Last Wednesday, after a more than five-year hiatus, AIR CRE reinstated our live orientation program.
Since the inception of the organization in 1960 and until 2012, all new AIR CRE members were required to attend a live orientation in order to learn, first-hand, what members can expect from the association and what the association expects in return.
In 2012 as the organization grew geographically, we introduced an online orientation program to make it more convenient for our new members to learn about the organization. However, an unintended consequence of this decision has been a bit of a disconnect between our members, especially our young members, and the value of the organization.
Many new members view AIR CRE as just another data vendor, not realizing that they are actually part of an organization that is absolutely unique to the industry. Although other associations may offer some of the same type of products and services as AIR CRE, there is no other industry organization anywhere in the country that offers its members everything AIR CRE does.
What makes us truly unique is our complete menu of services: data, contracts, networking, education, events, arbitration, mentoring…and, of course, the Rules of Professional Conduct which set the standard for member-to-member interactions.
As I arrived at the Bonaventure Hotel that morning, I was a bit apprehensive, wondering if the attendees would be energized and excited or just anxious to get the program over with so they could get the heck out of DTLA.
As soon as the program began, I knew we had made the right decision…The attendees were engaged and the speakers were dialed-in.
The orientation was presented by a panel of AIR CRE’s Board of Directors: Joe Vargas of the Wonderful Company, Bart Reinhard of JLL and Dave Harding of CBRE. If you’ve been in the industry for even a couple of years, I am sure those names are familiar to you.
Joe, Dave and Bart reinforced the fact that AIR CRE has been instrumental in their success and what a privilege it is to give back to the organization that has done so much for them. They emphasized that the day-to-day dealings of a broker is largely an independent undertaking, yet it’s absolutely vital for brokers to utilize AIR CRE’s wide network of leading professionals to create solid business relationships, both inside and outside of one’s market.
Over the quickly-paced session, the panel covered everything from the history of the organization to legislative advocacy (did you know that in 2017 AIR CRE was instrumental in defeating AB 1059, which would have banned all forms of dual agency…thanks, in large part, to AIR CRE Board Member Jason Jamison?).
The morning concluded with all attendees taking an online, 42-question test on the association’s Rules of Professional Conduct…don’t worry, it’s an open-book test and everyone in attendance passed with flying colors!
In speaking with those in attendance, it was clear they found great value in the orientation and became fully aware of products and services they didn’t know AIR CRE offered and expressed their gratitude to be part of such a broker-focused organization.
One of the new brokers in attendance, Garret Gilliland of Lee & Associates, Riverside, who I recently met at our NoMad mixer and again at last month’s Purchase and Sale Contract Seminar, relayed that, “the orientation helped me fully understand the tools and resources that are available to me as a member. This, like other AIR CRE events, was an incredible opportunity to engage with top producing real estate professionals, which fuels my drive to increase my industry knowledge and build a professional network.”
Comments like that emphasize the fact that AIR CRE was created to provide our members with a framework for long-term success. It’s very rewarding to see this organization’s involvement in the success of our members, as each member brings new life and opportunity to the association.
AIR CRE’s management team and staff are already developing new, fun ideas for the next orientation on Wednesday, July 17th. We welcome all members…I hope to see you there!