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Forty Under 40 Award winner Q&A: Brad Jones

This year’s cohort of recipients will be celebrated at an event Feb. 7, 2024

BIV is recognizing Brad Jones, senior vice-president of development at Wesgroup Properties, and 39 other exceptional business leaders as part of the 2023 Forty Under 40 Awards cohort.

Longer Q&As with each recipient are included in BIV's annual Forty Under 40 Magazine (out in print Dec. 11). Award winners will be celebrated at an awards gala Feb. 7, 2024.

This profile may have been edited for length and clarity.

What career highlight are you most proud of?

In my career, standout moments include work on Vancouver's River District, but a recent highlight is the Coronation Park project in Port Moody. Commencing work in 2019 near the Inlet Centre SkyTrain Station, it evolved into one of B.C.'s largest land assemblies of single-family homes. While we had many political and approval challenges, our team successfully reshaped the official plan. We're now on the verge of rezoning the site into an impressive master-planned community. This accomplishment, after years of effort, not only reflects our team's tenacity but also stands as a significant contribution to the development of Port Moody.

What was your toughest business or professional decision?

To be honest, there isn’t one that stands out for me. Real estate development is a challenging business – it’s an industry of complex regulation and high levels of government fees and charges. There are tough decisions that have to be made every day and the solutions often require adaptability and creativity.

How do you lead?

I believe that leading by example first and foremost is essential. I don’t ask anyone to do anything I would not or have not done before myself. We set the vision, align on intent and parameters and then I let people take ownership of their efforts. I like to provide support, but strongly believe that giving people autonomy is integral to their – and my – success.

What is the biggest lesson you've learned in business?

Relationships are fundamental. The foundation of success lies in the quality of the connections we build. Whether it’s with customers, colleagues or business partners, fostering transparent and trusting relationships creates a strong basis for collaboration and mutual growth.

Best piece of advice ever received?

Be mindful of what you can control, what you can influence and what concerns you. You cannot control all the things that concern you, so don’t overstress about those things. Focus on what you can control and what you can influence, and seek to understand what concerns you.

What advice would you give your 20-year-old self?

Get involved in the industry early in your career; don’t wait until you hold a higher position or have more experience. Your knowledge base and relationships will flourish.

What's left to accomplish?

Lots! I take a lot of pride in working through challenging projects with teams, and we’ve got lots coming in the pipeline I’m excited about. There are significant housing policy shifts taking place in our province and I am excited to work on them as a stakeholder as well, delivering much-needed housing in urban communities.

Is there anyone you would like to thank or acknowledge?

There have been a number of people in the industry from whom I’ve learned a great deal, but want to specifically mention a few people. Norm Couttie, former president of Adera, significantly enhanced my technical proficiency in our years working together. Similarly, Beau Jarvis, president of Wesgroup, has played an instrumental role in shaping my professional and leadership capabilities, which has really helped bring me to another level. I also want to thank my wife for being a constant supporter of me, my career and our family.

Read Q&As with all 40 award recipients here. Tickets to the 2023 Forty Under 40 Awards gala on Feb. 7 are now available.