Bill Shopoff, President and CEO of Shopoff Realty Investments, had never envisioned a lifelong career in real estate, yet he enjoyed the commercial real estate business and started a business for nearly four decades.
He studied biology while studying at the University of Texas. Realizing that biology wasn't for him, he decided to work on his MBA and explore other careers. In the end, he secured his real estate license for income and focused on selling and leasing residential properties.
“When I got my MBA, the job market was weak and the offers I received paid less than what I had already made as a part-time agent. That's why I've decided to focus my career on real estate, ”he told GlobeSt .com.
After several years as a real estate agent, he added land development and a brief foray into house construction to his resume, then decided his investment brokerage skills were well suited and started selling income property, mostly small residential properties.
It was from there that various events occurred that led to the establishment of a securities firm more than 28 years ago. Originally based in Austin, TX, he moved the company to Southern California nearly 20 years ago after seeing more opportunities in the market.
"As you can see, none of my career paths were included in my original plan. Moving from biology to business to real estate – being open to new ideas and avenues was paramount to my success."
From first-hand experience, Shopoff says that every cycle, every market downturn, and every major economic event at that time appears as an insurmountable challenge with new unknowns and unusual problems. "The crystal ball of the future always seems to be cloudy in these times."
When asked if he could impart some wisdom to an aspiring professional or entrepreneur navigating these uncharted waters, he says to "keep calm" and states that "this disruption will pass". He also suggests "keeping your eyes and ears open and being brave and intrepid as you look for channels to learn, grow, and build your future."
Look out for the upcoming October issue of GlobeSt. Real Estate Forum where Shopoff talks more about how young professionals should look for opportunities that may not fit their preconceived notions of what their careers might look like in our Best Practices Careers feature. Also, if you're a young professional, have you joined our ALM Young Professionals Network group on LinkedIn? We hold intense interviews to address the challenges we all face early in our careers. Please participate here.