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Jaime Brown: “Surround yourself with Martys”

One positive that has come from the pandemic is that it has certainly created a heightened sense of appreciation for all of the key relationships in our lives. There is a 100% correlation to female business owner success and the people you surround yourself with. I am extremely grateful for my ‘Mom Tribe’. Without judgment, […]

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One positive that has come from the pandemic is that it has certainly created a heightened sense of appreciation for all of the key relationships in our lives. There is a 100% correlation to female business owner success and the people you surround yourself with. I am extremely grateful for my ‘Mom Tribe’. Without judgment, they have provided a pillar of support, knowledge, and insight that has been crucial to my perseverance. I would say that just by being available to listen to frustrations and remind someone why they began their career in the first place, you can empower them to push through the fears that may be weighing on them — and they have absolutely done the same for me. In the midst of a pandemic, those supporting structures are exponentially more critical. The challenges we face ultimately strengthen the foundation of our relationships.


The Covid-19 pandemic has affected nearly every aspect of our lives today. Many of us now have new challenges that come with working from home, homeschooling, and sheltering in place.

As a part of our series about how busy women leaders are addressing these new needs, I had the pleasure of interviewing Jaime Brown.

Jaime Brown is an entrepreneurial real estate broker, wife, and mother of two living in sunny Tampa, Florida. After holding high-level executive positions in Internal Audit and Business Performance & Process Efficiency, Jaime left the corporate world in 2017 to develop the real estate brokerage firm, Tampa Homestyles. Through the success of her virtual business model, she has facilitated record-breaking sales, all while raising her family amidst an uncertain pandemic environment.


Thank you so much for doing this with us! Before we dig in, our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you share with us the backstory about what brought you to your specific career path?

Sure! After receiving my B.S.B.A in Decision Management and Information Service from the University of Florida I initially worked in the corporate sector, in positions related to audit, risk management, and process efficiency. While I enjoyed my work for many years, I had a sense that I was approaching a glass-ceiling and felt as though I had more to offer. In 2008 my husband and I started looking for a new home, and we immediately recognized areas in which the home buying process and experience could be improved. There were many “status-quo” aspects that added steps but not value to the process. When you have a background in process efficiency it’s hard for that not to spill over into other areas, so I guess that created the desire to create a higher quality experience for both sellers and buyers. I obtained my real estate license in 2008 and worked on both careers simultaneously. In 2017, with two very young children in tow, I came to the conclusion that a change was needed. I had been telling businesses how to improve their processes for years, so it was time to do it for myself and with the full backing of my very supportive husband, we did just that.

Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you started at your company?

In April of this year, I was honored to serve as the buyer’s agent in an unprecedented 6.4 million dollars residential sale. In a seller’s market with very little supply and a huge demand, we were able to secure the home for a substantially discounted rate relative to the asking price. It was a huge moment for me because it reassured me that my vision for my company is working. When the pandemic hit, buyers and sellers needed a way to continue their processes without risking exposure to COVID. My business model was already rooted in a virtual format, and its adaptability in the new environment quickly brought on new opportunities for us. I’m proud to have been a part of this record-breaking sale and hope it can inspire other moms and business owners to persevere through this challenging time.

None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?

My husband has been my number one supporter since the beginning. His encouragement empowered me to persevere through the rough times in the early stages of building the company. It led to an unanticipated change of ‘roles’ in our household, and not only did he embrace that change, frankly he nailed it. On top of being the amazing father that he is, I counted on him as my finance guy, IT tech, business coach, and my rock. He is my very own Martin D. Ginsburg and boy do I recognize and fully appreciate that.

The Covid-19 pandemic has affected nearly every aspect of our lives today. Can you articulate to our readers what are the biggest family related challenges you are facing as a woman business leader during this pandemic?

A huge part of the struggle of being a mother and an entrepreneur is balancing work with home life, and nothing is more important than my family. I was uncertain about how the pandemic would impact that balance, and with a surge in home sales, value, and overall demand, we have been incredibly fortunate and busy. It has been a major blessing but has also demanded a lot more time. Thankfully my kids are (mostly) patient and have also helped out and been understanding when needed. I will say though, E-Learning and Homeschooling 4 and 7-year-old boys at the same time is not for the faint of heart.

Can you share what you’ve done to address those challenges?

This pandemic has caused us to restructure our work schedules and household responsibilities. The kids have been little champions as mentioned above and to their credit, have started asking how they can help around the house, in addition to completing their daily school duties. Small tasks like vacuuming, cleaning the sinks, as well as helping with dinner prep have really given them a sense of responsibility and surprisingly some joy. I am so proud of the way they’ve embraced this change, and it’s amazing to see them grow into such great little people. We always say, “Teamwork makes the dreamwork!”. They’ve taken that to heart, and to some extent, I think they have realized it helps provide for better quality time overall.

Can you share the biggest work related challenges you are facing as a woman in business during this pandemic?

With running a minority, female-owned, business during the onset of COVID-19, it was important for me early on in the quarantine to make a choice to stay present and committed to my professional career, even with both kids home from school full-time. Considering the added stress and uncertainty, it would have been very easy to compromise on either end. With our virtual model, Tampa Homestyles was the perfect solution to the socially-distanced circumstances surrounding the pandemic, allowing me to keep my family safe as well. I did not want to let that opportunity go to waste and because of that, we’ve almost doubled our gross sales volume in the same timeframe as last year

Can you share what you’ve done to address those challenges?

With the pandemic and the growth in opportunities it presented, I needed to further push my management and solution skills to accommodate the new clients without compromising their experience. My husband obtained his real estate license in 2018 with the intent to use it for non-residential transactions and had previously focused on his IT consulting businesses. Given his consulting background, he fully understood the level of service needed and back-end processes and jumped right in without any hesitation. We met at work and both work from home (side by side!), so this was a very easy transition for us. As COVID cases are still soaring, our ‘roles’ have become all the blurrier, but the foundation we’ve built remains intact. Teamwork truly does make the dream work for us.

Can you share your advice about how to best work from home, while balancing the needs of homeschooling or the needs of a family?

To be completely honest, it’s not easy and I believe one size doesn’t fit all here. When my kids had to transition to remote learning, I wasn’t sure how I could manage the growth and still be there to give them the support they needed. With my husband’s guidance, they have really stepped up and taken accountability for their schoolwork and newly acquired household chores. While I am busy while working from home, being close to the kids makes me feel more involved and available during this time. In the end, no one can truly do it all, although we like to portray that we can. That expectation is unrealistic. The reality is that my success certainly wouldn’t be possible without the strong support of my husband, kids, and friends. This notion is especially true now, in an environment where no one has all of the answers.

Can you share your strategies about how to stay sane and serene while sheltering in place, or simply staying inside, for long periods with your family?

There have been a lot of ups and downs. We’ve been lucky enough to live in Tampa where there are an almost unlimited amount of things to do outside. The biggest help has been staying active — both physically and mentally. We play with our kids as much as possible and have tried to focus on fun family experiences whether at home or outside. At the end of the day, they restore my sense of confidence that I am doing the right thing, despite any mom-guilt I may be feeling. I’ve also worked on getting really good at making hand-crafted cocktails (for the adults-only, of course), so that helps.

Many people have become anxious from the dramatic jolts of the news cycle. The fears related to the coronavirus pandemic have understandably heightened a sense of uncertainty, fear, and loneliness. From your perspective can you help our readers to see the “Light at the End of the Tunnel”? Can you share your “5 Reasons To Be Hopeful During this Corona Crisis”? If you can, please share a story or example for each.

One positive that has come from the pandemic is that it has certainly created a heightened sense of appreciation for all of the key relationships in our lives. There is a 100% correlation to female business owner success and the people you surround yourself with. I am extremely grateful for my ‘Mom Tribe’. Without judgment, they have provided a pillar of support, knowledge, and insight that has been crucial to my perseverance. I would say that just by being available to listen to frustrations and remind someone why they began their career in the first place, you can empower them to push through the fears that may be weighing on them — and they have absolutely done the same for me. In the midst of a pandemic, those supporting structures are exponentially more critical. The challenges we face ultimately strengthen the foundation of our relationships.

From your experience, what are a few ideas that one can use to effectively offer support to their family and loved ones who are feeling anxious? Can you explain?

I am extremely grateful to have seen examples of this firsthand, with the support I have received from my husband. The marriage of Ruth Bader Ginsberg and her husband, Marty, has been a huge inspiration for me in this way. Not only did he recognize her potential, but he also enabled her to act on it early on in their marriage, at a time when it was uncommon for women to pursue professional endeavors over home life. To me, they were the epitome of a ‘power couple’.

Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?

In homage to RBG’s late husband, “Surround yourself with Martys”. Be friends with a Marty. If marriage is on the table, marry a Marty. Raise your kids to be Martys, regardless of their gender. The world needs more Martys. Without them, it is impossible for women to relentlessly pursue and execute their ambitions. My best advice to female business owners is to never back down from your vision.

How can our readers follow you online?

They can visit my website at http://tampahomestyles.com. I also share listings on Instagram: @tampa_homestyles and TikTok: @tampahomestyles.

Thank you so much for sharing these important insights. We wish you continued success and good health!

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