Stepping off the corporate ladder

Chace Whitson made a career move seven years ago and never looked back

  • Apr. 24, 2020 6:00 a.m.

Chace Whitson had a successful career in construction management, overseeing multi-million-dollar building projects, when an enticing job offer came along that would take him to new heights on the corporate ladder. But he walked away from it all seven years ago so he could become an entrepreneur.

“There’s no ceiling on what you can do when you work for yourself,” says Chace, who heads up the Chace Whitson Real Estate Group at Macdonald Realty. “I saw a lot of growth potential. Being self-employed and having the ability to grow my business as far as I can take it — it’s just such an opportunity to build relationships and make things happen.”

But it wasn’t an easy decision. Chace, who was a general manager at the time, really loved his work and the job offer was for a vice-president position in a larger company on the Lower Mainland.

“It was a big promotion and an amazing opportunity and one of the biggest struggles I’ve had in business was to turn that down,” he says. “Climbing the corporate ladder at a young age and having that success right in front of me and deciding to go out on my own instead was a big risk, but I wanted to pursue my own passion.”

The risk paid off. Chace is now one of the top realtors on the Saanich Peninsula, where he was born and raised. It’s an area he knows well and it’s where he’s now raising his own family.

“Growing up here, I have a really great understanding of the communities, the amenities, the beaches, the parks, the school system and I’ve always loved it,” Chace says. “I’ll never leave! The peninsula has everything.”

His building background, with a solid understanding of residential and commercial construction, has been a big asset for Chace.

“I know what to look for and I can give good advice,” he says. “It gives me a really good foundation to speak to the strengths and weaknesses of the construction.”

But after seven years in the real estate industry, Chace says the most important skill is developing strong relationships, which he values more than anything else.

“Relationships are the foundation of business, and listening to others and really, truly understanding what people want,” he says.

Chace considers his dad, Gregg, one of his mentors.

“My father was also in sales and he taught me to listen to what your clients want and what they value. You’re always so much further ahead by listening. I saw first-hand with my father and the relationships he built in business and how they carried through his entire career and how much trust people put in him.”

Another big lesson Chace learned early on in his career was not to take on too much and overextend himself.

“I think a lot of real estate agents go through this initially as they’re trying to grow their business,” he explains. “I took on business that was in Sooke, Shawnigan Lake and Cowichan — all over the place. The first couple of years I was very busy but I was spread quite thin and it took a toll on me. I did say yes to everything and it wasn’t until I started saying ‘no’ and being wise about it that things shifted.”

Chace decided to focus his business on the Saanich Peninsula and become an area expert. Living in Sidney with his wife, Erin, and three young children, boating is one of their favourite pastimes. The marina is just a five-minute walk from their home and they spend a lot of time on the water.

“I’m really happy with the balance I have,” he says. “I have great support from my team and I really value and respect my time with my family.”

When he’s not working, with his family or enjoying the outdoors, you can find Chace in a dojo. He’s been practising karate since he was seven years old and holds a black belt in Shotokan karate.

“It’s taught me discipline and integrity and I love the art of it,” he says. “It’s great exercise and you can really focus when you’re doing it and it provides that level of clarity.”

As Chace continues to grow his business, he has a lot of clarity on the future.

“I love what I do and wake up every morning excited about what I do and I just really look forward to each day,” he says. “I love my job and I wouldn’t change it for the world.”

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Just Posted

File Photo
Ranger Station welcomes new artists in residence

Aaron Moran and Sylvana dAngelo curating a display until November 1

Fraser Valley Regional District office on Cheam Avenue in Chilliwack reopening with restrictions in place as of Oct. 16, 2020. (Paul Henderson/Chilliwack Progress file)
FVRD to reopen corporate office on a limited basis

Fraser Valley Regional District visitors will be screened and asked to maintain physical distancing

Single use checkout bags are one of the plastic items on the list that will be banned in Canada starting in 2021. (Citizen file)
Editorial: Federal plastic ban a good start — but just a start

Canadians toss out 3 million tonnes of plastic waste every year.

Email news@ahobserver.com
LETTER: Thank you, clean-up crew!

Murray Brown of Agassiz is impressed with recent clean-up efforts

Courtesy/Seabird Island Band
‘We want to hear from you’: Seabird Island leaders seek community plan input

Two different ways to submit ideas, open until the end of November

In this photo provided by Shannon Kiss, smoke from the CalWood Fire billows, Sunday, Oct. 18, 2020, as seen from Gunbarrel, Colo. (Shannon Kiss via AP)
‘First guys out:’ western Canadian air tanker fleet busy despite drop in wildfires

CEO believes wildfires have become more dangerous in recent years as people live closer to where they start

Employee Sophia Lovink shows off a bag of merchandise in Toronto on Thursday, June 11, 2020. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette)
Canada gets C-average grade on 2nd year of cannabis legalization

Cannabis Council of Canada releases report card on federal government and legalization

(Black Press Media files)
B.C. suburbs could see increased demand for rental units as people work from home

Vancouver’s average monthly rent is the highest out of 35 cities across Canada

Fort St. John councillor Trevor Bolin (B.C. Conservative Party)
BC Conservatives leader fights back after BC Liberals leak 2018 workplace harassment case

Sexual harassment case was connected to employee being terminated, WorkSafeBC found

The BC Ferries vessel the Queen of Oak Bay. (News Bulletin file photo)
‘Buy a boat,’ Horgan advises anti-maskers on BC Ferries

NDP leader John Horgan talks COVID-19 misinformation

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Canadian and American flags fly near the Ambassador Bridge at the Canada-USA border crossing in Windsor, Ont. on Saturday, March 21, 2020. Restrictions on non-essential travel between Canada and the United States are being extended until at least Nov. 21. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Rob Gurdebeke
Non-essential travel restrictions at Canada-U.S. border extended to at least Nov. 21

The restrictions do not apply to those providing essential services in either country

Most Read