Why I’m All About A Different Kind of Road Tripping
Twenty-four months ago, I came to a sobering realization. During a periodic review of my business plan, I recognized a stark fact: very little of my business was a result of cross-office collaboration from around the country.
And yet this wasn’t surprising. I had invested minimal effort in getting to know my 700 potential partners around the country. I hadn’t visited a single one of our almost 40 offices. And while I had developed strong relationships with a handful of my peers, I ignored the opportunity to spend significant time with them.
Ironically as real estate strategists, we’re constantly thinking about the importance of proximity to coworkers. But I was stubbornly ignoring the fundamental business reality of “out of sight, out of mind.”
Since that pivotal epiphany, I’ve prioritized visiting our other offices. For some, it’s been as simple as arriving a day early for a planned vacation so I can work out of that local office. For others, it requires more initiative like hopping on a plane for a major meeting, when a dial-in would suffice.
But it’s working. My cross-office business is up 600% since 2015. I’ve visited 20% of our offices with several more trips planned for later this year. And I’ve proudly built many strong new connections with my hard-driving colleagues from around the country. In fact, as those relationships have grown many of us have chosen to convene annually for an unofficial “mini-conference” to compare best practices and ensure fluid cross-office communication.
But I’ll save more about that for a different post. For now, enjoy this group photo from our March 2017 gathering in Austin, TX.
(left to right): Pat Brady (Chicago), Anna Shaffer (DC), Mitch Kumin (Dallas), Gabe Marans (NYC), Ian Ducharme (Seattle), John Leskow (Philadelphia),Ryan Miller (Baltimore), Will Butler (London/Cross-Border), Ashley Elkin(Denver), Tripp Pruet (Houston), Bryant Lach (Houston), Alecia Burdick (Austin), Perry Kaplan (Philadelphia), Doug Jamieson (NYC)