Business Q & A

August 13, 2014

5 questions with Stephanie Wiens

Stephanie Wiens has changed companies and careers.

Stephanie Wiens has changed companies and careers.

Wiens signed on to IMA about three months ago, where she is responsible for finding new clients for the company’s insurance, risk management and employee benefits businesses.

She previously was director of marketing and a leasing agent at commercial real estate and development firm Occidental Management, where she worked for three years.

Wiens also is a founder of Women in Commercial Real Estate, an industry group launched last year by her and April Reed of Slawson Cos., Melissa Giordano of Kansas Secured Title and Kristin Stang of J.P. Weigand & Sons.

While Wiens, 39, has moved to a different industry, she said she isn’t straying far from her real estate background.

Companies involved in the commercial real estate industry, such as property management firms and commercial real estate owners and developers, are among the clients she is calling on as a producer for IMA, she said. Her other areas of focus are manufacturing and hospitality.

She likes to explain what she does by using a football analogy.

“IMA is the football team and I am the quarterback, so I am responsible for setting up the team to score a touchdown,” she said. “It’s kind of how we explain things here. Each position is critical to the success of the team.”

Wiens started her career with women’s clothing retailer Maurices, where she was a regional visual training manager working with the company’s stores on product placement and other corporate strategies.

After eight years, she moved over to Cessna Aircraft, where she was manager of business promotions for more than two years until she was caught in one of the company’s major layoffs in 2010.

Q. 1 How would you describe what it is that a producer does?

A. My primary focus at IMA is new business development, finding qualified business prospects.

Q. 2 Why did you make the switch from commercial real estate agent to producer?

A. For me, IMA offered long-term potential and the position matched up well with my talent and experience. Additionally, it provides me with a better work/life balance.

Q. 3 How did you come to choose IMA?

A. Actually, IMA reached out to me. After many conversations I was impressed by the fact that they were a privately held company with an entrepreneurial spirit, and that we shared similar core values.

Q. 4 Are there any experiences you can draw from your work as a commercial real estate agent that translate to your work as a producer?

A. Because there are more losses than wins in sales, I had to develop a drive of persistence though self-discipline. My experiences taught me not to focus on the losses, which allowed me to appreciate the small victories.

Q. 5 Will you remain involved in Women in Commercial Real Estate?

A. Absolutely. Women in Commercial Real Estate is a group for any woman in the commercial real estate arena: women in insurance, architects, bankers, advertisers, saleswomen.

Reach Jerry Siebenmark at 316-268-6576 or Follow him on Twitter: @jsiebenmark.

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