I'm a Woman and a Professional; So Says Planning Consult Louise Brooke-Smith, of CSJ Brooke Smith

Article excerpt

Byline: Louise Brooke-Smith

Louise Brooke-Smith resists the idea of being a woman in a man's world.

Having studied and worked in planning for nearly 30 years and run her own business for 13 years, she feels such an expression is not only outdated but also damaging.

"Being a woman is just not an issue in this business," says Louise. "In 20-plus years, I've never been a victim of gender prejudice. Well not that I'm aware. Perhaps I've been lucky but then I believe you make your own luck.

"The property industry is certainly no longer a man's domain. Most development teams are equally balanced between men and women and better for it.

"There's no doubt that men and women are slightly different in the ways we approach problem-solving. But neither one is better than the other. It's just different and complimentary as a result.

"I've heard both men and women extol the virtues of a woman turning her gender to her advantage. Pardon the expression but I think that's below the belt! …