2018 CREW Convention Recap

Thursday, Nov 1, 2018

Big thank you to one of our CREW Convention Scholarship winners, Eve Renaud, for putting together this summary for those who weren't able to attend. The CREW Calgary delegate consisted of 15 members this year, and from all accounts appears to be a hugely successful conference!

Check out some of the official photos HERE

2018 CREW Convention Summary

Firstly, I would like to send my sincerest thanks to CREW Calgary and Remington Developments for providing me with the opportunity to attend this year’s CREW Convention in San Diego. As expected, this was an amazing experience of networking, professional development and education in the San Diego Commercial Real Estate Market. There were too many valuable experiences to mention here, however this summary will highlight some of the valuable lessons I learned from this year’s convention.

The conference started off with a very valuable visit to the CREW Network Marketplace. Here, I was reacquainted with many of my fellow Canadian members and was able to roam the floor to meet new members from around the US. Following the Marketplace, CREW Edmonton hosted a lovely cocktail event with all of the Canadian attendees, and was able to introduce myself to many new members from across the country.

The Convention started off formally the next morning with a welcome message from CREW Network’s president, Tara Piurko. It was amazing to see a Canadian that I had the opportunity to meet while President of the Calgary chapter a few years ago stand on stage in such a high profile position within the Network.  The morning’s content continued with a very motivating and educational talk by Alison Levine, the Team Captain of America’s first Women’s Everest Expedition. Her speech really resonated with me since I’m currently working on a project right now that is taking longer than expected to get going. Alison’s analogy of how she had to ascend Mt. Everest by having to climb from Base Camp to Camp 1, and back down, Camp 2 and back down to Base Camp, etc. really drove that even though you are moving backward (or what it seems) you can continue to make progress.   Her description of how you need to climb the higher elevations slowly close to the summit also provide an example of how slow progress is still progress.

Later that morning, I decided to attend the Blockchain breakout session. I thought it would be a good idea to attend a session on a topic that I had NO background on. This was a very informative session on how Blockchain can change the way we see and trade in Commercial Real Estate. Although I left the session with more questions than answers, the session inspired me to look at different technologies in my work and see the value on how they can change the way we do business.

The following day was also full of informative sessions, but I couldn’t finish my summary without mentioning Robin Roberts amazing speech on persistence, rising from adversity, and managing a career as a trailblazer for women in a predominantly male dominated industry of sports broadcasting. She really resonated with me in that she always kept her goals in mind, such as being a sports broadcaster, but life can take you in different directions. If you are true to what you want, you may not achieve EXACTLY what you had your heart set on, but life can lead you in a much better direction. Her rules, dream big, focus small also really helped me not emphasize on the gigantic goals I have for my career ahead, but do what I can now. Robin Roberts’s life and her survival of cancer twice really left the room in awe, and not a dry eye in the house!

In addition to the on-venue sessions, I took advantage of attending a learning excursion of a retail property, Westfield UTC, a massive and impressive redevelopment project located in LaJolla. The tour really emphasized that experience continues to be an integral part in keeping bricks and mortar retail growing, and really separates the centres that succeed from the rest. Examples include Valet, ambassadors and a strong retail mix.

Overall, the CREW Convention was an invaluable experience from myself personally and professionally. I left the conference feeling motivated and reinvigorated at my job. I even had the chance to explore some new business ventures with fellow CREW Members. Again, thank you to CREW Calgary for giving me this experience to attend this year’s conference.

- Eve Renaud, Rencor Developments Inc.