Bookmarks: 5 Interesting Articles That May Help You This Week

November 5th, 2018

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,

Credit: iStock

management science and anything positive. I welcome your comments on these articles.

“Amazon and its planned 50,000 employees will also strain infrastructure. Home prices in Seattle have risen faster than anywhere in the United States except San Francisco since the Standard & Poor’s CoreLogic Case-

Shiller home price indexes began tracking real estate values 18 years ago. It’s difficult to see how New Jersey could afford to spend lavishly on Amazon when the state a few years ago canceled a multi-billion-dollar overhaul of a critical century-old train link to New York City.

Losers won’t have those worries, and many will get a boost from Amazon anyway.

Cities hoping to host Amazon’s HQ2 might still benefit from the company even if they lose the contest. CreditCreditLindsey Wasson/Reuters

According to the company’s figures, it has invested more than $4 billion and taken on more than 5,000 employees in New Jersey alone between 2011 and 2017, which is roughly half the time span of the promised HQ2 development. Over the same period, Virginia secured $29 billion of investment and over 8,500 jobs from Amazon. Even Tennessee, which is home to the finalist city of Nashville, has received more than $5 billion of investment and 6,500 jobs.”


Digital Natives Go Physical



6 Ways You Can Command A Room Without Saying A Word

When you have the floor to speak, you have the opportunity to command the room. You can command the room and lead even when you are not speaking. Follow these six nonverbal acts to establish your executive presence:

How One Hospital Improved Patient Safety in 10 Minutes a Day


Most modern health care improvements seem to involve expensive technology and an uncomfortable amount of change management. But clinical and nonclinical staff at the Rotterdam Eye Hospital have improved patient care and raised staff morale at a very modest cost: 10 minutes a day and a special deck of cards.

Members of the hospital’s design thinking team were inspired by something they saw when they boarded a KLM Airline flight: During a pre-flight huddle of the cabin crew, team members introduced each other and then asked each other two questions on flight safety.

When they got back to Rotterdam Eye Hospital, the managers asked themselves why couldn’t they add a similar feature to their own “team-start” huddles? After all, in some ways, the situations were similar: A group whose members may not have worked together before must form a close-knit team quickly and execute their duties in a way that meets the organization’s guidelines to the letter.”

City in a City: The 63,000 People Who Run The World’s Busiest Airport

“The Atlanta airport is one of the reasons UPS moved its corporate headquarters to Atlanta from Greenwich, Connecticut, in 1990,” says Dan McMackin of UPS. “The fact that we can make hundreds of direct international flights was a major contributing factor in our choice of Atlanta as the location of our global headquarters.”

But the airport also offers something simpler and more direct: jobs for more than 63,000 employees, which helps support a thriving middle class in and around the city. “Work at [the airport] makes mortgage payments and college tuition payments possible,” says Andrew Gobeil from the airport’s office of policy and communications.”


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

Bookmarks: 5 Interesting Articles That May Help You This Week

January 22nd, 2018

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! 

Credit: iStock

3 Commercial Real Estate Trends To Watch In 2018
“Political and economic uncertainty has pervaded the past year, with the U.S. economy showing signs of growth amid low inflation and a distressed retail segment in 2017, as accountants struggle to understand all the implications of the recently passed changes to the tax laws and Europe prepares for Brexit. Here’s a look at three commercial real estate trends to watch in 2018.”

Office Party? Atlanta Market 2018 Forecast
Yours truly pens a post: 2017 was a mighty fine year for Atlanta office real estate. Macro events such as tax law changes, a roaring stock market, very healthy corporate profits and strong employment numbers helped corporate America to have a pep in it’s 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 tune up some predictions for 2018 in seven areas…

Stop Neglecting Remote Workers
“Employees want to feel connected to one another. In a recent Globoforce study about the value of work relationships, 87% of respondents said they trust their coworkers and 93% said it’s important to have colleagues think highly of them. These bonds stoke engagement and commitment to the company. Cisco found that face-to-face relationships in particular are a boon to effective collaboration, which improves productivity, efficiency, and innovation.”

Warehouse Boom Continues, Sector Poised for more Growth in 2018, Says Report
“As Amazon’s continued retail expansion requires more and more square feet get absorbed into the company’s warehouse empire, the value of industrial real estate has climbed. A new report from Cushman & Wakefield, the national commercial real estate brokerage and consultancy, predicts that this particular market will only continue to boom”

Holiday Retail Sales Soared, With Biggest Increase Since Recession
“Shoppers came out in force during the holidays, driven by a strengthening economy, high consumer confidence and rebuilding efforts after a season of natural disasters across the country.

Retail sales during November and December increased 5.5 percent, to about $692 billion, from a year earlier, according to data released on Friday by the National Retail Federation.

It was the largest increase in holiday sales since the recession of 2008, exceeding the federation’s forecast of $682 billion, or growth of about 4 percent.”

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



The Times They Are A Changin’

My, my, what a difference a few Fed reports make.

We’ve been wringing hands for the better part of 2 years in this space worried about over-confident landlords who are raising prices with abandon. I think of the famous Michael Jackson hit Thriller and Vincent Prices’s famous laugh


Come gather ’round people
Wherever you roam
And admit that the waters
Around you have grown
And accept it that soon
You’ll be drenched to the bone
If your time to you
Is worth savin’
Then you better start swimmin’
Or you’ll sink like a stone
For the times they are a-changin’.

West Bound and Down – Twelve Days without an iPhone

Tooth of Time
Tooth of Time

Tooth of Time

I have a confession to make. For more than 17 years, I have been connected to the grid. Except for sleep, I was always tuned on. Yes, even on vacation, at night and certainly on weekends.

I bet I’m not alone in this admission, but at least I can publically declare my addiction to connectivity. I was like a real estate Waffle House; always on and available. Some will say I was like their hash browns as well; scattered, smothered, covered and chopped – but that’s another story.

But for 12 days in June, I had no iPhone, no computer, heck, not even a tin-can with a string. I accompanied my 15-year-old son Jonathan and his Boy Scout crew for a hiking expedition in the beautiful Sangre de Cristo Mountains of North Eastern New Mexico to Philmont Scout Ranch.

I’m proud of the 93 miles we hiked, the trials we endured, and the trails we climbed. We had an amazing time overcoming the obstacles together and more than one mountain top experience. By the way, I know why they call it that – the whole mountain top thing – adrenaline and views over a 50 mile horizon are an awesome thing.

Should it Stay or Should it iGo?

I thought long and hard about this trip. I don’t mean what to pack on my back, although that got a lot of attention. I had a tough decision to make on my iConnectivity. Should I take my iPhone in my pack or leave it in base camp?

Even in the wilds of New Mexico, one can get a signal at high altitudes. If I took it with me, I could make emergency calls, if need be. I’d have a compass, and plenty of eBooks to read in my tent at night. I could use the torrent of apps available for barometers, measure our distance covered, and perform all manner of important tasks. I could have a digital Swiss army knife (and yes, I could bring a solar charger to keep the thing going).

Oh, and I could check email.

I love my job, I love my clients, and my team had some very large transactions on the bubble. I really, really wanted to stay in the loop. I almost caved and brought the machine with me. There are SO many critical reasons to stay connected.

I realized, though, that I would be bringing a Pandora’s box of information into God’s Country. I began to understand that, for me anyway, bringing an iPhone “back country” would be the same as taking a phone call in the middle of a sermon at church. I’d mar a great experience with my son, and wrap my head around work problems instead of seeing the world one step at a time through his eyes. That Swiss army knife would cut apart my experience with my son and the other Scouts.

Radio Silence

Bam! The base camp locker door closed and the deed was done. I’d have no access of any kind for 12 full days. We put on the packs and headed to the busses that would take us to where our trek would begin. I’m glad they didn’t take my blood pressure at that point.

It had an immediate impact; and at first it was intensely negative. Uncertainty and doubt hit me. What had I done? What if I missed some major news item? I’m sure some client will need something urgently – probably right this moment! By the way, what do you do when you‘re waiting in line with nothing to occupy your time? Fortunately, there was no turning back on my information desert and I simply had to accept my decision.

After a couple of days, I began to relax and get into the groove. And then it began to hit me: the power of full engagement in a task you care deeply about, with someone you love is an amazing experience. I learned to function without a device and I am a better man for it. My son and I had the time of our lives, and I am immensely thankful for our uninterrupted time together. He is too.

What I Learned

Jonathan and I after summiting Mt. Baldy - 12,441 feet

Jonathan and I after summiting Mt. Baldy – 12,441 feet

After reflecting on this experience for almost two weeks, I learned that you can, that you must, unplug occasionally. Just a few weeks ago I would have (and did) scoff at the very idea. I am now a full on convert to strategic digital vacations. They clear the mind, cleanse the soul, and allow one to have rich and meaningful conversations with those close to you.

I have a great team behind me, and I’m thankful especially to Alysen Thompson for digitally backing me up. The piece of mind I got from Alysen, Sam Hollis, Sarah Momberg and Clint McKellar on my team was priceless. They brought me peace and confidence for 12 days at Philmont.
I also learned that the world goes on without you. This is a sobering thought, because we all believe that the rat race will come to an end without us involved. But it is a true and helpful perspective, at least for me, in the midst of our busy lives.
So, I am slowly reengaging in the digital world. I now have a newfound respect for the power of single tasking and focusing on the really important things in this life.
Hug your kids, your spouse or your pal this weekend and turn the machine off. Take it from me and my iSeperation: your digital audience will be there on Monday. Be present in the moment, and you will create memories and relationships that will last well beyond that silly text message. And on occasion, may I recommend that you simply take a hike!
Posted July 11th, 2012