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Michael Desiato is Incisive Media’s vice president, real estate.

NEW YORK CITY-Last year, I noted that 2008 would be a pivotal period for commercial real estate and that there could be rough waters ahead.

Well, 2008 was one hell of a year! Our headlines have said it all, from the fed’s seizure of Fannie and Freddie to the demise–in one form or another–of Lehman, Merrill and WaMu. It’s tough to feel good about the commercial real estate market right now, and any predictions of a recovery are little more than whistling in the dark.

One thing is true: There are more questions than answers. Big questions, such as: Who will survive? What will the landscape look like when the debris is cleared away? For those firms with the vision to see long term, it’s critical to adapt strategies that will prove their relevance through the downturn.

There is a choice every business must make in a downturn. Be a deer in the headlights or seize the opportunity to grow. We choose the latter. Incisive Media’s real estate group chooses to solidify our position as a vital marketing tool and play a critical role in helping decision-makers grow professionally and improve their businesses.

In 2009, our evolution will continue as we launch a networking web-event series; an online products-and-services directory; a lead-generation-and-consultant exchange; data; video; and audio. These multiple services and marketing opportunities will equip you to thrive through what may prove to be the most difficult economic period of your business lifetime.

Good luck in this tough market and have a happy and healthy New Year.

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