Driven By Insight

By Walker & Dunlop

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Bringing you fresh perspectives beyond commercial real estate, Walker & Dunlop CEO Willy Walker taps into a diverse network of leaders to share wisdom that cuts across industry lines. His guests are experts in their fields – from leading economists and CEOs to Harvard and Yale professors, and everything in between. Our one goal is simple: providing our listeners with unique insights, unparalleled data, and real-time market analyses.

Episode Date
Will Ahmed, WHOOP Founder & CEO
The Role Technology Can Play in Improving Your Health | feat. WHOOP's Will Ahmed Unicorn health and technology company WHOOP is being used by Rory McIlroy, Patrick Mahomes, and people like YOU to measure sleep, strain, recovery, and health. WHOOP founder and CEO Will Ahmed joined Willy Walker on this week's Walker Webcast to discuss how he built WHOOP into a start-up worth over $1 billion, and how WHOOP data is transforming lives. ABOUT THE SPEAKER: Will Ahmed is the Founder and CEO of WHOOP, which has developed next generation wearable technology for optimizing human performance and health. WHOOP members range from professional athletes and fortune 500 CEOs to fitness enthusiasts and executives to military personnel and healthcare workers. Ahmed has raised more than $200 million from top investors and has an active advisory board that consists of some of the world’s most notable cardiologists, technologists, marketers, and designers. Ahmed wrote “The Feedback Tool: Measuring Fitness, Intensity, and Recovery,” which sparked the underlying physiology and engineering for his work today. Ahmed was recently named to the 2020 Fortune 40 Under 40 Healthcare list and previously named to Forbes 30 Under 30 and Boston Business Journal 40 Under 40. In 2020, WHOOP was named Fast Company’s Most Innovative Company for Wellness. Before founding WHOOP, Ahmed was named a 2011 Harvard College Scholar for finishing in the top 10% of his class and a CSA Scholar Athlete; he captained the Harvard Men’s Varsity Squash Team. GET NOTIFIED about upcoming shows: » Subscribe to our YouTube channel here: » See upcoming guests on the #WalkerWebcast​ here: RELATED WEBCASTS: Tune in on Wednesdays for fresh perspectives about leadership, business, the economy, commercial real estate, and more! #WillyWalker​ hosts a diverse network of leaders as they share wisdom that cuts across industry lines. Guests include prominent CEOs, academics, high-ranking government officials, and sports heroes. Check out our previous videos: » Full playlist: » Investing in 2021: BlackRock's Kate Moore on market activity and investment advice: » What's the Secret to Achieving Success, Personal Fulfillment and Life Satisfaction? | Jim Loehr: Follow us: » LinkedIn: » Facebook: » Twitter: » Instagram: Subscribe: » Newsletters:
May 11, 2021
Dr. Jim Loehr, co-founder of the Johnson & Johnson Human Performance Institute
What's the Secret to Achieving Success, Personal Fulfillment and Life Satisfaction? | Jim Loehr Tells All What is the single most critical factor in achieving success, personal fulfillment, and life satisfaction? The strength of one’s character. In his latest book, Leading with Character, world-renowned performance psychologist and co-founder of the Johnson & Johnson Human Performance Institute, Dr. Jim Loehr writes that you must build character the same way you build muscle - through practice and energy investment. On this week's Walker Webcast, Willy Walker interviews Dr. Loehr to discuss how his work with elite athletes, Fortune 100 executives, FBI Hostage Rescue Teams, and more has shaped his views on mental toughness, character-building, and leaving a positive legacy. Keep watching to learn how to reclaim your peak performance. Listen to our discussion on mental fortitude and decision making. ABOUT THE SPEAKER: Dr. Jim Loehr is the co-founder of the Johnson & Johnson Human Performance Institute, which helped train and inspire more than 250,000 business, sports, medicine, and military leaders worldwide. World-renowned performance psychologist, researcher, and author of 17 books including his most recent, Leading With Character, and the national bestseller The Power of Full Engagement. ​​Dr. Loehr holds a masters and doctorate in psychology and is a full member of the American Psychological Association. GET NOTIFIED about upcoming shows: » Subscribe to our YouTube channel here: » See upcoming guests on the #WalkerWebcast​ here: RELATED WEBCASTS: Tune in on Wednesdays for fresh perspectives about leadership, business, the economy, commercial real estate, and more! #WillyWalker​ hosts a diverse network of leaders as they share wisdom that cuts across industry lines. Guests include prominent CEOs, academics, high-ranking government officials, and sports heroes. Check out our previous videos: » Full playlist: » Investing in 2021: BlackRock's Kate Moore on market activity and investment advice: » Are we getting our money's worth? Dr. Peter Linneman on Stimulus, Inflation and our Collective Enemy: Follow us: » LinkedIn: » Facebook: » Twitter: » Instagram: Subscribe: » Newsletters:
May 03, 2021
Kate Moore, Managing Director at BlackRock
Investing in 2021: BlackRock's Kate Moore on market activity and investment advice Roaring 20s? Asset bubble? Rate hikes? Willy Walker interviews BlackRock Managing Director Kate Moore on the investment opportunities worth tracking, the hot trends Kate's keeping a speculative eye on, and the geographic markets she sees as most (and least) promising.  Keep watching to learn the importance of diversifying your investments. ABOUT THE SPEAKER: Kate Moore, Managing Director, is a member of the Global Allocation investment team and Head of Thematic Strategy. Her investment mandate includes identifying opportunities to exploit structural change, policy evolution, and dislocations across global industries. She is a member of the Human Capital Committee. Ms. Moore’s service with the firm dates back to June 2016, when she joined as Chief Equity Strategist in the BlackRock Investment Institute. In that role, she was responsible for research on global equity markets, formulating tactical investment recommendations, and delivering thought leadership to both internal stakeholders and clients. Ms. Moore regularly contributes her macro and financial market views across a variety of global media outlets. She holds a B.A. in Political and Social Thought from the University of Virginia, where she currently serves on the Board of Managers of the Alumni Association. She also holds an M.A. in Political Economy from the University of Chicago. GET NOTIFIED about upcoming shows: » Subscribe to our YouTube channel here: » See upcoming guests on the #WalkerWebcast​ here: RELATED WEBCASTS: Tune in on Wednesdays for fresh perspectives about leadership, business, the economy, commercial real estate, and more! #WillyWalker​ hosts a diverse network of leaders as they share wisdom that cuts across industry lines. Guests include prominent CEOs, academics, high-ranking government officials, and sports heroes. Check out our previous videos: » Full playlist: » Data, analysis, & insight into the economy and commercial real estate market with Dr. Peter Linneman » Has the Pandemic Forced Companies to Rethink their Communication Strategies?: Follow us: » LinkedIn: » Facebook: » Twitter: » Instagram: Subscribe: » Newsletters:
Apr 24, 2021
Dr. Peter Linneman, Leading Economist & Former Wharton Professor
Are we getting our money's worth? Dr. Peter Linneman on Stimulus, Inflation, & Identifying our Collective Enemy Willy Walker interviews renowned economist Dr. Peter Linneman on the economy and the CRE industry. Their conversation is packed with insights into government stimulus, unemployment, asset class performance, and so much more. Want to find out an economist's forecast for office, multi-markets sector and jobs? Keep watching to find out. ABOUT THE SPEAKER: For over 40 years, Dr. Peter Linneman's unique blend of scholarly rigor and practical business insight has won him accolades from around the world, including PREA's prestigious Graaskamp Award for Real Estate Research, Wharton's Zell-Lurie Real Estate Center's Lifetime Achievement Award, Realty Stock Magazine's Special Achievement Award, being named "One of the 25 Most Influential People in Real Estate" by Realtor Magazine and inclusion in The New York Observer's "100 Most Powerful People in New York Real Estate". After receiving both his Masters and Doctorate in Economics under the tutelage of Nobel Prize winners Milton Friedman, Gary Becker, George Stigler, Ted Schultz and Jim Heckman, Peter had a distinguished academic career at both The University of Chicago and the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania. GET NOTIFIED about upcoming shows: » Subscribe to our YouTube channel here: » See upcoming guests on the #WalkerWebcast​ here: RELATED WEBCASTS: Tune in on Wednesdays for fresh perspectives about leadership, business, the economy, commercial real estate, and more! #WillyWalker​ hosts a diverse network of leaders as they share wisdom that cuts across industry lines. Guests include prominent CEOs, academics, high-ranking government officials, and sports heroes. Check out our previous videos: » Full playlist: » Data, analysis, & insight into the economy and commercial real estate market with Dr. Peter Linneman » Has the Pandemic Forced Companies to Rethink their Communication Strategies?: Follow us: » LinkedIn: » Facebook: » Twitter: » Instagram: Subscribe: » Newsletters:
Apr 17, 2021
Horacio Rozanski, President & CEO, Booz Allen Hamilton
Emerging Technologies That Will Change The Future Of Business - with Booz Allen Hamilton CEO Willy Walker interviews CEO Horacio Rozanski to discuss how technologies like AI , cyber, and 5G are shaping the world around us, why diversity and inclusion is crucial for cultivating a culture of innovation, and whether the pandemic has permanently changed the role of the consultant. With roles like cyber threat hunter, quantum scientist, AI ethicist, and CX strategist, Booz Allen Hamilton employees are shaping the future of the United States’ most critical defense, civilian, and intelligence missions. From defending against nation-state cyberattacks to securing satellite data to advising on vaccine distribution, the company is at the forefront of protecting American interests. Keep watching to find out how this technology is transforming businesses. ABOUT THE SPEAKER: Horacio Rozanski is president and chief executive officer of Booz Allen Hamilton Inc., a global technology and consulting company that serves government clients and Fortune 500 corporations. Booz Allen partners with clients to drive transformation and advance critical missions through a unique combination of technology, innovation, and consulting expertise. Since 2012, Horacio has led a strategic transformation of the firm, investing in innovation, advanced technology, and highly skilled talent, and reshaping its portfolio toward mission-critical, high-margin solutions. The company is now positioned in the defense, intelligence, civil, and global commercial markets as a leader in technology integration and adoption, a differentiation that has driven significant revenue and earnings growth in recent years. GET NOTIFIED about upcoming shows: » Subscribe to our YouTube channel here: » See upcoming guests on the #WalkerWebcast​ here:​ RELATED WEBCASTS: Tune in on Wednesdays for fresh perspectives about leadership, business, the economy, commercial real estate, and more! #WillyWalker​ hosts a diverse network of leaders as they share wisdom that cuts across industry lines. Guests include prominent CEOs, academics, high-ranking government officials, and sports heroes. Check out our previous videos: » Full playlist: » The Evolution of a $144B Real Estate Empire: How The Hines Family Company Turned Global Powerhouse​ » Redefining the 'Old' Narrative: Rethinking What Baby Boomers REALLY Want: Follow us: » LinkedIn: » Facebook:​ » Twitter:​ » Instagram:​
Apr 10, 2021
Russell Dubner, President & CEO, U.S., Edelman
Has the Pandemic Forced Companies to Rethink their Communication Strategies? The pandemic changed everything — where we work, how we live, and what we consume. So how has your internal and external communications strategy changed? Willy Walker interviews Russell Dubner, President & CEO, U.S. of global communications powerhouse Edelman to discuss communication strategies, social media, and why Americans are looking to corporate America for policy, solutions and leadership coming out of the pandemic. Keep watching to learn Russell's tips on how to build a branding strategy. ABOUT THE SPEAKER: Russell Dubner is a 25+ year veteran of Edelman, a global communications firm that partners with leading businesses and organizations to evolve, promote and protect their brands and reputations. He oversees the U.S. region, the firm’s largest operation. Russell counsels a wide range of clients, from stalwarts like Samsung, REI, PwC, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Nationwide, Juniper and Two Sigma, to fast-growth companies like NEOU, Eargo and others. He also oversees the firm’s commitment to gun safety, including a pro bono engagement with the Gun Safety Alliance. Russell recently established Edelman’s performance communications offering –a first-of-its kind application of emerging communications data and technology to cultivate and engage earned audiences. Additional contributions to the firm’s IP and offerings include tenets for enduring engagement, reputation recovery methodology, and a communications guide to the shifting media ecosystem. » See upcoming guests on the #WalkerWebcast​ here:​
Apr 03, 2021
Rick Shane, J.P. Morgan's Head of Consumer & Specialty Finance team, and Richard Hill, Morgan Stanley's Head of U.S. CRE Research
Is Wall Street Upbeat About the Outlook of the Economy Post-Pandemic? Willy Walker interviews Morgan Stanley's Head of U.S. CRE Research, Richard Hill and JPMorgan's Head of Consumer and Specialty Finance Research, Rick Shane to discuss commercial real estate, banking, and consumer finance coming out of the COVID pandemic. They discuss: the comparison of the Great Financial Crisis and the economic turmoil caused by the Pandemic the likelihood of student loan forgiveness and the potential impact on the lending and housing spaces; and predictions pertaining to the performance of different asset classes, including multifamily, retail, and hospitality. Keep watching to find out Richard and Rick's biggest concern about the commercial real estate sector. ABOUT THE SPEAKERS: Rick Shane is Head of J.P. Morgan's Consumer & Specialty Finance team. With more than 18 years of experience as a Senior Analyst, Rick offers thought leadership across multiple verticals. He has consistently received top rankings by Institutional Investor, the WSJ, Starmine and Thompson Reuters and was cited by Bloomberg as one of the "World's Best Financial Services Analysts." He is a graduate of the Johns Hopkins University, Boston College Law School and the University of Chicago GSB. Richard Hill is a Managing Director covering the US commercial real estate market and leads Morgan Stanley’s US REIT Equity and Commercial Real Estate Debt research teams. Richard joined the Firm in 2013 and has been an II-ranked CMBS analyst for several years. He has covered the industry in various capacities for 18 years in both banking and research roles, including positions at Royal Bank of Scotland and Banc of America Securities. Prior to becoming a research analyst, Richard worked in the Structured Securities Group of Banc of America Securities, where he was responsible for the origination, structuring, and distribution of securitization backed by CRE debt. He started his career in that bank’s Interest Rate Derivatives group, where he structured hedging strategies for CRE developers. Richard is a graduate of Georgetown University, with a BSBA in Finance. » See upcoming guests here:​
Mar 27, 2021
Jeff Hines, Hines Chairman and CEO, and Laura Hines, Senior Managing Director
The Evolution of a $144B Real Estate Empire: How the Hines Family Turned Their Houston Company into a Global Powerhouse Willy Walker interviews Hines Chairman and CEO Jeff Hines and Senior Managing Director Laura Hines-Pierce to discuss real estate development, development trends, and how their family business grew from one office in Houston to the #globaldevelopment powerhouse it is today with $144 billion of assets under management. They discuss: expanding from being the world’s leading developer into an acquirer/owner of commercial real estate; how or if the pandemic has changed their outlook on real estate development; and how their company is able to take on the language, cultural, currency, and construction risks when developing in a globally Listen to the full episode to find out how Jeff and Laura maintain a presence in 225 cities, 25 countries, and $144 billion of assets under management. ABOUT THE SPEAKERS: Jeff Hines is the firm’s Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. He leads Hines’ Executive Committee and chairs the firm's Steering Committee. He also sits on the firm’s Global Investment Committee. As Owner, Chairman and CEO, he is responsible for overseeing all firm policies and procedures as well as day-to-day operations. He became president in 1990 and has overseen a major expansion of the firm's personnel, financial resources, domestic and foreign market penetration, and products and services. He has led the development of the firm's domestic and international acquisition program and currently oversees a portfolio of $144.1 billion of assets under management. Hines graduated from Williams College with a BA in Economics and received his MBA from Harvard Business School. Laura Hines-Pierce joined Hines in 2012 and was responsible for project management of developments and support of new business opportunities in the Midwest and Southeast Regions, including analyzing acquisition and new business opportunities, developing financial and budget models, assessing market research, evaluating mixed-use development opportunities, and assisting with institutional fundraising. Since 2017, she has worked in the Office of the Chief Investment Officer, focused on several firm-wide initiatives that have helped to refine investment strategy and acquisition efforts. In September 2018, she was named the firm’s Transformation Officer to support the firm’s strategic and transformative efforts across the business, and in February 2020, she was promoted to Senior Managing Director –Office of the CEO. » See upcoming guests here:​
Mar 20, 2021
Dr. Joseph F. Coughlin, Director of the MIT AgeLab
Redefining the 'Old' Narrative: Rethinking What Baby Boomers REALLY Want Will older adults cause a disruption in the economy as they continue to age? Willy Walker interviews Dr. Joseph F. Coughlin, Director of the MIT AgeLab, and author of "The Longevity Economy: Unlocking the World's Fastest-Growing Most Misunderstood Market" this week, they discuss how 'oldness' is being redefined in terms of this demographic's impact on business and economic power. Also discussed: 1. How businesses and society need to understand the needs and aspirations of #babyboomers and in turn tailor their goods and services to meet boomers' valuable and disruptive demographic’s needs 2. Product changes driven by older consumers hacking products not originally designed for them Dr. Coughlin also discusses his thoughts on how the idea of 'oldness' stifles business thinking and how to best serve baby boomers as a group of consumers, workers, and innovators. ABOUT THE SPEAKER: Joseph F. Coughlin teaches in MIT's Department of Urban Studies & Planning and the Sloan School's Advanced Management Program. Coughlin conducts research on the impact of global demographic change and technology trends on consumer behavior and business strategy. He advises a wide variety of global firms in financial services, healthcare, leisure and travel, luxury goods, real estate, retail, technology, and transportation. Coughlin has served on advisory boards for firms such as Bell Canada, British Telecom, Daimler, Fidelity Investments and Sanofi-Aventis. He was appointed by President George W. Bush to the White House Advisory Committee on Aging and by Governor Charlie Baker to the Governor’s Council on Aging in Massachusetts where he co-chaired the Innovation & Technology Subcommittee.
Mar 17, 2021
Diana Olick, CNBC's Real Estate Correspondent, and Ivy Zelman, Zelman & Associate's CEO and Co-Founder
Will the US Housing Market Boom Continue through 2021? - CNBC's Diana Olick & Ivy Zelman discuss Willy Walker interviews CNBC's Real Estate Correspondent Diana Olick and Ivy Zelman & Associate's CEO and Co-Founder Ivy where they discuss the housing boom and their analysis on single-family housing, multifamily, built for rent (BFR) and single-family rental (SFR). They discuss: • Achieving success in male-dominated industries • The effects of low inventory as it relates to the housing market and construction costs • Migration trends and the potential return to cities • The vast expansion of the single-family rental and build-for-rent spaces Listen in to find out Diana and Ivy’s projections of the housing market. Diana Olick is an Emmy-Award winning journalist, currently serving as CNBC’s real estate correspondent across all platforms. She has been with CNBC since 2002 and covered the housing boom and bust leading up to the Great Financial Crisis. Diana lives in DC with her husband and twin daughters and went to Columbia University undergrad and has a masters from Northwestern in journalism. Ivy Zelman is the founder and CEO of Zelman Associates, one of the most highly respected research firms covering the housing industry. In 2020, Ivy was one of Barron’s Top 100 Women in Finance. She graduated from George Mason University and lives in Cleveland with her husband and three children.
Mar 06, 2021
Brendan Wallace, Co-Founder of Fifth Wall, and Casey Berman, Founder of Camber Creek
CRE shark tank! PropTech trends venture capitalists are tracking. Fifth Wall's Brendan Wallace and Camber Creek's Casey Berman join Willy Walker to discuss how Property Technology is transforming the CRE space and the investment areas they are keeping an eye on.
Feb 27, 2021
Walt Rakowich, former Prologis CEO
Former Prologis CEO Walt Rakowich joins Willy Walker to discuss the leadership lessons outlined in his book "Transfluence: How to Lead with Transformative Influence in Today's Climates of Change" and his experience leading Prologis through the Great Recession.
Feb 20, 2021
Great Places to Work® CEO Michael C. Bush and McKinsey & Company’s Chairman of North America Gary Pinkus
Great Place to Work® CEO Michael C. Bush and McKinsey & Company’s Chairman of North America Gary Pinkus join Willy Walker to discuss how to identify great companies, the keys to developing strong workplace culture, and what great companies will look like in the future.
Feb 16, 2021
Dr. Mauro Guillén, Wharton Professor and Author
Willy Walker is joined by Wharton Professor and author of “2030: How Today's Biggest Trends Will Collide And Reshape The Future Of Everything" Dr. Mauro Guillén. Mr. Walker & his guest discuss the demographic shifts, automation trends, geopolitical and economic evolutions, and technological advancements that are shaping our world.
Feb 06, 2021
Stephanie Linnartz
Willy Walker is joined by Stephanie Linnartz, Group President, Consumer Operations, Technology & Emerging Businesses at Marriott. Stephanie and Willy discuss multiple topics, including where Marriott is today as well as the future of the hospitality industry. Stephanie speaks to the lessons learned and skills crafted from growing up in the industry. She emphasizes the importance of emotional intelligence, and how this skill has driven the hospitality industry through the pandemic. Ultimately, she explains, good leadership is about taking care of your people. (2:20-6:00) Stephanie describes the dichotomy of being in leadership positions for both Home Depot and Marriott, as Home Depot has seen some of its best numbers in years, while the hospitality industry suffers. (6:01-8:30) Stephanie explains her belief that 2021 will be better than 2020 for the hospitality industry, but still down from peak numbers in 2019. While most people project those peak numbers won’t be back until 2023, Stephanie says they’re seeing a huge hunger for travel, and hopes that means we won’t have to wait that long. (8:31-14:55) Willy and Stephanie discuss the impact of a video statement made by Marriott CEO, Arne Sorenson, in the early days of the pandemic. Stephanie remarks on the message, admiring Sorenson’s openness, honesty, and transparency with employees on what Marriott would be doing to manage the pandemic. She says it serves as just one example of how Arne and Marriott leadership work with their employees, and how their actions reflect Marriott’s core values. (14:56-22:10) Stephanie expresses her concern that the huge amount of jobs lost in the pandemic will erase years of economic progress made by women and minorities. She focuses on reopening for the purpose of getting people back to work, and she addresses the changes in workforce dynamics going forward. (22:11-27:04) Stephanie elaborates on the cost effects of hotel maintenance and how this, paired with a drop in demand, affects pricing structures. (27:05-29:14) Stephanie speculates that hybrid meetings will be widespread in the next few months, and conventions and group business will be coming back in the latter half of 2021, contingent on the availability of the COVID vaccine. (29:15-35:58) Stephanie expresses her confidence in travel rewards programs, specifically Marriott Bonvoy, and their ability to innovate during the pandemic. Stephanie explains that Marriott has carved out a niche in the home rental market by launching Marriott Homes & Villas, a business that offers a high-quality home rental experience. (36:00-46:39) As the episode ends, Willy asks Stephanie how the hotel experience will be different for guests well after the pandemic is over. She discusses the increased use of technology and data, but stresses that the warm welcome and guest experience will only continue to get better. (46:40- 48:55)
Jan 19, 2021
Dr. Peter Linneman
Willy Walker is joined by Dr. Peter Linneman, Principal of Linneman and Associates. Peter and Willy talk through the economic comeback after the COVID-19 pandemic, and what progress will be made by summer 2021. (1:15-4:17) Peter discusses President-Elect Biden’s economic team, comparing their ideologies to President Obama’s economic policies revolving around Keynesian economics. (4:18-6:05) Peter urges people to focus on GDP and employment growth, and to begin thinking of employers and employees as allied forces who thrive in a growth economy. (6:06-8:50) Peter speaks to the current high unemployment rates because of the pandemic shutdown. He believes society should do what it can to compensate the hotel, retail, tourism, etc. workers who fell victim to the pandemic via government spending. (8:51-17:00) While we lost around 8.6 million jobs in 2020, approximately 8 million of those jobs have come back in large part because of the development of the COVID vaccine. This influx of jobs and money into the economy will lead to inflation, but Peter explains he believes this will be inflation of asset prices rather than retail prices. (17:01-27:46) Willy asks Peter about what types of investments folks should be looking at post-pandemic. Peter goes through his Linneman letter, where he breaks down a model to show that the best investments to make are in multi-family homes. (27:47-34:48) In Q3, e-commerce sales accounted for 14 percent of all retail sales. Peter believes they will continue to grow, however he stresses that they were projected to get to this point by 2022, but growth was accelerated due to the pandemic. Peter points out that, going forward, e-commerce will take more of the market, but brick and mortar will be a huge part of pick-up, delivery, and logistics. (34:49-40:53) Willy asks Peter about office spaces and working in the future. Peter explains that we went too far downsizing offices and in the amount of square footage per employee, and that re-opening offices will involve expanding space per employee. (40:54-50:11) As the episode ends, Peter explains the shortage in the housing market and why multi-family seems to be doing better than single homes. (50:12-54:36)
Jan 09, 2021
Aneel Bhusri
In this episode of Driven by Insight, Willy Walker is joined by Aneel Bhusri, Co-Founder and Co-CEO of Workday. Aneel begins by talking about his family and how his parents’ love for math and science led him to the career path he is on today. He also talks about his journey with Co-Founder Dave Duffield and how Dave helped mentor him and shape his values in the business world. (1:19-6:21) Willy asks Aneel about his prior career at PeopleSoft, specifically how his relationship with Dave Duffield grew throughout their time at the company. (6:22-9:49) Willy asks Aneel why he turned down an offer to be the CEO of PeopleSoft. He mentions the importance of humility in business and understanding when to turn down opportunities. (9:50-11:07) Aneel speaks to his return to PeopleSoft and the rejuvenation efforts he undertook with Dave Duffield, which furthered their bond with one another as business partners. (11:08-14:44) Aneel continues to walk through his professional journey when Willy asks him about his and Dave’s journey in creating Workday. Aneel goes into what set Workday apart from SAP and Oracle at the time, and what led him and Dave to believe they would succeed. (14:45-21:57) Aneel explains the current state of the competition between Workday and companies like SAP and Oracle. (21:58-24:19) Aneel talks about Workplace’s unique mission in having a good work community. He describes that happy employees lead to satisfied customers, which leads to a unified business model. (24:20-26:54) Aneel talks about the difference between software development and data science groups at Workday. Willy asks why there has been a recent emphasis on data science, and Aneel answers by saying that data can be valuable in making predictions for the future, specifically in career paths and auditing. This creates value for data, which leads to a demand for technology to enable these predictions. (26:55-34:45) Aneel uses his relationship with Dave Duffield as an example of finding friends who have a complimentary skill set to drive success in partnerships. (34:46-39:09) Aneel advises budding entrepreneurs to know what kinds of problems are important, and to do this by listening to the feedback of customers. (39:10-43:52) Willy concludes the interview by asking Aneel about his participation in the Giving Pledge. Aneel shares his focus on giving in ways that help with food security and education. He concludes by sharing how his business is working to improve diversity within the company. (43:53-50:41
Dec 18, 2020
Elizabeth Concordia
In this episode, Willy interviews Elizabeth Concordia, the President and CEO of UCHealth. The topic for the conversation is arguably the timeliest topic of all: healthcare and COVID-19 vaccine development. Willy and Elizabeth will explore insights into how health systems across the country are fighting the pandemic, saving lives, and planning for the roll-out of vaccines. Willy introduces Elizabeth and gives the audience background on UCHealth. (0:49-1:36) Turning to the subject of the COVID-19 vaccine, Willy asks Elizabeth about her reaction when she found out the Pfizer vaccine must be stored at negative ninety degrees Fahrenheit. Elizabeth notes that the efficacy of the available vaccines is promising, and she hopes that seeing others be vaccinated will dispel the doubts many others still hold. (1:37-4:12) Elizabeth explains that she and her colleagues have been planning for a COVID surge since April and have seen significant progress in treatment, a decrease in length of hospital stays and needs for ventilators, and an adequate supply of Remdesivir and PPE. (4:13-8:20) Elizabeth says her employees are fatigued and explains a reason for them to feel hopeful going forward. (8:21-9:25) Elizabeth shares about her hospital’s current operations. While the hospital has had to cut back on practices that had just recently been reintroduced after the onset of the pandemic, it has also grown in efficiency, gained new focus on virtual care, and found ways to permanently improve its retail and customer experience strategies. (9:26-10:40) Elizabeth speaks to how COVID-19 has altered the business model of most hospitals, shifting to more frequent tele-visits. She mentions how this has altered the payment plans for most patients as well. (10:41-14:09) Elizabeth and Willy talk about the knowledge needed to distinguish between the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines, the use of masks in between and following the two vaccine doses, the process of getting vaccines to rural areas, and the problem of patients delaying care for serious illnesses due to fears of COVID-19. (14:10-19:36) Elizabeth explains how and why the medical community needs to work to get kids back in school safely, and she and Willy urge listeners to reach out to others within the community who may be lonely and in need of connection. (19:37-24:54) Finally, Elizabeth predicts when people such as Willy and herself will be able to be vaccinated, and comments on the hope that the healthcare system won’t reach a breaking point that will force governments to impose any more shut downs. (24:55-27:20)
Dec 15, 2020
Kate Moore
In this episode, Willy Walker interviews Kate Moore who is the managing director at BlackRock and head of Thematic Strategy. An expert in investments and markets, Kate spends time sharing her outlook for 2021 and beyond. The interview begins with Kate giving her thoughts on the accelerated economic restart and where we are as an economy. (1:41-4:59) Kate explains how certain platforms and technology innovations used before the pandemic have now been turbo charged as a result. She believes that these changes and turbo charged platforms will remain even after the pandemic. (5:00-6:14) Kate shares that as growth improves and the economy reopens, short-term inflation should be expected. When it comes to the market and manufacturing, as companies shift their supply chain and as the markets reopen, efficiency will be improved and increases in costs will be dampened. (6:15- 12:13) Willy asks Kate about her thoughts on the unemployment rate. As things begin to reopen, Kate explains how companies may be slower to rehire in order to protect their margins. (12:14-15:32) Kate gives her thoughts about the financial strategies that companies will put in place as reopening accelerates. (15:33-20:12) Willy asks Kate to share her thoughts on how consumers will approach markets and investments as reopening continues. She explains how the tools that were used in equity risks are currently unavailable to consumers, providing them with uncertainty in their investment. She also touches on defensive stocks and how one can approach them wisely. (20:13-26:45) Kate talks about the presence of disruptors in structural changes, emphasizing the importance of taking time to think through a business model and being creative about the solutions provided. (26:46-33:59) With the rise of technology in recent times, Kate speaks about the technology platform BlackRock uses, which is called Aladdin. She points out its pros, specifically in risk management and access to data. (34:00-38:16) Kate provides her take that international investment offers less than what you would receive from the United States. However, she goes on to share her enthusiasm about new business models, especially in China, that are growing. (38:17-44:56) Willy moves on to ask Kate about her favorite sources she uses for her job at BlackRock. She shares the importance of always challenging your thinking and reading alternate opinions, as well as having different sources of learning. (44:57-49:46) Kate shares her experience of being a female Wall Street Investor in a male-dominated field. (49:47-52:15) Kate gives her thoughts about ESG and sustainable investing as she prioritizes a mindset of sustainability. She concludes by giving advice to investors looking to identify what is important to their investing process. (52:16-56:29)
Dec 11, 2020
Mark Parrell & Owen Thomas
In this episode, Willy Walker is joined by Owen Thomas and Mark Parrell. Owen is CEO of Boston Properties, the largest developer and owner of Class A office properties and a top leader in sustainability. Mark is the CEO of Equity Residential, a company focused on the acquisition, management, and development of residential properties. Willy begins the interview with the topic of how the pandemic has affected the office sector. Owen shares that when people do not come into the office, it causes other local businesses and big city economies to suffer. Owen explains how companies want people back at work, but are concerned about liability. (3:09-10:28) Mark shares his optimism of the cities’ ability to recover from the pandemic and his belief that once they are reenergized, renters will return. However, he notes that for this to happen, good leadership is required. (10:29-13:26) Another effect of the pandemic has been how economic vibrancy in other areas is causing movement from big cities. Mark responds to this by pointing out how the pandemic has caused big cities to lose some people. As things begin to open, however, the pull to move back to the city will become stronger due to both price and activation. (13:27-19:47) Willy moves on to ask mark how EQR has managed the challenges of the California market during the pandemic. Mark explains how rental rates are doing well because they are open to communication with tenants. Mark goes on to explain how this communication means directly contacting residents and being willing to work with them. Additionally, he explains the need to reach an agreement on a stimulus bill that is needed to help people get back on their feet. (19:48-29:56) Willy then asks Mark and Owen to share their thoughts on Prop 15. They share their opinions and how this bill would have been negative for landlords and businesses, and would have had a negative impact on industries. They instead encourage changes to be made through good leadership, which calls for action from people and for voices to be heard. (29:57-35:55) Mark explains how the fact that hard rents have gone down will create more opportunity in the overall market. His own company, along with others, are working towards giving good deals and cap rates to help increase opportunities. (35:56-40:23) Mark describes EQR’s current position in the market and their perspective towards seeking new acquisitions. (40:24-43:01) While Mark sees shared workspace as having a place in the commercial office world, he explains that the pandemic has made it difficult for this to be implemented. (43:02-49:38) Willy concludes the podcast by asking Mark and Owen to share ways in which they have incorporated diversity and inclusion into their companies. Mark explains how they have broadened their industry to hire highly qualified people of all types and have made it a goal to have a board that reflects diversity. Owen shares that they have put in place a diversity and inclusion committee to offer advice on how to improve diversity. (49:39-56:53)
Dec 05, 2020
Amy Gallo & Dr. Sigal Barsade
In this episode, Willy interviews two experts in human interaction, emotional intelligence, and conflict management: Amy Gallo and Dr. Sigal Barsade. Author of HBR Guide to Dealing with Conflict, Amy Gallo is an expert in communication and conflict management. Dr. Sigal Barsade, a professor of management at Wharton Business School, is also an expert in her field of emotional intelligence, organizational culture, and team dynamics. Willy begins the interview asking Amy and Sigal to share a disappointment they encountered during quarantine along with how they overcame it. Both Amy and Sigal share that their biggest disappointment was the inability to see family members. The two then define their own disappointment management strategies and give advice to listeners suffering from similar circumstances. (2:26-10:59) Willy asks his guests if conflict is always a bad thing. Amy responds by pointing out how an environment with no conflict contains artificial harmony, which does not reach to deeper levels of creativity. Sigal adds to Amy’s response by bringing in the emotional side and explains task conflict with positive emotions can create an environment of innovation and creativity. (11:00-16:15) Amy advises listeners to check their mindset before entering a conversation with someone that addresses a conflict. This can be knowing how you will bring it up, what questions you will ask, and choosing the right time and place for it. Sigal adds to this by speaking on the importance of having the ability to read others’ emotions. (16:16-25:28) Amy explains how identifying patterns in yourself shows you your default reaction to conflict and knowing this will help you prepare to respond in a positive way when conflict arises. Additionally, Sigal explains how we often follow the cynical attribution error, which is constantly attributing negative attributes to people. (25:29-31:01) Willy asks Amy how to deal with this personality conflict in a positive way in a work setting. Amy explains how this conflict needs to be faced by realizing that you can only control your own reaction and not the other person’s. (31:02-35:18) Willy asks Amy to share even more specifically how to deal with this in family settings. The important thing to remember in this situation is knowing what your goal is. You don’t have to focus on changing someone’s perspective, only on being true to your own values and sense of self. (35:19-39:50) Willy asks Sigal to share her wisdom on emotional norms, specifically in the virtual world and business environment. Sigal explains that emotional norms are the emotions that should be expressed versus those that should not be expressed. (39:51-47:25) The virtual setting of the business world over the last several months has dampened shared emotion and depressed the process of emotional contagion. Because of this, the virtual world is requiring people to be more explicit about emotional norms. Paying attention to emotions is important in understanding how people feel, think, and behave. (47:26-52:58)
Dec 02, 2020
Ivy Zelman
In this episode, Willy interviews Ivy Zelman, whose research, analysis, and advice concerning the housing market have earned her a formidable reputation as an analyst in the field. Willy first asks Ivy how she would choose to invest a million dollars in the housing market. Ivy would take a sort of hybrid approach, investing in assets in Cleveland, OH, as well as in Boise, ID. (1:11-2:40) Willy’s interest in Ivy’s hometown extends into his next question, as he asks her to share her background. She describes how, through her father and her father’s line of work, she learned valuable principles of business savvy and weighing risk. (2:41-4:12) Moving forward, Ivy spent six years working through her undergrad, including working at Arthur Young during the day while she attended school at night. Colleagues recommended that she pursue work on Wall Street rather than in accounting, and she landed at Salomon Brothers in investment banking before eventually transitioning into equity research at the same company. (4:13-7:53) A hard-working analyst who built a strong network and was bold and willing to ask tough questions, Ivy speaks to how she set herself apart in her field. (7:54-10:25) In 2007, she, her husband, and Dennis McGill founded their startup, and Ivy explains the timing of the transition before turning to questions pertaining to the housing market. (10:26-12:50) Continuing their look to the past, Willy and Ivy consider some of Ivy’s housing projections from 2011-2013, which bore out in different ways in the ensuing years. (12:51-15:11) Moving to the present, Willy and Ivy discuss whether circumstances they’ve just discussed from the previous decade are similar or different to circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic. (15:16-17:29) Ivy addresses the place of FHA loans, single-family credit availability, the COVID-inspired push for space and distance, dynamics of affordability, and rate projections. (17:30-22:28) The two discuss numbers pertaining to single- and multi-family home markets, and work through relevant factors of a decrease in urban living, the need to clear out a multi-family backlog, and questions of foreclosure. (22:29-34:28) Willy then draws attention to two shifts: the shift to remote working and a blue/red state shift. (34:29-43:40) As the conversation moves toward a close, Ivy speaks to current issues surrounding unemployment, risks to builders, and investment in workforce housing. (43:41-57:12)
Nov 17, 2020
Bobby Turner + Chris Paul
In this episode, Willy speaks with guests Bobby Turner and Chris Paul, focusing on their work pursuing social justice through Turner Impact Capital and other ventures. Before beginning the interview, Willy sets the stage with some foundational information about current circumstances in American economic and political life at the time of the episode’s recording. (0:48-6:56) Willy addresses his first guest, Bobby Turner. Through the course of his career, Bobby began to struggle between the capitalist world and the philanthropist world, and his wrestling eventually led him to develop a commitment to social impact investing. (6:57-9:23) Bobby defines social impact investing as business used as a force for good, and he explains the challenge of building capital for his first venture in 1998 with Magic Johnson. (9:24-14:35) Looking to his present work, Bobby then explains details of his work with Turner Impact. The organization centers its efforts on the need for affordable workforce housing, and Bobby addresses both the problem calling for change and the solution his team has developed before sharing encouraging metrics. (14:36-24:31) Chris Paul joins the conversation from the NBA Bubble. Broadening the conversation, Chris details what brought him to partner with Bobby and Turner Impact. (24:32-26:13) Chris explains how he and the basketball colleagues with whom he partners settle on what kinds of work to involve themselves in. Chris highlights his pride in the fact that he and many others have committed themselves to ventures together, rather than trying to tackle smaller-scale issues themselves. (26:14-31:09) The group considers the opportunity of the moment - a moment in which a civil rights movement, invigorated by the killing of George Floyd and a global pandemic, have pressed people to assess the moral fabric of the country. (31:10-32:39) Bobby, Chris, and others are committed to social justice work in the key interdependent areas of education, housing, and healthcare. Chris clarifies that these efforts start with the need to level the playing field. He, Bobby, and Willy also know that things can change and are changing in significant ways, and they share stories to demonstrate. (32:40-41:23) The group discusses education, and specifically Bobby’s work to develop charter schools and the way in which helpful school models introduced can be scaled to suit larger groups of students. (41:24-48:55) The interview concludes with thoughts from Chris on leadership in the NBA Bubble, the benefit of increased travel, bowling, and more! (48:56-57:11)
Nov 17, 2020
Andy Florance
In this episode, Willy interviews Andy Florance, the Founder, Director, President, and CEO of CoStar Group, Inc. He and Willy have a spirited conversation about commercial real estate markets and what Andy and his organization are seeing today as they work the markets. Before getting to his conversation with Andy, Willy introduces his friend John Rice, Walker & Dunlop Director, member of the Yale University Board of Trustees, and CEO of Management Leadership for Tomorrow. Willy asks John to share how American corporations, and the country in general, may best deal with ongoing civil unrest. John provides a three-part answer, giving business leaders concrete steps to take to make progress, rather than settling for more of the same problems. (1:05-8:15) On a related note, Willy provides listeners with an inside look at how Walker & Dunlop has been taking measures and using data and goals to track and drive its progress toward fostering social change. (8:16-13:31) The conversation then turns to Andy, as Andy speaks to his business started in 1987 - Realty Information Group. Andy was inspired by the potential for digital transformation, and actually ended up in the field by means of an unsuccessful effort to enter real estate. (13:32-17:17) Andy explains the shift to the name CoStar, which is both an acronym and a nod at the company’s desire to play a supporting rather than a leading role in commercial real estate transactions. (17:18-18:48) Andy fields a question provided by Brian Coulter of JBG Smith, speaking to his partnership with Jeff Goldblum through (18:49-21:04) Andy shares how his company has seen as much success as it has, pointing to the incredible size of the commercial real estate asset class, as well as to the company’s focus on persistence. (21:05-25:24) Continuing to explain the unique role Andy and his colleagues fill, he addresses their focus on multifamily properties and their interconnected emphases of data, community, and standards. (25:25-28:39) Willy runs through acquisitions that CoStar has made in different asset classes and seeks Andy’s views of the classes right now. The first acquisition is that of LoopNet, which belongs in the asset class of office space. (28:40-35-41) The other acquisitions include (35:42-49:25), STR (49:26-53:32) , and Ten-X (53:33-59:43), which represent the asset classes of apartments, hospitality, and (online) property sales, respectively. As he explains the acquisitions and classes, Andy talks about the recent shift to virtual apartment tours, the impact of COVID-19 on hospitality businesses, and more!
Nov 17, 2020
Glen Youngkin
In this episode, Willy speaks with guest Glenn Youngkin. Glenn was Co-CEO of The Carlyle Group, a Washington, D.C.-based global investment management firm. Before beginning the interview, Willy addresses Walker & Dunlop’s earnings, as well as the current state of the commercial real estate market, including mixed-use for student housing, and office space setup. (1:26-10:43) Willy introduces Glenn, and Glenn explains his career path that led him to an executive position at Carlyle. (10:44-13:44) Most firms were not located in Washington, D.C. and Glenn says that while at first, Carlyle’s position in D.C. was a strong differentiator, it has become less significant as the firm has grown into a global player with offices in New York and London. (13:45-16:04) Glenn says we are in the bottom of the current economic cycle, beyond where anyone could have anticipated. Carlyle works to make sure their portfolios are diversified, but says they weren’t chasing down trends which had them in a good place to begin dealing with the pandemic crisis. (16:05-20:08) Asia’s recovery shows us that auto sales, and consumer demand in staples have rebounded. However, items associated with big purchases, material capital spending, and businesses have not recovered as quickly. We’re starting to see growth in industries across Asia, like and Glenn believes, those trends will hold in the United States as they move into the recovery phase as well. (20:09-30:19) Glenn speaks to the liquidity in the private capital sector. (30:20-33:31) Another investment area impacted by the recovery is renewable energy. Glenn explains that there is a role for both natural gas and renewables in the energy transition. Over the next 20 years, he predicts there will be a large trend toward no carbon content energy. (33:32-44:33) The Carlyle Group is an ESG leader, and Glenn speaks to their belief that if you invest for impact, then you can turn a good business into a great one. Diversity and inclusion for Carlyle is not a division, but rather embedded into the culture of the firm. Glenn says the results are clear - taking those ESG values and applying them throughout the business gives you better outcomes. (44:34-49:35) As the episode ends, Willy asks Glenn about recent reports that we will see economic inflation in the next year. Glenn stresses that predicting the economic climate one year out is extremely difficult, and now during the pandemic, it is inextricably tied to public health progress. Borrowing from Warren Buffet, Glenn says that you shouldn’t bet against America and its ability to rebound from the current crisis. (49:36-53:47)
Nov 17, 2020
Barry Sternlicht
Willy Walker and Barry Sternlicht, Chairman & CEO of Starwood Capital Group, discuss the CRE market’s performance, touching on asset class performance across Starwood’s vast holdings and investments, the path forward for our country and economy, and where and when investment opportunities could present themselves. Walker Webcast Replay - April 22, 2020
Nov 17, 2020
Mary Erdoes
In this episode, Willy speaks with guest Mary Erdoes, Chief Executive Officer of JP Morgan Chase's Asset & Wealth Management line of business. Willy begins by giving his insights into the current state of the commercial real estate world. (1:13-4:59) Willy introduces Mary and asks about how her role has changed in the midst of a pandemic. The biggest change, she explains is deputizing a newly at-home workforce to work remotely. (5:00-13:04) The popular thinking is that this will be a “v-shaped recovery” and the markets will follow. The problem, Mary explains, is that we don’t know when a vaccine will be available. While the economy will recover, Mary says the time it takes for the pandemic to end will impact how many businesses, jobs, and savings accounts are lost. Mary explains that you must plan for the worst, while at the same time continuing your investment mindset. (13:05-21:15) China’s government has handled the pandemic much differently than the US, and their markets are showing recovery. Willy and Mary agree that it is a tough comparison, because of the social regulations China has imposed on its citizens that would not be possible in the United States. However, Mary says it does show a willingness for communities to come back and create a new normal. The relationship between the United States and China was already frosty pre-pandemic, Mary says continuing that relationship post-pandemic is going to be difficult. She foresees countries being more isolationist in the future than they were before COVID, and that the balance between digital and in person meetings will have to be renegotiated. (21:16-27:09) Willy and Mary discuss the challenges of working from home and any plans to get employees back in the office. (27:10-33:35) Mary explains how JP Morgan is gathering and analyzing COVID data. (33:36-42:19) Willy asks Mary what it is like to work for Jamie Dimon. Mary says he is a unique and gifted leader who works, even through personal crisis, with resiliency. Mary explains that diversity is sustainable at JP Morgan because Jamie puts an emphasis on hiring diverse talent. (42:20-49:09) Mary shares where she and JP Morgan are looking for opportunities. (49:10-50:54)
Nov 17, 2020