June 24, 2019

Healthcare Facilities Take Over Retail in San Diego


Author: Kelsi Maree Borland


The integration of clinics and urgent care facilities into retail centers is the biggest trend in healthcare, according to experts at a CREW San Diego discussion.


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June 18, 2019

2019 Woman of Influence Full Featured List Revealed


Author: Natalie Dolce and Real Estate Forum reveal this year’s woman of influence list, including newly focused categories, judge’s categories and more. In preparation for our Women of Influence special feature and retreat, Real Estate Forum and put together a spotlight on the achievements of women in commercial real estate.


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April 12, 2019

CREW Corner: Blockchain & commercial real estate industry

Publication: The Daily Transcript

Author: Rebecca Bodemann


Revolutionary. Innovative. Equalizing. Disruptive.

These buzzwords have been linked to blockchain technology, which some retailers use to streamline the process of bringing products to the market. Blockchain technology also has the potential to shake-up the commercial real estate industry.


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March 29, 2019

Understanding Blockchain Technology


Author: Kelsi Maree Borland


At the most recent CREW San Diego event, industry leaders unpacked block chain technology and explained how it can benefit business processes.


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February 27, 2019

Influential Women 2019: Lauren Slatinsky

Publication: The Daily Transcript

Author: Jennifer McEntee


Slatinsky is president of the San Diego chapter of Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW). She takes the reins at a time when CREW San Diego is drafting a strategic plan for the trade group's future that considers member retention, leadership succession, and how best to advance the work of local commercial real estate professionals.


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February 05, 2019

Achieving Pay Parity in Commercial Real Estate


Author: Lauren Slatinsky


If the current level of growth continues, women may not reach pay equity with men until 2119.


A recent white paper from Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW) Network entitled Achieving Pay Parity in Commercial Real Estate compiled data about lasting pay disparity between men and women in the U.S., as well as data about the benefits of a gender diverse leadership team and strategies for closing the gender pay gap.


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January 31, 2019

Which Asset Classes Will Lead San Diego in 2019?


Author: Kelsi Maree Borland


Industrial and office assets could be best positioned for a strong 2019, according to Lynn Reaser, Ph.D, CBE, chief economist and adjunct professor of economics at Point Loma Nazarene University. Reaser spoke at the economic forecast luncheon for CREW San Diegothis week, held at University Club atop Symphony Towers. The economic outlook predicted stable economic growth in 2019, with GDP growth at 2.4%, 2% inflation, two more rate hikes and stock market gains of 8% or 9%.


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January 29, 2019

Mostly ‘B’ Grades Seen in 2019 for San Diego Commercial Real Estate

Publication: Times of San Diego

Author: Chris Jennewein


The outlook for commercial real estate in San Diego this year is mixed, with high demand for new warehouse and office space offset by challenges in other sectors.


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January 3, 2019

Seniors Gain Attention at CREW Network Convention

Publication: SoCal Real Estate

Author: Jennifer Litwak


Some of the focus of 2018’s annual CREW Network Convention, which took place in San Diego this year, was on seniors and their real estate needs. During the event, Hessam Nadji, president and CEO of Marcus & Millichap, presented “Market Trends and Insight."


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January 1, 2019

San Diego Top Marketing Executives 2019: Lisa Bittner & Mandy Serrano

Publication: SD Metro Magazine


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December 3, 2018

Business Women of the Year Finalist: Jennifer Litwak

Publication: San Diego Business Journal


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November 20, 2018

Women Who Impact San Diego 2018: Catherine McCullough

Publication: SD Metro Magazine


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November 12, 2018

CREW San Diego Names 2019 Board

Publication: The Daily Transcript

Author: Staff Report


Lauren Slatinsky, vice president at the workplace design firm Cultura, has been installed as the 2019 president of Commercial Real Estate Women of San Diego (CREW). Ariel Bedell, a partner with the real estate law firm The Loftin Firm, will serve as president-elect.


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November 6, 2018

CREW San Diego Elects New Board of Directors

Publication: Connect California

Author: Dennis Kaiser


Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW) San Diego, a membership organization dedicated to promoting, educating and supporting professionals in the field of commercial real estate, announced its 2019 board of directors.


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October 23, 2018

CREW Convention in Photos, Recognized Leaders


Author: Natalie Dolce


The CREW Network Convention and Marketplace here last week brought together more than 1200 women. caught up with a few to talk about what CREW means to them among other things.


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October 17, 2018

CREW Network Elects 2019 Board of Directors

Publication: SoCal Real Estate

Author: Carrie Rossenfeld


Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW) Network has elected its 2019 board of directors, selecting six commercial real estate leaders to be led by incoming president Holly Neber, CEO of AEI Consultants, according to a release from a representative of the organization.


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September 5, 2018

50 Influential Leaders: Bre’an Fox

Publication: The Daily Transcript

Author: Jennifer Chung Klam


Growing up in Manitoba, Canada, Fox built forts with her siblings, and this early interest in building and design eventually led to a career as a designer 26 years ago, when she launched Facility Solutions Design Group.


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September 5, 2018

50 Influential Leaders: Wendy Lanahan

Publication: The Daily Transcript

Author: Jennifer Chung Klam


As director of real estate for wireless chipmaking giant Qualcomm Inc., Wendy Lanahan oversees about 70 properties, comprising 6 million square feet of commercial space in the United States and Canada.


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September 14, 2018

A Fresh Course for CREW


Author: Betsy Kim


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September 11, 2018

Celebrating Women Profiles 2018

Publication: San Diego Magazine

Author: Betsy Kim


The Woman of Mission Federal Credit Union: Lisa Chappell


As vice president of corporate facilities, Lisa Chappell is responsible for managing a multi-million-dollar, 350,000-square-foot real estate portfolio of more than 31 retail branch locations and two corporate offices.


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May 18, 2018

The Cutting-Edge Technology Disrupting CRE


Author: Kelsi Maree Borland


The most recent San Diego CREW meeting invited industry leaders to show off the newest technologies changing their business.


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May 16, 2018

Top 40 Under 40: Bryal Hilton

Publication: The Daily Transcript

Author: Jennifer Chung Klam


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March 21, 2018

Influential Women: Ariel R. Bedell

Publication: The Daily Transcript

Author: John Roemer


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March 21, 2018

Influential Women: Catharine Hughes

Publication: The Daily Transcript

Author: John Roemer


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March 21, 2018

Influential Women: Viveca Bissonnette

Publication: The Daily Transcript

Author: John Roemer


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March 9, 2018

Talent drives the market; local is new global

Publication: The Daily Transcript

Author: Andrea Papagianis-Camacho


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January 4, 2018

Lessons learned from Liberty Station & Seaport Village

Publication: Daily Journal

Author: Andrea Papagianis-Camacho


As San Diego's iconic landmarks continue to evolve, many lessons can be learned from large-scale development projects on government-owned lands that are shaping the city's diverse communities.


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Collaboration Will Be Key For CREW-SD in 2018

Author: Carrie Rossenfeld

December 18, 2017


Bringing in legacy members to help mentor and support newer and younger members is a goal of CREW San Diego, incoming president Bree Wong, with SWS Engineering, tells The San Diego chapter of Commercial Real Estate Women, which is dedicated to promoting, educating and supporting professionals in the field of commercial real estate, recently named its 2018 board of directors.



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Tiffany English Elected to National CREW Network Board


December 15, 2017


Tiffany English a member of CREW (Commercial Real Estate Women) San Diego, has become the first individual from an architectural design firm to join the national CREW Network board of directors. CREW Network is the industry’s premier business networking organization, with chapters in North America and Europe, dedicated to influencing the success of the commercial real estate industry by advancing the achievements of women.


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FEMA Emergency Preparedness... Are You Ready?

Source:  FEMA


In light of the recent hurricane's, CREW San Diego is hopeful our members and our community will work to initiate emergency preparedness for their homes and businesses.


The below FEMA publication is an excellent resource guide that has been designed to help the citizens of this nation learn how to protect themselves and their families against all types of hazards.

No Piece Is Too Small- Illumina's Workplace Strategy

Source:  American Builders Quarterly

Author: Kelsey E. Ingram

June 2017


Everyone grumbles when it comes to moving desks at the office—stacks of papers, photos, and knickknacks all have to find their way from one area to another. Why can’t everything stay as is? As Illumina’s Jenny Durbin explains, each employee’s placement is a carefully considered piece in a puzzle to optimize company performance.


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Top Commercial Real Estate Leaders Darcy Miramontes

Publication: The Daily Transcript


After earning a law degree from Loyola Law School, Miramontes fully intended to practice law. But once she began working with her mother, an industry veteran in commercial real estate, her career took off fast. She was named Rookie of the Year by her company just a few years after starting as a runner.


As it turns out, a background in law has helped Miramontes develop a successful career as a real estate broker.


"I have a good perspective on contract negotiations," she said. "I can understand where the attorneys are coming from, but I also understand from a broker or deal perspective what could be set aside and what really needs to be negotiated."


Today, Miramontes leads JLL's Southern California multifamily team in San Diego and Orange counties and the Inland Empire. She represents institutional and private clients in the valuation, marketing and disposition of multifamily properties and development land. She has completed $1.6 billion in multifamily transactions, representing more than 13,000 units of multifamily housing.


While limited land and a constrained pipeline present a challenge to the county's housing needs, Miramontes said those factors are driving the fundamentals of the market, which she said will remain strong this year.


Miramontes and her team will be taking Broadstone Coronado on the Bay to the market in June. The remodeled, 549-unit apartment complex is located on the waterfront of Coronado Island.


"It's a great core-plus opportunity in a highly sought-after submarket in San Diego that underwent renovation and has great fundamentals," she said. She is also working on an upcoming development opportunity for the mixed-use Courthouse Commons. San Diego County is looking for a developer to re-envision and redevelop three city blocks downtown.


Miramontes is a member of Commercial Real Estate Women (also known as CREW San Diego), the Urban Land Institute Women's Leadership Initiative Committee, JLL Women's Network, and the JLL Latino Employee Resource Network.

40 Under 40- Ashley Gosal

Publication: The Daily Transcript

Author: Jennifer McEntee

April 19, 2017


As the in-house legal counsel for real estate developer Bosa Development, Gosal sometimes can't help but notice she's the only woman in the boardroom. And at 29, she's also sometimes the youngest.


"It's difficult to be a woman, particularly in real estate. There's a general bias in our society as to women's capabilities, focus and intent," Gosal said. "I have found it to be difficult, but I haven't focused on that. You have to know who you are as a person and push a little harder. You dig in your heels a little more."


Gosal's education and experience are all the credentials she needs. She has a law degree from University of San Diego and a bachelor of commerce degree from The University of British Columbia. Since joining Bosa in 2015, she's overseen the company's legal requirements on projects including the purchase and entitlement of the downtown San Diego block bordered by Broadway, 7th, 8th and C streets, and on Bosa-acquired properties at 10th and Market, 530 B Street, and 401 Mile of Cars in National City.


In the community, Gosal serves on executive committee of the Downtown San Diego Partnership board; as co-chair of the Urban Land Institute's Women's Leadership Initiative; on the Monarch School board of directors; as a member of Commercial Real Estate Women San Diego; and as a member of two Building Industry Association San Diego committees.


Gosal said she feels fortunate to have found a niche that allows her to use her real estate and business acumen, while working for a company with worthy mentors and offices in both San Diego and her native Canada.

40 Under 40- Carly Glova

Publication: The Daily Transcript

Author: Jennifer McEntee

April 19, 2017


After a decade in commercial real estate finance, including as an associate with San Diego's BioMed Realty Trust, Glova said she did some soul-searching.


"My heart was never in it. I didn't want to jump out of bed to get to a job in finance," said Glova.


She knew she loved the commercial real estate industry and making connections between people.


"No one was serving the industry as far as recruiting," she said.


So she founded executive search firm Building Careers LLC two years ago as San Diego's first dedicated hiring resource for the local commercial real estate industry. Glova estimates she's played matchmaker for about 30 companies and more than 1,000 job candidates.


"Companies know they can pick up the phone and say they're looking for a candidate at any level, at any salary. I have a pretty deep network," said Glova.


She is Building Careers LLC's only employee, but she works closely with two contractors to match companies with prospective candidates.


Glova stays connected with the local business community by volunteering for a number of organizations. She was a former board member for Commercial Real Estate Women and the Urban Land Institute's Young Leaders Group and the membership vice president for NAIOP San Diego's Toastmasters Club and serves on its Developing Leaders board. She's also active with outreach organizations like Going Places Network and Dress for Success.


Glova said her age is an asset in her recruiting, since she's young enough to know how difficult the job market can be right out of college, and experienced enough to know what businesses want.


"It's great to bring my perspective to the table," she said. "My clients appreciate my understanding of their business and appreciate the level of folks I'm targeting."

How to succeed in (real estate) business

Publication: The Daily Transcript

Author: Anne Benge

April 18, 2017


Gina Champion-Cain, a well-known San Diego real estate developer, investor and restauranteur, surprised the audience at a recent Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW) San Diego presentation by admitting to being a strong introvert. Who better than someone who finds "working a room" to be out of her comfort zone to advise others about a winning formula for business success?


As CEO of American National Investments, a retail, office and hospitality development firm, and owner of LuvSurf, a multi-faceted real estate, hospitality and branded merchandise company, Champion-Cain has created significant commercial and residential buildings as well as signature restaurants, a vacation rental business, a coffee roasting company, an apparel brand and more.


As the featured speaker at the CREW Legacy Member-exclusive event, Champion-Cain focused on the role of creativity as a pillar of her success. The mental exercises she experienced through her philosophy major at University of Michigan, she said, as well as with her studies in law school, has been far more useful to her in business than her MBA. Creative and critical thinking has helped her recognize what an opportunity could be rather than just taking it at face value.


Having a diverse educational background, or even one that's just different from many of your peers, can be leveraged as an advantage. She challenges those who work for her to come with solutions, not problems, and advised the audience to "start off the conversation with 'I have a solution' before you even say there is a problem."


Champion-Cain also recommended letting go of fear -- particularly -- the fear of failing. She told the audience that she always knew she would be able to make money, whether that required waitressing or developing a building. Confidence is there for the taking, and she said that self-confidence has been her most important asset in business. Don't succumb to peer pressure or self-doubt, she advised.


Seeking out the right mentors can also bolster your confidence and help gain a new perspective. When Champion-Cain once asked one of her mentors about leadership, he confided that the secret to his success was surrounding himself with people smarter than him.


He also told her to lead with what she knows. For example, his strength was in relationships rather than financials, sales or other aspects of business. Accordingly, he made sure to leverage his interpersonal skills to achieve the goals he had for the company.


For Champion-Cain, leveraging her creativity and curiosity has served her well and guided many business decisions. She wants to be excited about her investments, and knowing and caring about her business ventures has led to making sound investment decisions as well as gaining more control over her money than she might have through a conventional retirement account. "Know where your money is," she recommended.


Another part of her winning formula for business success? Hard work. "I've worked like a dog," she said. Her hard work has been well recognized with many achievement awards and even a "Gina Champion-Cain Day" reserved by a former San Diego mayor. CREW San Diego, along with many others San Diegans, is excited to see what Champion-Cain has in store for the future.


Anne Benge is CEO of Cultura and a CREW San Diego Legacy member.

CREW San Diego Announces New Board of Directors

Publication: The Daily Transcript

February 24, 2017


CREW (Commercial Real Estate Women) San Diego recently announced its 2017 board of directors, which will be led by Catherine Hughes, of Ware Malcomb, as president.


Other board members will be Lauren Slatinsky, of Pacific Building Group, as first vice president - membership; Hallie Putterman, of Bentley Mills, as second vice president -- sponsorship, Dawn Watson, of LevitZacks, as treasurer; Ariel Bedell, of The Loftin Firm, as secretary; Bre'an Fox, of FS Design Group, as director of education and programs; Bryal Wirth, of Heaviland, and Maura Young, of Pacific Rim Mechanical, as directors of marketing communications; Melissa Scofield, of the San Diego Business Journal, as director of special events; Wendy Lanahan, of Qualcomm, as a national delegate; Toni McMahon, of Fuscoe Engineering, as a foundation delegate and Jackie Isidore, of Johnson & Jennings, as past president.

Influential Women

Publication: The Daily Transcript

February 22, 2017


Debra Aitken

For many years, Aitken served as assistant vice president at California Bank & Trust, where she oversaw a portfolio of 25 bank branches along with numerous corporate headquarters and office properties. She was involved with several commercial real estate associations for networking and developing business. She also previously worked in contract furniture.


After surviving cancer, Aitken felt like anything was possible and didn't want to let any experience pass her by. She decided to follow her interest in commercial real estate and in 2014 made a career change.


Aitken now provides project and construction management for capital improvement projects and tenant improvement projects for Cushman & Wakefield. Recently, she helped Regent Properties, a major Los Angeles-based real estate investment trust, reposition Atlas at Carlsbad, a 250,000-square-foot, multimillion-dollar office property.


The project entailed a major renovation of splitting the building into two separate parts, in addition to managing meticulous storm water control strategies and working closely with the city of Carlsbad.


She has been an active member of CREW Network San Diego since 1999, and served as its president in 2003 and 2009. Last year, she joined the CREW Network Foundation Chapter Champions, identifying and sharing best practices in scholarships, industry research and career outreach. This year she will serve as a CREW Network committee member, focusing on membership education platforms nationally.


"CREW promotes professional opportunities for women in the commercial real estate industry -- an industry where women are still underrepresented," Aitken said. "The spirit of collaboration runs strong through our membership, and we're always looking for opportunities to help each other succeed ... It's a very empowering organization."


Jennifer Litwak

Litwak runs Housing on Merit, which develops and manages affordable housing properties. The nonprofit also provides education and wellness services, along with job and life skills training for residents.


After a stint as a litigator, Litwak transitioned into public policy work and advocacy, consulting on issues related to affordable housing and homelessness. In 2013, she joined HOM, which now has 12 properties with over 2,150 units across California, serving more than 5,375 residents.


Since it generates revenue through its properties, HOM is not dependent on government funding, Litwak said. This allows the organization to be more nimble and responsive to the needs of its communities. In San Diego, for example, HOM has responded to the growing number of homeless female veterans by launching a program to provide funds to help them establish permanent housing.


Litwak said the most rewarding aspect of her job is having a lasting impact on people's lives. She also hopes to do that through her work with the national CREW Network, helping to provide statistics on the advancement of women in commercial real estate.


"As a woman in this industry, being part of that organization and elevating the conversation around gender bias and barriers ... is one of the most impactful things I can do," she said.


"CREW promotes professional opportunities for women in the commercial real estate industry -- an industry where women are still underrepresented," Aitken said. "The spirit of collaboration runs strong through our membership, and we're always looking for opportunities to help each other succeed ... It's a very empowering organization."


Toni McMahon

McMahon manages all Fuscoe Engineering Inc.'s business development, marketing and public relations for the San Diego region.


She recently took on the role of campaign manager for Fuscoe Regional Director Eric Armstrong as he ran for a division director position with his local water district. While he lost by a slim margin, McMahon said the exposure was positive for Armstrong and will lead to future opportunities. For her, the experience was both challenging and rewarding.


"I consider it an accomplishment," she said. "This experience had all the elements that motivate me: Supporting and rallying behind an individual I believe in, debate, hard work, planning, marketing, pounding the pavement, deadlines and excitement."


A marketing leader, McMahon has shared her expertise by serving with a number of industry organizations, including the Downtown San Diego Partnership, the Urban Land Institute, the Building Industry Association of San Diego and as marketing director for CREW Network's San Diego chapter.


While these organizations do important work for both men and women in the industry, she said advocating for the advancement of women is personal for her. McMahon has a smart, ambitious daughter and wants nothing to stop her from achieving her potential.


"Professionally, it is crucial that diversity exists at our decision-making tables so that different ideas, perspectives and opinions are shared and considered," she said. "It takes a diverse group to create the most amazing and unique solutions. A group that excludes a gender is lopsided and shortsighted."


What 2017 portends for commercial real estate women

Publication: The Daily Transcript

Author: Teresa Y. Warren

February 3, 2017


The Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW) San Diego hosted its annual economic insights forum in January, which provided an expert's opinion as to what may be ahead for the U.S. and international economies.


This year's speaker was Spencer Levy, Americas Head of Research for CBRE and a senior member of the company's global research team. It was the second year that Mr. Levy, based in Baltimore, appeared at the forum to speak to a San Diego audience about a variety of issues of particular importance to the commercial real estate industry.


Mr. Levy's presentation was thought-provoking. And while predictions of experts like Mr. Levy may not always turn out to be correct, the information they present challenges their audience to think critically.


As anyone who attends such events knows, the value of the presentation isn't just found in what the speaker says. Rather, it is what the attendees do with the information they received that has lasting impact.


Taylor Flores, vice president of Cultura, a furniture management and facilities design company, gained a new perspective about how she looks at workforce production rates, based on Mr. Levy's observation that overall production rates are down in the workforce due to lack of innovation.


"Our (current day) innovations such as apps, Uber, Airbnb, etc. are currently taking a piece of the pie, not making the pie larger," said Flores. "I thought that was really interesting, and while I'm not personally an engineer who can 'do' anything with that, it definitely made me look at things differently."


Levy also predicted a likely downturn in the U.S. economy in 2019 lasting up to two years. For Lisa Chappelle, vice president of facilities management for Mission Federal Credit Union, that was better news than she anticipated.


"I plan to center on 'recession proofing' my team by focusing on leadership, strategy and all that our team has to offer our organization in good times and bad," said Chapelle. "We'll be stepping up the PR of our workgroup, emphasizing our contributions and concentrating on advancing our skills, experience and education."


Bryal Hilton, design and development planner for Heaviland Landscape Management, is similarly looking ahead optimistically. She is preparing, both professionally and personally, for smart growth. "With a 'small' recession predicted, focus your business toward services and not goods," she says. "Take this time to really focus on what makes you stand out."


At Burger Construction, COO Brian Gates thinks Mr. Levy's insights can help his business in its planning and forecasting, particularly the CBRE researcher's "suggestion of closely watching consumer sentiment indices as a leading indicator of a recession." As with most businesses, said Gates, "we pay close attention to where we are in the economic cycle, and this information will support us in our cycle strategy."


For Natalie Stillman, CFP, CLTC, vice present of financial planning for Hall Private Wealth Advisors, Levy's outlook on a recession also made an impact. "I thought it was interesting how he said it would be better for us to suffer another recession than not go through another one," she said.


"He seemed to feel this was a normal part of a business cycle and expansion would follow. I think we tend to fear the word 'recession,' based on the recent Great Recession, and yet his perspective is that this is a healthy thing."


Flores also took to interest in Levy's advice to detach from the idea of your company selling a product or good because those who sell goods will be at a disadvantage. "Mr. Levy emphasized the need to focus on the overall concept of service versus goods, as goods are a commodity and can be much more affected by political changes, globalization and the economy," she said.


"Our company just went through a major rebranding," Flores added, "to be able to focus on offering just that -- an overall service experience versus selling goods. I think it's something that basically every company can do if they refocus and re-evaluate how they operate."


Teresa Y. Warren is president of TW2 Marketing, which she founded in 1992.


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