Celebrating International Women’s Day: #InspireInclusion Through Conversations with Inspirational Women in Commercial Interiors – Bronte Turner

This International Women’s Day, Design Insider is proud to embrace the 2024 campaign theme: #InspireInclusion. We are delighted to present a series of interviews with some of the most inspirational women in the commercial interiors community—each playing a pivotal role in shaping the industry.

Inclusion is a pathway to innovation, creativity, and empowerment. When we inspire inclusion, we not only celebrate diversity but also harness the rich perspectives and ideas that drive our industry forward. This year, we’re highlighting the voices of Inspirational Women who aren’t just participating in the commercial interiors sector but are actively shaping its future to be more inclusive, vibrant, and dynamic.

Bronte Turner, Managing Director London at HLW International, is one of our Inspirational Women. In our conversation, we delve into how Bronte interprets #InspireInclusion within the context of her work and the broader commercial interiors sector. We explore her personal experiences, the success stories that have marked her journey, and the collective strides we can make toward a more inclusive industry. Moreover, we discover the women who have inspired her and how she, in turn, serves as a beacon of inspiration for others.

Join us as we celebrate Bronte’s achievements, insights, and stories, and let’s continue to #InspireInclusion every day in every way.

Bronte Turner, Managing Director London at HLW International

Please could you introduce yourself and your role?

Hello – my name is Bronte Turner and I am a Principal, Managing Director London at HLW International. I joined HLW in 2008 as a Senior Interior Designer and rapidly worked my way to Design Director the same year, and Managing Director London in 2012. Over the past 12 years, I have been overseeing the London and European operations and studio as well as the strategic growth of the EMEA business. I am still actively involved with projects and clients as a passionate designer who brings a mix of design, ESG commercial acumen, focus and drive to all of our work. Our studio delivers spaces for clients such as Amazon, Citibank, Royal Mail, DRW and Wix.com.

How do you interpret #inspireinclusion and what needs to happen to achieve this within the commercial interiors sector?

Our industry has certainly come a long way over the last 10+ years. As a mother and a business leader, I am focused on continuing to forge equality and inclusivity into all aspects of our day-to-day life – equal opportunities and inclusivity should be a given at work, at school, on site etc., and we should all be able to follow our passion! For me, there are two significant challenge areas to  ensuring that commercial interiors is an inclusive sector. Firstly, ensuring that it is a career option available to anyone from any background. Secondly, that when talented people reach a stage in their career and life to grow families, that they are not disadvantaged in terms of their career progression by doing so.

Are there any success stories of inclusion you would like to highlight?

Success is helping to create an inclusive industry, which is part of my day-to-day life. I work regularly with the best people of all genders, whether fellow leaders, colleagues, or emerging talent.

As I look around HLW and my client and project teams, I am excited by the diverse mix of people and talent I get to work with compared to ten years ago. We now regularly see female business leaders, engineers and even – finally – women on site in construction. We also see far more diversity in our teams, with both males and females continuing to grow their careers and successfully balance that with raising children to also be happy, healthy, ambitious and successful.

What does it feel like to be inspired by, and inspire, people around you?

Of course it feels great – to be a part of positive change, whether leading it or supporting it. I have been lucky enough to have some amazing mentors (male and female) throughout my career, who have helped to guide and shape me. I hope that I can provide the same support and inspiration for others to grow, challenge themselves and not be held back to fulfil their potential.

Which inspirational women do you celebrate?

There are several women in my day-to-day life who inspire and motivate me – my mother, sisters and my daughter: all who have pushed and challenged me to realise my full potential. I want to make sure our industry and many others only continue to become more inclusive for anyone to excel at their chosen career.

I would also say my mentor at HLW over the last ten years has been Susan Boyle, who has created a business that supports and propels female talent in our industry. She has challenged and supported me throughout my time at the practice, and I am incredibly grateful for it.

Thank you for reading this conversation. Discover more empowering stories from Inspirational Women in commercial interiors by clicking HERE to continue our #InspireInclusion series.

Join us in celebrating and learning from these influential voices!


About Alys Bryan

Alys is a knowledgeable design editor who is focused on instigating conversations, both online and in-person, with industry experts which challenge, educate and advance the commercial interior sector. Her training and 15 years of professional experience as a furniture designer for the commercial sector makes her uniquely placed to lead Design Insider as Editor
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