5 valuable messages from CoreNet

Yesterday's CoreNet Symposium was a cracker: great venue, inspiring speakers, leftfield content, real points of learning – and a bloody good bash to boot.

I walked out richer for the event, thanks in part to five messages that I absorbed:

1. Conferences don't have to be dull

"Let's have circus tents, ice cream vans, a 'street' of food vendors, flying cheerleaders and a DJ – plus expert speakers from all over the world" they said.

Although the symposium topic, 'Wellness and Wellbeing', might have seemed a little leftfield at first glance for the corporate real estate audience, its value was expertly detailed in the many, engaging and high-tempo sessions that flicked us along through the day.

Thank you:

Anthony Flannery of Reimagine

Jim Taylour of Orangebox

Tony Armstrong of CBRE

Jessica Cooper of Delos

Owen Zachariasse of Delta Development Group

Grant Schofield Ph.D of AUT

Inspirational speakers all.

2. Wellness is not a fad

Evolving markets and technology mean that the type of work we had to do a decade ago is significantly different from what we do today. Not only is the work different, but the mindset of the people looking for it has moved on too.

At a time when Gen-Y talent is increasingly looking for employers - and workplaces - to deliver new, more 'human' work experiences, if you lack an effective, wellness-centred approach to work then the effects on your business could well include:

  • Losing employees
  • Rising costs: due to reduced employee performance and productivity
  • Going out of business altogether – as your competition steals a march on you.
Wellness makes sense – after all, human beings are drawn to attractive, enriching places. It's not about yoga retreats. If you want to attract and retain star (choosy) performers to your business, you're going to need to provide them with much more than a desk and a computer. And if you don't, your competition is probably doing so – already.

3. Your building can earn you money

Owen Zachariasse of Delta Development Group was fascinating in his discussion of Delta's 'cradle to cradle' approach and industry-leading development work in Holland.

He really grabbed my attention when he talked about how they have focused on generating company productivity in their buildings by a) designing superlative, tailored human-centred environments and b) by focusing less on energy efficiency (1% of cost) and instead placing laser-like attention on people environments (90% of business cost). A tiny improvement in this arena makes a significant productivity and cost improvement.

Taken to its logical conclusion, the message I heard from Owen was that this approach means that building owners who think like this will get not just a 'free' building, but one that generates money for them. Wellness works.

Check out Park 20|20 for more detail – well worth a look.

4. Walkie talkie

Jim Taylour was a fascinating, often hilarious and truly insightful speaker. At the symposium to talk to us about office ergonomics, his talk ranged far more widely.

Essentially, Jim's message was that as employers wake up to the competitive advantage of well-supported wellness policies, and talented employees are making career choices on the fuller package on offer, there's never been a more critical and exciting time to deploy a powerful thread of wellbeing into real estate – and ergonomic - design.

He really grabbed the room's attention when he brought up a slide called 'walkie talkie'. He asked any millennials present to take off a shoe and wave it in the air. He then said: "This is a fantastic invention: if you want to speak to someone across the office about something, what I suggest you do is put this on your foot and walk across the talk to them: walkie talkie." Great.

5. Speak like Steve Irwin

Steve Gurney finished the day off with a high-tempo and often savagely funny series of stories loosely based around 5 key things he's learned in his life as a champion endurance athlete.

Apart from scaring us all with the frightening places that leeches like to visit when hunting for human blood, the most powerful message I took away from him was how he discovered that crocodile hunter Steve Irwin's 1000-watt enthusiasm was not an act, but instead an expression of his love of life - and his chosen career.

You know how Steve Irwin spoke: "crikey!" If this is what your outlook is for your job and your life, superb news. If not, you might need to change it…

Thanks CoreNet for a great day.


This product has been added to your cart