“It’s All About The Competition For Talent. Whatever It Takes Just Do It.”

I always start these things out with “I attended some kind of X event” because I do and where do you think the ideas and brain flow come from?

So with that, I recently attended a workplace event titled RETHINK. Office Of The Future: New York.

It was way downtown right next to One World Trade Center. If you follow my Twitter or Instagram I just had to take some pics and post them up as the views are certainly world class. As a quick side as you would suspect the security was tight but also about as friendly and professional as could be.

Below are the sessions that I personally attended. There were two tracks A and B with small intimate roundtables also. I did not attend any of these, not sure why I just chose to network instead.

If you take the time to click on the link the roster of speakers was impressive with representation from Brookfield, Blackstone, Convene, Verizon, Fifth Wall, Wells Fargo, and WeWork to just name a few.

-Opening Presentation: A Glimpse into the World of the City’s Largest Office Tenant

A special presentation by Lisette Camilo, Commissioner of the Department of Citywide Administrative Services

-General Session

Beyond 9 to 5: The Future of Office Space and Occupier Needs

Never before has the dynamic of work been such in flux. As workspace needs, and technologies evolve, workplace occupiers and forward thinking landlords need to come together in order to create an environment that allows a workforce to thrive. As occupiers see the workplace as a beacon to attract and retain top talent, landlords are also learning that traditional office space is no longer going to cut it. How can they these two parties learn from each other on how to truly create the ideal place to work?

  • Get the Most from Your Talent: What is the most significant way that the physical environment can positively impact employee effectiveness, engagement, collaboration, and creativity – for all generations?
  • Under One Roof: The costs and benefits of work from anywhere vs. having everyone at the office.
  • The Tools to Succeed: How can technology effectively make and measure a “productive” workforce?
  • One-Size-Does-Not-Fit-All: How to create an office space with multiple departments and cultures?

-Track A Session

Workspace 2020 – Technology and the Future of Work

Technology has always impacted how we work and interact. However, the pace at which it’s redefining work is happening faster than anyone could have realized. How do occupiers and landlords stay up to date on what systems will bring the most efficiency out of their buildings and workforce? How have the advances in technology and remote connectivity affected the tenants need for office space? How are tenants and landlords balancing the value of data gathering with the expectation of privacy? And what systems do employees want to be more productive?

  • An Office Pangea: How has the Internet of Things (IoT) been able to assist landlords and tenants in configuring space?
  • Size Matters: How the size of your building will impact your ability to implement the security and technology that your company requires.
  • The Great Balancing Act: How can technology improve collaboration and efficiency while also ensuring privacy and security?
  • The Self-Aware Office: How will A.I. change everything?

-Track B Session

Building Upgrades: Adapting Today’s Office Space for Tomorrow’s Challenges

New, smart and efficient office properties are popping like never before. But what about all the existing product that’s on the market? The market is flooded with pre-1990 office space. How can landlords and tenants work together to bring the most out these spaces? What are some of the nontraditional tactics landlords are doing to make these offices more desirable to prospective corporate occupiers?

  • Out with the Old: What limitations and benefits do owners see in renovation vs new build.
  • Stand Out in the Crowd: How Can old properties compete vs newly constructed office space?
  • Having a Digital Masterplan: How to plan your building around technology and not the other way around?
  • Being Flexible: How changing your lease terms can give your space a competitive advantage.
  • Coexisting Relationship: How working together with Coworking companies may be the right way to go.
  • What About Amenities? How do you accommodate that in renovation project?

-General Session

From Data to Design: Creating an Evidence-Based Framework for Health in Buildings


  • Esther M. Sternberg M.D., Director, UA Institute on Place Wellbeing & Performance Research Director, University of Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine

-General Session

Work Outside the Box: Redefining the Flexible Workspace

Gone are the days where work is merely coming into the office from 9-5. Millennial workers require their work to be more flexible. From freelancers to startup employees, there is an increase of workers untethered from a physical office who are free to roam the world. While these workers aren’t necessarily required to work out of a corporate office, they still need places where they can reliably get their work done. As this form of action becomes adopted by companies, the need for traditional office space becomes less critical. They are now turning to companies like Convene, WeWork, Breather, and Regus to provide an all-in-one workplace solution. While coworking may offer a quick fix, is it the right future for how companies will need to work?

  • Know Your Nomad: What do your employees want from a flexible workspace?
  • Data and Decision Making: How to leverage data that coworking spaces can provide real-time.
  • From the Landlord’s Perspective: The value of having coworking in your building as an amenity.
  • The Cost-Benefit Analysis: Is coworking a more cost-effective alternative to redesigning your existing office?

To surmise in general it was interesting, educational, informative and a well-organized event.

So why the title “It’s All About The Competition For Talent. Whatever It Takes Just Do It.”

It came from a quick Tweet I posted during the event for one thing.

And with that came a huge amount of likes views and interactions which surprised me a bit.

In retrospect, it probably should not have as I have and certainly many others have been on this “space as a service” bandwagon for quite some time.

As I mentioned I networked my tail off and had many interesting conversations one of which was with two nice ladies from WeWork. What do you think that was about? The tenant and the environment they occupy? Of course, it was, but it’s how they are thinking about it which fascinated me. I will just say this keep dismissing WeWork at your own peril. What if they only get 10% of the market? How much money is that? Trillions? “Never happen,” you say? Ok, I will agree with you if it makes you feel better.

How about Convene? Any idea what they do? They have Brookfield behind them among others. Somewhere someone said that Brookfield owns and or manages more than 1000 buildings. I will just leave that here for you to digest.

What companies like WeWork, Convene, Brookfield, Blackstone and yes Verizon understand and are focusing BILLIONS of dollars and resources towards is the talent that companies need and the workplace experience they are having every day.

Another quick side. The representative from Blackstone should write a book. He nailed it and then some. How many buildings does Blackstone own or manage? Hmm, have to look that one up.

Every tenant or potential tenant/occupier is after one thing TALENT! That is there most valuable resource and they are using SPACE and that entire environment to compete and attract that TALENT.

How do you keep that young lawyer in your firm?

How do you keep that young accountant…

How can you attract that top tier analyst…

How can you keep and or attract that young aggressive productive broker…….oops too far?

Do they have to be young?

I recently had a conversation with a 25-year-old broker who is now working for WeWork. He left a “establish brand name” to do what? Make money and be in an environment that does what?

Makes Billions?

It’s 2018 and I’m not sure what you are focusing on as a company or brand.

I do know what every major firm in the world is doing inside and outside of commercial real estate and they understand one thing for sure…

“It’s All About The Competition For Talent. Whatever It Takes Just Do It.”



+1 “Just do it?” (Wink)








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