On 10th February 2022, we held our second #constructioncast of 2022. Stuart chaired the discussion about MIPIM, and how to make the most of MIPIM. Joining the panel were Amanda Illing from Gatehouse Chambers, Mike Thornton from Knight Frank and Nick Hanmer from Club Peloton.
The team opened with a perhaps obvious, but key question for many:
Do people win work at MIPIM?
MIPIM is the place to create relationships and collaborations for future projects. Some do win actual work on the cycle to MIPIM and at the event. The cycle to MIPIM brings people together in such a way that strong friendships are formed.
The ability to win work at MIPIM is certainly there but it is arguably not the main reason to go. The event itself does take time, money, and people away from their desks but the reason for going is perhaps more about creating relationships than winning work directly.
For some, like the headline sponsors, it is about marketing. The sponsorship deals at the main MIPIM event allow immense branding and marketing opportunities.
The cycle to MIPIM is an intense 7-day long bike ride from London to Cannes and along this journey, you can cement relationships through shared experiences even if they are near-death!
How do you make the most effective use of time at MIPIM?
For Mike, it’s very important to accept the first lunch you get invited to after the cycle to Cannes – you will be hungry.
In advance of MIPIM maybe 6-8 weeks beforehand, let everyone know that you will be going. People will see that and get hold of you. Then lots of meetings will start to build up in your diary.
When at MIPIM, you will undoubtedly bump into a lot of senior people that you might not have access to otherwise. Take advantage of the time down there and prioritise meetings.
Don’t go wild…
Be careful not to overload the diary. Have some meetings in your diary but keep some space. Consider putting that you are going to MIPIM in your email footer before you go so people can see it. Leave space in your diary so that if you meet someone, you can meet up.
There are a lot of fringe activities that are worth going to as well. You can make effective use of the time there by going to fringe activities like yoga or hula-hooping (!) on the beach.
The benefit of so many people being in one place is huge. The actual conference has a wide variety of stands and talks/presentations on offer. But you can meet many people by simply being there or cycling to MIPIM.
On the ride: many start the ride without knowing anyone but end the week have a wide network and diary full of invites.
MIPIM ladies is another group worth taking a look at. It started with a small group and has now grown to over 200 people.
In what way can going to MIPIM be made more sustainable or contribute to CSR / ESG?
There are a number of things that can help you improve your own outcomes in terms of ESG and CSR.
Changing the way you travel such as going by train rather than plane can make a difference. But the CSR and ESG perspective is also around what you learn about industry developments.
The people that go to the main event, and the exhibits are really interesting. It is worth attending some of the talks and checking out the event timetable to ensure you fit in the things you want to see.
Counting the Carbon…
This year for the first time Club Peloton is carbon-counting in partnership with Knight Frank and Civic Engineers.
Their aim is to draw a line – showing where the ride is at the moment with regard to CO2 emissions, and build from there. There are lots of positives to take from what Club Peloton are doing and as long as there is an open conversation taking place then progress can continue.
The ESG agenda is the most prioritised thing of any business at the moment. Both the ride and MIPIM this year are likely to be focussed on these, so the team are looking forward to both doing their best to improve and learn more at the event.
Is MIPIM useful for people other than architects?
Amanda observes it is definitely useful for a variety of people within the real estate and built environment whether they are barristers chambers or architects and contractors. She recognises the usefulness of MIPIM for Gatehouse chambers, notwithstanding their role in the construction process. No one wants to end up in a dispute but when they arise someone good must be there to support them.
The ride has been labelled the architect’s ride in the past, perhaps unfairly.
There are a lot of architects and engineers on the ride but there are also a lot of people from finance, law, marketing, consultancy and developers on there too. The ride (and MIPIM) bring a huge variety of different people together.
Although MIPIM’s purpose is not for recruiting – it is something to consider. MIPIM can be a good way to find people and develop careers. People occasionally move jobs as a result of the event. On the ride – if you want a thorough 7-day job interview it is a brilliant opportunity to do so.
What one piece of advice would you give anyone going for the first time?
- 1. Immerse yourself in it. Get involved in everything you can. You never know who you might meet.
- Preparation is key. If you prepare for the worst and hope for the best, you will do great.
- Create a WhatsApp group chat with the colleagues you are going with beforehand.
- Drink lots of water – it will be a heavy few days.
- Take both suncream and an umbrella – the weather is unpredictable.
- Don’t go with expectations of what it will be like. Just relax and enjoy it. Everyone is very open to networking and making friends so just embrace it.
If you would like to greet the riders as they enter Cannes after a long seven days of riding this March, then please do. They will be arriving at the port in Cannes at about 3 – 3:30pm on Wednesday 16th March. You won’t miss it there will be some large Knight Frank banners everywhere and the coach will be wrapped in Knight Frank and other sponsor logos.
To support Stuart in his ride to MIPIM, visit his JustGiving page. All contributions are greatly appreciated!
Watch the full webinar recording here on the Limeslade YouTube channel.