Last week I attended a CoreNet Global panel discussion at the RealShare conference in Irvine, California.
With a panel consisting of three Real Estate companies, two End Users and one Investment Asset Management company, ‘Flexibility’ was the common theme. However, I was most intrigued when the End User began to challenge the Landlord and Broker to “listen more intently to the tenant needs.” (hmmm…. maybe that’s why they titled this session: “Needs of the Modern End User”)
David Wensley | Cox, Castle, Nicholson
Jack McNutt | Newmark Grubb Knight Frank
David Willis | Cresa
John Gabriel | LA|Fitness
Jay Warner | Brandman University
John Cornuke | TIAA-CREF
As each panelist talked of the speed of economic recovery in the region and the associated Tenant response, these two topics continued to be ‘front and center’.
Provide Flexibility: The brokers are no longer able to ‘swap’ out tenants or simply ‘reduce space’ because tenants are requiring a different type of space. They need greater flexibility to provide dynamic teaming environments, touchdown space for the mobile worker and impromptu collaboration space - all within an environment that is imaginative and inspiring! As a result, the landlord is being challenged to update their space to attract this employee-focused tenant.
Listen to the Tenant: Hand in hand with increased Flexibility, the Tenant wants the broker and landlord to really listen to their needs. Listen intently to understand ‘how’ the tenant’s business works, who is their audience/client, and then zero in on their growth needs and the specific timing. Truly absorbing those needs provides a greater opportunity for the broker and landlord to meet them and offer unique environments that may be the perfect fit. For example, LA|Fitness can ideally co-locate with a shopping mall, sharing their peak parking hours with lulls in the mall’s activity. Or, imagine the benefits of utilizing a large footprint industrial space for an innovative collaborative tenant needing maximum flexibility for “activity-based workspace”.
My overall impression of the conference was that it was filled with optimism and enthusiasm. The real estate tenant market is not just a matter of filling vacant space with a tenant, but listening to the tenant, responding with creative options to meet their needs, and teaming with innovative designers to make the space ‘SING’!
Click on the hyperlink below to read more about last Thursday’s RealShare Orange County…