The rising stars of Britain’s commercial property industry have been recognised at the recent British Council for Offices’ (BCO) fifth annual NextGen Awards ceremony.
The Awards are part of the BCO’s NextGen programme, which sets out to mentor and encourage the next generation of property professionals to become future leaders in the industry, whilst providing a platform for new talent to share ideas.
The country’s top designers, developers, architects and occupiers under the age of 35 were invited to join the BCO for the awards ceremony, which took place virtually on 12 November. It celebrated the achievements and successes of young professionals in the commercial property sector across the UK, and the individuals who mentored them.
It was clear to the BCO judges that Yohance has made a huge contribution to the property industry, both through his current role at Quadrant Estates since joining the firm in March and previously, at CBRE. In addition to delivering significant office developments in cities across the UK, Yohance has dedicated himself to supporting students and younger colleagues to increase diversity and social mobility in the industry. During his time with CBRE, he founded a careers outreach programme which hosted over 200 students across careers workshops and work experience opportunities and has continued his efforts to support students at Quadrant.
Yohance is also Chairman of RICS London Matrics, where he focuses on raising awareness of the industry to students through talks, career events, workshops and workplace tours.
David is the youngest individual to hold the position of Associate Director in Cooper Cromar’s history, recently taking on one of the practice’s biggest and most complex projects, a new European Headquarters in Glasgow for a major financial institution. In addition to his client service, the judges were impressed by David’s dedication to supporting peers and junior colleagues through their own qualifications.
The last few years have seen Shauna’s career grow from strength to strength, quickly advancing to Director at Glenn Howells Architects. Since joining GHA in 2010, Shauna has played a significant role on multiple large-scale projects in the region, and is also now a leading member of GHA’s ‘People Plan’, an initiative which aims to promote mentorship, while raising awareness of mental health and wellness in the workplace so that colleagues at all levels feel supported.
Chris has been recognised for his outstanding work as a Project Manager at T&T, where he has overseen the incredible transformation of HMRC’s sites in Bristol and now Cardiff. Chris has shown real dedication to clients, going above and beyond to effortlessly accommodate multiple senior stakeholders and adapt to new challenges that have emerged throughout the project period.
Since joining Hoare Lea, Michelle has become an integral part of the sustainability team. It was clear to the judges Michelle is well respected by her colleagues, displaying a maturity beyond her years and taking a creative approach to keeping clients engaged at every step of the strategy development. Outside of her role with Hoare Lea, Michelle is also the youngest member of industry think-tank, The Edge and was recently invited to join a round table with Lord Debden, Chair of the Climate Change Committee.
This year’s Inspirational Leader Award was given to Gary Elliott, Founder and CEO of structural and civil engineering firm, Elliott Wood. Gary has used his award-winning expertise to explore new ways of thinking about the impact his business has on society, leading his team to open The Building Society – now a leading co-working space, facilitating creative and technical knowledge sharing for the next generation of engineers. The judges were also impressed by his natural leadership that puts people first, always challenging and inspiring others to deliver innovative results.
Employer of the Year is voted for by BCO’s NextGen members, commending organisations that offer a stimulating and supportive environment – a place where employees know their leaders care about the problems they face. This year’s winner is AECOM, celebrated for living up to its promise to allow colleagues the ‘Freedom to Grow’ and deliver equal opportunities for all.
The PropTech Company of The Year award recognises the ever-growing presence of PropTech in the commercial real estate market and celebrates technology innovation in the industry over the past year. This year, NextGen members awarded this to Mobius, praising the state-of-the-art virtual reality technology that the company revolutionised the market with.
A new category for 2020, Entrepreneur of the Year recognises a Founder or Co-Founder that has produced a product or service that is transforming the commercial real estate sector. The judges were delighted to award this inaugural award to Stuart Maggs at Scaled Robotics, for his tireless dedication to change construction with the use of Robotics and Machine learning.