Executive Managing Director of JLL Named the 2023 Person of the Year
BOSTON- For 26 years, Matt Daniels has helped large, global clients define and execute their real estate needs in the face of dramatic market changes. A visual learner by nature, he knew at a young age that he wanted to be in a business with tangible outcomes – including assets you could see, feel, touch, and ultimately deliver. That’s why commercial real estate felt like his calling.
Inspired by the competitive edge of his home state, Massachusetts, Daniels wanted to make sure that his career played an active role in ensuring the Commonwealth remained competitive and boosting its diverse industries by maximizing commercial real estate assets.
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Daniels’s family, home state pride, and his 60-plus person leasing team are big motivators that keep him pushing and striving for excellence. But he is also ‘a wildly competitive person’, which is an attribute that can’t be dismissed in the competitive market of commercial real estate in New England. For Daniels, any CRE success is a win not only for himself, his team and JLL- but for the entire region.
Daniels brings his two-plus decades of commercial real estate experience to JLL’s Boston Leasing team with experience representing tenants and landlords in the Greater Boston Market. In a marketplace still reeling from the drastic changes begun in the 2020 shift to remote work, Daniels has maintained JLL’s place as a leader of the pack. As the Brokerage Lead and Executive Managing Director, Daniels and his team continue to be market leaders in structuring the region’s most complex and creative transactions on behalf of their clients.
Through his work on the National Advisory Executive Council and Brokerage Leadership Council, he has crafted the vision and strategy for his market. In his tenure at JLL (NYSE: JLL), he has touched various transaction types and product types totaling $4B. It is this leadership that led him to be recognized with the Commercial Brokers Association’s prestigious McCall Leadership Award, which is the highest form of praise bestowed upon a commercial real estate broker in Greater Boston.
Growing up in Andover, MA, Daniels attended Phillips Exeter Academy and received his Bachelor of Arts from Brown University. He was diagnosed with dyslexia at an early age, which he notes as perhaps one of the biggest challenges he’s had to face in life and, of course, in his professional career.
Early on, Daniels understood the value of teamwork, and he has no doubt in his mind that commercial real estate wins and milestones do not happen in siloes. To him, building a team whose goals and values align to maximize commercial real estate in a city fueled by its diverse and innovative industries is a key to success.
In his time at JLL, he has been able to build a team of “game changers” who “do it all” when it comes to commercial real estate – and not many succeed in building such a team but in delivering impactful results that shape and steer the market regionally. He cites that building a team of commercial real estate experts and leaders that continues to lead the market, structuring the region’s most complex and creative transactions on behalf of their clients, has been one of the most memorable and impactful parts of his career.
When asked about role models and mentors, Daniels says that he has had many mentors throughout his path who have been influential in helping him achieve the success he has achieved so far, but if he has to mention one specifically, he’d be remiss not to mention Jay Calnan of J Calnan & Associates. Calnan’s way to grow his business and service clients comes with a lot of humanity in the way in which he treats his partners and everyone around him.
It’s this approach, and that of meeting his civic obligations, including his involvement with Team IMPACT, which inspired Daniels to be involved with the nonprofit organization as well. It is Calnan’s philosophy of leadership and civic participation that has helped Daniels further understand that success comes with obligations to do great things and to give back, and “Jay [Calnan] was instrumental in realizing just that.”
Daniels is a Licensed Massachusetts Real Estate Broker and is the former president of the Commercial Brokers Association, Greater Boston Trustees of the Reservation. In addition, he has served in the past as a board member on the Hamilton Little League Board, is a former board member for Team Impact, and as the President of the Steering Committee for Appleton Farms. Most recently, He was a recipient of the McCall Leadership Award as Broker of the Year (a lifetime achievement award).
For over 200 years, JLL, a leading global commercial real estate and investment management company, has helped clients buy, build, occupy, manage and invest in a variety of commercial, industrial, hotel, residential and retail properties. A Fortune 500® company with annual revenue of $20.9 billion and operations in over 80 countries around the world, our more than 103,000 employees bring the power of a global platform combined with local expertise. Driven by our purpose to shape the future of real estate for a better world, we help our clients, people and communities see a brighter way. JLL is the brand name, and a registered trademark, of Jones Lang LaSalle Incorporated.
JLL aims to continue to be a leading global commercial real estate and investment management company, helping clients buy, build, occupy, manage, and invest in a variety of commercial, industrial, hotel, residential, and retail properties.
In the New England market, amid the macroeconomic headwinds impacting commercial real estate today, JLL will continue to grow its footprint in the market, keeping in mind the many factors that have historically made Boston a dominant and leading market fueled by its diverse and innovative industries. JLL’s thoughtful and experienced market leaders will be critical to helping investors, landlords, tenants, and others navigate CRE, not only to secure deals but also to meet their needs and help the region thrive and remain competitive.