Contact Us

The Art of the Schmooze

Chicago Other

On Tuesday hundreds of commercial real estate all-stars will converge at the House of Blues for Bisnow’s networking event of the year, Schmoozapalooza. (Is this the year the fist bump finally overtakes the handshake?) To help you prepare, here are a few tips from top schmoozers who will be in attendance.


Before any networking event, Podolsky|Circle CORFAC International principal Alissa Adler (snapped driving a Porsche at the Joliet Speedway) makes sure to have her elevator speech ready. She also pinpoints something interesting she’s done recently (because nobody wants to answer “Nothing.” to “What’s new with you?”), whether that’s personally or on a deal at the office. Another trick: stand near the most popular person in the room, because that’s where everyone gravitates (you can also try the food for similar results). Almost every event yields something useful, she says, whether that’s a new client (like her first at Circle Realty Advisors) or a tidbit of crucial market information.


US Bank SVP Rick Page (left), off to South Africa in a couple of weeks, says sitting in your office on the phone doesn’t cut it. Real estate is still a relationship game. Always make sure you understand context, he adds. There are many players in CRE and “My firm provides full service solutions to corporations” means something very different to a furniture sales person, broker, build-to-suit developer, or bank. At the office, Rick’s been busy with commercial foreclosures and OREO all over the US after a long career in brokerage, development, and corporate real estate. He could fill a book with all the interesting challenges, he says. Get your event tix here!