Inclusion is the better business disruptor

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May 10, 2018

By: Candy Ramirez, JLL

A new white paper titled Diversity: The Business Advantage reinforces what recent reports by organizations like the Center for Talent Innovation, accounting firm Grant Thornton and academic journal the Harvard Business Review have also said: diversity and inclusion fuel innovation and help drive growth and success for companies in today’s business environment.

“For the third straight year, the National Association of Female Executives (NAFE) declared JLL the only commercial real estate firm to be a top company for executive women.”

JLL is a big believer that diversity and inclusion matters. Globally, women account for 36 percent of the workforce, 39 percent of our executive leadership and hold four of ten seats on the Board here in the U.S., including the Board Chair. For the third straight year, the National Association of Female Executives (NAFE) declared JLL the only commercial real estate firm to be a top company for executive women.

JLL is also one of ten commercial real estate companies profiled in the white paper, which was produced by CREW Network. The white paper details five common best practices among companies pursuing gender equity and diversity:

  1. Greater gender equity and diversity start at the very top of any organization. Leaders and stakeholders must be invested and involved to be successful.
  2. Diversity efforts should be written and visible to all employees. Include these objectives in your business plan and on every executive and board meeting agenda to keep them top of mind.
  3. Accountability is key. Success must be measured and lack thereof must be addressed.
  4. Be honest about unconscious biases in all facets of your business practices. Once identified, take quick action to overcome them.
  5. Evaluate your recruiting process. Does your company lean towards hiring through networking or formal application processes? Are diverse hiring pools required?


Taking opportunities to learn from other women and organizations is a big step in the right direction. Last month, four JLL Bay Area women including Hilary Barte, Emily Clanahan, Eve Rossmere and I were nominees in the 3rd Annual ELEVATE event which honors diversity and women’s leadership in commercial real estate, and was sponsored by a partnership between The Registry and CREW chapters throughout the Bay Area.

More than 200 women from a broad range of Bay Area companies attended the event to network and exchange ideas on how to promote and deepen diversity and inclusion for the benefit of their companies. Many had started their own mentoring programs and some were leading internal groups – like JLL’s own Northwest Women’s Business Network, which was  a finalist for the Breaking the Ceiling award. Some were also giving back to their local communities by helping school-aged girls in underserved communities with college and career planning which could potentially lead to a career in commercial real estate.

It was an illuminating and inspiring event and we all came away from it with the feeling that not only is JLL “walking the walk” when it comes to inclusion and diversity, but many of our commercial real estate peers in the Bay Area are walking with us.

About me

Candy Ramirez

I help tech companies take their real estate portfolios to new heights. I’m a versatile leader who navigates teams through complex projects under tight deadlines. I’ve honed my skill set in technology, training, event planning, multi-tasking, time management, and effective communication to thrive in a busy environment and deliver exceptional customer experiences.

You can contact me by email directly at



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