Natalia joined CBIZ Gibraltar in 2018 with significant experience in both marketing and client support. She has a vast understanding of the connections between strategy, concept and communication, thereby providing Gibraltar’s clients with the best-in-class services.
As part of our Get to Know Gibraltar series, we sat down with Natalia and asked her these questions:
What part of your working day makes you think “This is why I do this job?”
Working in client services, I get the opportunity to support many different aspects of a project. It is always exciting to be able to partner with a company and assist them in a major business decision – selecting office space.
Office space goes so far beyond the physical space, it is about collaboration, culture, brand awareness, recruitment and retention of talent, and more. All of these attributes play a major role in helping a client identify space that meets their needs, and to be a part of that process is truly rewarding. From promoting Gibraltar services and expertise, to working on presentations, to finding suitable space options for clients, I always feel like I am part of a team that is here to make a difference and enhance our clients’ experience.
In addition to our clients, I am so lucky to work with such wonderful people that I know really care about their colleagues and clients, and that I can rely on. Coming into work every day and being surrounded by such successful and approachable faces really makes a world of a difference. I am always growing and evolving all thanks to the support that I receive from the colleagues around me.
How do you want tenants to feel when they first walk into the office?
Employees should be excited when they first enter their office. It should set the tone for the day ahead and be warm and inviting, as well as a fun and productive place to work.
Office space should emphasize a company’s culture and brand, while promoting collaboration and employee engagement. An office space should motivate you and present a lot of learning opportunities, as well as serve as a place for connecting with others. Employees should feel safe, comfortable, and happy when they are in their office space.
Why do you prefer to work in the physical office environment?
I am a people person and really enjoy the collaboration and connection that comes from being in-person with others. COVID-19 and the shelter-in-place orders really made me realize how much more productive and motivated I am when I am in the office surrounded by my colleagues. Although not having a commute was convenient at times, being able to see colleagues, collaborate on projects, bounce ideas off each other, get together for lunch or happy hour or simply have a water cooler chat that is not virtual is so worth the short train ride to the office for me.
What are some of your favorite buildings or offices spaces in Chicago?
It is difficult for me to select a favorite building in a city where construction cranes are constant and new, beautiful skyscrapers are changing and expanding the skyline.
However, as much as I love the allure of the brand-new buildings, my true appreciation is for the landmark buildings that are known for their historical background and architectural significance. Buildings like The Merchandise Mart, The Rookery, The Post Office, Civic Opera, and The Wrigley Building all stand out to me. They are so synonymous with Chicago and have truly stood the test of time – yet are able to redefine and evolve themselves to meet the needs of office space today.
What advice would you give young real estate professionals and workplace experts?
Do not be afraid to ask questions. I remember when I was starting in the industry right out of college, there were so many things that I did not know, and, early on, was afraid to ask. It is always better to ask one too many questions than to stay silent. People that you work with, especially in this industry, will always make time to sit down and explain the many layers to the business to someone that is eager to learn and willing to ask for help. The more questions you ask, the more you will learn and the better at your job you will get.
Along with asking questions, finding a mentor is very valuable and important in this industry. For me, as a woman in a largely male dominated environment, it was very important to find someone that I look up to for guidance, support, and career advice. Having a mentor that you can learn from is key. I would recommend that those starting out in the industry spend their time networking and connecting with others so that they can find a mentor that they can nurture a lasting relationship and grow in their career.
What do you like to do when you’re not at work?
Outside the office, I enjoy spending time with my husband, Michael, and our rescue dog, Tripp. We like to travel and have most recently been enjoying visiting national parks throughout the country. In time, I would love to be able to check all of them off my list.
In addition to traveling, we enjoy spending time with our friends and family, going out for a nice meal, binge watching shows (recommendations always accepted), cooking at home and exploring neighborhoods around the city.
CBIZ Gibraltar is comprised of professionals from a variety of backgrounds, spanning a broad range of real estate expertise and experience. We share in a common focus of accountability, integrity and responsiveness.