Corporate Vision January 2017

20 CORPORATE VISION / January 2017 , As a leading real estate provider, Savills has over 700 officesandassociates throughout the Americas, Europe, Asia Pacific, Africa and the Middle East, employing over 30,000 people. Edina Wong gave us more insight into how the firm operates. “Savills mission is to be the real estate adviser of choice in the markets we serve. We do not wish to be the biggest, just the best (as determined by our clients). Our values capture our commitment not only to ethical, professional and responsible conduct but to the essence of real estate success, with an entrepreneurial value-embracing approach. How we do that? “We take pride in everything we do. We deliver the highest quality of services and always go the extra mile to meet our clients’ needs. Most importantly, we seek to employ and retain only the best people. We pride ourselves on our integrity, unblemished The Real Estate Advisor of Choice Savills is a leading global real estate service provider listed on the London Stock Exchange. The company, established in 1855, has a rich heritage with unrivalled growth. We heard from ‘BusinessWoman of the Year - Hong Kong’ EdinaWong, who told us all about her career and how she has helped Savills tomaintain their success. track record and excellence in customer service. As forward thinkers, we work as strategic partners for our clients offering them creative solutions to the ever-changing market.” In 1990, Edina started with First Pacific Davies (later acquired by Savills) as an agent in the Prestige Homes department. In 1994, she was promoted to Associate Director and went on to sell top- end luxury properties in Hong Kong. Edina re-joined Savills in 2000 as their Senior Director of the Residential Services, responsible for managing two sectors within this department – tenant and landlord representation. She tells us how her previous experience has helped her excel in her current role. “I started my career in real estate as an agent. At the time I assisted my prime client, Jardine Fleming, with all of their expatriate housing solutions ranging from trainees, fund managers to managing directors. There was a need for me to help with their personal relocating requirements, it was not just finding the suitable property but also assisting with every aspect of their move. I worked very closely with the company on their annual budgeting and expatriate policy to help them regulate costs. “In 1990, I was offered an opportunity to market and sell sites and properties at the top end of the market. During this period, I met and worked with all the major developers and investors in the Asia Pacific region. “The experiences I gained as an agent has given me great insight in managing, training and empowering my team. My extensive knowledge of the real estate industry along with my marketing experience have served as a great asset in strategic planning, whether it be with corporate clients with their budgeting requirements or landlords on pricing and launching ideas.” Edina works in a male dominated sector therefore she explains what techniques Savills employs to attract the best female talent from across the industry, as well as the challenges she has faced as a woman working in a male dominated sector. “My department works with clients on their residential needs and is predominately represented by females. I feel this is mainly due to services we provide. Part of the team specialized in the provision of ‘destination services’. We assist expatriates and their families relocating to Hong Kong with their search for a residence and schooling options for their children. During the entire process we would largely communicate with the wives and children directly. I feel that being the same gender definitely helps and it seems to be easier for clients with a family to relate to a mother. Our aim is to make this often challenging transition as comfortable and as seamless as possible for the entire family. “Walking into a room dominated by male counterparts can be daunting at times. Many females feel that they need to adopt an ‘alpha mentality’ to demonstrate assertiveness amongst their peers. I feel it is more important to be true to one’s self and not to concede to perceived expectation. My personal advice is to be bold, voice your opinion, even if it is very different from the majority. Many times a different idea may evoke a new way to look at the situation, leading to a new strategy or approach.” This leads on to Edina talking about what changes she would like to see that will enable women to succeed in a competitive industry. “The role of women in society has evolved and shifted through the decades. I think it is difficult to try and change the long-accepted mind set. However, the Millennials are more progressive with their views on ‘gender equality’, which has opened the path for more opportunities for women. I do believe in time the barrier between the genders will minimize (and close) and a woman will no longer trail behind men in the ever changing corporate landscape.” 1701CV49 The Gateway Apartment