Published on: November 5, 2020
Diana Bezares oversees approximately 400,000 SF of Fried Frank’s headquarters office in NYC. She also serves as the chair of the firm’s business continuity team. Diana also sits on various Firm committees, such as the Sustainability Committee. Diana is an active member of various legal forum groups, including IFMA and ALA. Diana is also a certified First Aid Mental Health Responder and has a strong love of helping people.
“Diana plays a critical role as Director of Operations and Facilities for our headquarters office in NY. She is solutions driven, quick witted and always reliable. Diana also has her finger on the pulse of our firm’s culture and ensures our office operations and services are aligned with our strategic goals and values. Her positive attitude, humor and can-do approach are all a plus!” –Victor Nuñez, COO at Fried Frank
What is one thing no one knows about you?
“I love music!!! No matter how bad your day is going, it is the one thing that can change your attitude from miserable to joyous. Put on a good song and dance away your stress!! Give me some old school music and I’m in the grove!!!!”
How did you get into the Facilities/Workplace field?
“I began my career in 1993 as a legal secretary for a prominent law firm in New York City. In 1996, I left the firm to join another prominent law firm. At the second law firm, as part of my work assignment, I worked with the managing partner and the director of administration. As such, I had a lot of exposure to all management-related activities, including being directly involved with the firm’s slab-to-slab buildout. When the facilities manager left the firm, we were in the middle of a buildout. The managing partner asked me to step in and assist as I had exposure to the project and have a great love for problem solving. The firm sent me to NYU to get my certification in facilities management. I fell in love with operations and facilities and have never looked back!”
Tell us about a favorite project highlight.
“Although I have worked on many projects and have very fond memories of all of them, my favorite project highlight is building/repurposing space at my firm for collaborative areas. We have two well used collaborative areas in our offices. There is a Nespresso machine, a trail mix dispenser and an M&M'S dispenser! Of course, now with the pandemic, the dispensers had to be removed, but I am hopeful they will come back!”
Tell us about a challenge or obstacle that you face in the Real Estate/Facilities world.
“There are many challenges in the real estate and facilities world. The one, most challenging obstacle is planning for future space in light of our current pandemic. Pre-pandemic, attorneys and business services staff spent their time in the office working. While attorneys had the flexibility to work from home from time to time, the business services staff really did not. We have learned that we can successfully work from home and continue to provide top-notch client service. However, we also need to be mindful of how much space we will need going forward in light of the new trend of working from home. How much is too much space? How much is too little space? Many considerations need to be made to plan the future workspace carefully and efficiently. That’s a huge challenge.”
What learning experience would you pass onto future FMs?
“Educate yourself!! Never stop learning. Don’t be intimidated by obstacles. As Nelson Mandela said, “It all seems impossible until it’s done”! Believe in yourself, and ask for help. Asking for help is not a weakness but strength; know enough to seek guidance for things you don’t know.”
Interviewed by Sonya Verny, MCR, Operations Director of Business Development in the Americas at Mace Group, IFMA NYC Secretary & Executive Committee Oversight for the Communications Committee