Day One: CoreNet Global Summit in North America

With the theme, Experience Matters: It’s Not just Business. It’s Personal, the CoreNet Global Summit in Orange County began October 20 with a pre-conference slate of educational sessions capped by a networking reception at the newly-opened Innovation Pavilion.

It was no coincidence that two of the afternoon sessions on Sunday were titled “A New Look at Employee Experience: Employee Health, Happiness and Productivity” and “Learn From The Craft Brewing Industry: Engagement Through Experience.”

At the Employee Experience session, speakers Disha Mehtani, Vice President Human Resources, View Inc. and Jeanne Meister, Founding Partner, Future Workplace shared the results of a comprehensive survey that highlighted the importance of natural light in the workplace and creating an overall experience that is memorable.

At the same time, David Barnett, Research Manager at JLL, was sharing lessons for corporate real estate users from the craft brewing industry. Not just focused on select brews, craft brewers have perfected the art of creating an experience where patrons can enjoy wooded environments, park benches, outdoor scenery, and fire pits.

The lesson, he said is to treat your employees, and your customers, the same way.

“Give employees options, make them feel good about the work that they do,” he said. “Happiness comes first, followed by trust and kindness. Look outside your industry for inspiration.”

Later in the day, David Smith, Vice President, America’s Head of Occupier Research at Cushman and Wakefield gave an eye-opening view of the eSports industry and how it is quickly reshaping cities globally.

eSports worldwide has grown from a $130 million industry in 2012 to a nearly $3 billion industry today, rivaling, if not surpassing, the growth rate of major sports leagues such as the NFL and the U.S. film industry.

To the uninitiated, eSports are competitions among video gamers (and we are not talking a group of kids in the basement).

In the city of Arlington, TX, the eSports Stadium Arlington is 100,000 square feet and is part of a complex that includes Globe Life Park, home of the Texas Rangers. Major venues such as this one are being built around the world, notably in China.

A key to the success and the rapid growth – and a lesson for all corporate real estate professionals – is that eSports perfectly illustrates the concept of Phigital – the hybrid of physical and digital activity.

Video gamers can play from their own home, of course, with regular competitors whom they know, and they can compete publicly in arenas for prizes that reach into the millions.

Who knew that so many people would pay to go to an arena and watch other people play video games? That is why you come to a CoreNet Global Summit!

Another packed session presented lessons from Walgreen’s’ Workplace for Tomorrow. And the CoreNet Global Academic Challenge 5.0 kicked off, with teams from the Breda University of Applied Sciences, Vanderbilt University, and the University of Washington competing to develop a strategy to “recession-proof” a company’s real estate portfolio.

The students will work on their concepts and present them Tuesday and the winner will be announced Tuesday evening at the annual Awards & Recognition dinner (keep an eye on this space for that breaking news!).

To round out the day, attendees descended on the Innovation Pavilion for the Opening Reception.

The Summit has many new and returning features including CNGtv and the What’s Next podcast parlor, Campfire Sessions and picnic tables to dine outside or make a quick call. So California!