Our destiny is increasingly in the hands of others – civic leaders, regulators and, ultimately, public opinion. We, like others, have consistently failed to to articulate how we contribute to society… If we want communities to understand us, let alone trust us, and to attract the best talent, this must change
Role models have played a huge part in my career. At every turn I had someone to look to and learn from. Many other groups in the workplace have not been as fortunate.
With a few notable exceptions, until very recently there were few women, let alone working mothers, or even grandmothers, in leadership or visible positions in our industry.
Our industry faces many challenges and several of these can be put down to a failure of leadership and also inertia wrought by a too-limited world view.
If we do not act to better reflect the communities we are active in, how can we be successful in supporting them or making good on our promise of delivering social value?
Also, as EG editor Samantha McClary so eloquently put it when we met recently; why is our industry so rubbish at telling its stories and explaining itself?
Our destiny is increasingly in the hands of others – civic leaders, regulators and, ultimately, public opinion. We, like others, have consistently failed to to articulate, in plain English, how we contribute to society and how our work is valuable in anything more than financial terms. If we want communities to understand us, let alone trust us, and to attract the best talent, this must change.
At Grosvenor we are challenging ourselves to meet these issues.
Today I’m proud that 50% of our executive committee is female and we have industry-leading family friendly policies, including fully paid and equal shared parental leave.
Newer initiatives have seen us evolve our approach to talent management and succession, as well as analysing how and when accidental bias might occur in order to eradicate it.
Our sustainability goals say a lot about the purpose, values and culture of our business.
The work that our Future Female Leader, Emily Hamilton, is helping to steer – and the cultural shift this is creating – will shape our business and the outlook for our colleagues and communities for generations to come.
This shift will only be fully effective if we clearly explain and celebrate successes and bring others with us – together we can achieve more, faster.
Supporting Hamilton and other women in growing and refining the skills that are critical, not only for leadership roles, but for the reputation of our industry is for me a really significant opportunity that I am intent on seizing.
Craig McWilliam is chief executive, Grosvenor Britain and Ireland
The property industry is vibrant, exciting and dynamic but it has suffered from a reputation for being male-dominated, which is perhaps a little unfair. However, we are committed to changing this opinion and ensuring women see the sector as one that offers them great opportunities and ensures that we are able to effectively compete with other industries to attract the best talent
Promoting diversity and talent in a business should be seen as a priority and part of its culture and growth strategy.
We have run a highly successful graduate recruitment programme at Cluttons for a number of years and this investment and long-term commitment to creating a pool of “home-grown” talent has made an important contribution to the success of our business – indeed, many of our senior experts started their careers this way.
The Future Female Leaders programme complements this scheme very well and our candidate, Victoria Ireland, started her property consultancy career as part of our graduate intake nine years ago.
Since then, she has benefited from exposure to all aspects of our business and now has extensive experience across the main residential surveying disciplines in central and Greater London.
Her skills include Red Book portfolio valuations, valuations under the Leasehold Reform Act, advising clients in connection with rent reviews, properties held under the Rent Act 1977 and the Housing Act 1988, as well as ground rent and asset management.
She has also acted as an expert witness giving evidence at the First-tier Tribunal and Upper Tribunal.
Ireland has advised London estates, charities, local authorities and private clients and she is a member of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors and an RICS-registered valuer.
Her commitment to the business, desire to learn and team spirit makes her the ideal candidate for the Future Female Leaders programme.
The property industry is vibrant, exciting and dynamic but it has suffered from a reputation for being male-dominated, which is perhaps a little unfair. In our own business, half of our employees are women.
However, we are committed to changing this opinion and ensuring women see the sector as one that offers them great opportunities and ensures that we are able to effectively compete with other industries and attract the best talent.
The skills that Ireland will learn as part of the Future Female Leaders programme, such as public speaking and thought leadership, will help her as she progresses through her career.
They are vital for building confidence and also encouraging the type of thinking we need in the industry as we evolve and adapt to the challenges that we face thanks to the influence of disruptive technologies and the changing expectations of clients – all of which are welcome, in my opinion.
I look forward to following Ireland’s journey and encourage her to share her experience with colleagues and clients so that we can all benefit.
James Gray is managing partner at Cluttons
We are focused on ensuring our business is fit for the future, equipped with the right tools to meet the needs of our people and our clients. EG’s Future Female Leaders programme directly aligns with our core KF X values
Investing in talent and the future of the real estate industry remains top of the agenda at Knight Frank.
We are committed to leading from the front and ensuring that we help shape our industry to be the best, most balanced and innovative that it can possibly be.
We recently launched KF X, a unique and innovative programme to drive ambitious diversity across the firm and fast-track the fantastic talent that is coming through.
We are focused on ensuring our business is fit for the future and equipped with the right tools to meet the needs of our people and our clients.
EG’s Future Female Leaders programme directly aligns with our core KF X values, providing a platform to engage the next generation of women in the industry, addressing the key issues and taking steps to make those significant changes.
We are delighted that Kathryn Cripps will represent us as our chosen Future Female Leader.
As a member of the KF X People board and the Knight Frank Gender Focus Group, Cripps strives to positively champion gender diversity and improve the working environment for working parents within the firm.
She has regular one-to-one sessions with young women in the business, acting as an informal mentor.
Outside of her working life, Cripps is a mentor for the OBREMS network and a member of Real Estate Balance, an association focused on addressing the industry’s gender imbalance.
In 2018, she ranked 34th in the Top 50 Female Future Leaders in the Financial Times Champions of Women in Business.
Cripps is a huge asset to our firm and ideally suited as a Future Female Leader.
There is no doubt that our involvement in EG’s programme will be enormously effective.
Throughout Knight Frank we are committed to enhancing our unique international partnership culture by creating the optimum, supportive and inclusive workplace and believe the Future Female Leaders programme serves to strengthen this aim.
Stephen Clifton is head of commercial at Knight Frank
See also: The five Fs of future female leaders
Investing in our talent is fundamental to what we do. Having a focus on gender balance is a critical element in creating diverse and inclusive teams
DLA Piper is delighted to partner with EG on its REWIRE programme to promote the future female leaders of the real estate industry.
We share the view that women have been under-represented at senior levels across the real estate industry. But we are also encouraged as we see that companies across the sector, including ourselves, are recognising the issue and taking steps to address it.
Initiatives such as REWIRE will help to shape the next generation of industry leaders.
Alanna Hasek is a senior associate in our London real estate group. She focuses on complex acquisitions, disposals and portfolio management. Hasek qualified as a solicitor in 2010 after being recognised by the City of London Solicitors’ Company as the trainee solicitor showing the most promise.
She has continued to excel since joining DLA Piper in 2017 and acts for many of our high-profile real estate clients.
We have been working hard to improve the gender balance of the real estate team at DLA Piper and are now starting to see the benefits, with an increase in female partner promotions, lateral partner hires, and in those taking leadership positions.
We are proud members of Real Estate Balance, and have signed-up to its chief executive commitments. We have also been collaborating with others in the industry to host mentoring lunches in order to share ideas and promote positive role models.
Hasek is one of our rising stars, and we are delighted that she has the opportunity to participate in the Future Female Leaders programme.
Investing in our talent is fundamental to what we do. Having a focus on gender balance is a critical to creating diverse and inclusive teams. We are excited to support Hasek through this programme.
William Naunton is UK head of real estate at DLA Piper