June 2014
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Why You Must Attend IBCon
 
The “caliber of attendees” enables ample opportunities to network and develop new industry contacts.  

Chip Pieper
Chip Pieper
VP Sales & Marketing
Environmental Systems, Inc. (ESI)

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Embracing Change: REThink | Innovate | Transform is the theme for this year’s RealComm/IBCon conference taking place June 18-19.  Although themes denote purpose and focus, what actually separates one conference from another when attempting to attract attendees, vendors, and sponsors? As it relates to those of us that will be heading to Las Vegas in a few weeks, why are we making the investment to attend this particular show? Was it possibly the process that was taken to create the theme?

PointsIt appears so. Based on numerous conversations with preregistered attendees, the method of creating the theme is indeed a significant draw that attracts participants. The fact that multiple industry leaders contribute to the focus of each year’s event, weighs heavily on the desire to commit to the conference. According to Jim Sinopoli, Managing Principal at Smart Buildings, “Jim Young and Howard Berger call on industry experts to collaborate on the development of the event.” Sinopoli feels that the level of outreach in driving session topics and educational experiences is a significant difference maker in creating value for those who seek insight into the latest trends in building efficiency.

The output of this collaborative practice produces a “unique blend of educational opportunities that is hard to replicate in the industry,” says Darryl Benson, VP of Strategy and Solutions at Intelligent Buildings.  This quality also attracts “buyers in the know to come to RealComm/IBCon to acquire knowledge on the most recent innovations impacting this industry,” Benson continues. 

2013Another offering that is distinctive to RealComm/IBCon is the Smart Building Best Practice Showcase.  Last year there were 30 case studies on display in the SHOWCASE along with representatives who walked you through the engagement from a business opportunity, solution, to the results that were attained.  The format was not only diverse and informative; it was a great networking experience as well. Actually, it was probably the most impactful session of the two days.

Sinopoli is “looking forward to a refreshed set of examples of building efficiency solutions.”  Hopefully, his expectations will be met as Jim and Howard promise that this year’s SHOWCASE will be even bigger, and better than last year’s. 

Both Benson and Sinopoli agree that more than anything the mix of practitioners and real estate executives allows for a great chance to connect with liked-minded people. The “caliber of attendees” enables ample opportunities to network and develop new industry contacts.  Furthermore, John Petze, Partner at SkyFoundry says, “RealComm/IBCon is the place that real estate professionals come to network and learn about technologies that affect the entire spectrum of the real estate business. We see it as the place to interact with customers to understand their actual needs and challenges.”  Another perspective from Quinn Munton, Executive Director at GPG Advisors suggests, “Realcomm provides GPG the opportunity each year to spend one-on-one time with our clients and prospective clients to share what we have learned and how we believe we can provide value.  Few other conferences have the content value to attract C-level executive teams.”

There are however, some new sessions for this year’s conference that deserve to be highlighted. Although these tracks are primarily offered through the Pre-Conference event which takes place on the 17th, they nevertheless, promise to offer significant value to those planning on arriving in Las Vegas early. Similar to the collaborative design structure mentioned previously, the new sessions called on feedback from industry experts to shape. For example, the Corporate Real Estate Technology and Automation track, the Sustainability Executives Smart Building Roundtable, and the Smart Building Integrators Summit are all new for this year.

Geoffrey MooreAnother session that was mentioned by a number of individuals that are looking forward to attending is the Geoffrey Moore Keynote. The application of his work to the commercial and corporate real estate industry should prove to be very intriguing indeed. “I’ve been a big fan of Moore’s since Crossing the Chasm was released back in the early 1990’s. The underscoring themes of the Technology Adoption Life Cycle, the Chasm, and Crossing the Chasm are still as powerful today as when they were introduced,” says Darryl Benson.

New ParadigmFinally, when we consider what the act of Embracing Change: REThink | Innovate | Transform may consist of in the next few years, we may need to dust off our copy of Andy Grove’s Only the Paranoid Survive and reread the section on Strategic Dissonance &  Inflection Points. For those of you that may have misplaced the concept since Grove’s introduction in the 90’s, it is as follows, arriving at a point of strategic dissonance suggests that the incumbent strategy no longer works as the underlying market and competitive dynamics have shifted enough to require a new strategy.  Grove termed these “strategic inflection points” to describe the giving way of one type of industry dynamics for another.  Strategic inflection points signal fundamental change in a business and require a new strategy, a modified business model, and a change in the way business is conducted.  The driver might be new regulations, the economy, emergent competition, a structural dynamic that obviates the current environment, an aging workforce, and/or new technology innovation.  Actually, in our industry, one could argue that all of these concerns WILL have an impact on our ability to thrive in a market place where everything will be IP enabled. 

Reliable ControlsThe implications of The Internet of Things will be a topic that Jim and Howard have indicated will be addressed throughout the conference. Along with Cybersecurity and Big Data, IP enabling everything will certainly be hot discussions to keep an ear out for at the event. When putting all of this in the context of what draws attendees to want to commit to the conference, Patty Anderson, CEO at Performance Building Solutions, LLC sums it up well, "attending Realcomm/IBCon provides our organization with a pulse on the marketplace. We can see emerging technologies and understand what our customers learn in the educational sessions which enable us to deliver the right level of services that customers are requesting.”


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