A Successful Career Development Session for Young CRE Professionals

Over 55 young commercial real estate professionals attended the NAIOP Vancouver Career Development Session on June 11, 2015 at KPMG. Sponsors of the event were KPMG and Taylor Ryan Executive Search. Speakers included Lorne Burns, leader of KPMG’s National Real Estate Practice; Andrea VandenEnden, CA, Senior manager of Sales Enablement at KPMG; and Gavin Ryan, founding partner of Taylor Ryan Executive Search Partners.

Some key takeaways:

From Lorne Burns:

  • Be true to your values.
  • Promote others and they will promote you.
  • Be open to opportunities; sometime they don’t come at the most convenient time.
  • Jump into situations and drive them in unique directions.
  • The top three things Lorne looks for in a new hire: high energy/enthusiasm, collaboration and intellectual capability.
  • Differentiate yourself and build your own brand.
  • Add value beyond your job description.
  • As a new hire, what you should look for in an employer: opportunity for variety, to be able to change career paths, an employer who develops people, and an employer who makes you proud to work for them.
  • Create and cultivate relationships wherever you can.
  • Look for a mentor.

From Andrea VandenEnden:

  • Reinvent yourself every so often (between 4 and 7 years).
  • Be proactive and show your confidence; stick your neck out.
  • Respect other peoples’ time when networking.
  • Prove yourself in every new assignment.
  • Read What Got You Here Won’t Get You There by Marshall Goldsmith.
  • Find a mentor and leverage them respectfully.

From Gavin Ryan:

  • At the interview, dress the part; don’t dress down.
  • Network extensively; Vancouver’s CRE community is a small and very interconnected one.
  • The questions you ask in an interview are as important as the answers you give.
  • Reinvention, either at a new company, or within your existing company, is essential to keep you fresh. But look at a 4 to 7 year horizon – 2 years is generally not enough.
  • Developing good relationships with recruitment experts is essential.

The PowerPoint presentation delivered at the event is available here. To be the first to hear about other upcoming NAIOP Vancouver events, subscribe to our mailing list.

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