Thursday, April 18, 2024 Apr 18, 2024
75° F Dallas, TX
Dallas 500

Meet the Dallas 500: John Gates, JLL

The CEO of JLL's Americas region talks about the turbulent market and how to break down barriers for prospective talent. Plus, he provides the one book he thinks all executives should read.
John Gates

After joining The Staubach Co. in 1990, John Gates became one of the firm’s top-performing brokers before shifting to management after the company was acquired by JLL. He now oversees the U.S., Canada, and Latin America operations. “Difficult environments always create opportunities,” Gates says. “We are making investments to gain share and prepare for growth.”

In his 2024 Dallas 500 Q&A, Gates weighs in on the turbulent market, breaking down barriers for prospective talent, and the one book he thinks all executives should read.

Education: The University of Texas at Austin (MBA), Trinity University (BS)

Proud Moment: “We have all been feeling the impacts of this turbulent past year in numerous ways but watching how our people at JLL have continued to come together. The partnerships we have with our clients feel greater than ever, and that’s a true testament to our people and the culture we have at JLL.”

Destinations of Choice: “We love the beach—specifically the Caribbean Sea—and the mountains in Colorado and Montana, but the family lake house at Horseshoe Bay is probably in first place.”

Karaoke Song: “I avoid singing at all costs. No one wants to hear that!”

Industry Change: “We always have to be thinking about the next generation of talent, and we know that in order to attract and retain the best brokerage talent in our industry we have to break down barriers to entry and provide opportunities for our new hires to thrive early on in their career. We are completely reimagining the way we onboard our brokerage talent, and we just launched a new immersive training program, JLLU, in the fall of 2022 aimed at helping new brokers kickstart their careers and generate revenue faster.”

Key Leadership Strategy: “Aligning around a compelling future vision and then agreeing on what needs to be done to get there, and who is responsible for what actions.”

Childhood Dream: “To be a professional athlete.”

Go-to Adviser: “I have quite a few mentors actually. My father was a great mentor to me for many things and in business I would highlight Roger Staubach. I learned countless important lessons in my more than 25 years working closely with him.”

A Better DFW: “I believe we’d be at least a little better in virtually every regard if we were a more integrated community racially.”

Must-read: Legacy by James Kerr is the story about the most successful professional sports franchise in history over a long period of time, the New Zealand All Blacks rugby team. It has incredible lessons and stories on building a winning culture and team. Their team building norms are so strong they have lasted for generations.”

Hobby/Passion: “I exercise six days per week and enjoy golf, fishing, and hunting.”

Alternate Reality: “If I wasn’t in real estate, I would be coaching because I love to win in a team game.”

Food I Hate: “Cucumbers”

Future Forecast: “It’s a difficult environment and that always creates opportunity. Right now we are making investments to gain share and prepare for growth. We have the opportunity to build the greatest commercial real estate business in the industry.”


Ben Swanger

Ben Swanger

View Profile
Ben Swanger is the managing editor for D CEO, the business title for D Magazine. Ben manages the Dallas 500, monthly…

Related Articles

Dallas 500

Meet the Dallas 500: Karla Smith, SRS Real Estate Partners

The executive vice president and principal with SRS Real Estate Partners’ Dallas/Fort Worth office shares her best advice, her proudest moment and her hopes for the future of real estate
Dallas 500

Meet the Dallas 500: Cece Cox, Resource Center

The CEO of one of the largest LGBTQIA+ and HIV/AIDS service organizations in the U.S. talks about raising funding, her spirit animal, and how she stays focused on her mission.
Dallas 500

Meet the Dallas 500: Robert Walker, Scottish Rite for Children

The hospital president and CEO shares how he developed his work ethic, how he spends his free time, and what he sees in store for the health system.