CREF Corner Office Conversation: Steven Bean From Situs

Andrew Foster afoster@mba.org

March 14, 2019


The Mortgage Bankers Association released an interview with Situs Executive Managing Director Steven Bean.

Bean shared his perspective on commercial real estate trends including technology and an increasing focus on end-user customer outcomes. He serves on MBA's Commercial/Multifamily Board of Governors.

The video can be viewed here.

In explaining how Situs views the current CRE environment, Bean said the firm "believe[s] that the digitization of CRE is coming, it's upon us and there's going to be winners and losers. Whoever is adopting first is important," he said. 

Bean also noted the related trend that clients are "starting to focus more on the end-user customer outcome...as opposed to being internally focused. That's a change in the industry." He addressed the length of the current business cycle, mentioning a baseline framework for understanding whether specific lines of business are pro-cyclical, anti-cyclical or a-cyclical. "Whatever cycle you are in in or type of market you are in, you have to react and be relevant," he said. "You have to be ready to adapt at any time. Unless there's some 'Black Swan' event, we're pretty well positioned for the next downturn."

Discussing retaining talent and staffing, Bean highlighted the historically low unemployment rate and Situs' strategic approach, "we're a little like the MBA; we focus on education, we focus on diversity and we focus on young professionals," he said. "Those areas are all good MBA programs. How we enact that is we focus on training, skills development and rewards programs."

Bean also talked about technology and commercial real estate, pointing to data analytics and improving process inefficiencies as key areas that are evolving and affecting businesses.

Explaining MBA's value proposition, Bean called MBA a huge voice in the industry. "We have a much broader constituency than most of the other associations out there because we have both the residential and commercial industries," he said.

In CREF Corner Office Conversations, MBA Associate Vice President Rob Van Raaphorst talks one-on-one with commercial real estate finance leaders about their business and engagement with the industry. Other videos in the series can be viewed at the MBANow website.

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