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Spotlight Interview | Louise Rushmer | Cushman & Wakefield

Spotlight Interview | Louise Rushmer | Cushman & Wakefield
18 March 2021
 

In this Spotlight Interview, we speak to Louise Rushmer, who is a Partner at Cushman & Wakefield where she heads up the Property and FM Corporate Portfolio. 

Louise joins us to discuss topics such as her route into FM, her ideal workplace culture and her experience in change management. She will also explain how her extensive experience in hospitality prepared her for a career in FM.

Rushmer, who is the Head of Property and FM Corporate Portfolio – IFM EMEA Global Occupier Solutions at Cushman & Wakefield, began her career woking for the Royal National Theatre, starting in housekeeping and working through all areas ending as Deputy Head of Catering, responsible for managing 150 people. 

Rushmer has worked in property and FM for the last twenty years, beginning her FM career working for RRD International, managing its European offices. Other roles of Rushmer’s include Head of Property and Facilities at Virgin Money, and Strategy and Estate Manager at RSA.

 

“My hospitality background really taught me how to get into the customer’s mindset, and not to get bogged down in process.” 

– Louise Rushmer

Account Director IFM EMEA, Cushman & Wakefield

 

Watch the Spotlight Interview to Learn More...

 


 

 

Hospitality and FM

 

Rushmer spoke about her early experiences in FM, and the transferable skills that she gained: “Hotel management has so many similarities to FM, particularly when it comes to dealing with customers and the public. 

“My hospitality background really taught me how to get into the customer’s mindset, and not to get bogged down in process.”

“I also learnt a lot about back-of-house/front-of-house operations, and how when you are front-of-house you’re on stage, and it’s like you are performing. I see similarities with FM here. It also taught me many commercial skills through on the job problem-solving”

 

Workplace Culture

 

Rushmer is extremely interested in the topic of workplace culture and has experienced many different ones throughout her varied career. She told us: ”I’ve been in a very sales-based environment, where it’s all about the deals, and the culture is driven by saving money. 

“From an ideal workplace perspective, my current role at Cushman & Wakefield is as near as ideal as I’ve ever been in. Particularly relating to our team, we have a clear vision,  with an inspirational and intuitive leader who makes us feel valued. It's definitely a people-led culture.“

It’s also very clear that diversity and inclusion is at the forefront of our culture, but also I am treated as a valued employee, and I feel trusted to do the best I can every day.”

 

Women in FM

 

On the subject of diversity in FM, Rushmer spoke passionately about her experience in female-centric teams:

“I’ve worked alongside some great women and been fortunate enough to win one of the Women in the City Awards several years ago. The team I’m in now is female-centric, my boss is a woman, and many of the leadership team are women. 

Speaking about gender discrimination, Rushmer recalled an exampleearly in her career:

“There was one occasion, around ten years ago, when I’d been promoted to run the UK operations for a company. I went to the M&E provider to ask for a quarterly business review, and they asked me if I was going to put out lunch, not knowing that my role had changed. I couldn’t believe it, and I called it out at that moment.” 

However, Rushmer was keen to emphasise that she has had in general a very positive experience as a woman working in FM:

“I think the women in our industry are fantastic, and the emotional intelligence focus that they bring is a real positive.”

 

Careers and Opportunities

 

Rushmer is a strong believer that being a success in your career isn’t all about qualifications or experience necessarily –and that attitude and passion are key. She feels that if you have the opportunity to give someone a chance, you should absolutely do it, speaking about her personal insights on this matter:

“My daughter has a rare chromosomal abnormality, and if she were to go to a ‘standard interview’, she would struggle. She was given a chance to do an apprenticeship at a security company, and the chair of the organisation loved her passion and took her on as an employee.

“I am keen to give these opportunities where I can in my work. I would urge everyone to do the same. You may already donate to charity, but to give a young person an opportunity to work in your organisation can change someone’s life.”

 

Picture: a photograph of Louise Rushmer

Article written by Ella Tansley | Published 18 March 2021

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