Spreadsheets, calculations and a five-year plan are important. But the first step is committing to your goal. : Actively in real estate since 1996, Ms Dean is a member of CCIM, REIS, CIP. Main focus is investment real estate in Lee County Florida. As a successful real estate investor, and a woman, I am often asked how I got started in this field. I have pondered this question for over 20 years, and the best answer I've come up with is that I just did it. I believed I could do this, and then did.