President's Message

October 27, 2021

Dear CREW Greater Philadelphia Members,

I’m not sure about you but the pandemic has been with us for so long I am starting to forget when it even began. So much of our lives have changed but covid hasn’t stopped us.  

Pre-covid:

  • WFH…did you even know what this meant?  In fact, for many of our businesses, we never could have imagined managing our companies when everyone seemed to Work From Home. Our new paradigm: how to continue supporting WFH while building and developing the team. We already know we can be productive.
  • Work hours, a fictitious 9-5. Now, because of WFH, work seems ever-present. I think we are now on a rolling 24 hour day, with us each having multiple starts and stops, but always committed to getting the job done.
  • Video Conferencing. Some of us knew about Microsoft Teams and Go-To-Meeting, but who ever heard of Zoom? For a while over the last 18+ months, all we did was Zoom calls. Now we are finally tiring of them and are desperate to see each other in person.
  • Masking. We only knew about travelers that were masked. Who knew that they were modeling what most of us have come to accept as the norm? We rarely leave our homes or offices without a mask in our bag or pocket. We’ve learned that a mask is a critical accessory for our ability to gather and connect.
  • Networking. Wow….I think we all knew how to network in person. We’ve all now learned how to make new relationships, massage older ones, and overall stay connected via oh so many creative ways. Here’s hoping that many of these unique methods to meet and build new relationships carry forward.
  • Golf. How many of you dusted off your old clubs, bought new ones, joined a club, etc.? Who knew that golf would ever be so popular?

Overall, over the last 18+ months, I have learned to adapt, be flexible, and be thankful that I have had CREW!  We have heard from so many of our members that, while they have adapted to our “new normal,” it has been the network and relationships in CREW that have sustained them professionally and personally during Covid. CREW provided a forum to make working from home for long hours tolerable;  CREW taught our members how to use Zoom and tools like it; helped them understand policies and procedures like masking and vaccinations, and how to handle the various debates between colleagues on “should we mask?” and “do we have to get vaccinated?”. And most importantly, CREW provided the forums for us to NETWORK, NETWORK, and NETWORK.  

Our CREW Network assured that our members who lost jobs because of covid found new ones, brought us together via Zoom and in-person with walks, wine, and golf, found a way to build our CRE skills so we kept learning, and developed our diversity, equity, and inclusion skills so that we would reach out to a broader network.

So, as we look back over the last 18+ months, think about what you gained and how important CREW was during this time. I encourage you to share this gift of CREW with others. October begins a time of membership renewal and gives new members the boost of a few months to their annual membership. Please reach out to encourage your commercial real estate colleagues and friends to come to our upcoming events and consider joining our Chapter as a member and/or sponsor.   

And finally, plan to continue to grow personally and professionally. In 2022, we will launch our CREW Greater Philadelphia Inaugural Leadership Program. A year-long program with four carefully developed sessions, giving you the opportunity to develop your professional skills and build deep relationships. It’s an opportunity to invest in YOU! If you have questions or just want to learn more, please reach out to Past President, Rebecca Udell.  
Looking forward to seeing you all at many of our upcoming events!

All the best,
Carol

Carol Horne Penn
2021 President, CREW Greater Philadelphia