Along with many other organizations that are easing their way back into events, seminars, and larger conferences, the RELPI Community came together for an inaugural launch this past week. Approximately forty people congregated in a both indoors and outdoors space, exceeding capacity, for an event that was designed as, “A mostly social gathering along with education and information,” for four hours at a venue* that overlooked the Manhattan skyline:
A few takeaways from both producing and participating in this meeting includes and not limited to some interesting dynamics.
First, seeing people other than family and friends in more than one dimension and in full body mode was one of the most exciting and life affirming moments experienced since the pandemic began. And more to the point, having the opportunity to reconnect with one’s peers after such a long drought it was as if your lungs were filling to full capacity again.
Second, there was a definite initial awkwardness to approaching people. Do we shake hands, hug, fist bump, elbow bump or what? After a bit of time, this seemed to dissipate especially when people began to exit and there was a lot of embracing in the vein of, “I’m so glad to see you my friend, I’ve missed you.”
Third, and this was a real kicker…I personally had a “people hangover” the following day and it took a little time to reflect on this. Basically, it had been more than a year and half that I have engaged with more than a couple of people at a time for any period of time and getting back into real and substantive social interaction turned out to be wonderful, but I was out of practice. However, I’m sure these are muscle memories that will come back quickly.
From a content aspect, our Keynote Presenter Jonathan Miller, CRE, CEO of the appraisal and consulting firm Miller Samuel offered some terrific insights about the residential market with terrific interaction from the Community Members. Although Jonathan’s expertise is in the residential arena, he did offer an interesting commentary about the new dynamics in the office market when he said, “I’ve hired more people and taking less space” which could be a harbinger of things to come.
Of course, with news of these new variants spreading, we’re not sure how the “circuit” will continue this fall. With the hope that this is just a blip, it’s great getting back into the groove!
*Event space generously provided by Mike Romo.