Bookmarks: 5 Interesting Articles to Help You This Week

January 30th, 2017

Credit: iStock

Credit: iStock

Each week, I select a few articles that rise above the fray and hopefully help you on your journey in the CRE world. They pull from one of four “corners:” corporate real estate, technology, management science and anything positive. I welcome your comments on these articles and the submissions of others (with credit to you if I post them). I wish you a terrific week!

Chick-fil-A is beating every competitor by training workers to say ‘please’ and ‘thank you’
“According to Chick-fil-A, the chain has the upper hand when it comes to customer service because it invests more than other companies in training its employees. The chicken chain’s unique business structure, in which each franchisee is only allowed to open one Chick-fil-A location, further allows for more hands-on supervision and training.” www.businessinsider.com

Top 10 Hot Artificial Intelligence (AI) Technologies
“Coined in 1955 to describe a new computer science sub-discipline, “Artificial Intelligence” today includes a variety of technologies and tools, some time-tested, others relatively new. To help make sense of what’s hot and what’s not, Forrester just published a TechRadar report on Artificial Intelligence (for application development professionals), a detailed analysis of 13 technologies enterprises should consider adopting to support human decision-making.” www.forbes.com

A New Age Industrial Product Emerging To Meet Modern Needs

Inspired by the creative office movement, a new generation of industrial flex space is emerging that combines creative office and industrial uses under one roof. Most of these projects recycle large old industrial buildings by dividing them up for multiple tenants.

This is a relatively new product type that appears most popular in mature urban locations with a large, educated young workforce, such as San Diego, Minneapolis, Seattle, Minneapolis, Los Angeles and New York… www.nrei.com

Unusual employee benefits at Basecamp – the complete list
I’m often asked about the benefits we offer at Basecamp. Potential employees are obviously curious, but most of the questions I get are from fellow business owners and entrepreneurs. Everyone’s looking to know what everyone else is doing — as are we — so I figured I might as well post our current benefit list publicly.

Note: Since the majority of our staff works remotely, and some outside the US, some of these benefits are provided in different ways. For example, the 401k is only available in the US. We’re currently working on making sure everyone, no matter where they work, have commensurate benefits (or at least as similar as possible). We’re still working on this, so hopefully I can write more about how we’ve addressed this down the road.” www.linkedin.com

How Well Are #CRE Leaders Balancing Need To Attract Talent & The Need To Reduce Company Costs?
Corporate real estate (CRE) leaders around the world are focused on strategies to attract and retain superior employees and help enhance their productivity. At the same time, they must continually find ways to reduce occupancy costs. The overriding challenge is to balance these two goals, which are often in opposition to one another.

This is the picture that emerged from a new global CRE survey conducted by Cushman & Wakefield in conjunction with CoreNet Global in 2016 as a follow-up to the 2015 study of industry trends, which reinforces the criteria that is really driving occupier decisions. This year, our survey examined not only location and workplace strategy as corporate value drivers, but also CRE’s alignment with business strategy alignment.” www.cushwake.com

Your success blesses others. I wish you a great a hugely impactful week!

Ken

 

Bookmarks: 5 Interesting Articles to Help You This Week

January 23rd, 2017

Credit: iStock

Credit: iStock

Each week, I select a few articles that rise above the fray and hopefully help you on your journey in the CRE world. They pull from one of four “corners:” corporate real estate, technology, management science and anything positive. I welcome your comments on these articles and the submissions of others (with credit to you if I post them). I wish you a terrific week!

The Surprising Truth About Choice
Technology gives us the power to check emails from home in the middle of the night and to collaborate in real time with colleagues all around world. And because choice empowers a person to work in whatever style they find most conducive to success, we expected our 2016 survey to show that more organizations are offering choice to their employees. So you can imagine the shock we felt when we learned that choice is actually decreasing! According to the results of our 2016 U.S. Workplace Survey, which surveyed 4,000 U.S. workers across 11 industries, only one in four people now reports having choice in where they work. That’s a 24 percent decrease in a span of just three years.” www.gensleron.com

How to Write Email with Military Precision
In the military, a poorly formatted email may be the difference between mission accomplished and mission failure. During my active duty service, I learned how to structure emails to maximize a mission’s chances for success. Since returning from duty, I have applied these lessons to emails that I write for my corporate job, and my missives have consequently become crisper and cleaner, eliciting quicker and higher-quality responses from colleagues and clients. Here are three of the main tips I learned on how to format your emails with military precision… www.hbr.org

What Matters More to Your Workforce than Money
Economists have long argued that money doesn’t buy happiness. But compensation is still a major factor for us when we’re considering where to work. What do we know about how more pay influences employees’ motivations?

That slice of information can be the difference between a workforce that is satisfied and productive and one that isn’t — costing the business money in the long run.

As the chief economist at Glassdoor, my role is to help unearth some of the driving forces behind job seekers’ decisions: why they choose the jobs they do, what matters to them at work, and what causes them to love — or despise — their company or manager.www.hbr.org

Tech That Will Change Your Life in 2017
Ok, teleportation is still a ways off. But we’re still in awe of what’s in store for the next 12 months. The list below has become an annual tradition, where we talk to industry insiders, track the trends and otherwise gaze into our crystal ball to identify the tech that’s going to make an impact in the near term—for better and worse.” www.wsj.com

A New Age Industrial Product Emerging to Meet Modern Needs
“Inspired by the creative office movement, a new generation of industrial flex space is emerging that combines creative office and industrial uses under one roof. Most of these projects recycle large old industrial buildings by dividing them up for multiple tenants.

This is a relatively new product type that appears most popular in mature urban locations with a large, educated young workforce..” www.nreionline.com

5 Trends That Will Change The Way Your Customers Will Shop In 2017
At first glance, the queues for 2016’s hot-ticket holiday item, Snapchat Spectacles, might not have looked all that different from the round-the-block lines that formed for the Tickle Me Elmo craze of 20 years ago. But a closer inspection reveals how the simple act of shopping has been quietly transformed during that time.

Rather than waiting at the mall to make their purchase, Snapchat’s hopeful customers were lining up to buy specs at Snapbot vending machines in exotic locales such as the Grand Canyon, the Rose Bowl and Big Sur…” www.forbes.com

Your success blesses others. I wish you a great a hugely impactful week!

Ken

 

Office Party? Atlanta Market 2018 Forecast

2017 was a mighty fine year for Atlanta office real estate. Macro events such as tax law changes, a roaring stock markets, very healthy corporate profits and strong employment numbers helped corporate America have a pep in its collective step, and Atlanta was no exception.

As I look deeply into my crystal ball and based on reading, and conversations with economists and market experts, I’ve begun to true up some predictions for 2018 in seven areas:

Thanks Dow Jones Industrials! You Rock!

Development
The goal in 2018 for corporate America in 2018 is employee engagement. Read another way, employers want you to want to come to the office. On the development side, this is dramatically impacting what architects are drawing and where building is occurring. Infill development will continue to thrive. Buildings will continue to strive to look “authentic,” like Hines’ T3 development which will consist of a 200,000 heavy timber frame and wood building planned at Atlantic Station. Authentic design can be achieved using the right materials or by retrofitting an older building – the organic approach to real estate.

The Emergence of the City Center
Maybe the 1950’s are coming back to life in reimagined small town America. Seven city center projects are proposed or under construction around metro Atlanta including the Braves Stadium know as the Battery, Avalon in Alpharetta, City Springs in the City of Sandy Springs,  Assembly in Doraville and others. People like working in a dense environment, but want to enjoy the cheaper housing and larger yards of the suburbs. Some have said the city center concept is the 21st century mall.

Rental Rates
Next year, rental rates on most classes will stop climbing as fast as they did in 2017 and concessions start to return in certain markets like Central Perimeter. I also believe there will be an uptick of subleases as growing companies are forced to move their operations in order to expand. There’s been an increase towards the end of 2017 and we believe there will be even more of this activity in 2018. The one exception to this forecast is newly delivered class A which is the hottest product in our city. Corporations with a pocket book will continue to drive rates in sexy new product to the highest our town has ever seen.

Office Product Types
As always, the market will continue to be a tale of the haves and the have nots. Rental rates notwithstanding, the haves will remain the most popular among tenants that can afford them and investors who pine for the latest and greatest. Take Three Alliance for example. The building experienced a rapid lease-up and has now traded for an historic price. Class B product with inefficient floorplates and lack of support amenities won’t experience near the rental rates of trophy Class A. Expect to see a trophy tower launch in an urban market with much more infill urban development/redevelopment. Finally, urban industrial product is becoming more attractive for redevelopment into creative loft office.

Tenant Demand
Last year, corporate America was catching its breath and approaching with caution because of uncertainty around administration, tax policy and the general business environment. However, with the Dow up 5,000 points in one year, which has never happened in history, the business economy is, and will remain, robust. I believe there will be continued organic growth and M&A activity in 2018. In board meetings and planning meetings, which are taking place right now, I believe businesses are planning for expansion in 2018. In 2017, many companies were a question mark, and that has turned into an exclamation point for 2018.

Capital Markets
In 2018, we anticipate cap rates will remain steady for suburban product. In the suburbs, there were misalligned expectations between sellers and buyers. Sellers forecasted continued rental rate increases, but buyers didn’t agree.  One can anticipate further cap rate compression in high rise urban and “cool” infill product – where she stops, nobody knows.

Technology
Next year will also be the year that the “internet of things” (IOT) begins to have a real impact on commercial real estate. It will rapidly improve the operating efficiency of commercial real estate, and it will be interesting to see what sort of role it will play for building owners and managers, as well as tenants. Building systems will let us know when they need service and save on labor cost. Maybe they’ll bring you coffee at 2 in the afternoon, too.

I saw a beautiful sentence in the Wall Street Journal recently: “investors have abandoned defensive positions, throwing caution to the wind.”  As you complete returning all those gifts back to Amazon, let’s hope Santa is in a good mood all year in 2018. This economy is the gift that keeps on giving.

Let’s keep this ball rolling, shall we?

Bookmarks: 5 Interesting Articles to Help You This Week

January 9th, 2017

Credit: iStock

Credit: iStock

Each week, I select a few articles that rise above the fray and hopefully help you on your journey in the CRE world. They pull from one of four “corners:” corporate real estate, technology, management science and anything positive. I welcome your comments on these articles and the submissions of others (with credit to you if I post them). I wish you a terrific week!

100,000-square-foot startup hub ‘TechRise’ planned for Buckhead
“We are seeing increasing demand for short-term leases among emerging growth companies, and specifically in the tech sector,” noted Ken Ashley, executive director at Cushman & Wakefield. “Those companies are changing so rapidly, it’s hard to see even six months into the future, much less five years.”

While there is demand for short-term office space created by co-working spaces and incubators, it is unlikely the real estate industry will adopt the model at scale. “It’s one shelf, but it’s not the whole store,” Ashley said. “It would be unlikely that you would see many landlords take entire buildings and commit them to short-term (leases).” www.bizjournals.com

Why Millennials Don’t Like to Make Phone Calls
“The biggest reason has to do with time. We might not like to admit this, but as we get older, we stop forming as many new brain cells. (The myth is that we lose a lot of brain cells each day.) Millennials think faster than anyone older than 34. Millennials process information faster than most of us. They don’t have time for outdated technology.

In my informal survey, Millennials said they want to communicate faster and get better answers. To me, it’s the difference between asking a question on Twitter or trying to find an expert on a topic. Maybe the quality of the answer is different, but you can post on Twitter in about five second. (Believe me, I’ve tested this.) When I asked a question about parking in Las Vegas recently, about three people answered within seconds.” www.inc.com

Stop Setting Goals You Don’t Actually Care About
“At the start of 2016, I asked myself one question: “How can I make achieving my professional growth goals effortless?” I found the answer was elegantly simple — by focusing on alignment goals.

Many people fail on their professional development goals for the year because they take on a lot of goals — goals that they feel they “should” do but ultimately don’t energize them. For example, maybe they tell themselves that they need to read a pile of books in order to learn more, keep up with their colleagues, or just stay up-to-date with their industry. But if sitting down to read feels more like a chore, it’s unlikely they’ll make any progress — and they may feel badly for not achieving their goal when the year comes to a close. While the goal itself felt like it was something that fit the needs of their professional role, it didn’t match the individual’s preferences or ambitions.” www.hbr.com

Tech That Will Change Your Life in 2017
Ok, teleportation is still a ways off. But we’re still in awe of what’s in store for the next 12 months. The list below has become an annual tradition, where we talk to industry insiders, track the trends and otherwise gaze into our crystal ball to identify the tech that’s going to make an impact in the near term—for better and worse.” www.wsj.com

How To Earn Your Manager’s Respect
recent HBR study of nearly 20,000 employees around the world found that the most important thing that workers want from their managers is respect. “If you don’t feel respected, you won’t be engaged in your work,” says Linda Hill, professor at Harvard Business School and the coauthor of Being the Boss: The 3 Imperatives for Becoming a Great Leader. Respect from your boss has many layers, according to Michael Watkins, chairman of Genesis Advisers and a professor at IMD. It begins with being seen as “someone worth keeping and someone [your boss] wants to have as part of his team.” It progresses to being viewed as an employee deserving of “interesting and challenging assignments,” and finally as an employee that your manager, “wants to invest in and develop because he thinks you have a bright future.” Wanting respect is one thing; getting it is another. Here are some strategies.” www.hbr.com

Meet The 28-Year-Old CEO Plowing Travel Guidebooks Into The Future
Three years after graduating from Western Kentucky University, Daniel Houghton, 28, took the helm of the now 44-year-old travel brand, Lonely Planet, in 2013. One of his first tasks? Laying off 75 people, one-fifth of the company’s employees, many of whom worked on Lonely Planet’s free-spirited print guidebooks (though layoffs touched every team).  Guidebook sales, industry-wide, had plummeted 40% from 2007 through 2012, so Houghton decided Lonely Planet had go digital to survive. One year after he took over, digital accounted for 30% of Lonely Planet’s revenue, and print sales also rebounded, up 27% since 2013. In his first month as CEO, Houghton circumnavigated the globe three times in two weeks, meeting Lonely Planet’s partners and staff in offices spanning five continents. www.forbes.com

Your success blesses others. I wish you a great a hugely impactful week!

Ken

 

Bookmarks: 5 Interesting Articles to Help You This Week

January 3rd, 2017

Credit: iStock

Credit: iStock

Each week, I select a few articles that rise above the fray and hopefully help you on your journey in the CRE world. They pull from one of four “corners:” corporate real estate, technology, management science and anything positive. I welcome your comments on these articles and the submissions of others (with credit to you if I post them). I wish you a terrific week!

How a Laid-Off IT Guy Built a Million-Dollar Nutcracker Empire
In the space of a year, Glenn Crider lost his job and saw his products enshrined in the Smithsonian Institution.

Crider makes nutcrackers. If you mailed or received Christmas cards, you’ve probably seen his work. That year a fierce soldier in a yellow uniform, a shaggy-haired drummer, a red-suited Santa clutching a snowflake staff, and a king in a high golden crown stared proudly from the perforated frames of holiday stamps. After posing for their close-ups, the four wooden originals marched from Crider’s garage workshop into the U.S. Postal Museum in Washington D.C. www.inc.com

Millennial Start-Up Love Your Melon: Why Giving Back Is Sweeter Than Making Millions
Older people” have a lot of misperceptions about the Millennial me-me-me generation. Millennials are professional wafflers, they say, rarely staying at a job for more than a few years. They move relentlessly, avoiding roots, community, and settling down. Most of all, their addiction to technology, digital devices, and virtual relationships desensitizes them from engaging in meaningful ways with real people and real problems.” www.forbes.com

How Google Channels Diversity Into Creativity
“Google hasn’t let up on its efforts. Google’s leaders know that diversity on their teams — specifically the inclusion of individuals from underrepresented groups — is key to its businesses and has a direct impact on its bottom line. The company wants individuals from underrepresented backgrounds to apply for its job openings and feel welcome at the company.

‘We fully acknowledge we have work to do and are committed to this work for the long haul,’ says Thygesen, whose own division features a program designed to help grow women and minority-led businesses that are interested in working with Google. ‘We hope that by highlighting these folks’ accomplishments — both tangibly as it relates to our bottom line and intangibly as it improves our collective ability understand, embrace, and celebrate our differences — others like them will see themselves in fulfilling careers at Google.'” www.forbes.com

No Laptop, No Phone, No Desk: UBS Reinvents the Work Space
“The elimination of fixed desks is not a new concept — it has proved particularly popular among technology companies and start-ups — but only in recent years has technology made it more viable for larger companies.

It is still a rarity, however, in investment banking. Citigroup is one of the few companies that has a similar setup, at its new headquarters in downtown Manhattan.” www.wsj.com

How To Earn Your Manager’s Respect
recent HBR study of nearly 20,000 employees around the world found that the most important thing that workers want from their managers is respect. “If you don’t feel respected, you won’t be engaged in your work,” says Linda Hill, professor at Harvard Business School and the coauthor of Being the Boss: The 3 Imperatives for Becoming a Great Leader. Respect from your boss has many layers, according to Michael Watkins, chairman of Genesis Advisers and a professor at IMD. It begins with being seen as “someone worth keeping and someone [your boss] wants to have as part of his team.” It progresses to being viewed as an employee deserving of “interesting and challenging assignments,” and finally as an employee that your manager, “wants to invest in and develop because he thinks you have a bright future.” Wanting respect is one thing; getting it is another. Here are some strategies.” www.hbr.com

When You Outgrow Your iCloud Storage
How can I tell how much iCloud storage I have? Should I look at my iPhone or my computer?
www.nytimes.com

Your success blesses others. I wish you a great a hugely impactful week!

Ken