Q+A: Jaimee Yoshizawa:

Real estate boss: You can’t finish the race if you don’t get out of the starting box


Jaimee Yoshizawa

Jaimee Yoshizawa, president and sole stockholder of The Red Ltd., established her multipurpose firm in 2013. With new expansions happening throughout Nevada, she plans developments for the locals who need them, she says.

What is the best business advice you’ve received, and from whom did it come?

Shortly after the 2008 global economic downturn, I asked a real estate partner for his insight on economic cycles. He said the next economic downturn could happen when current or future generations forget the mistakes the generation prior had made. Taking that advice to heart, I strive to reflect, learn and grow from the challenges faced in managing my business and projects. In the current dynamic market, I need to remember not to let a healthy economic environment overshadow lessons learned from my experiences.

What’s the biggest issue facing Southern Nevada?

One of the more prominent issues in a dynamic market is effectively managing growth for our communities. With upward movement, there are systemic issues that inevitably come with a growing population. With growth, we need to maintain quality education in our school system, parks, emergency response services and public infrastructure. A concerted effort from the public and private sectors is necessary to provide a course of action to maintain the health and welfare of our residents.

What has been your most exciting professional project?

I am passionate about working on my 424-plus-acre project in the Sierra Nevada region. The Ridges at Dayton has a residential component of 1,000-plus homes on an 18-hole championship golf course with a variety of commercial uses. This is exciting because it is an embodiment of my business model of utilizing a multidisciplinary approach to executing complex real estate projects. It is rewarding to implement a plan that maintains adequate schools, parks and other community services. I enjoy identifying commercial uses that complement the area.

Meanwhile, my management efforts with a dynamic group, Oasis Global Partners, are exciting. We are in the early planning phases of a multibillion-dollar mixed-use resort near the Strip. It is fulfilling to have the opportunity to execute a project of such magnitude that will have such a positive impact on the job market and the economy.

What are you reading right now?

I have put off my “required” reading for far too long. I need to complete licensing requirements for my real estate brokerage, engineering and property management over the next month. So, I’m reading project management risk assessments from my coursework. For leisure, I prefer a good sci-fi.

What do you do after work?

I don’t have a typical 8-5 workday. I spend evenings catching up with my work associates in Hawaii and parts of the world in different time zones. I enjoy working outside a busy office environment in the evenings and, during the weekends, I spend my available time at Red Rock Canyon. I don’t go a day without a morning run, my laptop and coffee. The mornings are my “after work,” when I game plan for the day. I do try and spend the occasional happy hour a few times a month with co-workers and associates.

Describe your management style. How did you refine your management approach?

I don’t have a hard hand. I focus on strengths, not weaknesses. I try to provide a supportive work environment. First and foremost, I lead by example. In that regard, I’ve learned to recognize those who will pick up on how they are treated and reciprocate to others. I strive to manage with respect and appreciation for effort. Lastly, I encourage a well-balanced work, family and personal life. I can’t lead by example in that regard, but that is even more the reason I support the work-life balance.

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?

I see my company growing, but not in size. I want to improve the quality of my company’s work environment, maintain the wonderful relationships I have with partners in my real estate projects, and the continued personal and professional growth of my staff. My company needs to be dynamic. My work is market-driven. Where will the market be in 10 years? I don’t have the answer. Therefore, I need to be cognizant of market trends and flexible to effectively manage risk and capitalize on opportunities.

If you could live anywhere else in the world, where would it be?

I would live in Hawaii where I grew up so I could be with my family. I wish I could spend more time with them, especially my father and nephews, Ty and Cade.

Whom do you admire?

I have been so fortunate to be surrounded by amazing individuals. June Nakamura is an outstanding woman in the civil engineering industry. After graduating from college, I was June’s first employee when she started her own company. I watched her build and establish a successful engineering firm in Hawaii, in a male-dominated industry. My other mentor when first starting in commercial real estate was Lucinda Stanley. I admire how she always strives to pass on her knowledge and success. In construction and development, I admire Gary Oda and Ryan Tanaka, my development partners. I would be proud to have even a small portion of the accomplishments they have in their respective industries and community.

What is your biggest pet peeve?

I believe everyone is capable achieving goals with effort and perseverance. I find it disheartening to hear how life goals are perceived as overwhelming without taking a step in that direction. We all, myself included, at times exhaust energy merely thinking how difficult a goal is to achieve without doing anything about it. When worrying about health, choose to eat right and exercise. If more time is needed for yourself, get up an hour earlier. The race can’t be finished if you don’t ever get out of the starting box.

Where do you like to go for business lunches?

My office will absolutely vote on a 12-pack of tacos from Taco Bell. When we have a deadline and need to work through lunch, Taco Bell is what we crave.

If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

I need to learn not to rush through life. I’m always in a frenzy to get through my day. I should slow down and enjoy the moment.

What is something that people might not know about you?

Growing up, I was very introverted and still am in many ways. My staff and clients sometimes say I am outgoing and sociable. That’s a skill set I’ve learned over the 20 years of growing my companies that doesn’t come naturally.