Principal, Strategic Design, Syllable Inc.
Sector: Private Sector
Discipline: Interior Design
Magic Moment: I’m a big believer in carving your own path and not following pre-set standards – even when things get hard. When I decided to do my Masters in Strategic Design and Management at Parsons, my family, friends, and peers where a little confused why an Interior Designer needs that, especially while working full time. Everyone was not as understanding when I started my entrepreneurship journey at naïve age of 25. I also left the design world and joined an innovation firm where it seemed like a step backwards and no connection to Interior Design. All those perceived ‘mis-directions’ to a typical career journey has made me a more thoughtful and strategic leader. I would say my ‘magic moment’ would be every time I questioned myself, it was to keep going and listen to my gut.
Abdul Kaderali, Architect: He was able to show what it means to lead with compassion and a calm mind, I was fortunate enough to work under his guidance and become well-versed with contracts and negotiating on site with multiple stakeholders. He embodied a grounding energy to lead a team with ease and build strong relationships – even when things got tense during project delivery.
Nadia Sapiro, President, Throughline Strategy: Nadia was a force to work with. She empowered me to believe in myself, step into my strengths and not have to ask for a seat at the table. I quickly learned that I didn’t need to prove myself – and just be. She spoke with honest candor and gave critical feedback in a beautiful way. She truly lifted those around her and taught me how to be a true consultant.
Next Big Challenge As An Industry: We need to be building more sustainable buildings and adaptively reuse office buildings into multi-unit residential to assist with the housing shortage. Following One Planet living for design and specification in spaces to push vendors to offer more sustainable options – as they are currently very limited.
On Championing Others…: I participate in events which help students curate their portfolios and prepare them for interviews. This is also done with immigrants that come to Canada who are seasoned professionals and need to enter the market. I have been on multiple ARIDO committees and was on the Executive Board as a Director to advocate for the profession. My passion for business operations is also shared with fellow business owners – all to elevate the industry and improve our services or be there when situations get challenging. I love watching people attain their goals and grow and anywhere I can help them on their journey brings me great joy.
Secret Talent: In my free time, I play with silk and fire fans.
One word that captures you: Tenacious – I’ve been called an ice breaker ship many times, I bulldoze through what sometimes feels like the impossible and enjoy solving complex situations.