Calthorpe Estates, which owns swathes of land across South and West Birmingham, primarily in Edgbaston, held a briefing for the business community last week - in itself almost revolutionary.
It was put together jointly with Birmingham Forward and Birmingham Business Breakfast Club at the Botanical Gardens.
The Calthorpe bosses were staggered by the turnout - perhaps 250 people came along to listen to how the company was progressing current developments.
But, if it got its eyes opened many others of us also had our eyes opened as to how it is changing.
I remember the days when to call Calthorpe aloof was as generous as you could be.
Perhaps better words would be almost hermit-like, suspicious of outsiders, something of a secret society, cussed and intractable, having little interest if any in engaging with the wider community.
Were one of those dreadful journalists to contact them about some issue of the moment, the reply was invariably a sniffy no comment.
There had been signs that things were changing. They had hired a public relations company to outline upcoming development schemes, like their plans for the Tally Ho site opposite Edgbaston cricket ground.
But there have been false starts before. Could a Calthorpe really change its spots?
Something of a surprise then that it had agreed to such a wide-ranging business discussion, and journalists were allowed to be present. And the shocks didn't stop there.
It was clear from the start that the company had embraced marketing, a sure sign that it is truly catching up with the modern world.
Marketeers and PR executives fussed around us journalists.
The company put on a professional presentation, indeed almost slick. Executives answered questions, sometimes a little stiffly, but openly.
Sometimes they even smiled. And we actually learned a few things.
For almost as long as I have been in Birmingham, I have listened to people moaning about dilapidated old villas up the Hagley Road and other parts of the estate.
The explanation was that under a previous management regime some of these sites had been put out on long leases and in some cases it had taken eight years to return them to the fold. Indeed chief executive Richard Allen admitted he had been "appalled" at the state in which some had been handed back.
A question about noise and transport movements surrounding future major developments like the new hospital was treated sensitively instead of some sort of threat.
All the indications were that Calthorpe found the event as productive as those of us listening to them did.
I hope the penny has dropped - we need a Calthorpe working with the community and not in isolation from it. Calthorpe needs Birmingham to make progress on issues such as transport while Birmingham needs a Calthorpe which is progressive and forward-thinking.