Corenet makes CRE History

The latest marketing campaign by Corenet is really a tragic statement by the Singapore Chapter as to just how far removed they actually are from their stated objective.

It is widely accepted that in the digital age value will largely be measured in terms of creativity. A recent survey run by IBM of 1,500 CEO’s from 60 countries identifies “creativity as the most crucial factor for future success”. It is well known that with AI fast advancing, it is better than human capability for certain tasks, many jobs – if not whole industries – are likely to no longer employ humans. CRE is no different and will also be susceptible to this trend as many CRE functions can be better serviced by AI.

To “make CRE great again” by creating value in the digital age, surely Corenet should be leading the way by demonstrating creativity itself? Unfortunately, it is clear that the Singapore Chapter is not capable of this or for that matter, any form of creativity. The best they can do is copy someone else’s strap line and gimmick with all its negative connotations. This marketing campaign might as well have been created by computer as the only skills required to create it were copy and paste. It signals an organisation that is out of ideas and only destined for demise in the digital age.

In principal, Corenet is a great organisation. Their mission is to advance the practice of corporate real estate through professional development opportunities, publications, research and conferences; but for something to advance it needs to be future focused at least in part.

On moving to Singapore, I attended many Corenet events here, a practice that I have long since given up. When we set up our business we did not even take out membership. Why? in our view the Singapore Chapter falls well short of the mission. To the best of my knowledge it does not produce any locally based research or data relying entirely on overseas sources that are in part not relevant here. Cornet has a young leaders programme but there are no activities for young leaders in Singapore. Why, do the next generation not matter here? There is a significant emerging “Proptech” industry in Singapore that is largely ignored by Corenet. Are the Singapore Chapter so detached from innovation that they are unaware of this community? Having attended many events, I found them repetitive and overly focused on what has already been done. And while benchmarking the past is an important knowledge base, there is far too little focus on the future or what could be possible.  For the most part the Singapore chapter is nothing more than a series of networking events for the same old dinosaurs patting themselves and each other on the back for their past achievements. Where are the young professionals, the innovators in Singapore?

To achieve their objective of “Making CRE Great Again” and preparing for the digital age Cornet Singapore Chapter would be well advised to really start embracing the future, it could start with an injection of creativity, innovation and a marketing campaign that is aspirational rather than a tired old rip off.