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Innovate and Elevate - August 30, 2008. Times Property (Times of India)

Even in a tough market, there are ways to survive

The saying 'The idle mind is a devils workshop' is true only if you let your mind be idle and not innovate and elevate. With the buzz being of slowdown and a slack in sales and transaction volumes which is true to a great extent, I think this time is best utilised to 'Innovate' products and services one can add to their basket within their firm or organisation.

Most renowned developers have started their relationship re-building exercise with brokers since their media response has been average. They do expect brokers to be saviours and miracle workers in times like that but frankly how long can a fake relationship last? I guess they are doing their bit of innovation.

In the meanwhile a small company like ours have started working on an all-new look for our website. Adding new products and services like "Orientation and Relocation" programmes for expatriate clients. I am happy to share these openly, as this should not be some 'big secret'. Add real estate finance and property management to your services portfolio. The property business and associated services businesses are huge as the sea. There is enough room for everyone to fish.

See how you can 'Elevate' your standard of business and practice by offering better service. Attend workshops, 'educate yourself to elevate' even more reason, if you think you know it all.

If you are not the conference going type, read on related subjects; write your own blog on your site. Furthermore, create an environment in your office worthy of inviting clients. If you put your mind to it, there is so much you can do. We have been observing the market players are now also looking at consolidation as part of their innovation strategy and I think it's a great one. Instead of twiddling your fingers waiting for business to come your way, you have the option to consolidate with bigger players or players of your size and vision. Network nationally and internationally to invite business your way.

Here is a prediction of how things might shape up in the times to come, just so you now almost how much time we have to 'Innovate and elevate'. Considering the real impact and feel of the slowdown almost came into effect in May-June 2008, and putting factors like resistance, supply, demand, pricing etc we will see a "Correction" phase spread over two years with random deals, (unless 100% FDI opens into retail or any other major sectors or any major positive economic influence pushes market back into bullish sentiment). After which there will be a 'Plateau' and gradual upward trend.

My humble reading is from December 2011 onwards we will see the markets across all sectors in Metros like Mumbai, Hyderabad, Bangalore, Nagpur, Pune NCR, and Cochin on an upswing. Pune, Jaipur and few tier II and III cities where there is excess residential supply in select locations within the city will continue to see correction and perhaps a fall or dip allowing buyers or investors an opportunity to enter around 2011-2012.

Having said that, my prediction above may not hold good for premium locations and premium and luxury properties. For example in the residential segment in Mumbai prices at Malabar Hill, Napeansea Road might or will hold up. Prices in Mid Town regions like Worli, Prabhadevi will remain flat and might go up. But Bandra for sure is set to move northwards and the only way is up. Ever increasing demand, lack of quality supply and being the new mid-town address with proximity to Bandra-Kurla complex, the new CBD, the Diamond Bourse, Airports etc make it the hot favourite destination. However, my feeling is the "Commercial Property" segment will see a correction of up to 15% over the next year across the city.

The India story is alive and true. It's the greed coupled by stock market correction and fall that has taken over creating a slowdown besides the sentimental effect created by media on Inflation being at two digits. So there is a lot more coming to cheer about. Anyone who is in a 'hurry' or 'lacks grace' will see their results coming accordingly.
Like, I always quote Kabirsahib's verses to my son Abir, which I will translate and put for you in English: "Slowly and with patience oh mind, everything happens with time; even if the farmer ploughs and waters day and night, only when crop season arrives he will reap his fruits or results."