In a new era of reduced office utilization, Dhandapani helps occupiers provide engaging and inspiring workplaces while helping them achieve their business goals.
“These are significant, complex challenges, but business is a team sport,” she said. “I am blessed with a great team, and I love problem solving, so I am enjoying what I do.”
In May 2022, Dhandapani, who is also a member of the CBRE executive committee, was promoted to CEO of Global Workplace Solutions. Before the promotion, she had been serving in a dual role as CBRE’s chief transformation officer, with executive oversight for people, marketing, supply chain and corporate real estate and chief operating officer of GWS.
Dhandapani’s career started in financial services helping steer Capital One Financial, where she spent 17 years as a senior technology executive on its digital transformation. Commercial real estate wasn’t on her radar until CBRE selected her as its chief digital & technology officer in 2016.
“I found the CBRE opportunity intriguing when I first heard about it, and once I met with CBRE CEO Bob Sulentic and other executives, there was no turning back,” Dhandapani said.
Surrounding herself with smart, talented people has helped Dhandapani be successful. She also points to the direct managers who have given her chances in different roles. Most importantly, Dhandapani credits her family, particularly her husband, an engineer who left a corporate job and formed his own business to have more flexibility when their son was born.
“While I don’t think any of us would say we are where we want to be from a diversity, equity and inclusion standpoint in our industry, I feel we are making progress,” Dhandapani said.
Regarding DEI, Dhandapani said it’s important to think about how everyday actions impact people and to try to be models of inclusive behavior. Further, some team members have young children who need their parent’s attention at certain times of the day, so she doesn’t schedule meetings or engage with them during those times.
“I have had focused strategic pivots throughout my career, including lateral moves. All my roles have contributed to my overall career growth and enabled me to obtain the role I have today. Seize opportunities to learn and grow and succeed at those, promotions will follow.”
Read the March 2023 issue of CPE.
The post Women in Real Estate: Chandra Dhandapani appeared first on Commercial Property Executive.
Executive Insights, CBRE Group Inc.
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