitioned into the non-profit sector working in fundraising. She taught me an incredible work ethic, how important relationships are and how to conduct yourself on a day to day basis. These two women paved the way for me to get where I am today.
Outside of my family, the best mentor I could have asked for is Gretchen Rosenberg who is the CEO of Kentwood Real Estate. She brought me into the Lifestyle Denver world four years ago, of which I have since taken over as she has moved out of sales. She exemplifies the epitome of professionalism and has taught me the importance of getting involved in the community. With her help, I have continued to take on new roles and challenges that have helped me grow and learn every step of the way.
Thank you to Libby for chatting with us about her journey and giving all of us future #SheShines women out there an extra push toward our passions. It is important to love what you do and Libby is a perfect example of someone who took control of her career and her life, making the jump into the unknown. She is a big inspiration to future women dreamers, doers and entrepreneurs. Join us next month for another #SheShines feature!