Lessons we learned from sports that apply to CRE

Author Charlie Cutler Read bio
Tags: commercial real estate sports
Date: December 2, 2020

We all know that playing sports is fun! These noble practices teach us more about ourselves and our future than just the need for having athletic skills and being fit. As any athlete will tell you, a game teaches valuable life lessons that can be applied to just about anything you pursue for the rest of your life.

By entering the coworking arena, we are now witnessing the emergence of a fascinating new real estate trend, conceived on the rules of sports. Transcending the traditional real estate investments in office space, retail, multifamily, the sports community leverages its strength ( the strength of its brand) to become a commercial real estate juggernaut. We here present you with a fascinating story of a CRE development, based on loyalty, and sports spirit.

The Real Estate Catcher

Partnering with the right people makes a big difference in real estate. Those partnerships are not to be considered as “one-night stands” – but rather a marriage. Equally as in the sports field, a right partner can predict the outcome of the match and knowing that it takes about five to ten or fifteen years to get to where you need to be with your business, selecting a partnering that’s a “good catch” can speed up the process.

You should always make sure that you partner with the individuals, with whom you have mutual respect and cherish equally bigger pictures and thoughts on the subject. Long-term commitment to such a business partner will definitely be the key to your success in commercial real estate trading.

Chris Baker Pro Baseball

Smart passing keeps the ball moving forward

To successfully move forward, one needs to plan their moves intelligently and take initiative, especially if the field has opened for such turns. And remember, practice makes the master, and life isn’t always fair, not to the athlete, not the CRE market.

No one knows better than any athlete how hard has been working over his referees, meaning that you will surely face harder periods in your business, whether through the need of cutting or (unnecessary) expenses or managing and letting off employees.

Well-matched positions make great players

Never forget – it’s ok to make mistakes. When you’re young and inexperienced, it’s easier to make a mistake, especially the costly ones. Just make a commitment to remind yourselves that all the most successful business leaders have made a lot of mistakes to get where they are today.

The path of any success is not paved in feathers, but you’re not grasping for them either. Mistakes are a necessary part of every process and progress, and learning from what’s happening and positioning yourself at the right place at the right time will keep you relevant in CRE.

Warner Bonner kayaking

Talent is a predictor, but not a guarantee

Although talent is a “push through” factor, remember that everything worth fighting and doing in life requires persistence. Sometimes, launching the best crowdfunded real estate deals fails before it succeeds, and many factors are influencing such deals. 

No matter how talented you are to spot an opportunity, if the time is not right that opportunity might be a bad idea to invest in. Also, if you choose to stay out of the market because you have suffered from a bad decision – you will also not succeed.

Talent is not a guarantee, but persistence is, and getting people to pay attention to you can roll the snowball in five years, and the work from the initial years will grow to pay dividends.

IPG Group now handles pre-development planning, CRE marketing, and advertising, interior design, and green living practices, but it took a while to get where we are now. While the market itself is not robust, we still have to plan and design future projects, ensuring diversity in income streams and customer relevance. This ensures our ability to outlast downturns.

No safety net for the constant change

Sports, but also the market itself teaches us that serenity and acceptance of the things we cannot change gives us the courage to actually change the things we can. The real wisdom is to know the difference and recognize situations when our influence can be a gamechanger, but also when to let go of something.

If we are not able to change some deal to our advantage, another opportunity will definitely stumble upon us. Good news and bad news are parts of the same coin, but no matter how bad things get, they will always change. 

Famous athletes who are great realtors

There’s a select list of athletes who actually have gone out and created real opportunities after retiring their sporting careers. This is not just an endorsement and figurehead role, but setting up a life after sports – and some life they have settled.

The first one to break the real estate market was Kobe Bryant – a five-time NBA champion, whose basketball has “retired” to enter the CRE commune. He believed in innovation and helping athletes train and perform at their best. Finally, he came up with the ultimate upgrade that athletes have been silently demanding for years!

Former Los Angeles Lakers star famous for his $100 million capital fund invested in media, tech, and data tracking for big sporting events and halls.

IPG Athletes

Every business leader is faced with tough decisions and (seemingly) insurmountable obstacles throughout their career, but having sporting experiences can define their real estate professionalism and future. These experiences have shaped the IPG group into who we are now. Equally our successes as the failed lessons made us choose to learn and improve.

IPG team members have been sport-oriented throughout their whole lives, and some of us have a rich background in various sports. Our sporting careers provided a thirst for optimism and enthusiasm – much needed in the shaky real estate market.

Ivan Smiljanic cycling

A Career in Rowing And a Future in Real Estate

Rory Tuttle was recruited to UC Berkeley’s National Championship rowing team, and today he enjoys mountain biking, duck hunting, and the occasional swim in the Bay. An avid skier, Rory was a ski instructor in Idaho before launching his career in real estate.

Johan Quie was invited by the United States Rowing team to move to San Francisco to train for the 2012 London Olympic Games. 

After racing in the 2000 Olympics for Serbia, Ivan Smiljanic was recruited by the University of California at Berkeley to join their National Championship rowing team. Ivan is on the Executive Board of Northern California Olympians, and he is the Director of Rowing Relations at UC Berkeley.

Warner Bonner is a former rower who took gold in the Pacific Rowing Championships and silver in the NCAA Championships with the University of San Diego. In the mid-nineties was selected to join the US rowing team to compete in the US Olympic Festival and was also a 2-time silver medalist in the US national kayak championships.

Baseball Making The Best Catchers

IPG’s associate, Chris Baker, drafted by the San Diego Padres and played professionally for four years during his University years. Chris was a 1st team baseball player and an all-academic athlete even before being drafted by the Padres, but there he was selected by minor league baseball as the All-Star shortstop. Besides providing top-notch services for all the IPG clients, Chris is now building his way towards becoming a scratch golfer.

Charlie Cutler attended UC Berkeley as a scholarship athlete. Team captain of the 2008 Cal baseball team and later drafted by the St Louis Cardinals. As a Catcher, Charlie played professionally for nearly a decade with the Cardinals, Pirates, Cubs, and Angels.

A Love for Sports Shaping Future in CRE

Casaldra enjoys cooking and taking trips to the East Coast with her family. She frequently takes weekend excursions with friends to wine country and ventures to the “steeps” to ski Squaw Valley in the winter. 

Yuliya Kuleshova is a competitive marathon runner, swimmer, and triathlete. She loves traveling, spending weekends outdoors with friends, hiking in the mountains. 

Mitchell Hickman attended De Anza College, where he played NCAA basketball throughout his college career. He was selected as the Athlete of the Year in his final season, following which, he transferred to UCLA and graduated among the top students of UCLA’s distinguished Bruin Honors program.