AFIRE Podcast #31: Changing Strategies in the Office Sector

(Featuring David C. Smith, Americas Head of Occupier Research, Cushman and Wakefield)

COVID forced an experiment at global scale to test productivity and culture in a work-from-home environment. Now that we’re a year into the experiment, what’s the future of the office sector ecosystem?

With the coronavirus pandemic entering into its second year, a lot of occupiers are rethinking their real estate strategies. Investors are trying to find the right way to pivot and find new strategies for value creation in the midst of a large-scale workplace evolution.

As most workers, especially in the US, are not yet allowed or interested in returning to their offices, investors have the opportunity—and the urgency—to build out long-term scenario plans, strategize future decisions and investment philosophies, and understand the current field of options available. Latency in the office sector has opened up the possibility of new forms of thinking that rely on keeping occupiers productive and engaged within the evolving real estate landscape.

In this episode of the AFIRE Podcast, David Smith of Cushman and Wakefield provides recent insights on the four emerging, key purposes of office space, including a look at how occupiers are changing their own thinking around office use.


David C. Smith is the Americas Head of Occupier Research for Cushman and Wakefield. David produces occupier thought leadership content for the Research Center of Excellence and directs a program of market presentations, written analysis, surveys, forecasts, and data collection that supports Global Occupier Services and the brokerage business, as well as advances the strategic plan in Americas Research.

David previously spent over a decade at Kingsley Associates, a leading provider of research and benchmarking solutions to real estate companies around the world. In addition to providing consulting services to global real estate companies, he was also involved in several industry-wide thought leadership partnerships with BOMA and NMHC. In that role, Mr. Smith served as one of the creators of the NMHC/Kingsley Associates Apartment Renter Preferences Report.

David has written thought-leadership deliverables pertaining to occupier trends and topics, including: coworking, employment, demographic shifts, occupier real estate strategy decision making, technology trends, real estate costs and workplace usage

As the Vice President / COO of real estate industry’s leading provider of research and performance benchmarking solutions, David focuses on customer (tenant / resident) satisfaction, employee engagement and client / investor perceptions, and consulting services to global firms.




The publisher of AFIRE Podcasts is not engaged in providing tax, accounting, or legal advice through this publication. No content published in the AFIRE Podcast is to be construed as a recommendation to buy or sell any asset. Some information included in the AFIRE Podcast has been obtained from third-party sources considered to be reliable, though the publisher is not responsible for guaranteeing the accuracy of third-party information. The opinions expressed in the AFIRE Podcast are those of its respective contributors and sources and do not necessarily reflect those of the publisher.


Benjamin van Loon, Communications Director | +1 202 312 1405

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