In honor of Black History Month, Cushman & Wakefield interviewed members of Blacks United in Leadership and Development (BUILD), a new employee resource group established for colleagues at Cushman & Wakefield who identify as African, African-American, Afro-Latin, Black, Caribbean, and West Indian; with origins from Africa, North America, the Caribbean, Central America, the Pacific Islands and South America. The group supports career and leadership development, networking opportunities, employee recognition and community service, with the goal of attracting and retaining diverse talent throughout Cushman & Wakefield.
This week, we interviewed Carol Henderson, Director, Business Incentives Practice – Global Business Consulting. She has more than 15 years of experience in assisting domestic and international clients in site location decisions resulting from relocation, expansion or consolidation. Additionally, she has secured business incentives for a variety of real estate transactions including manufacturing, corporate headquarters, research and development, specialty healthcare facilities, call centers and data centers.
Cushman & Wakefield: How did your upbringing help shape who you are today?
Carol Henderson: As a military child, I was fortunate to see the world at an early age. Being a military child exposed me to different cultures and places throughout the world that most people never get to see and experience. My experiences helped me to have an open mind and great appreciation for diversity. In order to adapt to new places and people, I also learned the importance of being flexible and willing to accept change. These qualities are attributes that have helped me achieve my professional goals. I believe my background has been very important in helping to achieve my personal and professional goals.
How can CRE companies attract more diversity?
Companies should consider looking from the inside out. Examine overall recruitment tactics and talent management and see if there are barriers or obstacles that are hindering people from coming to the industry because they don’t think it’s inclusive. Ask current employees why they have stayed and use them as testimonials. Figure out what the obstacles are in their eyes. Ask for referrals and recommendations of groups to reach out to and engage with. Consider employing a retention strategy for all races, religions and genders. These are all ways companies can use their current employees to figure out the best tactics for future attraction and retention strategies.
What does diversity in this industry mean to you?
Diversity is important because our country and workplace consist of many cultural, racial, and ethnic groups. When we embrace diversity, we have a better understanding that working together and allowing for our differences can lead to positive outcomes.