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Meet Emma Davenport, our new Senior Principal, Strategy Australia

A week into the job, we talked to Emma Davenport, our new Senior Principal, Strategy in Australia about her experience in the rapidly changing industry, why she chose Unispace and her thoughts on the future of work.

Welcome to the team Emma, we’re thrilled that you have joined us. What attracted you to come to Unispace?

Thank you, I’m happy to be a part of the team. A few things attracted me to join. Firstly, the global presence of the business provides an exciting opportunity to tap into global insights and understand trends in other regions that may come to influence the industry here at home.

Having come from design firms that focus on the strategy and design phases of workplace projects, I’m also keen to see the space come to life through Unispace’s end-to-end process. To see the strategy that we develop with a client come to fruition through the construction phase and be a part of the unified team delivering the project.

Finally, the people attracted me here. Unispace already has a strong team of strategists across the globe that I now get to work with and a local team with broad skills and experience. I look forward to getting to know my colleagues here and overseas.

Tell us about your role, what are you excited about?

As Senior Principal, Strategy, I will lead our Australian strategy team and work with our clients, and the broader Unispace business, to develop workplace strategies that are tailored to each client’s business and growth plans. Strategies that address the needs of their people, facilitate connection and enable them to do their best work.

As well as working with our clients, I’m looking forward to partnering with my counterparts in strategy across ANZ and globally to grow and evolve our strategic offering to adapt to the changing needs of the market.

I am motivated by helping people to discover more joy at work – both my team and our clients.

Having worked in the industry and in workplace design for over 20 years, what is some of the change that you have observed?

Wow, big question. I guess all industries have experienced a great deal of change over the past two decades, and workplace design in particular reflects broader changes in the way we live and work. Employees now expect a higher degree of choice, control and empowerment around work and the spaces we design reflect this. Technology has had a huge impact on how and where we work, as well as the characteristics of our physical work environments. The pandemic of course accelerated the rate of change and taught us all very quickly that flexibility and adaptability are key to a successful workplace.

One big change that I have been excited to see has been the increase of women and women in leadership in the design and construction industry. Diversity of thought is necessary for creativity and innovation. I’ve been a supporter of NAWIC and will continue to champion equality and diversity across the industry.

The future of workplace is a hot topic, what are your thoughts on where the workplace is heading?

The only one certainty in the future of workplace is that it will continue to change. Businesses need to build resilient spaces that are adaptable and can evolve with their needs. There’s no one solution for a space that will suit every business. Positive results will come from asking the right questions to uncover the specific needs of an organisation and the individuals that make it successful.

Finally, tell us about a great career defining moment?

I vividly recall a career defining moment which occurred at the completion of a workplace project some years ago. As a way of launching the new workplace, the organisation hosted a family day. I witnessed our client proudly leading their families through the office we had designed, passionately describing the benefits and characteristics of each space, accurately using the terminology we had used in the strategy and change management programmes.

It struck me profoundly that as workplace specialists, the real value of our work is beyond the design of physical space. We have the ability to cultivate a sense of ownership and pride, connecting people to a recognition of their purpose at work and engaging them on a deeply personal level.



With over 20 years' experience in the design and property industry, Emma Davenport is the Senior Principal, Strategy, Australia. Emma will lead the strategy team in Australia, supporting our clients by developing workplace strategies that are tailored to each client’s business and address the needs of their people, facilitating connection and enabling them to do their best work.