Bookmarks: 5 Interesting Articles That May Help You This Week

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.

1. Coworking Firms Draw Tenants With Babysitting, Farm-to-Desk Dining

Convene

Convene

Long gone are the coworking days when it was enough to offer a cheap desk and maybe a beer keg.

At, for instance, The Wing, the coworking space designed for women, which will count at least 13 locations by year-end, members are offered showers, a roof deck, a beauty room, and even a recently-launched babysitting space called Little Wing that provides open play and story time for children and support groups for mothers. Now available in their Soho and West Hollywood locations, Little Wing will eventually be rolled out throughout the chain. 

While these might seem extravagant for an office, they’re actually right in line with the sort of luxury amenities tenants can now expect from coworking spaces.

“When we were conceptualizing The Wing in the early days, one of the key considerations that was core to our business model was, ‘What are the things everyday working women need in order to be successful?’” said Zara Rahim, spokeswoman for The Wing. “Each of these experiences and parts of the physical space are answers to those questions.”

2. Co-working Operators Set for Expansion in the Southeast

wework-san diego-1540.jpg

The co-working sector continues to expand in the Southeast, piggybacking off the area’s job and population growth, according to industry sources.

“[Co-working space in the Southeast] is absolutely expected to continue to grow,” says Austin DuBois, assistant director of Workthere, an office space rental agency launched by real estate services firm Savills in 2017. “We are seeing more and more local and regional providers open their doors and we’re also seeing a lot of groups expand into new locations. So, the supply and demand are growing.”

As co-working’s dominant player WeWork prepares for its IPO filing, a recent Crain’s New York Business article argues that the deal will serve as a benchmark for the valuation of the entire co-working sector.

3. Why You Should Never Borrow Someone Else's Charging Cable

Getty

Getty

We've all been there. Your smartphone or tablet is low on power and you've left your charging cable at home. There's no harm in borrowing one from a fellow passenger in the airport departure lounge or from your hotel's front desk clerk, right?

In 2019, that would be a huge mistake, say cybersecurity experts.

“There are certain things in life that you just don't borrow,” says Charles Henderson, Global Managing Partner and Head of X-Force Red at IBM Security. “If you were on a trip and realized you forgot to pack underwear, you wouldn't ask all your co-travelers if you could borrow their underwear. You'd go to a store and buy new underwear.”

Henderson runs a team of hackers that clients hire to break into their computer systems in order to expose vulnerabilities. Since cyberhackers have figured out how to implant charging cables with malware that can remotely hijack devices and computers, his team sometimes uses a trick to teach clients to be less trusting of third-party charging cables. “We might send somebody a swag iPhone cable in the mail. Maybe we have it branded as something innocuous, like a vendor or a partner that they have listed on their website. We send off the cable and see if the person plugs it in,” he says.

4. I Shared My Phone Number. I Learned I Shouldn’t Have.

Glenn Harvey

Glenn Harvey

For most of our lives, we have been conditioned to share a piece of personal information without a moment’s hesitation: our phone number.

We punch in our digits at the grocery store to get a member discount or at the pharmacy to pick up medication. When we sign up to use apps and websites, they often ask for our phone number to verify our identity.

This column will encourage a new exercise. Before you hand over your number, ask yourself: Is it worth the risk?

This question is crucial now that our primary phone numbers have shifted from landlines to mobile devices, our most intimate tools, which often live with us around the clock. Our mobile phone numbers have become permanently attached to us because we rarely change them, porting them from job to job and place to place.

5. Better Ways to Predict Who’s Going to Quit

Nicholas Eveleigh/Getty Images

Nicholas Eveleigh/Getty Images

Companies know that employee turnover is expensive and disruptive. And they know that retaining their best and brightest employees helps them not only save money but also preserve competitive advantages and protect intellectual capital.

Most retention efforts, however, rely on two retrospective tools. First, exit interviews are conducted to better understand why people chose to leave, though by this point, it is usually too late to keep them. Second, annual employee surveys are used to assess engagement. These survey results are later compared to people who left the organization, in the hopes that they will yield any relevant predictors of departures. The problem is that these data don’t give managers a real-time picture of who might be considering leaving.

Our latest research has focused on using big data and machine-learning algorithms to develop a turnover propensity index for individuals – a real-time indicator of who is likely thinking about quitting. We grounded the development of these predictive models in academic research on turnover and then conducted a series of studies.

Our results demonstrate that it is possible to develop indices that predict in real time the likelihood of a person to consider an outside offer and to eventually leave the firm.

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

Bookmarks: 5 Interesting Articles That May Help You This Week

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.

1. Leading Change in a Company That’s Historically Bad At It



David Malan/Getty Images

David Malan/Getty Images

Organizational change was once a seasonal experience. But today, managing continual disruption is a skill required of most leaders. Change management is the new management, which makes doing it effectively that much more difficult.

Despite our extensive knowledge on the topic, failure rates among organizational change efforts remain high. Most reliable research estimates that 50%–70% of initiatives fall short, largely focusing on change implementation as the culprit.

Common obstacles that organizations face include failure to sustain the effort over the long term, competing priorities, and under-resourcing. But some seeds of failure are sewn long before change is implemented — and some initiatives are set up to fail the moment they are conceived.

2. How Phones Made the World Your Office, Like It or Not


Bettmann/Getty Images

Bettmann/Getty Images

Misplacing your car keys is worrisome, but it’s nothing like the free-fall panic of losing your phone. Hollywood could make a horror movie about somebody just looking for their iPhone XR and going slowly insane.

The telephone began to pervade our lives at the end of the 19th century, and then — as you can see in these photos from The New York Times’s archives — it became our lives. Cellphones were a significant inflection point. They made it possible for us to be available at virtually any moment, which was so extraordinary that most of us tacitly accepted that we should be available at virtually any moment.

History’s first call on a hand-held wireless phone was made on April 3, 1973, by a Motorola executive named Martin Cooper. Mr. Cooper had developed the phone himself and, having a cheeky streak, decided to step out onto Sixth Avenue, in Midtown Manhattan, and call his rival at Bell Laboratories to gloat a little. Can you hear me now?

3. Going Beyond Hospitality

Ray Cavicchio

Ray Cavicchio

In the world of hotels, the lobby is a convenient hub for the vast array of services that the establishment provides, including checking in, checking out, and arranging transportation.

It often doubles as a communal multipurpose gathering place for the work and leisure activities of guests—providing a place where they can do everything from meeting with corporate clients to relaxing with a good cup of coffee and a book.

But Greenbelt, Maryland–based Bozzuto Group, a diversified real estate company that manages 72,000 apartments and 2 million square feet (186,000 sq m) of commercial space in East Coast cities and Chicago, has figured out that lobbies can provide similar—and even more expansive—benefits to residents of its apartment buildings.

Bozzuto employs interior designers from the hospitality field who emulate the flow and activation of space in hotel lobbies and often incorporate hotel-like features such as business centers and conference rooms to accommodate residents who are remote workers. One apartment community in Baltimore, Anthem House, features a coffee shop with tables that spill into the lobby as a way of activating that space.

4. How To Invest Like Blackstone: Four Industrial REITs Riding The Amazon Wave

AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

Blackstone Group's record-breaking $18.7 billion bet on 179 million square feet of U.S. warehouse space is a bet on the future of online shopping.

As more and more Americans turn to internet retailers—e-commerce accounts for roughly 10% of total retail sales in the United States, up from 6% at the beginning of the decade—companies like Amazon, Walmart, and Home Depot are vying for the increasingly valuable real estate where they store and distribute their growing inventories. And most importantly, they're willing to outspend each other.

In what is now the largest private equity deal in history, Blackstone announced on Sunday that it will acquire the U.S. logistics assets of Singapore-based GLP, which has one of the largest real estate fund platforms in the world and $64 billion in assets. Blackstone's own real estate arm was already robust, with a $140 billion portfolio and hundreds of millions of square feet of hotel, retail, residential and office space under its control across the globe. According to Bloomberg, the deal will roughly double the firm's U.S. industrial footprint.

5. What 10,000 Steps Will Really Get You

Ed Jones/AFP/Getty

Ed Jones/AFP/Getty

In America, the conventional wisdom of how to live healthily is full of axioms that long ago shed their origins. Drink eight glasses of water a day. Get eight hours of sleep. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Two thousand calories a day is normal. Even people who don’t regularly see a doctor are likely to have encountered this information, which forms the basis of a cultural shorthand. Tick these boxes, and you’re a healthy person.

In the past decade, as pedometers have proliferated in smartphone apps and wearable fitness trackers, another benchmark has entered the lexicon: Take at least 10,000 steps a day, which is about five miles of walking for most people. As with many other American fitness norms, where this particular number came from has always been a little hazy. But that hasn’t stopped it from becoming a default daily goal for some of the most popular activity trackers on the market.

Now new research is calling the usefulness of the 10,000-step standard into question—and with it, the way many Americans think about their daily activities. While basic guidelines can be helpful when they’re accurate, human health is far too complicated to be reduced to a long chain of numerical imperatives. For some people, these rules can even do more harm than good.

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

Bookmarks: 5 Interesting Articles That May Help You This Week

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.

1. The Rise Of The Subcontractors: Labor Shortage Keeping Skilled Workers In Control

Wikipedia/DiamondMountain

Wikipedia/DiamondMountain

The labor shortage in the construction industry is one of the country's great, unsolved problems as the economic expansion has continued. While it has caused prices to shoot up, it has also created a new dynamic in which subcontractors are now arguably the most powerful entity on a job site.

For companies who provide specialized labor to construction companies, the Great Recession was a game-changer. And when it comes to pricing and availability, subcontractors — an industry that cycles between feast and famine — are expected to retain their power over pricing and timing for the foreseeable future.

“All of this is driven by workforce, manpower and skilled trades,” Associated General Contractors of Georgia CEO Mike Dunham said. “The [subcontractors] are just constrained by the sheer availability of skilled workers. I don't have anybody who doesn't need people. The subs right now are in the catbird seat. They are at an absolutely maximum capacity.”

2. Workplace as a Service: Workplace for the Future

78cm0U3LQEmNo95n6sVrag.jpg

The rise of flexible workspace solutions is fast becoming one of the principal disruptors in the modern world, with cost-savings and the ability to attract top staff changing the way companies do business

The word ‘disruption’ has become de rigueur in business circles in recent years.

From startups breaking into industries previously dominated by major global players, to the rapid advancement of technology and evolving working practices, the business world continues to be in a state of flux.

But while many may associate disruption with technological advancement, it’s actually how we work that is becoming one of the central drivers of this revolution, with flexible working due to eclipse artificial intelligence as a key disruptor in the 2020s.

The era when employees were happy to work in packed offices, 9-6, day-after-day is coming to an end. Now more than ever, the modern employee prizes flexibility.

3. Best Practices: Getting Out Of An Investment When The Getting Is Good

Courtesy of Rodney Richerson

Courtesy of Rodney Richerson

Nothing lasts forever, including commercial real estate assets' most productive years. Determining exactly when the best time is to sell a CRE asset is, however, as much art as science.

What are the most important considerations in how long to hold a property, and how do you determine the best exit strategy?

We put that question to executives at six CRE investment companies, of various sizes and holding various property types.

4. Millennial Sleeping Habits Are Changing The Modern Workplace: Here's How

Pexels.com

Pexels.com

I've written before about how millennials are changing the workplace in terms of technology use, cultural attitudes, and even the distribution of the workforce.

But there’s a subtle way millennials could be reshaping the workplace, and it might be beneficial for everyone: it’s all in how they sleep.

There are some conflicting reports on how often millennials sleep, but the general consensus is that they’re sleeping more hours of the day. For example, one study by the American Bureau of Labor Statistics found that millennials are sleeping an average of 25 minutes longer each night. With the average American sleeping 6.8 hours per night, that propels millennials straight into the recommended “7 to 9 hours” category.

Compared to other generational groupings, millennials are doing well in terms of the number of total hours slept. Generation X members appear to be the worst. However, millennials are also reporting higher levels of stress, casting some doubt on the true quality of the sleep they’re getting—but for now, let’s focus on the positives.

5. Now Calling Balls and Strikes: Robot Umpires

Dominick Reuter for the Wall Street Journal

Dominick Reuter for the Wall Street Journal

Facing a 3-2 count in the seventh inning here Friday night, T.J. Rivera of the Long Island Ducks let a borderline changeup pass by, tossed his bat away and jogged toward first base. He thought he had drawn a walk to break up a perfect game by opposing pitcher Rick Teasley of the Somerset Patriots.

Five steps down the line, Rivera heard home plate umpire J.B. Torres deliver those two dreaded words: strike three. Rivera glared back at Torres, preparing to plead his case, when he remembered an important detail: Torres didn’t actually make the call. A little voice in Torres’s head told him to do it.

“[Rivera] said to me, ‘I was trying to get that walk, but I forgot it’s not on you tonight—it’s on the computer,’” Torres said.

Baseball’s future has arrived in the Atlantic League, a collection of eight independent professional teams that span from New Britain, Conn., to Sugar Land, Texas. In February, the Atlantic League reached a three-year agreement to audition a series of experimental rules for Major League Baseball to evaluate, largely designed to improve pace of play and generate action. These include the prohibition of mound visits and defensive shifts, shorter inning breaks and enabling hitters to “steal” first base on any pitch not successfully caught in the air.

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

Bookmarks: 5 Interesting Articles That May Help You This Week

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.

1. How Not to Run a Panel

Clarence Hamm/Associated Press

Clarence Hamm/Associated Press

Over the past few years, I’ve participated in about a hundred panels. Over the past couple of decades, I’ve listened to—or, let’s be honest, endured—hundreds more. Most of them had one thing in common: They sucked.

I could write a whole book about the panels that have gone wrong in particularly strange or hilarious fashion: the one where the moderator fell asleep. The one where the opening statements lasted longer than the time allotted for the whole event. The one, high up on the 10th floor, when the acrobatic window washer stole the show.

These exotic horrors notwithstanding, I disagree with Leo Tolstoy: Every unhappy panel is unhappy in some of the same ways.

You know the scene. First come the long introductions. Then five people give opening statements of steadily increasing length. After that is a “conversation” in which the panelists talk past one another, sticking to the same old points they have made dozens of times before. This is followed by a few incoherent rants from the angriest members of the audience (question mark optional). Finally, a polite round of applause, which is anticipated with the same resigned longing as the saving bell on the last day of school.

It doesn’t have to be like that. At their rare best, panels can actually be fun and informative.

2. Leadership | Becoming a Visionary: What it Takes to be a CRE Thought Leader

Leadership.jpg

When Lawrence Fink speaks, executives listen. Not just because he is CEO of BlackRock, one of the largest money management firms in the world, although that certainly has something to do it with it. Rather, over the years Fink has become renown for the advice he dispenses in his much anticipated annual letter to CEOs. In 2018, for instance, he set the investing world on its head when he told CEOs that their companies need to do more than just make profits—they also need to contribute to society. Granted, Fink said this with the might of $6 trillion in assets under management behind him and the very pointed observation that if companies want to receive backing or support from BlackRock they will take heed of his words.

But Fink’s letter last year and the one this year was seen as more than just marketing or one executive expounding on the issues.

Fink set off a debate in offices around the world about the company’s purpose and what it owes society—a debate that arguably has helped lead to a renewed corporate commitment to environment, social and governance issues.

This year’s missive was of a similar theme: “Stakeholders are pushing companies to wade into sensitive social and political issues—especially as they see governments failing to do so effectively,” he wrote. This indeed is a current trend that Fink is highlighting, which is what thought leaders do.

3. Amazon's Revolutionary Retail Strategy? Recycling Old Ideas

Simon Dawson/Bloomberg/Getty Images

Simon Dawson/Bloomberg/Getty Images

I sometimes think that if you could look in the safe behind Jeff Bezos’ desk, instead of the sports almanac from Back to the Future you’d find an Encyclopedia of Retail, written in maybe 1985. There would be Post-It notes on every page, and every one of those notes would have been turned into a team and maybe a product.

Amazon is so new, and so dramatic in its speed and scale and aggression, that we can easily forget how many of the things it’s doing are actually very old. And we can forget how many of the slightly dusty incumbent retailers we all grew up with were also once considered radical, daring, piratical new businesses that made people angry with their new ideas.

This goes back to the beginning of mass retail. In Émile Zola’s Au Bonheur des Dames, a tremendously entertaining novel about the creation of department stores in 1860s Paris, Octave Mouret builds a small shop into a vast new enterprise, dragging it into existence through force of will, inspiration, and genius. In the process, he creates fixed pricing, discounts, marketing, advertising, merchandising, display, and something called "returns." He sends out catalogs across the country. His staff is appalled that he wants to sell a new fabric at less than cost. "That’s the whole idea!" he shouts. Loss leaders are nothing new.

4. Economics Isn’t Dismal. It’s Useful.

Mary Ann Smith

Mary Ann Smith

In an annual rite of passage, over a million Americans will enroll in their first economics class in the fall, and as the field of economics has evolved, these introductory classes are changing, too.

Many economists these days view what we are teaching not so much as a specific subject matter but as a set of analytic tools that are relevant beyond the relatively standardized production and pricing decisions of the business world. This perspective has led modern economists to study families, education and health, much as they study business strategy, politics, and finance.

This broader ambit for economic reasoning provides an opportunity to make introductory economic courses more useful to more students, exploring how these ideas can inform the thousands of decisions they confront each day.

This approach requires a shift in vision. As an undergraduate, I was taught from the perspective of a spectator in the nosebleed seats watching the economic action unfold below. But economics is more useful if we teach students to see themselves as protagonists on the economic playing field.

5. Decoding the Ideal Workspace for Millennials

Shutterstock

Shutterstock

The millennial workforce is often tagged with the misconception of being easily distracted and unmotivated. Thus, a challenge which most businesses face in unlocking their true potential. They yearn autonomy, and if one applies the paradigm to the way they like to work, it becomes quite obvious why they love the idea of coworking spaces. 

Inherently collaborative and flexible by nature, coworking has observed many new trends and unique practices over the years. They are the new hub for India’s ever-dynamic millennials who seek an adequate/ ideal spectrum of work and play amalgamation. Organisations today are striving to make their workplace the ideal environment for employees to flourish, and coworking spaces have proved to be an ideal propeller in workspace productivity and collaboration.

Led by the emerging Gen Z population, the workforce of India has gradually evolved and so have workspaces where desks are no longer limited to its primary utility and every employee desires a holistically driven workplace.

With a relatively conducive working environment in place, modern offices in the form of coworking spaces are more responsive to workers’ needs and are not confined to physical locations amidst emerging mobility solutions provided by leading players in the segment. 

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

Bookmarks: 5 Interesting Articles That May Help You This Week

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.

1. How Gen Z Influences Your Office Design

iStock

iStock

At last year's CoreNet Global Conference in Boston , CoreNet chairman and Ernst & Young's Americas leader David Kamen remarked that corporate real estate spaces are now being designed to suit the generation of Americans that are currently in high school.

It makes sense—considering the fact that landlords are demanding longer lease commitments that commonly stretch from 10 to 15 years. And as office styles change regularly, corporate real estate professionals are wondering which trends are here to stay.

According to market research, the group most likely to influence the next evolution of office design is Gen Z. The youngest members of that group are currently sophomores in high school, and the oldest are 23 years old. They look at the world very differently from millennials.

2. I’ve been designing offices for decades. Here’s what I got wrong

Slack [Photo: Garrett Rowland/courtesy O+A]

Slack [Photo: Garrett Rowland/courtesy O+A]

I’ve been trying to pinpoint the moment it all went wrong. Or maybe that’s too extreme—the moment it all got crazy. And I keep coming back to the term “24/7.”

It was the year I graduated from high school, 1983. That same year, according to the Oxford dictionary, Jerry Reynolds, a basketball player for the Milwaukee Bucks, coined the term “24/7” describing his dunk shot that he claimed he could make 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, anytime, any day. Whatever the merits of this claim, his phrase was a slam dunk—it caught on instantly.

About 10 years later Primo Orpilla and I had just started our interior design practice Studio O+A, and one of our earliest technology clients, a young highly motivated CEO, wanted to get more out of his employees. To that end, he asked us to design an office that would encourage staff to stay longer and get more work done.

Besides creating a cafeteria that could accommodate serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner (the first time we had heard of three squares as an office perk), we incorporated a number of spaces to make the office more comfortable for a long-term stay. This may have been the beginning of the 24/7 office. It was certainly the moment when amenity spaces took off.


Fast forward another decade. Open offices are in full swing, and so are their critics. O+A is firmly established as a creator of work environments with an almost endless variety of amenity spaces.

3. How to Reach Out to Someone Whose Career You Admire

Retales Botijero/Getty Images

Retales Botijero/Getty Images

We all have professional idols we’d like to meet. Sometimes we might luck into getting to say hello at a conference or having a mutual friend who can introduce us. But often, despite our suspicions that we have a lot in common with and could even be friends with our heroes, they remain out of reach.

I’ve been on both sides of the equation. Readers have emailed me about wanting to connect, and I’ve done my share of approaching people I admire without seeming like a groupie or a stalker. I’ve found four strategies to be effective in connecting with high-profile strangers, even without the benefit of a warm introduction.

Establish your credibility. When you send a networking request, it’s important to immediately set yourself apart as someone worth knowing. For instance, when I recently wrote to a prominent film director, I started the note by citing our shared alumni affiliation and — because I wanted to inquire about adapting one of his films into a musical — mentioning the prominent shows that had been created by graduates of the musical theater workshop I’m in. He responded, expressed interest in talking further, and noted that a composer friend had told him that “many exciting works have come out of this program.” By establishing your credibility up front, you make it clear that the interaction will be fruitful.

4. Seven Habits Of Extra Interesting People

Getty Images

Getty Images

Indeed, anyone can learn to become more interesting, which is a wonderful thing, because being interesting can help you strengthen your network, win more clients, and lead more effectively.

There are several habits that many interesting people have in common. Sometimes these habits form naturally, but they are more often than not the result of conscious effort. Here’s what interesting people do to make themselves engaging, unusual and hypnotizing.

They are passionate. Jane Goodall, a bona fide interesting person, left her home in England and moved to Tanzania at age 26 to begin studying chimpanzees. It became her life’s work, and Goodall has devoted herself fully to her cause while inspiring many others to do the same. Interesting people don’t just have interests; they have passions, and they devote themselves completely to them.

5. The Deeper Significance of the Mall on Stranger Things

Netflix

Netflix

When Stranger Things’ Eleven (played by Millie Bobby Brown) sets foot in her town’s brand-new mall for the first time, she is equally overwhelmed and dazzled. Her friend Max (Sadie Sink) steers her to The Gap and watches Eleven touch everything in sight. Finally, Eleven pauses to stare at a mannequin. “How do I know what I like?” the young, telekinetic girl asks. “You just try things on until you find something that feels like you. Not Hopper. Not Mike,” Max explains gently, referencing Eleven’s adoptive father and boyfriend. “You.”

Netflix’s nostalgic sci-fi series introduces significant changes in Season 3: It’s the summer of 1985, and the nerdy kids who once played Dungeons & Dragonshave blossomed into mall-going tweens, albeit ones who face supernatural monsters and Soviet agents along with the typical pains of growing up. Their fictional hometown of Hawkins, Indiana, is changing, too—thanks to a flashy new shopping center called Starcourt, which arrives just as the United States is experiencing a historic boom in mall construction.

Before consumers started flocking to the internet two decades later, Hollywood sought to capture the role that malls played in American teens’ lives. It was inevitable that Stranger Things, a show steeped in 1980s culture, would add to this canon with its own montage.

Eleven and Max’s shopping scenes map onto a rich history of malls in movies and TV shows such as Clueless and Mean Girls. On-screen and off, places like Starcourt served as a rare middle ground between school and home, offering teenagers independence and a chance to experiment, via stores selling clothes and accessories, with self-expression. Most mall montages focus on transformation, and Stranger Things is no different. By the end of the sequence, Eleven has traded her worn button-down for an on-trend jumpsuit splashed with geometric shapes.

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

Bookmarks: 5 Interesting Articles That May Help You This Week

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.

1. Duke Long’s Updated 2019 Top 150 Commercial Real Estate People You Must Connect With On LinkedIn and Duke Long’s Updated: 2019 Top 100 Commercial Real Estate People You Must Follow On Twitter

Duke-Long-Block-Resized-Logo.png

I am humbled to be named No. 38 on Duke’s list of the top people to connect with on LinkedIn and No. 4 on his list of the top commercial real estate people you must follow on Twitter.

2. The Power of One Push-Up

CRISTINA QUICLER / AFP / GETTY

CRISTINA QUICLER / AFP / GETTY

The numbers used to assess health are, for the most part, not helpful.

There are the vital signs: heart and respiratory rates and body temperature. Sometimes blood pressure. These are critical in emergencies. If you’ve been stabbed in the chest, paramedics want to know no numbers more than these.

But in day-to-day life, the normalcy of those numbers is expected. It doesn’t so much grant you a clean bill of health as indicate that you are not in acute danger. What if you just generally want to know whether you’re on pace to live an average life or longer?

Except in extreme cases, no single number gives a good idea of whether a person is functionally healthy or not. The common numbers are not directly or easily changeable. As these numbers continue to dominate health care, however, an emerging body of evidence is finding useful and cheap numbers that anyone can track. If these new numbers aren’t being taken seriously, it may be because they seem too obvious.

3. The Wrong Ways to Strengthen Culture

LARS LEETARU

LARS LEETARU

Compared with some other activities of business leaders, such as hiring the right talent and setting strategy, changing corporate culture can be especially challenging. Culture is amorphous; there are no direct levers for shifting it in one direction or another. Indications are that CEOs are putting a higher priority on this aspect of leadership than in the past.

According to a study by the research and advisory firm Gartner, CEOs mentioned culture 7% more often during earnings conference calls in 2016 than in 2010. In surveys both CEOs and CHROs say that “managing and improving the culture” is the top priority for talent management.

But the data suggests that there’s lots of room for improvement: Each year companies spend $2,200 per employee, on average, on efforts to improve the culture (much of the money goes to consultants, surveys, and workshops)—but only 30% of CHROs report a good return on that investment.

When trying to spearhead culture change, many leaders use the wrong tools. Having surveyed more than 7,500 employees and nearly 200 HR leaders at global companies and conducted in-depth interviews with 100 HR leaders, Gartner has written a report identifying the most- (and the least-) effective ways leaders try to transform culture. To increase their odds of success, the report advises, they should avoid three mistakes.

4. What Startup Employees Can Teach the Rest of Us About Work

STUDIO OMG/ EYEEM/GETTY IMAGES

STUDIO OMG/ EYEEM/GETTY IMAGES

In the 1950s, the average age of a company on the S&P 500 index was 60. Today, that number is 20. This means that the most successful corporations are growing three times faster than they have in the past. To succeed at this rate of rapid change, employees and business leaders have had to adapt by adopting growth mindsets, learning new skills, and embracing flexibility. Where stability and long-term planning were once the mark of a sound strategy, adaptability is the new competitive advantage.

This need for adaptability is not new, though it doesn’t come easy to everyone. Over the past two decades, many large companies have failed to evolve and seen their business margins, market share, and profitability suffer — sometimes leading to devastating results.

So why are some companies able to evolve while others struggle? I argue that it comes down to who you hire. Fundamentally, leaders with a growth mindset believe intelligence and success can be learned, while those with a fixed mindset believe that these are static traits over which they have little control.

In the context of a large company that is seeing increasingly volatile business results, leaders with a growth mindset are far more likely to adapt, push for change, and encourage others do the same — a skill that is needed to succeed in today’s workforce.

5. How Hot-Desking Will Kill Your Company

(Photo by Photofusion/Universal Images Group via Getty Images) Photo credit: Universal Images Group via Getty Images

(Photo by Photofusion/Universal Images Group via Getty Images) Photo credit: Universal Images Group via Getty Images

If you hate your company, its employees and the shareholders then go ahead and introduce the latest management fad: Hot-desking.

It's a better way to destroy the firm than inviting Russian hackers to rob you blind. The bigger the company, the faster the damage will occur with hot-desking.

Hot-desking is a working arrangement where employees have no assigned desk. Each morning you get a workstation based on that old standby, first-come-first-served. If you show up at 5:30 a.m. then you'll likely have your pick. Later than 9 a.m., then probably you'll get what’s left even if that means working apart from your colleagues.

The theory behind this idea is that it provides companies with increased flexibility in managing office space.

With some exceptions, the drawbacks vastly outweigh any benefits. I know this having witnessed decades in corporate jobs, including a role at one employer that implemented such idiocy.

Here’s what you need to know.

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

Bookmarks: 5 Interesting Articles That May Help You This Week

March 25th, 2019

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.

Who Still Buys Wite-Out, and Why?

“Christmastime is when the pens in my house get their biggest workout of the year. Like many Americans above grammar-school age, I seldom write by hand anymore, outside of barely legible grocery lists. But the end of the year brings out a slew of opportunities for penmanship: adding notes to holiday cards to old friends, addressing them, and then doing the same with thank-you notes after Christmas. And given how little I write in the other 11 months of the year, that means there are a lot of errors, which in turn spur a new connection with another old friend: Wite-Out.The sticky, white fluid and its chief rival, Liquid Paper, are peculiar anachronisms, throwbacks to the era of big hair, big cars, and big office stationery budgets. They were designed to help workers correct errors they made on typewriters without having to retype documents from the start. But typewriters have disappeared from the modern office, relegated to attics and museums. Even paper is disappearing from the modern office, as more and more functions are digitized. But correction fluids are not only surviving—they appear to be thriving, with Wite-Out sales climbing nearly 10 percent in 2017, according to the most recent public numbers. It’s a mystery of the digital age."

www.theatlantic.com Correction fluids are not only surviving—they appear to be thriving, with Wite-Out sales climbing nearly 10 percent in 2017, according to the most recent public numbers. It’s a mystery of the digital age.

A bottle of white correction fluid

DAVID PLATER UK / GETTY

No One Asks the Top CEOs Where They Went to College

Of the CEOs of the top 20 companies in last year’s Fortune 500, exactly one — Amazon.com Inc.’s Jeff Bezos — went to an Ivy League school (Princeton). And that’s not all. We tend to think of the founders of technology companies as having all gone to Stanford University (or dropping out of Harvard University). And yes, many of them did. But Michael Dell went to the University of Texas. Steve Jobs dropped out of Reed College in Portland, Oregon. Marc Andreessen went to the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. So did Larry Ellison, though he never graduated.

www.crainschicago.com Of the CEOs of the top 20 companies in last year’s Fortune 500, exactly one — Amazon.com Inc.’s Jeff Bezos — went to an Ivy League school (Princeton)

The Worlds Most Successful People Don't Actually Start Work at 4 a.m. They Wake and Work Whenever the (Heck) They Decide

"Apple CEO Tim Cook starts his morning routine -- not just his morning, his morning routine -- at 3:45. General Motors CEO Mary Barra gets to the office by 6 a.m. Best-selling author Dan Brown (The Da Vinci Code, etc.) gets up at 4 a.m., has a smoothie and a cup of bulletproof coffee, and then grinds away.

Clearly, waking up early works for them.

But not for everyone.

As Adam Grant says, "The world's most successful people aren't worried about what time others wake up. They wake and work on the schedule that works for them."

What seems right for early birds may not be right for you, because what time you start your day has nothing to do with your level of success.

Success is all about what you accomplish -- and, just as important, how you choose to accomplish it.”

www.inc.com

The Hottest Chat App for Teens Is … Google Docs

"When the kids in Skyler’s school want to tell a friend something in class, they don’t scrawl a note down on a tiny piece of paper and toss it across the room. They use Google Docs.

“We don’t really pass physical notes anymore,” said Skyler, 15, who, like all the other students in this story, is identified by a pseudonym.

SHUTTERSTOCK

As more and more laptops find their way into middle and high schools, educators are using Google Docs to do collaborative exercises and help students follow along with the lesson plan. The students, however, are using it to organize running conversations behind teachers’ backs." www.theatlantic.com

How to Make Your Open Office Less Annoying

A person sits at a bench surrounded by walls on three sides and uses a smartphone in front of a round table.

ANDREW WINNING / REUTERS

"You know you’re in an open-plan office when you click on an article that will allow you to hate-read about open offices, then kind of hide your computer screen with the top half of your torso so that your colleagues don’t realize just how much you’re not a team player.You know you’re in an open office because you’re trying to write a sensitive email while wedged between one coworker making a gynecologist appointment and another picking tuna-fish salad out of his Invisalign.The office’s openness is never more real to you than when you try to have a private conversation with the intern about the office dress code, only to further expose the entire office—to a lesson in micro-generational social norms and the definition of a “cold-shoulder top.”

Around 70 percent of offices in the United States are open-concept, according to the BBC, even though these paper-pushing panopticons make us more likely to get sick, and make us less likely to be ... uh, what was I saying ... productive. Because of all the distractions.

www.theatlantic.com

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

Bookmarks: 5 Interesting Articles That May Help You This Week

March 11th, 2019

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.

There's Only One Blockbuster Store Left in the Entire World

“Blockbuster was once one of the largest retailers in the world. It helped move the consumers' ability to watch movies from the theater to the home, via stores that offered videotapes of mainline films for rent. Eventually, it was buried by Netflix and other companies that offered DVDs via mail, and then the emergence of streaming. Two Blockbuster stores survived as of this week. One will close later this month, and that leaves only one left in the world.

Blockbuster was founded in 1985. At its peak, in 2004, it had over 9,000 stores. About half of those were in the United States. Blockbuster's employee count in the same year was 84,000, which is nearly triple what Google parent Alphabet has today. www.usatoday.com

The exterior of a Blockbuster video rental store is seen February 10, 2004 in San Francisco. Soon there will be only one Blockbuster location left in the world, a store in Bend, Oregon.

The exterior of a Blockbuster video rental store is seen February 10, 2004 in San Francisco. Soon there will be only one Blockbuster location left in the world, a store in Bend, Oregon. 

(Photo: Justin Sullivan, Getty Images)

Heads Up, Real Estate World, Driverless Cars Are Coming

"...to get these vehicles fully driverless will take longer to develop than the low-speed autonomous shuttles. These cars would be an advantage for suburban areas, helping to increase real estate values further away from urban centers with faster travel time and more options.

Matt Caywood, CEO of TransitScreen

However, the transportation information entrepreneur warns planning ahead for this technology is critical. Within dense urban areas, it could increase traffic, congestion and parking problems. This would require appropriate charges for driving and parking within the city.“Very strong leadership would need to be ahead of this,” warns Matt Caywood. “People don’t worry about things until it becomes a problem. At that point it becomes a really big problem.” www.globest.com Matt Caywood, CEO of TransitScreen

Elon Musk Had a Great Week

“Elon Musk can exhale.

The entrepreneur has been on edge since SpaceX launched a spacecraft to the International Space Station last weekend. The launch went smoothly, the Falcon 9 rocket lighting up the night sky like a flare in the darkness. And SpaceX spacecraft have visited the space station more than a dozen times before, to deliver supplies and science instruments to the astronauts on board. But this mission was unlike the others. The spacecraft that launched on Saturday was designed to carry humans." www.theatlantic.com

Parachutes soften the descent of SpaceX's Dragon spacecraft on its return to Earth.

Parachutes soften the descent of SpaceX's Dragon spacecraft on its return to Earth.

NASA

1B SF Of New Industrial Deliveries Not Enough To Satisfy Demand

"Industrial tenants want more space and they want it now."

Industrial supply nationwide is through the roof — with nearly 1B SF of new space coming online during the last three years — but it isn't enough, according to a report.

Warehouse

Despite the surge in supply, there was positive net absorption in 43 of the 47 markets that were tracked during 2018. During the fourth quarter, 40 markets enjoyed positive net absorption. www.bisnow.com

The People Who Eat the Same Meal Every Day

Two pieces of bread—one spread with peanut butter and one spread with jelly

YURIY GOLUB / SHUTTERSTOCK

"So there is nothing wrong with this habit. In fact, there are many things right with it. I spoke with about half a dozen people who, at one time or another, have eaten the same thing for lunch every day. Together, their stories form a defense of a practice that is often written off as uninspired.Many of the people I talked with emphasized the stress-reducing benefits of eating the same thing each day. Amanda Respers, a 32-year-old software developer in Newport News, Virginia, once ate a variation on the same home-brought salad (a lettuce, a protein, and a dressing) at work for about a year. She liked the simplicity of the formula, but the streak ended when she and her now-husband, who has more of an appetite for variety, moved in together six years ago. Would she still be eating the salad every day if she hadn’t met him? “Oh heck yeah,” she told me. “It would’ve saved so much time.

"www.theatlantic.com

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

Bookmarks: 5 Interesting Articles That May Help You This Week

March 4th, 2019

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.

Stressed at Work? Mentoring a Colleague Could Help

“Our experiment results showed that people who served as mentors experienced lower levels of anxiety, and described their job as more meaningful, than those who did not mentor. We learned from our interviews that mentoring afforded senior (officials) a venue for discussing and reflecting on concerns. Mentors heard their mentees’ accounts of anxiety and realized these feelings — which they also shared — were commonplace. By acknowledging that these anxieties were common, both mentees and mentors grew more comfortable in discussing them and in sharing different coping mechanisms. Mentors often found their interactions with junior colleagues therapeutic."

www.bisnow.com By acknowledging that these anxieties were common, both mentees and mentors grew more comfortable in discussing them and in sharing different coping mechanisms.

ZHAO HUI/GETTY IMAGES

Real Estate Giants Try to be More Like WeWork

"...at Dock 72, an innovative new building in Brooklyn’s Navy Yard where WeWork’s custom co-working offices and Rise by We fitness studio will soon fill a third of the square footage, landlords are claiming a small victory. The building, co-owned by Boston Properties and Rudin Management, has its own tech. Rudin’s technology subsidiary, Prescriptive Data, has developed a mobile app to serve as tenants’ main portal for interacting with the building.

For Dock 72, Rudin developed a mobile app to serve as tenants’ main portal for interacting with the building. [Image: courtesy of Boston Properties]The Dock 72 app will allow tenants and their employees to enter the building, register guests, book fitness classes at the in-house studio, order and pay for food at the cafeteria, book shared conference rooms, and submit work orders for maintenance issues. Data from the app will also provide the property’s operators and managers with real-time insights into the patterns of users, helping to improve building services and performance. With the app, Michael Rudin, senior vice president of Rudin Management Company, says he wants the building to be cashless.” www.fastcompany.com

With the app…Rudin Management Company, wants the building to be cashless

Canyon Ranch to Bring Its Trailblazing Wellness Model to Senior Living

"Canyon Ranch is entering senior living at a time when many operators are reconfiguring their operations to focus on wellness. Based on what he has seen in the resort industry, Milner is confident that Canyon Ranch will provide a more robust and time-tested offering than potential competitors, however.

Photo credit CanyonRanch and Leisuremanagement.co

“Resorts would claim to have spas or wellness programs and when you really looked under the marketing and looked at substance, there [was] not much there,” he said. “So, I’m not educated enough yet on senior housing as a segment [to know] how serious these wellness programs are, and I hope there are some really serious players in it, but I certainly know there’s not anybody with our wellness background and skill set in the market." www.seniorhousingnews.com

A Historic Rocket Launch Lights Up the Night; SpaceX is one step closer to returning human spaceflight to U.S. soil.

MIKE BLAKE / REUTERS

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla.—The stars were out over the marshlands near the launchpad. Crickets trilled a steady melody, interrupted by the occasional squawk of a bird flying low over the water. Except for a few pops of lightning, the sky was a very deep blue, almost black. It was, by all appearances, nighttime.

Then came a burst of blinding light.

A SpaceX rocket ignited its engines just before 3 a.m. ET on Saturday and rose like a ball of fire against the sky. A gold-colored glow spread across the horizon, like a racing sunrise in the middle of the night.

For the first time, a commercially built spacecraft designed to carry humans has launched to the International Space Station. www.theatlantic.com

The American flag stands upright on the surface of the moon.

NASA Is Rushing to the Moon

JOHNSON SPACE CENTER / NASA" The Trump administration wants to put humans on the moon by 2028. Unlike the Apollo program, this won’t be an in-house effort. NASA has asked American aerospace companies to submit designs for transportation systems that could be launched and tested, without a crew, as early as 2024. Applications are due in late March, and the winners stand to receive contracts worth from $300,000 to $9 million. Potential participants include longtime NASA contractors such as Boeing, Lockheed Martin, and Northrop Grumman; the quirky-billionaire-owned SpaceX and Blue Origin; and smaller, more obscure companies." www.theatlantic.com

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

Bookmarks: 5 Interesting Articles That May Help You This Week

February 24th, 2019

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.

Amazon Real Estate Head Holly Sullivan Has No Regrets About The HQ2 Search

“The primary factor that we really looked at was the labor market,” Sullivan told Bisnow Thursday in an interview. “If you look at the RFP, it was fairly concise, but direct on what we were looking for. And that was a location where we could have the talent on day one, but also an opportunity to build that talent pipeline. We specifically referenced a tech talent pipeline.”The company found that talent hub in Arlington. Amazon will build a 4M SF campus in the newly christened “National Landing” headquarters, and, as part of the deal with Virginia, Virginia Tech has committed to open a $1B satellite campus for innovation 2 miles away.The public process naturally led to a trial in the court of public opinion, where Amazon has taken its lumps. After months of dealing with staunch opposition in New York City, the company decided to pull out of its agreement to open half of HQ2 in Queens. Amazon wanted a good, long-term partner, Sullivan said, and it lost confidence that it could find one in New York."

www.bisnow.com The primary factor that we really looked at was the labor market

Holly Sullivan Amazon

Strong Start to 2019 for Architecture Billings

"Starting the year on a strong note, architecture firm billings growth strengthened in January to a level not seen in the previous twelve months according to a new report released today from The American Institute of Architects (AIA).AIA’s Architecture Billings Index (ABI) score for January was 55.3 compared to 51.0* in December. Indicators of work in the pipeline, including inquiries into new projects and the value of new design contracts, also strengthened in January.“The government shutdown affected architecture firms but doesn’t appear to have created a slowdown in the profession,” said AIA Chief Economist Kermit Baker, Hon. AIA, PhD. “While AIA did hear from a few firms that were experiencing significant cash flow issues due to the shutdown, the data suggests that the majority of firms had no long-term impact.”

www.aia.org

Starting the year on a strong note, architecture firm billings growth strengthened in January to a level not seen in the previous twelve months

Five Industrial Trends for 2019

"Now that we're a month in to 2019, everyone has recovered from the holiday season and is eagerly looking ahead to the rest of the year. If your company is considering moving to a new industrial building or renting industrial space for the first time, there are some predicted trends that are important for you to know." www.reoptimizer.com

Renters No More? Millennials Look to Ownership

Could Millennials, long regarded as the renting generation, represent the long-term bedrock of single-family home construction? A special report from Wells Fargo Securities and L.E.K. Consulting says yes.

Millennials House Key

“Millennials’ delayed household formation has led to a 2.2-million household gap relative to what the historical headship rate levels of their Gen X counterparts would imply,” according to the Wells/L.E.K. report.That late start in forming households can be attributed to the weak labor market following the 2008 recession, and a student debt overhang, the report says. “However, aging Millennials are set to close the headship rate gap with prior generations—likely driving steady long-term growth in residential new construction.”

www.connect.media

The FAA Is Finding New Tricks to Cut Delays

The Federal Aviation Administration is taking steps to reduce air-traffic congestion that has spread beyond crowded New York.

The Federal Aviation Administration is taking steps to reduce air-traffic congestion that has spread beyond crowded New York. 

ILLUSTRATION: HARRY CAMPBELL

As the skies get more crowded, the Federal Aviation Administration is making changes to air-traffic control in hopes of avoiding the kind of widespread delays that travelers experienced routinely 20 years ago.The total number of minutes that flights were delayed by air-traffic control slowdowns—most of it attributable to weather—soared 69% to 21.7 million in 2017 from 12.8 million in 2012. Twenty-seventeen was a particularly bad year for ATC delays because of storm-related slowdowns, triggering the efforts to find new ways to minimize weather impact. It started working in 2018. Delay minutes actually dropped 4% compared with 2017 because of a new effort to speed flights out of New York airports.

But the number of flights keeps growing—up 2% last year—as airlines add more service, and congestion concerns have spread beyond crowded New York. The FAA is under pressure to find ways to handle storms without as many delays to avoid a return to the quagmire that air travel became in 1999 and 2000, when talk of gridlock abounded.On April 1, the FAA will change how it handles flights into and out of Chicago and Denver, replicating the changes in New York airspace that reduced delays even as traffic increased. On the same day, it will also launch a major push to reduce slowdowns nationwide when bad weather hits.”[WSJ paywall] 

www.wsj.com

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

Bookmarks: 5 Interesting Articles That May Help You This Week

February 18th, 2019

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.

Google to Spend $13 Billion on Data Centers, Offices Across U.S.

"Alphabet Inc.’s Google plans to spend $13 billion on data centers and offices across the U.S. in 2019, saying the investment will create thousands of new construction jobs in states outside its traditional base of California.The new spending builds on $9 billion the company put into expanding across the country last year. By the end of 2019, Google will have a presence in 24 states, Chief Executive Officer Sundar Pichai said in a blog post on Wednesday. As many as 10,000 new construction jobs could be created in Nebraska, Nevada, Ohio, Texas, Oklahoma, South Carolina and Virginia, Pichai said.Doubling down on hiring people across the country could help spread Google’s political influence at a time when lawmakers and regulators are asking tougher questions about the internet giant’s data-driven business model and approach to privacy. At Congressional hearings in 2018, conservative politicians repeatedly accused the company of having a left-wing bias because most of its employees were based in stereotypically liberal CaliforniaThe spending also underlines how much money Google is pouring into data centers, which are key for its growing cloud-services business as well as supporting its core search and ad products. Though the company’s revenue continues marching steadily upward, costs are growing too, weighing down margins." www.bloomberg.com

Pedestrians walk past the Google Inc. offices in New York, U.S.
Pedestrians walk past the Google Inc. offices in New York, U.S. Photographer: Michael Nagle/Bloomberg

[tweet_box design="box_09" float="none"]Search this | Google plans to spend $13 billion on data centers and offices across the U.S. in 2019 #cre[/tweet_box]

Import Wave Jams California Warehouses

A steady wave of imports into Southern California’s ports has the region’s shipping terminals overstuffed.

A steady wave of imports into Southern California’s ports has the region’s shipping terminals overstuffed. PHOTO: MIKE BLAKE/REUTERS

"A steady wave of imports into Southern California’s ports, driven by a robust U.S. economy and companies trying to get goods moving ahead of potential tariffs, has the region’s warehouses and shipping terminals overstuffed and distribution networks jammed.

U.S. businesses have been pulling shipments forward ahead of expected tariff increases and China’s Lunar New Year holiday, when the nation’s factories shut down for several weeks. That stacked-up inventory is straining logistics capacity around the neighboring ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, which together comprise the biggest U.S. trans-Pacific gateway.

Retail's Woes Aren't Over -- Consumer Trends Signal They May Be Starting Again

"As a group, the affluents are the most highly educated in our society and also the best read. They follow the news, especially the business news, more religiously than the lesser-educated, lower-income masses. As a result, they see dark clouds on the economy’s horizon sooner than the rest. 

To assess the affluents’ perspective on the state of the economy, we need to look at another survey, this one conducted by Ipsos at the end of 2018. With a consumer base of individuals with incomes $125k and above, Ipsos found that the affluents currently are far less optimistic about the U.S. economy than they were the same time last year ." www.forbes.comThe Biggest Impediment To Growth In CREtech

The latest splashy headlines in CREtech tout total funding and the extraordinary proliferation of startups—both wonderful things that benefit the entire sector. A reality check is in order though. Before the hasty celebrations kick off, let’s talk about the biggest impediment to growth facing CREtech.
 Adoption.Scaling issues trouble many CREtech startups unless their customers fully adopt and engage with their product/solution. Nascent startups overlook the fact that many target customers simply do not have the human resources or physical infrastructure in the first place.“Tech products and services present a learning curve, as they require people to change the way they currently operate and implement new processes. It’s no longer good enough to simply deliver a valuable product or service; the most successful companies are the ones who recognize this fact and dedicate resources to assisting people in implementing change,” says Shannon Shaw of WiredScore." www.cretech.com

Amazon’s Pullout From Queens, N.Y., Stuns Real-Estate Industry

The Citigroup Building, at center right, which was previously scheduled to house new Amazon employees, stands in the Long Island City neighborhood in Queens.

The Citigroup Building, at center right, which was previously scheduled to house new Amazon employees, stands in the Long Island City neighborhood in Queens. PHOTO: DREW ANGERER/GETTY IMAGES

Amazon.com Inc.’s announcement that it is ditching plans for a corporate headquarters in New York City stunned real-estate speculators, developers and renters who had rushed into the Long Island City neighborhood to be near the new HQ2.

Only three months ago, the prospect that the giant retailer would locate a headquarters in New York City and create 25,000 new jobs set off a real-estate frenzy that the borough of Queens had never experienced.Open houses for Long Island City condos were overflowing. Brokers said customers made offers via text messages on units, site unseen. Developers with office space in Long Island jockeyed to attract the thousands of workers that were expected, and local residents cheered the promise that new restaurants, fashion boutiques and other new stores would flood the retail-starved neighborhood.”[WSJ paywall] www.wsj.com

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

Bookmarks: 5 Interesting Articles That May Help You This Week

February 11th, 2019

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.

Why People Still Don’t Buy Groceries Online

"However they get customers to sign up, supermarkets are likely going to have to spend a lot of money in promotions and deals as they try to make delivery more popular among consumers. This, of course, advantages Amazon, which has deep pockets and has long been able to convince shareholders that spending up front on getting customers in the door has long-term dividends. This has never been Peapod’s strategy—it outlasted competitors like Webvan because it never spent a lot of money it didn’t have, Parkinson told me." www.theatlantic.com

A Peapod employee fulfills an online order (Alana Semuels / The Atlantic)[tweet_box design="box_09" float="none"]However they get customers to sign up, supermarkets are likely going to have to spend a lot of money in promotions and deals as they try to make delivery more popular among consumers[/tweet_box]

"The beginning of the year is often a time for fresh starts. It marks a new period — a distinct point between the past and the future — which motivates people to set new goals and strive for self-improvement.

But what if you were already doing pretty well? Would a fresh start still be motivating? Or might it actually set you back?I explored these questions in the context of work performance. Across one field study and three laboratory experiments, I found that a fresh start on people’s performance records — what I call a “performance reset” — affected their motivation and future performance differently, depending on their past performance." www.hbr.orgRemembering Herb Kelleher: The Power of Authentically Engaging Employees"He was the best listener I've ever met in my life,” Parker said. “You tell people that and they're kind of surprised (because) he always talks so much.”His attention was always focused on the conversation. It didn't matter who else was in the room or walked into the room, Parker said.“He was intently listening,” Parker said. “That was really helpful to me. What I realized is that's how he learned so much. And he really cared about what people had to say and their thoughts and where they came from. … I think that's how he go so well in touch with his people (at Southwest). That's how he got to know what was going on at his airline.”

"Kelleher was a legendary character and an upstart maverick who disrupted an industry." www.leanblog.com

How To Remember Names

“A person’s name is to him or her the sweetest and most important sound in any language.”-Dale CarnegieOne of the best ways to make a favorable first impression — and to get ahead socially or in business — is to remember people’s names. You can improve your ability to remember names if you will follow these four steps" www.witt.com

[tweet_box design="box_09" float="none"]A person’s name is to him or her the sweetest and most important sound in any language[/tweet_box]

Workplace Theft Is on the Rise

Your office is a den of thieves. Don’t take my word for it: When a forensic-accounting firm surveyed workers in 2013, 52 percent admitted to stealing company property. And the thievery is getting worse. The Association of Certified Fraud Examiners reports that theft of “non-cash” property—ranging from a single pencil in the supply closet to a pallet of them on the company loading dock—jumped from 10.6 percent of corporate-theft losses in 2002 to 21 percent in 2018. Managers routinely order up to 20 percent more product than is necessary, just to account for sticky-fingered employees.

JAMES GRAHAM

 Some items—scissors, notebooks, staplers—are pilfered perennially; others vanish on a seasonal basis: The burn rate on tape spikes when holiday gifts need wrapping, and parents ransack the supply closet in August, to avoid the back-to-school rush at Target. After a new Apple gadget is released, some workers report that their company-issued iPhone is broken—knowing that IT will furnish a replacement, no questions asked.” www.theatlantic.comYour success blesses others. I wish you a great a hugely impactful week!

Bookmarks: 5 Interesting Articles That May Help You This Week

February 4th, 2019

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.

15 Years Ago, Google's CEO Had a Brilliant Response to a Tricky Interview Question – and it Helped Him Get Hired

"When it comes to job interviews, we all want to give answers that make us stand out from the rest of the candidates. That means knowing how to answer each question, including the tricky ones designed to stump you.

But what if you don't know the answer to a question?" www.cnbc.comGoogle CEO Sundar Pichai

Simon Dawson | Bloomberg | Getty Images
Google CEO Sundar Pichai

Make Way for Generation Z in the Workplace

They are risk-averse and more diverse, says Inc. magazine. Forbessays they “want to work on their own and be judged on their own merits rather than those of their team.”Generation Z is arriving, and they are different than previous generations – or at least that’s how this young cohort is being portrayed as it begins to enter the workforce. After the traditionalists, baby boomers, Generation X and Generation Y/millennials, we have Generation Z – that group born after 1995 now starting to graduate college.But is Generation Z really different, and if so, how? When it comes to ascribing characteristics and accepting advice about a particular generation, caveat emptor. Over-generalizing about any group is a slippery business." www.knowledge,wharton,edu[tweet_box design="box_09" float="none"]#GenZ: "As a group, they are “sober, industrious and driven by money,” reports the Wall Street Journal, but also “socially awkward and timid about taking the reins.”[/tweet_box]2019 Workplace Trend Predictions

The Fox Architects office just received the Fitwel 3 Star Rating – Image by Ron Blunt Photography

"Happy New Year, WDM readers! Work Design publisher, Bob Fox has again spent the month of January picking the brains of industry experts, clients, and peers while reviewing patterns in the market to round up his predictions for the biggest workplace trends in 2019. His list of five major trends include some new and some continuations that he expects will make an impact on the workplace this year.." www.workdesign.com

Modern Office Design: The One Thing Employees Want Most

“In the war for top talent, many employers assume the way to win is to offer employees unique and trendy perks—arcade games in the breakroom, fully-stocked beer fridges and on-site dry cleaning services, to name a few. It’s a reasonable assumption since those are the kinds of fringe benefits mega-successful corporate giants like Google and Amazon provide.However, there’s one simple element of modern office design that has a much greater effect on employee productivity and well-being: abundant natural light.www.iofficecorp.com

"As a content-obsessed millennial, I have made podcasts part of my daily routine for years. I listen while commuting, cooking, running errands, putting away laundry, washing dishes or during any relatively mindless activity that can be done while wearing wireless headphones.

My bond with podcasts is so cemented that it comes as a shock when someone I meet at a party — or someone in my family, or a friend I thought I knew — tells me that they, in the year 2019, do not listen to podcasts. And never have. And don’t really get what it’s all about. And, worse, don’t quite know how to start." www.NYTimes.com

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

Bookmarks: 5 Interesting Articles That May Help You This Week

January 28th, 2019

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.

Amazon Pushing Hard Into Ocean Shipping, Making it Easier for Chinese Goods to Get to You

"Quietly and below the radar, Amazon has been ramping up its ocean shipping service, sending close to 4.7 million cartons of consumers goods from China to the United States over the past year, records show.

This marks a significant move into what many believe is the company’s overall strategy of eventually controlling much of its transportation network, from trucks to airplanes and now to ships." www.usatoday.com

A cargo ship carrying shipping containers(Photo: Getty Images)[tweet_box design="box_09" float="none"]Quietly and below the radar, Amazon has been ramping up its ocean shipping service, sending close to 4.7 million cartons of consumers goods from China to the United States over the past year[/tweet_box]

Future and Growth of Transportation Market by 2020

Future and Growth of Transportation Market by 2020
Image credit: Shutterstock

"The business world is facing a complete overturn, and so does every industry vertical. The spending on IoT (Internet of Things) in the digital age is going to increase multifold with a net worth crossing $581 billion by 2020, as per McKinsey. Transportation and logistics are the backbones of the economy and an integral part of almost every business are also going to spend over $40 billion on IoT platforms, systems, and services by 2020, as per Statista. These facts clearly signify the new opportunities that the Transportation market is expecting in near future." www.entrepreneur.com 

The 512W22 office building in Manhattan has 16,920 square feet of terraces and a common roof, all planted with native grasses and trees. CreditCreditCookFox Architects

"For years, office architects and designers have been bringing nature into the workplace, incorporating materials like wood and stone and strategically deploying plants and botanical artwork.

Now, companies are inviting employees to step outside for a taste of the real thing.

Employers with suburban campuses have long turned swaths of blank lawn into furnished outdoor areas where workers can meet with colleagues, work alone or simply take a break from their computer screens.

Now, developers and owners of urban office buildings are adding terraces and transforming once-barren rooftops into parklike settings, where workers can plant vegetables, unfurl yoga mats or swing in a hammock." www.nytimes.com

[tweet_box design="box_09" float="none"]Now, developers and owners of urban office buildings are adding terraces and transforming once-barren rooftops into parklike settings, where workers can plant vegetables, unfurl yoga mats or swing in a hammock[/tweet_box]

Biggest Multistory Warehouse In The U.S. Planned For Brooklyn

A rendering of Sunset Industrial Park, a four-story, 1.3M SF warehouse planned in Brooklyn

“This will be a groundbreaking project for the U.S. industrial market, not only because of the building’s unprecedented design — essentially, four separate, stacked distribution centers — but also because of the enormous benefit it will have from a ‘last mile’ standpoint,” Bridge Northeast Region partner Jeff Milanaik said in a press release. " www.bisnow.com

Upward Momentum: Charting a Year of Skyscraper Construction

Charting a Year of Skyscraper Construction

Ever since the first towering spires broke through the clouds in New York and Chicago, skyscrapers have remained a potent symbol of economic might.The tallest buildings require vast amounts of materials, expertise, and capital to make them a reality, but the cities that add these landmarks to their skylines gain prestige and send a powerful message to competing economic centers. www.visualcapitalist.com

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

Bookmarks: 5 Interesting Articles That May Help You This Week

January 14th, 2019

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.

Construction Costs Complicating Developer Pricing, Tenant Decisions

"At North American Properties' Colony Square redevelopment project, the prolific developer secured an agreement with its general contractor that will cap any construction cost increases.That was something that the developer rarely ever considered before the Great Recession of 2008, Managing Partner Mark Toro said.“Pre-recession, we did not see the kind of run-up [on construction pricing] that we have seen this time in this cycle,” Toro said. “The level of activity is not unprecedented by any means ... but it's by far the most activity we've seen in our careers. And that's what's leading to the pricing pressure." www.bisnow.com[tweet_box design="box_09" float="none"]"Pre-recession, we did not see the kind of run-up [on construction pricing] that we have seen this time in this cycle...The level of activity is not unprecedented by any means ... but it's by far the most activity we've seen in our careers. And that's..leading to the pricing pressure."[/tweet_box]

"After a morning of tedious three-ring-binder presentations from executives, and stuffy lectures by professors, it was time for the keynote speaker. Herb walked to the podium, lit a cigarette, poured a glass of Wild Turkey bourbon, and delivered what remains the most hilarious, baudy, utterly brilliant CEO speech I have ever heard. When I spent a little time with him after the talk, I realized immediately that I was in the presence of leadership greatness — an entrepreneur who was as smart as he was sassy, as competitive as he was human, as consequential as he was approachable." www.hbr.org

DAVID WOO/GETTY IMAGES

How Google Will Destroy Uber

"Google’s Waymo has officially launched the world’s first self-driving, ride-sharing service! Residents in four Phoenix suburbs can now ride around in its robo-taxis for a small fee.

In RiskHedge, I recently explained why self-driving cars are going to gut the auto industry like a fish. And Phoenix is only the first step in Waymo’s domination of American roads.

Here’s why....." www.forbes.com

This Book List Will Almost Earn You A Ph.D. In Leadership

"Some books stick with you, long after you’ve closed the cover. The best books linger for decades, changing the way you look at the world. Those were the sorts of books we requested when we asked 20 world-class scholars to recommend titles for our 2018 list of the best leadership books available.You can’t actually earn a Ph.D. in leadership from reading these books. (If you really do want to earn your doctorate, we hope you’ll check out this Ph.D. program in leadership, for senior executives.) What the books will do for you, however, is provide mind-stretching insights that help you think deeper and lead stronger.We assembled this list of readings from some of the smartest people we know: top scholars with extensive practitioner experience. We asked them to tell us about the books that changed the way they think and lead.The remarkable list ranges in year of publication from 1958 to 2018, and the topics are almost as diverse. Below we share the insights of the experts who recommended each title. We also suggest who on your holiday list might enjoy reading each book" www.forbes.com

Here’s What the Big Tech Companies Know About You

“The novelty of the internet platform boom has mostly worn off.

Now that companies like Facebook, Amazon, and Alphabet are among the world’s most valued companies, people are starting to hold them more accountable for the impact of their actions on the real world.

From the Cambridge Analytica scandal to the transparency of Apple’s supply chain, it’s clear that big tech companies are under higher scrutiny. Unsurprisingly, much of this concern stems around one key currency that tech companies leverage for their own profitability: personal data.” www.visualcapitalist.com

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

We Interrupt The Normal Bookmarks Blog Post to Bring You Some POSITIVE Economic News

January 7th, 2019

For a number of years I've curated updates in this space on the CRE world. Today, we take a short break to focus on a different topic - the economy. I'm frustrated that some media outlets harp only on the negative news at every turn. This is one of the best economies of our lifetime - please read beyond the trending and check out the good news out there. #factsmatter #don'tjustreadtheheadlines

Credit: iStock

The Labor Market Would Like You All To Stop Panicking Now Please

"Job gains were led by the healthcare industry, which added 50,000 jobs in December, as well as construction, which added 38,000 jobs. Construction employment increased by 280,000 jobs over the year." www.bisnow.com 

'The Labor Market Would Like You All To Stop Panicking Now Please': Economists React To December Jobs Report On Twitter

[tweet_box design="box_09" float="none"]The labor market would like you all to stop panicking now please #cre[/tweet_box]

Fed Chair in Atlanta Boasts About Economy

"...Powell said he remains upbeat and has not made up his mind about further rate hikes this year.

“There is no preset path for policy,” he said. “We are always prepared to shift economic policy and to shift it significantly.”

The Fed is “listening carefully to the message that the market is sending,” he said.

Powell spoke Friday after release of the monthly government report that showed a gain of 312,000 jobs in December – about twice as many as had been expected. The report also showed wages rising. While the unemployment rate ticked up to 3.9 percent, that increase was caused by a surge of new workers, he said.

That report was evidence that the economy is chugging along steadily and can probably more easily handle more rate hikes."  www.ajc.com

 

[tweet_box design="box_09" float="none"](The)..."report was evidence that the economy is chugging along steadily and can probably more easily handle more rate hikes."[/tweet_box]

Strong U.S. Job and Wage Growth Provides Assurance on Economy

"All the while, the economy kept cranking out jobs. U.S. employers added a net 2.64 million jobs to their payrolls in 2018, the best year since 2015. Payrolls have grown for 99 straight months, by far the longest stretch of steady hiring on record.

The unemployment rate ticked up to 3.9% in December from 3.7% but remains low by historical standards. The increase owed in part to more people entering the workforce, some of whom get counted as unemployed while they’re looking for work.

Stock prices, already moving up on the economic news, jumped even higher after Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said the Fed would be patient about further increases in rates this year."[WSJ Paywall] www.wsj.com

 

Businesses across many sectors have been searching for workers as the labor market has tightened.
Businesses across many sectors have been searching for workers as the labor market has tightened. PHOTO: JOE RAEDLE/GETTY IMAGES

U.S. Stocks Surge on Powell Remarks, Jobs Report

"U.S. stocks bounced back from their worst two-day start to a year since 2000, soaring Friday after fresh signs of economic strength eased fears that slowing growth around the world could drag on the U.S. expansion.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped nearly 750 points as better-than-expected hiring in December suggested a healthy labor market. Stocks rose further after Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said economic data suggest good momentum heading into the new year, but that the central bank is “prepared to adjust policy quickly and flexibly” if necessary.

The combination mitigated investors’ worries about an economic slowdown. Those fears sent waves of volatility sweeping through stock and bond markets in recent weeks..." [WSJ Paywall] www.wsj.com

Q and A on the Big December Jobs Report

"The big news is that the jobs market apparently didn’t get the memo that the U.S. economy was barreling toward a recession. In fact, the jobs numbers came in a lot stronger than expected. Payrolls were up 312,000 in December, compared with expectations for about 180,000, and bringing the full count of jobs added for 2018 up to 2.6 million jobs, the strongest year for job gains since 2015. Wage growth accelerated slightly and, at 3.3 percent (before inflation) for mid-level workers, tied an earlier cyclical high. Weekly hours edged up slightly, jobs gains for the prior two months were revised up, and 70 percent of private industries added jobs on net, a high share for that metric.” www.washingtonpost.com

[tweet_box design="box_09" float="none"]The big news is that the jobs market apparently didn’t get the memo that the U.S. economy was barreling toward a recession. In fact, the jobs numbers came in a lot stronger than expected.[/tweet_box]

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

Bookmarks: 5 Interesting Articles That May Help You This Week

November 26th, 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.

The Benefits of a Short Attention Span

I'll make this a quick read | "..yet blaming smartphones for our distractibility feels too easy—human attention has always been fleeting. A study conducted several years before the first iPhone was unveiled found that workers spent an average of just two minutes using a particular tool or document before switching to another. Moreover, interruptions may have a silver lining. Many workers who were insulated from distraction by website-blocking software became more aware of time’s passage and were able to work for longer stretches—but also reported higher stress levels as a result of their sustained focus.Illustration: woman looking at phoneFor those seeking to exercise greater control over their attention span, science has some suggestions. A 2016 study found that mindfulness meditation led to short-term improvements in attention and focus, and that the benefits were disproportionately large among heavy multimedia multitaskers.  And research published earlier this year suggests that the long-term attentional benefits of regular mindfulness practice may be even more substantial than previously thought. www.theatlantic.com[tweet_box design="box_09" float="none"]interruptions may have a silver lining. Many workers who were insulated from distraction by website-blocking software became more aware of time’s passage and were able to work for longer stretches[/tweet_box]

"Doctors rely heavily on faxes in both routine and high-stakes situations. According to Vox, one industry analyst estimates that 75 percent all of all medical communications still happen by fax. Occasionally, news outlets describe this phenomenon, mostly as human-interest stories: “Medical Students Flummoxed by Fax Machines” or “Med Students Are Puzzled When Forced to Use This Ancient Technology.” Despite confusion and frustration, though, the business of faxing continues on. Part of this has to do with an interpretation of a clause in hipaa, a U.S. health-privacy law, which requires health providers to take reasonable steps to safeguard patient information. Because this rule explicitly mentions fax and not email, some providers interpret the law to mean that records must go by fax.

A row of fax machinesDADO RUVIC / REUTERS

That habit dies hard. A start-up called PatientBank, which allowed users to share and receive medical records digitally, shut down in January, partly because weaning hospitals from fax proved too difficult. Paul Fletcher-Hill, a PatientBank co-founder, told me that one reason hospitals cited for their continued dependency was security: Many believed that hacking computer systems were easier to hack than fax machines—and that computer hacks were more damaging.“There’s a perception that digital systems are easily hackable, and it’s true that many hospitals have struggled with ransomware attacks recently,” he said. There’s some truth to the claim that fax is more secure, in the sense that even if a signal is intercepted—which is very possible—compromising a single transmission would be less severe than hacking an entire system of digital records. So while fax may be more vulnerable in individual instances, in the aggregate, it may be more secure.." www.theatlantic.com[tweet_box design="box_09" float="none"]Fax Machines Live on! | There’s a perception that digital systems are easily hackable, and it’s true that many hospitals have struggled with ransomware attacks recently,” he said. There’s some truth to the claim that fax is more secure, in the sense that even if a signal is intercepted[/tweet_box]

"When American engineers started adding bike lanes to American streets about a decade ago, they changed the model, creating a “protected” bicycle lane once misleadingly called “the Copenhagen lane.”

CreditCreditTop: Photo by John Massengale; Bottom: Rendering by Gabrielle Stroik Johnson; Design by Massengale & Co LLC

In Copenhagen, wide cycle lanes on both sides of the street buffer equally wide sidewalks from traffic.CreditFrancis Dean/Corbis, via Getty Images

 

We see examples on many Manhattan avenues, with parked cars sitting awkwardly between moving traffic and grossly striped bike lanes. Every planner and urban designer I’ve talked to in Denmark and the Netherlands says their countries would never build such ugly, over-engineered streets, which diminish the pedestrian experience and give high priority to traffic flow at 35 m.p.h. and above." www.NYTimes.com

HQ2 Is Only Part of the Story of Big-Tech Expansion

"When word got out that Amazon is going to split its HQ2 between New York City and greater Washington, D.C., as the company made official today, many saw it as evidence of the widening gap between America’s coastal superstar cities and the heartland. Amazon is expanding from Seattle, a successful tech hub on the West Coast, to the world’s leading global city (New York) and the capital of the most powerful nation on Earth (Washington), both of which sit on the East Coast Acela corridor, equivalent to one of the world’s largest economies. With Google planning yet another expansion in New York, here is another example of winner-take-all urbanism.While it is true that the geography of big tech reflects a winner-take-all pattern, not everything follows the shift of Amazon and Google to East Coast superstar cities. Indeed, tech in San Francisco may be reaching a saturation point as many of its big firms appear to be heading elsewhere, including some smaller, “rise-of-the-rest”locations." www.citylab.com

World's Biggest Companies Plan to Get Down With WeWork Effect

“The biggest employers on the planet see a future filled with free beer and new age motivational posters. Their offices will need to catch up.

WeWork co-working space in London Photographer: Luke MacGregor/BloombergAfter WeWork Cos reinvented the office experience for freelancers and start-ups, large businesses see their use of flexible space rocketing over the next three years. More than half of them expect the non-traditional space to account for at least a fifth of the total compared with about 5 percent now.

“WeWork has changed the narrative around corporate real estate,” said Lee Elliot, a CRE trends researcher. "As well as seeking more flexibility, big businesses will increasingly look for “amenity-rich environments that help their employees with the challenges of modern work.”

The shift presents a major challenge to the world’s biggest landlords, which have traditionally focused on securing long-term leases to maximize the value of buildings and reduce the risk of vacancies. In London, landlords including British Land Co., Great Portland Estates Plc and the Crown Estate Ltd. have begun using some of their buildings as flexible spaces in response to changing demand.” www.bloomberg.comYour success blesses others. I wish you a great a hugely impactful week!

Ken’s Ten Trends; The Latest on Corporate Workplaces

“We are planning spaces now for those who are in high school” - David Kamen, Chairman of CoreNet Global, in a preview of the Future Forward 2025 reportI recently returned from the confab of all things corporate real estate – the 2018 edition of the CoreNet Global Summit, which occurred in Boston. The theme, “What’s Next? Exploiting Uncertainty,” certainly summarized the feeling of many of the 3,000 plus attendees. The U.S. economy is robust, and real estate types are super busy finding sit/stand desks for all those butts. However, the fears of something bad in the future are gathering like clouds on a summer day. "Winter is coming, better prepare now," said one CRE executive.At the conference, I listened carefully and took copious notes. Below is my attempt to boil it all down into 10 trends:

  1. Coworking becomes legit in corporate America- multiple CRE executives at major companies told me they are going to make some portion of their portfolios into a co working environment. The coworking craze is rapidly moving beyond the small, independent jobbers and into the mainstream. Over the next five years, corporate real estate professionals are set to dramatically increase their use of coworking spaces to house employees, according to a survey conducted by Cushman & Wakefield at the CoreNet Global Summit. The results so far, indicate companies utilizing co working have doubled over the past two years. When asked what percentage of a global workforce use or will use co working on a regular basis, respondents said 11% are using today, 17% in two years and nearly 25% in five years. The survey also revealed that 75% of those polled said the main benefit of utilizing coworking was the ability to ramp up or down a corporate real estate portfolio.
  2. White label coworking will come roaring out of the gates in 2019– private label offerings from landlords, service providers of all kinds and others will flood the market. The market is reacting in lockstep to what the existing competitors have created – and the profits realized. However, one of the challenges to these newcomers is the ability to offer flexibility to users. Cool coffee and free beer are part of the allure to those who occupy the spaces, but variable commitment periods are what makes CFOs smile.
  3. Lili pads and flexibility are what occupiers are jumping to – Speaking of the happy CFOs, with so much uncertainty in the economy (either up or down) leadership at some of the world's largest users of space are seeing shorter-term commitments/management agreements and are willing to pay more to have the option to grow or go.The ideal lili pad could be a spec suite in a building, but with a short and highly flexible lease term.
  4. Work “how” not work “place”– Happiness in the workplace has to do with the ability to make choices regarding where you physically work in the office. The ability to choose to perform your work in different environments increases retention and overall satisfaction, according to surveys. As my friend Bryan Berthold, Managing Director of Workplace Strategy at Cushman & Wakefield says, “I didn't take away your office. I gave you a building.”
  5. Want to come work here? –  I also saw in stark relief what we have all likely experienced in the current environment: labor rules the world. While some companies are locating on the beaten path in major cities, others are pivoting to lower-cost opportunities. “More arbitrage opportunities (exists) than ever before,” said David C. Smith, Vice President, Americas Head of Occupier Research for Cushman & Wakefield. “Growing educated workforce in secondary and even tertiary cities allow companies to keep their gateway offices and expand new departments in cities like Nashville, Boise, Phoenix, Charlotte, etc.” Whatever the location, there are still better and worse places to be (sub-markets and building types.) The fact of the matter is corporate America is scrambling to find someone – anyone – who can come aboard and work on the latest project the sales team just closed.
  6. Engagement is the new KPI– Employees want to be inspired by work that matters. Millennial workers seem to be asking in lockstep, “What are we trying to accomplish?” Corporate real estate leaders are trying to deliver spaces that support and emphasize the mission of the work occurring in the place. Cushman & Wakefield’s Berthold says the workplace, “Should be authentic, encourage innovation (and) should be a place where long-term friendships are fostered. Paramount to the needs of this group is that work is something to experience…the richness of leading a life where one’s work is as rewarding as one’s play is not your father’s office. It is your daughter’s.”
  7. Campsites and Open Houses* define an era of corporate openness to the community. A Campsite can occur when two companies are working on a large project together. Instead of Skyping, one company will send a team to the other to embed for 90 or 120 days. Culturally, teams can work together better by being in the same place for an extended period. Open House describes a scenario where corporates are opening up their campuses to the community. A great example of the phenomena is NCR’s HQ in Atlanta, which has a classroom in its lobby. The room can be reserved by anyone in the community, including Georgia Tech professors. In an Open House, CRE executives are attempting to build community relations and also to have potential new workers see their culture.
  8. This is the golden age of PropTech(but humans will continue to be needed.) One example of the burgeoning property technology market is machine learning for a design perspective in which we move away from 2D plans to building rich data models. Also, high volume, high repetition tasks like financial analysis will be automated. The organizers of the conference programmed some fascinating sessions on AI and automation that took advantage of proximity to some of the world’s leading thinkers on the subject. In Boston, you can find a lot of very smart human beings who can talk about smart machines. I think technology will assist us in making better decisions and absolutely make us more efficient. In the short term, however, I don’t think Siri will replace a broker, end user or landlord. When it comes to large, game changing decisions, people still want to deal with people – supported by great technology.
  9. The digital natives known as Gen Z will change the workplace again. Cristina Banks, PhD, director of the UC Berkeley Center for Healthy WorkPlaces, presented her research on 400 respondents who are Gen Z. Here is a summary of who they are: Born between 1996 and 2010 (oldest just turning 23) they are 64.6 million people or 20% of the U.S. population.

Some of the traits she observed:

    • Tight benching is not what Gen Z’s want – they do want lots of sunlight and portable desks in the workplace
    • Want a sense of place and connection to natural light in this digital world
    • This group will be financially conservative – they watched their parents suffer through 2009. They are also highly motivated to be financially successful.
    • 100% wanted a human receptionist
    • Digital sophistication is valued but not at the expense of face-to-face interactions
    • They think about safety and security a lot (think school shootings)
    • Assigned seating will come back – “We want our own space and the ability to make it our own,” they said
    • Technology is assumed to be great and easy to use
    • Wellness and mobility are emerging, and they want an active work environment. “Bring your authentic self to work,” one said.
    • An egalitarian approach to office – everyone should have the same look and feel

In short, Dr. Banks said this generation “want’s it all,” their own safe, well lighted space but also the ability to be mobile at the same time.

  1. The office as a destination - the  amenity war rages on We have finally reached the point where leadership has to ask "pretty please will you come into the office?" Real estate directors are taking keen notice of the newest available and refreshed product. Developers of new office assets are striving to build or adapt “authentic” buildings that consist of “real” materials like wood and often have a historical connection, in an attempt to market to those end-user leaders. Also, we are at a level of hyper convenience and comfort today, in part to compete with the coworking providers. The amenities go well beyond a fitness center and include robust recreational areas, food and beer, concierge services, pet and child care, and curated gardens to grow fresh fruits and vegetables. In short, there is a competition to see who can make the workplace feel most like home (please keep your shoes on there, mister.)

To sum it all up, there seems to be uncertainty around the corner, but the economy is super-duper just now. Real estate leaders report that their CFOs aren’t so much worried about cutting cost as “making the right investments” for their workforce. Workers are demanding a lot these days, and companies are willing to do what it takes to keep them happy.Would you pass the almond milk, please?Campsites and Open House concepts were first discussed in an HBR article entitled “Why Companies Are Creating Their Own Coworking Spaces published 9/24/2018

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,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." www.nytimes.com

 

Digital Natives Go Physical

ILLUSTRATION: ANDREA CHRONOPOULOS

 [tweet_box design="box_09" float="none"]a funny thing happened on the way to the retail apocalypse. Stiffening competition, surging online advertising costs and cheap mall space have prompted these so-called digital natives to embrace what they call “offline” in a big way.[/tweet_box]

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: www.forbes.com

How One Hospital Improved Patient Safety in 10 Minutes a Day

KELLY SILLASTE/GETTY IMAGES

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." www.hbr.org

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." www.theguardian.com

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

Bookmarks: 5 Interesting Articles That May Help You This Week

October 29th, 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.

How to Mitigate Rising Construction Materials Costs

"Construction costs are increasing rapidly. Some developers have said that total construction costs are up 30% over last year. A lot is contributing to the rising construction price tag, but a labor shortage and rising materials prices are among the biggest drivers. Now, trade tariffs on steel and lumber are putting more pressure on construction costs. While there is little developers can do to curb these increases, implementing materials management technology is one way to offset it.." www.globest.com

[tweet_box design="box_09" float="none"]Some developers have said that total construction costs are up 30% over last year[/tweet_box]

The Amazon Selling Machine

A computer screen showing Amazon's Australia homepageQUINNROONEY / GETTY"What if there were a company that knew what you wanted to buy before you did? What if it made shopping recommendations that tapped into your deepest desires? Better yet, what if it then made buying completely seamless? Would you ever stop shopping?

Amazon shareholders may like the answers to those questions. The company that revolutionized the way we buy has now gotten serious about selling the ads that tell us what to buy in the first place. It is selling advertising on Amazon.com, encouraging brands to create Alexa “skills” so they can market to people when they’re at home, and putting targeted ads on the main screens of its Amazon Kindles, tablets, and televisions. And it’s attracting money that brands used to spend on Facebook and Google." www.theatlantic.com 

Jeff Bezos's Morning Routine Is the Opposite of Most Productivity Advice. Maybe Yours Should Be Too

Jeff Bezos
CREDIT: Getty Images

"Elon Musk seems to get most of his sleep under his desk. Richard Branson recommends getting up at 5 a.m. Apple's Tim Cook takes being an early riser even further, getting up at the ungodly hour of 3:45 a.m. And once these and other titans of industry are up, they're usually busy with productivity-boosting activities like exercise, journaling, and meditation, reports time-use expert Laura Vanderkam.

Not Jeff Bezos.

As you can see in the interview below (hat tip to Signal v. Noise), he insists on a full night's sleep and spends his leisurely mornings ... puttering? Yes, that's right. The world's richest man skips heroic productivity rituals for breakfast with his kids and a slow morning warm up. He doesn't get fully up to speed mentally until 10 a.m.' www.inc.com

[tweet_box design="box_09" float="none"]The world's richest man skips heroic productivity rituals for breakfast with his kids and a slow morning warm up. He doesn't get fully up to speed mentally until 10 a.m[/tweet_box]

What I Learned About Life at My 30th College Reunion

Though we all went to the same school, and Harvard’s name likely opened doors for many of us, at the end of the day—or at the end of 30 years since graduation, in this case—what was so fascinating about meeting up with my own richly diverse class during reunion was that no matter our original background, no matter our current income or skin color or struggles or religion or health or career path or family structure, the common threads running through our lives had less to do with Harvard and more with the pressing issues of being human.Life does this. To everyone. No matter if or where they go to college. At a certain point midway on the timeline of one’s finite existence, the differences between people that stood out in youth take a backseat to similarities, with that mother of all universal themes—a sudden coming to grips with mortality—being the most salient. Not that this is an exhaustive list, but here are 30 simple shared truths I discovered at my 30th reunion of Harvard’s class of 1988." www.theatlantic.com

Credit Lars Leetaru

“With fares, tips, and bonuses factored in, I average around $20 an hour and give around 75 rides per week,” said Jon Sycamore, a driver in Salt Lake City who also runs a real estate business. “If you remove tips, it drops to around $15 an hour.” By comparison, Salt Lake City’s living wage is $11.48 an hour for a single adult and $24.12 an hour for a single adult with a child. www.NYTimes.com

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