Professionalism and ethics was the hot topic on day one of MIPIM, as we promoted its importance for the property industry and the market as a whole, getting feedback from investors, occupiers, employers and of course industry leaders. Here’s your snapshot from the first day of MIPIM.

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An evolving profession

The evolving role of property professionals in today's world was the session which kicked off the day in the form of a roundtable.

Panellists included RICS qualified professionals from different markets including Germany, Finland, the Netherlands and the UK, as wells as solicitors working closely with the profession.

Some of the outcomes in their discussion were: The noticeable raising of standards across the Chartered Surveying profession over the past 10 years; but also the need for clients to understand the value of professionalism in real estate in order to succeed in the implementation of those professional standards.

The panellists also explored the notion that culture and diversity have a fundamental impact on professionalism in today’s world.

A new mandatory requirement: Conflicts of Interest

Our Chief Executive Sean Tompkins explained RICS’ efforts to identify key risks in the property industry that could undermine the professionalism of the sector, and how we’re reviewing our standards accordingly to remain fit-for purpose and offer confidence in our professionals.

As a result, we’ve launched a global professional statement covering how to manage conflicts of interest, one of the main areas of risk identified from a thorough global industry consultation. All RICS professionals and regulated firms will be required to meet the new standard to be effective from 1 January 2018.

Watch: Stay updated with this new standard

We were delighted to welcome Simon Radford, Chief Executive of Lothbury Investment Management and Chris Ireland, UK Chief Executive of JLL, to our stand. Both joined Sean Tompkins on a panel to give their full support to the work we’re doing to identify key areas of risk and raising standards in this area.

They emphasised the role of industry leaders in setting the example when practitioners are confronted to situations such as “dual agency”, one of the main areas of concern in the UK market where the new requirements for UK commercial property investment market bans controversial practice of dual agency.

Additionally, our President Amanda Clack FRICS explained live on Radio Immo, the importance to regulate the industry and offer trust in the profession in this area of conflicts of interest. She particularly highlighted the need for a collaborative approach with other professional bodies, non-profit organisations, governments and regulators to set and implement the recently launched International Ethics Standards - applicable in every world market.

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Professionalism and clients

At the Palis de festival, we hosted a panel debate on how professionalism is understood by clients looking at their needs and priorities. During this session end-user clients explained what they value from professionalism.

The panel’s key thoughts:

  • Diverse thinking, as well as more traditional views of diversity with examples of inviting younger members of staff onto boards to give alternate views, is vitally needed.
  • They value quality independent advice and are willing to pay for it.
  • Professionals need to think creatively and should be given time to do this.
  • Professional standards can go in cycles, with a solid link to economic situations.

The panel

  • Eric Cheah, Head of Investment Management Asia Pacific at Union Investment Real Estate
  • Russell Chaplin Chief Investment Officer at Property, Aberdeen Asset Management PLC
  • Catherine Guizol, Director Project Immobiliers at Coca-Cola European Partners France

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