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Global Business Councils: Boots on the Ground

by Lisa Calarco, Manager Global Business Development and Outreach, NAR Commercial and Global Services

At the end of January, I had the opportunity to attend the Florida REALTORS® Mid-Winter Meetings in Orlando, FL, and meet with many of the volunteers and staff from several Global Business Councils. Being new to the Global Business Development and Outreach role, I was excited for this trip. It was my chance to “get my boots on the ground” and meet with a variety of different councils to get a first-hand view of what is going on out there. Florida was at the forefront for the Global Business Councils, and some have existed since the late 90’s, so I knew it would be a fruitful experience.

Right now we have 113 global business councils at the state and local level around the U.S., all with varying levels of activity. Global Business Councils exist to be the support for the global real estate practitioner; to provide them with news, legislative updates, education, and networking opportunities. The opportunity to sit down with staff and volunteer leadership and have conversations about their goals for the upcoming year was a great experience. The conversations ranged from how to improve on their global council, to implementing new initiatives, and even on how to get one started. Running a global business council (or committee or forum as they are also called) is a passion for many of these individuals and something they strongly believe in. It can either start as a bit of a grassroots movement and slowly, but surely, catch steam. Or, it can be an initiative from the incoming Leadership Team.  A council can’t solely run on the heart of a volunteer though, it needs support from both the staff and the leadership of a board to be successful.

Does your board have a global council? Are you involved in it? If not, what would it take to start interest for one at your local level? There are no restrictions over who can have a global business council or what one even looks like – it’s what you, the members need or want it to be. That’s the beauty of the global councils; it is purely to provide a benefit to members and to become a touchstone for Global real estate in the local area.

I am excited to begin working with the Global Councils around the U.S. and to have more conversations about how we at NAR can help you accomplish your goals, and to hear how councils have helped or could help YOU. The ultimate goal is to have a network of very successful CIPS Designees and other global practitioners with the ability to consider their local or state council “home base” for their global needs. And, for NAR to continue to work with those councils to ensure that they’re providing you, the member, with a robust global real estate experience.   So, if you’re not a member of your global council, get involved! If you don’t see one in your area, ask questions find out why and how you can help get one started. Lastly, don’t forget to reach out to me because that’s what I’m here for!

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