We were honoured to welcome Peeter Wesik, Chairman of Wesgroup Properties, as our Icon Speaker for our luncheon event on December 10th. Peeter was in conversation with Jennifer Podmore Russell, Director, Deloitte LLP, and shared the following nuggets of wisdom.
What career advice do you have for individuals starting out in the business?
Peeter Wesik: Focus on your strengths. Find people you can work with who are good at things you are not, and work with them as a team.
What are the big challenges facing our industry now?
The need to create social capital. In a world of high and intense densification in the Lower Mainland, to find ways to help people socialize in the public realm, in a space where they can meet others.
On cities: As Jane Jacobs said, cities have energy of their own. Vancouver has its own energy, like NYC, San Francisco, and other great cities. We have ocean, mountains, the US border, and a constrained land base. We have a very livable city and we need to work on building communities here.
On regional planning: It's difficult, what with 21 municipalities and their own different ways of doing things, but we need to do it. The academics at the UBC planning School need to be leading us in that area.
Some of the best urban decisions made in the Lower Mainland: The decision to keep residential units in the downtown to add life to the downtown core; and Premier Bill Bennett's decision to bring rapid transit to the Lower Mainland.
On what is most important to Peeter: Family and genuine, positive relationships are most important to me, as well as giving back to our community and our business associations.