Growth in the churches around my home is clearly a cyclical thing. There’s a subtle competition taking place for butts in pews (and of course bucks in baskets).

My current parish is growing in leaps and bounds while another local church, once THE place to be on a Sunday morning, is slowly shrinking. The clerical staff changed (one was subsequently arrested, a proud day for all of us!); parishioners started to die off (older ones; no crime took place here, that I know of) and the bloom was clearly off the rose.

That ebb and flow is natural, and I’m waiting for the day when my current House of Worship starts to dip in numbers and the Faithful begin to stream slowly for more fulfilling spiritual pastures, for churches that are doing exciting things and, more importantly, staying on message.

On a slightly more secular plane (only slightly), I thought of this competition while attending the recent Avison Young Annual General Meeting in DC. While most of the meeting was off the record, they allowed me access to a lot of their strategy and permitted limited coverage, most of which you have already read.

What I heard was a unique story in CRE today—a firm with a growth plan not unlike that of Andrew Farkas years ago when he was building what would ultimately become industry stalwart CBRE. A systematic plan is in place for international growth at AY, and chief Mark Rose reported that a firm that had no presence in the states four years ago is eyeing a North American roll call of 2,500 people within the next four years.

I saw first-hand a team of 30-something young brokers fired up about their prospects not only in the industry but at AY and a cohesive support group to ensure their success. It was (dare I say it?) thrilling to see commercial real estate executives as charged up as this growing group was—newcomers and seasoned pros alike.

I witnessed a group of people doing exciting things and both honing and staying on message.

So here’s the question . . . How fired up are you about where you are and your coming prospects? Looking forward to hearing from you at