NEWPORT BEACH, CA—NAIOP SoCal's Young ProfessionalsGroup held its second annual Y GamesFriday at Newport Dunes. The day included friendlycompetition, team building and networking with YPG alumni,students, NAIOP members and other real estate spoke with Jim Proehl, EVP andmanaging director for the western division of PM RealtyGroup, president of NAIOP SoCal and a team captain at the Y gamesabout the significance of events like these for youngprofessionals, who influenced his own career and advice he wouldgive to young people entering the CRE industry.

| The Y Games look like serious business.What was your strategy for the trike race?


Proehl: It is all about transformingyour state of mind back to when you were four years old so you canvisualize your path around the track.

| How do events like these fit into NAIOPSoCal's overall approach to its Young ProfessionalsGroup?


Proehl: It allows us 50+-year-olds topretend that we are still in our 20s and 30s like the YoungProfessionals. NAIOP SoCal's goal for establishing the YPG programwas to find a way to get more young professionals better connectedto the commercial real estate industry by building a strong networkof real estate professional colleagues. These events along with ourmentoring program that we started three years ago help connect ourYPG to our more seasoned real estate professionals, which allowsthe young professionals to hear and see how real estate executiveshave built their careers.

| Since you recognize how importantmentorship is for young professionals' careers, who were yourmentors as you were coming up through the ranks?


Proehl: One of my key mentors wasClarence Barker, past president of the Irvine Co. CommercialProperties. Clarence helped to expose me to many facets ofcommercial real estate early in my career and helped me to see thatdeveloping my leadership and communication skills is as importantas developing technical knowledge.

| How does your personal life mesh withyour CRE career? Do the two ever meet?


Proehl: Much of my personal liferevolves around coaching my boys in youth athletics, where I havethe opportunity to teach young boys the fundamentals ofcompetition, teamwork, focus and how to deal with both winning andlosing—similar things to what other young professionals will dealwith in their real estate careers. I've had the opportunity to meetmany other real estate professionals during my years of coachingboth on and off the field.

| What advice would you give to youngpeople just entering the CRE industry?


Proehl: Put in the extra time to learnas much as you can as quickly as you can to make yourself avaluable real estate professional. Work hard to build your networkof real estate professionals through organizations like NAIOP, andbe a leader in whatever you do.

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Carrie Rossenfeld

Carrie Rossenfeld is a reporter for the San Diego and Orange County markets on and a contributor to Real Estate Forum. She was a trade-magazine and newsletter editor in New York City before moving to Southern California to become a freelance writer and editor for magazines, books and websites. Rossenfeld has written extensively on topics including commercial real estate, running a medical practice, intellectual-property licensing and giftware. She has edited books about profiting from real estate and has ghostwritten a book about starting a home-based business.