At the start of his career, John Adams, now a principal at Avison Young, made a key decision: despite shouldering a heavy workload, community and family commitments, he would devote time to join and participate in commercial real estate professional organizations. He earned his CCIM designation in his first two years in the industry, and has since joined SIOR as well. “I worked hard to get all of my course work for CCIM done within a two-year period to set myself apart from other people and younger people in my market,” says Adams, who is also head of the office member group and a member of the communications and branding committee at SIOR.

The advantages were many. “I could talk to brokers that are not competitors with me, and that allowed me to learn from other people that are also successful in the business,” he says. “There is a lot of sharing ideas and trademarks. That has been very beneficial.”

Joining professional groups is a tried-and-true path to climbing the career ladder in any industry but especially so in the commercial real estate community, where relationships are paramount. It is, though, just one part of what can and should be a multi-pronged approach to building one’s reputation and expertise.

Want to continue reading?
Become a Free ALM Digital Reader.

Once you are an ALM digital member, you’ll receive:

  • Unlimited access to GlobeSt and other free ALM publications
  • Access to 15 years of GlobeSt archives
  • Your choice of GlobeSt digital newsletters and over 70 others from popular sister publications
  • 1 free article* every 30 days across the ALM subscription network
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM events and publications

*May exclude premium content
Already have an account?



Join GlobeSt

Don't miss crucial news and insights you need to make informed commercial real estate decisions. Join now!

  • Free unlimited access to's trusted and independent team of experts who provide commercial real estate owners, investors, developers, brokers and finance professionals with comprehensive coverage, analysis and best practices necessary to innovate and build business.
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM and GlobeSt events.
  • Access to other award-winning ALM websites including and

Already have an account? Sign In Now
Join GlobeSt

Copyright © 2023 ALM Global, LLC. All Rights Reserved.