The True ROI of Building a Culture of Diversity and Inclusion

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JLL’s commitment to diversity, inclusion, and fostering talent from within has been instrumental in the firm’s ability to become one of the top commercial real estate teams in the world.

My personal story is a great example of JLL’s enthusiasm for helping team members achieve their ambitions. I originally started career at Cresa South Florida in 2012 (a tenant advisory firm that was acquired by JLL in 2015) as a brokerage assistant but soon realized that becoming a broker wasn’t the right path for me. Instead, I was attracted to Project Management –– a field I had no experience in, but felt that I had an innate skillset for.

Rather than brushing me aside due to my lack of technical knowledge, my managers encouraged me to put together a presentation outlining my strengths as a potential project manager and readiness to learn and grow within the field. JLL responded by giving me the tools to succeed in my new career path, including a two-year apprenticeship, specialized courses, mentorships with business leaders and sponsorship to participate in the Commonwealth Institute’s Strategies for Success program, which prepares women for leadership roles.

Maureen Mascaro with JLL Managing Directors Barbara Black and Matthew Goodman at a JLL Women’s Business Network Event

















Today, I am a Project Manager in JLL’s Miami office, excelling in a career that I thoroughly enjoy. In the last year I have also taken major steps forward in business development, winning over new clients and consistently generating revenue and showing a significant monetary return for the firm’s investment in me. I’m very grateful to JLL for listening to my ambitions and working with me to help achieve them. Recently, I became the Florida lead of JLL’s Women’s Business Network (WBN), a global initiative dedicated to fostering an environment that attracts, develops and retains the best women in the marketplace.

WBN gives members a chance to network with leaders of JLL and other industry members. For example, JLL recently hosted an event where our members were able to converse over lunch with leading business executives. We provided lists of conversation starters –– from what your management style is to what superpower you’d most like to possess –– to get the ball rolling. Participants were able to build relationships and develop informal mentorships with highly-influential and accomplished individuals.

Through monthly professional development calls, WBN members can also learn about internal career and development opportunities. With more than 20 WBN chapters across the Americas, JLL is helping to close the gender gap by empowering women. It’s part of our broader diversity and inclusion initiative, which sponsors other Employee Resource Groups for African-American, Latino, LGBT and veteran employees, as well as people with disabilities. These voluntary, employee-led groups provide a platform to celebrate diversity, network with peers and make meaningful connections across the organization.

Other companies can follow suite and reap the rewards that come from investing in their team, becoming more inclusive and incubating homegrown talent. Too often company executives tend to interact only with each other instead of mingling with staff and discovering unseen potential.

Studies have shown that promoting workplace diversity is among the most important predictors of a business’ sales revenue, customer numbers and profitability. Also, a well-rounded leadership team provides better strategic guidance for a company’s future direction. A wider range of perceptions, perspectives, experience and input will invariably lead to better decision making across the board.

At JLL, Diversity and Inclusion isn’t about creating advantages for specific groups of people. It’s about removing barriers for everyone. A nurturing culture that embraces all backgrounds and experiences –– that helps all employees achieve their ambitions and supports them throughout that journey –– makes our company stronger both internally and externally

About the Author

Maureen Mascaro, JLL Project Manager

 As a client centric project manager, Maureen focuses primarily on interior office build-outs. Maureen represents her clients in construction and design oversight, financial management and multidisciplinary coordination. Some of her clients include Novartis, SpencerStuart, Russell Reynolds, Onboard Media, Carnival Cruise Lines, ProColombia Exports, TotalBank, Virgin Voyages, DeVry University,  Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines, Telefonica, Clyde & Co and Viacom..