Monday, December 8, 2014

Standardized RFP in the US? / Women's Leadership Workshop / Introduction to Capital Raising Course


At last week’s Capital Raising and Investor Relations (CR/IR) meeting, NAREIM (National Association of Real Estate Investment Managers) CEO Gunnar Branson issued a challenge to the group:  Let’s follow INREV’s (European trade association for non-listed real estate vehicles) lead and establish a committee with the goal of creating a standardized RFP / RFI (Request for Proposal / Request for Information) template for the U.S. 

Universal head nodding from the managers in the room - and a cautiously optimistic reaction from the two consultants in attendance - met his suggestion. There were a few present who jumped at the chance to be on that committee. Those of you who have ever been involved in completing an RFP or RFI know the amount of work involved.  And - even though after a standardized basic form is adopted, consultants will still reserve the right to request answers to additional questions - this would be a great boon to our industry.  This initiative is likely to be launched in early 2015.  Stay tuned!

Some of my takeaways from the CR / IR meeting.  Economists remind the group:

·      Secondary market / derivatives caused problems in 2007
  • “We were really good at regulating our tree, the problem was that every other tree in the forest was on fire” – pre crisis / didn’t realize impact of leverage
  • “There’s a whole generation of people who don’t think about real estate as a hedge against inflation because they haven’t lived through inflation.”
  • Jobs will continue to move to ‘right to work’ states
  • High priced labor is moving to central city locations

NAREIM runs a series of excellent meetings throughout the year traversing different discipline areas in the institutional real estate investment management arena.  These meetings are wonderful think-tank environments where, as Gunnar likes to remind attendees:  “Your ticket to this event is a license to think in public.”  Check out NAREIM’s calendar here.

Women's Leadership Workshop - Chicago
Last week Liz Weiner and I conducted our Women’s Leadership Workshop in Chicago.  We were joined by 17 women in commercial real estate, from 10 different companies. The response from this highly-interactive session has been tremendous.  

Collaborative discussions, insightful exercises and experiential partner work filled the afternoon.  In each of our Women’s Leadership programs, I provided the male perspective which adds a unique dynamic to the session. 

The workshop is structured to help women in commercial real estate develop and enhance their professional presence while becoming more aware of behavioral traits that may be holding them back in their career development.  From the feedback we’ve received, it appears we are filling a self-development gap in the overly male-dominated commercial real estate industry.  This is very exciting - and rewarding!

Here are a few comments we received from participants in our Women’s’ Leadership Workshops: 
  • “Great program – I would recommend to all the women in my network”
  • “The discussion topics were so interesting”
  • “As an industry we need more women leaders; and workshops like this bring awareness, skills and techniques to help accomplish that”
  • “Brought to the surface all the issues I felt were stopping me from moving ahead and learning I wasn’t alone”
  • “Many women don’t see how they are perceived and I think this can help them grow individually and in their careers”
  • “I will be more communicative with my boss about my successes”
Our next Women’s Leadership Workshop will be held in NYC during the first week of January with other US cities (and London) planned for 2015.  More to come!

Introduction to Capital Raising Training Course
In partnership with IMN, Liz and I are excited to announce our Introduction To Capital Raising course taking place January 21-22, 2015 in Laguna Beach, CA. This 1.5 day workshop will benefit new additions and others with more experience in marketing real estate investment opportunities to pension funds, endowments, foundations, sovereign wealth funds and family offices.

As an added bonus, the workshop will be held alongside IMN's 12th Annual Winter Forum on Real Estate Opportunity & Private Fund Investing.   Course participants will be granted complimentary access to the main conference program at the conclusion of the course for an additional afternoon of education and networking opportunities.

For further information either write back to me or visit the website.


Dave Gilbert on being named President of Clarion Partners.

Mike Simmons on joining Akridge as Vice President, Acquisitions.

On the Road...
January 2015:  Felix / Weiner Consulting Group - Commercial Real Estate Women's Leadership Workshop, New York City, San Francisco and Los Angeles

Jan. 15 -16:  NAREIM Asset Management and Acquisitions Meeting, San Francisco, CA. Learn more and register here.

Jan. 21-22:  Introduction to Capital Raising Course offered by Steve Felix and Liz Weiner in partnership with IMN running alongside their Opportunity and Private Fund Investing conference, Laguna Beach, CA. Learn more and register here.

Jan. 21 - 23:  IMN's Winter Forum on Real Estate Opportunity and Private Fund Investing, Laguna Beach, CA. Learn more and register here

Feb. 17 – 18:  NAREIM Research & Investment Management Meeting, Chicago, IL. Learn more and register here.

Feb. 19 - 20:  University of North Carolina, Kenan-Flagler Real Estate Challenge (I've been invited to be a judge!), Chapel Hill, NC. Invitation only.  Learn more here.

Mar.3 - 5: NCREIF (National Council of Real Estate Investment Fiduciaries) Winter Conference, Phoenix, AZ.  Learn more and register here

Mar. 10 - 11:  National Association of Real Estate Research Professionals (ARERP) meeting, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA

Mar. 17 - 18:  NAREIM Executive Officers Spring Meeting, Miami, FL. Learn more and register here.

Mar. 26 - 27:  PREA (Pension Real Estate Association) Spring Conference, Washington, DC. Learn more and register here.


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