What Is The Biggest Threat To The Future Of Commercial Real Estate? No Talent!

NO TALENT!

NO TALENT in #CRE!

The biggest crisis! The most profound! The mission critical!

Am I overstating or trying to sensationalize what it the most obvious?

No, I am not.

It could be said about and could be easily relatable to most any type of industry today.

But why #CRE?

The #1 reason for that is technological innovation.

And to further that point it’s about digital transformation, the industrial internet, advanced analytics, artificial intelligence, robotics, machine learning, the internet of things and a host of other innovations that are fundamentally changing the nature of work.

So, is it just about technology?

Not completely but is also more about what skills sets are valued today and the pace those skill sets will erode and be eliminated in the future. And when I say the future I mean the future NOW!

It’s not beyond anyone’s capacity to understand why it’s profoundly critical we (#CRE) address this issue NOW!

My concern is that commercial real estate has failed to grasp what impact those technological innovations will do to the present workforce.

Do we fully understand what important skills/jobs will matter and be needed to compete in the global marketplace?

Do we fully understand what advantages and unfortunately disadvantages of not addressing this issue will mean, today?

Is it not almost always said by any C-level person that the most strategic advantage any company has is its people?

My question for #CRE is who are the “right” people?

Let’s take brokerage for example.

Pretty straight forward in many of our minds.

In no way shape or form will the day to day tasks of that brokerage change in the next three to five years?

To keep it interesting let’s throw in a single broker.

Now let’s attach these critical responsibilities or skill sets to both.

Brokerage:

Digital transformation, the industrial internet, advanced analytics, artificial intelligence, robotics, machine learning, the internet of things.

How does that make you think about brokerage now?

Who’s job is that at a brokerage today?

A better question is how many people do you need to hire to handle all of that and what skills will they need to have to make the brokerage competitive?

Individual Broker:

And again, digital transformation, the industrial internet, advanced analytics, artificial intelligence, robotics, machine learning, the internet of things.

Surely none of these will be a part of any brokers daily skill set. Is that a realistic point of view as you sit here today?

This is just one example.

How about building management, building maintenance, portfolio management, acquisitions, finance….and on and on.

The More Important Questions.

Are you addressing any of those issues NOW?

Do you even understand what they are now and how they will affect your daily business?

Can you relate that to commercial real estate and how it functions?

Can you write a job description and explain why that job is needed today?

What jobs or functions that exist now need to stay a part of your business?

Even More Important Questions.

Who has those skills now?

Do you see any gaps between those skills and what is going to be necessary?

Where do you find these people?

Do you even know where to start to look for them?

Do you develop them on your own?

Do you have that capacity to do that?

Can you survive if you don’t?

Are you the right person to do this in the first place?

What Is The Biggest Threat To The Future Of Commercial Real Estate?

Is it you?

Only you can answer that.

I know for sure what I think it is, it’s No Talent!

 

+1 Did I mention demographics at all?

+1+1 Proud of myself for that one.

 

 

  • David Music

    I couldn’t agree with this assessment any more than I do. There have been amazing changes in this world but most of them haven’t trickled over to CRE because of a significant and growing talent deficit. CRE is such a specialized field that a smart person can’t just step in and understand it in 6 or 12 months, it takes real ramp up time. More time than most talented people are willing to invest.

  • Trey Tubbs

    Great insight! Future success for CRE professionals will rely on their ability to embrace and respond to change (because it’s not going away) AND continuously learn to sharpen their toolset.

  • Frank K.

    Great questions Duke. Keep up the good work

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