Andrew Carnegie once stated, “Teamwork is the ability to work together toward a common vision. The ability to direct individual accomplishments toward organizational objectives. It is the fuel that allows common people to attain uncommon results.”
Vendors and property management teams, work to improve operational efficiency, environmental sustainability, tenant care, and more. Working together is integral to the success of our commercial properties and their organizational objectives, and often lead to uncommon results, just as Carnegie defined.
I sat down and discussed property management and vendor relationships with Jansen Trentham, General Manager, Core Property Capital, Shane Froman, Senior Vice President, Lincoln Properties, and Shawn Benjamin, Account Manager, Atlantic Paper. Here is what they had to say.
Ultimately, building relationships, working with vendors, and collaborating comes down to providing greater value for the tenants of the building. How do vendors provide value to the tenants of these great buildings?
Shawn Benjamin does it, by, “Staying on top of what is out there and what is going on in the market. It is like what you said Shane, when you took over 171.”
“You told me you wanted this to be a premier property and have products that elevate the tenant experience. Bringing those products and experiences that people may not have and not know they have until they experience it and get that wow factor. Bringing those technologies and trends is one way we provide value to the tenant experience,” Benjamin explained.
Shane Froman adds, “I feel the service partners, in many ways, are more responsible for that tenant experience than property management. Especially from that frontline of experience, whether it is through products or the direct experience with the staff they provide. So, when you look at our service partners that are security, janitorial, or garage, or those that supply a product to us, like Shawn, it is important to remember the impact they have.”
“When a tenant walks into a building, generally the first person they see is garage management or staff, so they are the ambassador that first reached the tenants. That is the first experience they get.” Froman explains. “It is not management. Our partners are an extended staff of our team, which is how I always ask my management team to look at it, that our vendors are extensions to our team.”
“So, [tenants] walk out of the garage and walk into the lobby and the first person they see there is the security officer. Then they get into the elevator and that elevator technician has kept that elevator running and kept it from jolting around.”
“Then they get to their floor, and they go to the restroom before going to their desk and in the restroom, the janitorial team has kept it pristine and smelling good so then there is that pleasant experience, then you get into paper supply, air care, automated faucets, and soap dispensers that work like they should and there is that pleasant experience.”
“Behind all that, making sure it all jives is property management.” Froman explains. “A lot of those first touch experiences are by our service partners and therefore almost 100-percent of what they do affects the tenant experience.”
Jansen Trentham wraps it all up very nicely when he states, “As landlords, we know a vendor can make or break your building.”
“Having a vendor you trust, and that you know you are getting good knowledge from and have that working relationship makes so many things easier and in industries you may not understand while you are dealing with a million other things or just because, what faucets are best for a restroom are something I am not going to know off the top of my head. So having a vendor that is an expert in that regard is just huge and all landlords should be focusing on more than ever.”
Collaboration in commercial real estate is built on the work and relationships between service partners and management teams. Successful collaborations are built brick by brick on the foundation of a strong relationship, and these do not appear overnight. As Shane, Jansen, and Shawn have all demonstrated, partnerships are built on trust, knowledge, and communication. Growing a strong relationship with your vendor partners can have immense and positive effects on your property, and it is the fuel that allows us to achieve uncommon results.
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