Women Talk Real Estate take on MIPIM

Walking along the Croisette in Cannes during MIPIM is one of the easiest times to see the lack of gender diversity in the property industry. As the industry gathers to do business in the sunshine, it is the men in suits that dominate the seafront restaurants and the sidewalk bars.

That vista across the streets of andrea-carpenterCannes should bring home to female professionals that, as a smaller proportion of the experts working in the industry, it is even more important to ensure that visibility counts.

At Women Talk Real Estate, we believe that one of the best ways we can do this is to use the stage at industry events and the media to raise the profile of our female experts.

Currently, around 14% of speakers at events are female. We think this doesn’t truly showcase the expertise of female professionals, or reflect the diversity of the industry we want going forward.

As we get more female experts on stage, it will have both an individual benefit and a collective one. For the individual, being on stage and in the media gets female professionals and their expertise recognised and can lead to better business opportunities and career progression.

For the representation of women overall, the visibility challenges stereotypes about what women do in the industry and it also provides more role models for younger generations.

We know that there is a strong universe of female experts to help stage diverse events so we are working with them and event organisers to make sure the two connect. We have a database of female professionals that are keen to speak at events and this is accessed by event organisers and the media.

Our database currently has more than 300 female professionals registered and we have seen invitations extended to 65 potential speakers in our first couple of months of being up and running.

We know that we can’t change the representation of women in our industry overnight but we believe that because visibility matters, practical initiatives such as Women Talk Real Estate can make a positive contribution.

If you are a female professional in our industry, register to join our database or get in touch to find out more.

Andrea Carpenter is a Director of Women Talk Real Estate www.womentalkrealestate.org

Advice for a MIPIM first timer

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Your first time at MIPIM can be a bit daunting: with over 20,000 keen property professionals and hundreds of events going on, how can you quickly orientate yourself, get involved and get something out of it?

Many delegates have also been gathering in Cannes for some time, ourselves included, so here are some of the tips we’ve picked up over the years – some of which might be useful to even the most experienced attendees as well.

Personal elevator pitch

It is good to know in advance what you want to say about yourself when you meet new people. Keep it to 30 seconds or less, focus on what might be interesting to others and remember that it’s a personal introduction not a sales pitch.

You’ll introduce yourself and what you do many times at MIPIM and likewise other delegates will have met plenty of other people, so it needs to be fresh and ideally memorable. Not least to make sure you’re happy to deliver it again and again each day.

Also touch base with your company’s marketing and comms team – there may be particular information or messages that would be useful to share (and brownie points for doing so).

Set targets

Making sure there’s time to go with the flow is important but structure is important tool. Setting yourself achievable goals such as meeting three new contacts from a target sector a day, for example, is a good way to keep focus. And while sticking with people you know is a useful early strategy, most people at MIPIM are really receptive to meeting new contacts so if stepping up to someone new doesn’t already come naturally, force yourself. You’ll soon think nothing of it.

Scheduling

Have a look at the MIPIM programme in advance and plan the sessions you would like to attend. When you get to Cannes it is easy to get swept away and attend events that others are going to. Looking at the schedule with your goals in mind now will help you to pick out events that you can profit from and will also give you the opportunity to meet new people.

A few practical tips

  • Order your delegate pass now by post so that there’s one less thing to worry about when you arrive. Alternatively, if you run out of time you can also pick it up on your way through the airport to free up time when you get to Cannes itself, as the queues at the Palais can be enormous.
  • Be prepared to get stuck in the moment you arrive, or even before on the plane or train down. It’s a good idea to take lots of business cards (about 250-300), and keep some in your hand luggage.
  • The bus is an easy way to get to town from the airport and you’re more likely to make new contacts than in a taxi.
  • If in doubt head to Café Roma or the London, Manchester or other regional stand.
  • Look out for other posts coming up – what to wear and what to pack in particular.

And whether MIPIM excites or terrifies you, we hope these tips help to give you a head start before you touch down.

 

Delegate list now released!

Get a head start with the MIPIM delegate list

This week, one of our pre-Christmas highlights: the delegate list for MIPIM 2016 has now been released!

As some of you may know already, a list of delegates signed up to attend MIPIM is released each year and then updated regularly as more people register in the months leading up to the conference in March.

It’s a great opportunity to identify and highlight people you would like to meet – as well as contacts you already know and want to catch up with again.

If you’re already signed up as a delegate, you can now find this participants list here.

Use it early on to identify those who could make a difference to your business and begin conversations with them early. The four days of MIPIM lay claim to the busiest schedules of the year and this is a great way to get a head start!