• Americas

Asian/Pacific Heritage Month: An Interview with Sabrina Lieu

Sabrina Lieu is a Senior Marketing Coordinator located in New York, NY.

Q: What is a way you enjoy celebrating your culture at any time of the year?
A: I mostly celebrate my Chinese culture with my sisters and now with my in-laws. We visit the Buddhist temple a few times a year to receive blessings as well as bestow blessings and prayers to our family and friends. A very important time for me in my culture is Chinese New Year. We have our New Year’s Eve dinner, “Shou Sui.” My family cooks a grand feast and everyone comes over. It’s like a reunion with lots of food and red envelopes with money or as we say, “Lai See.” Up until this year, I was always receiving because the tradition is to give Lai See to young children/adults until they are married. I got married last September, so it was a new tradition and a very heartwarming experience for me to be the one gifting the red envelopes.

Q: Who is a notable Asian/Pacific American figure who has inspired you, and why?
A: I was a very active kid and took up soccer and karate at a young age. My source of inspiration was Bruce Lee. I loved watching his movies and imitating his masterful martial arts movements. He had this charisma and stealthy nature that was a force to be reckoned with, even though I was only seeing this person through a TV and in books that I borrowed from the library (which were always overdue!).

As I got older, I became more aware of his philosophical character. Bruce Lee was also a poet. My father has quoted Bruce Lee to me since I was a little girl. The one quote that always stuck with me was, “Adapt what is useful, reject what is useless, and add what is specifically your own.”

Q: How have you seen diversity as a valuable asset in our business?
A: When I attend networking events at Cushman & Wakefield, I see lots of people gathered of many different ethnicities, talking about work to kids to shared interests. These bonds and interactions make the work connections stronger.

Q: What are ways that all employees can be champions for diversity in the workplace?
A: It is extremely important for us to be educated about others’ cultures and customs to develop a respectful environment. It’s human nature to want to feel accepted, first as kids in school, then high school, then college, now as working professional adults in the “real world.”

Working with someone else on your team on a new project, attending different workshops or seminars that our company offers, and having an open mind and heart for yourself and for others is crucial to promoting diversity in the workplace.

Most people do not think I have a Chinese background—90% of the time I hear incorrect guesses if the topic comes up. I do like how astounded people are when I tell them that I am part Chinese and part Guyanese—I think it gives people this sense that assumptions are not always true. Not everyone will “look” like their ethnicity/background, which means people need to engage in deeper discussions with one another.

  • Regions

© 2019 Cushman & Wakefield, Inc.