Bryan Froud joined JLL late 2018 as a Senior Occupancy Planner in Melbourne, Australia.
Tell us about your upbringing, how has this changed your perspective?
I grew up in regional Victoria about 3 hours outside Melbourne, Australia. I had 5 acres of native forest as a backyard where I built forts and crawling down wombat holes, but once dial up internet was available I spent most of the next couple of decades glued to the screen. This feels like a unique experience and one I frequently reflect on.
Because I’ve experienced a time without internet but also grew up with it – I find it helps me explain emerging and complex technologies to others in a simple and relatable way so they can understand it’s potential.
I still feel like I ‘fell’ in to a career in commercial property, but after 12 years in the industry across a range of disciplines (Facilities, Asset management, Occupancy Planning and Portfolio Strategy), along with a mix of government and corporate experience, it’s broadened my perspective when considering out client’s problems and requirements.
How has ‘Future of Work’ shaped your time at JLL?
The Future of Work and Human Experience research pieces were large parts of why I wanted to work for a company like JLL, I wanted to be part of a community that encouraged me to contribute my own thoughts on the workplace of the future. In fact before I even joined JLL and was a government employee, directors from the US JLL Workplace Strategy and Technology Solutions team took the time to take me on tours of innovative and progressive workplaces in San Francisco.
I think the human experience is an important facet of any job, workplace or organisation. Being able to reflect and empathise with our employees, clients or communities helps us develop greater insights into what the actual problems are and not what we believe the problems are base off bias or assumptions. I’m currently undertaking an Executive Masters of Business Administration at RMIT, and their program requires all graduates to complete a design thinking course so they understand the principles of empathy, ideation and prototyping.
Personally, the biggest takeaway from this course has been how to ask better questions. Too often when we ask a questions, the answers given usually relate to the ‘what’….but if we don’t probe deeper - to understand the ‘why’ or the ‘how’ – the solutions we develop will usually only solve half the problem.
Lastly, what are your ambitions?
One of my biggest frustrations in previous organisations was not being able to attend industry events or voice my opinion, but this is something JLL encourages. Since joining JLL I’ve recorded podcasts on workplace strategy, conducted a Blockchain presentation in front of 320 conference attendees and recently was appointed to lead the Young Leader committee for CoreNet Global’s Australia Chapter.
In previous roles, these opportunities would have been discouraged, it was only with JLL’s support and mentoring – along with my own ambitions – that these opportunities have become possible.