How to Plan Your Company’s Move


How to Plan Your Company’s Move - Tenant Advisory Group

Relocating an entire office is a daunting task, and business owners rarely have the time to allocate to the process. Thankfully, there are professionals available to guide businesses through the transition, effectively reducing stress and increasing the efficiency of the move. The secret is planning and knowing what to expect, which will greatly increase the chances of a smooth transition.

When considering a relocation, a long lead-up time is imperative. Moving an entire business is a large, involved process with many moving parts that can really disrupt productivity if not planned property. A general timeline to consider is: a company that requires a 10,000-square-foot space should begin their planning 12 to 18 months prior to moving; a 4,000- to 7,000-square-foot space should start nine to 12 months in advance; and a space less than 4,000 square feet should plan at least six months before the move. The longer the lead up time, the less likely there will be major complications, effectively saving the company more money.

Once a business has a timeline established, it’s time to set and manage expectations. Too often this step is overlooked, and yet it is essential in creating a smooth, efficient relocation. While this responsibility largely falls on the broker, the client will need to accept what is possible within their current situation and budget. For example, if a client wants a custom buildout, budgets will need to increase or compromises will have to be made. Unfortunately, there are brokerage firms that will over-promise a client simply to obtain their business, thereby setting unrealistic expectations. This is a dangerous precedent to set, as the client will be left with an unpleasant experience due to a drawn out process, less-than-ideal prices and a higher cost. The best business practice to benefit every party is to establish realistic expectations, then work to exceed them.

Prior to setting foot in a single office space, it’s a good idea to develop a basic layout and checklist of requirements for the new location. Identifying and prioritizing employee activities and needs will help provide the broker with a clear idea of the end goal. Decide how many offices and conference rooms are needed, and how much space should be allocated to each employee. A helpful tip for this process is to think about the day-to-day lives of each employee, as this will provide clues as to what amenities the office layout will need.

Remember that planning the layout of a space isn’t only about the current workforce and day-to-day needs. It’s about creating a template for the business to grow. Consider how large the next office must be, and then identify how much space should be allocated to each department of the workforce (sales, marketing, creative, programmers, accountants, etc.). How many private offices, conference rooms, collaborative spaces and kitchens will the office need, and how much square footage should be allocated to each employee? The process that addresses space requirements is called “benchmarking.” For example, a tech company will have different requirements than a law firm when it comes to design, layout and square footage allocation. A creative agency with 10 employees may want 175 to 190 square feet per person, whereas an accounting firm might want 230 to 250 square feet per person. Effective benchmarking through a discussion with the broker will improve their ability to find the right space that can be perfectly utilized per a business’ needs.

Once the preliminary search has narrowed down a few options of spaces that would be right for a business, this is the perfect time to seek the input of a space planner or architect to discuss the buildout and design plans. Being able to compare space plans among a selection of top contenders will help discern if the exact square footage and shape of each office will be a strong fit. It may depend on the building, but this preliminary planning can typically be done alongside the lease term negotiations. As always, be sure to take advantage of a long lead-up time as well as the resources of a commercial real estate broker in order to acquire that dream office in a smooth manner and at a fair rate.

Bill Himmelstein Named to Crain’s Chicago Business CRE Ranking


Bill Himmelstein Named to Crain’s Chicago Business CRE Ranking - Tag (1)

Crain’s Chicago Business released its inaugural edition of The Most Influential Commercial Real Estate Brokers in Chicago, and our own Bill Himmelstein has been included in this list!

The new list represents an impressive cross-section of the Chicago-area commercial real estate sales community, many of whom have practiced with distinction for decades. Click here to read about how Bill grew Tenant Advisory Group to one of the best in the city.

TAG’s October Networking Adventures


TAG’S OCTOBER NETWORKING ADVENTURES - Tag

The October Tenant Advisory Group Executives Breakfast and Executives Luncheon saw quite the turnout! Attendees from a variety of industries came together to build their individual networks and learn how they can work together to enhance their business results. Thanks to all who attended!

 

TAG Executives Breakfast Guest List

Faheem Ahmad, COO, Technical Doctor

Sam Barhoumeh, Managing Director and CEO, Ready Networks

Rob Bisceglie, CEO, Action for Healthy Kids

Jon Borg-Breen, Co-Founder, Symbiont Group

Erryn Cobb, Co-Founder, Fetch Public Relations

Gina Cocking, Managing Director, Colonnade Securities LLC.

Kim Eberl, CEO, Motion PR

Jonathan Eisler, Managing Director, Perspectives Organizational Consulting Group, President, Association of Consultants to Nonprofits

Adam Glazer, Managing Partner; Schoenberg, Finkel, Newman and Rosenberg, LLC

Mitchell Gordon, Co-Founder, Bradford and Gordon, LLC

Jeff Hirner, Founder and COO, One North Interactive

Eric Lazar, Partner and Lead Evangelist, SpeedPro Chicago Loop

Stephanie LoVerde, Jameson Sotheby’s

Tyler Mose, CEO, Indirap Productions

Sagar Pandaya, CEO, Middleground

Grigory Pekarsky, Managing Broker and Partner, Vesta Preferred Realty

Dan Porcaro, CEO, Porcaro, Stolarek and Mete, LLC

Jason Randolph, CEO and Founder, Savant

Paul Raya, Attorney, Cook Alex

Scott Seagren, Vistage Chair

Robert Szafaraowicz, Vice President, Buzz

Jeremy Waitzman, Partner, Walker Morton LLP

Michael Ward, Riley, Safer, Holmes and Cancila LLP

Greg Woodard, Principal, Solve

 

TAG Executives Luncheon Guest List

Jon Adler, Managing Partner, Adler Law

Stuart Baum, President, Large Pond

Bob Berland, President, Berland Communications, Co-Founder, Hire Elite Athletes

Bill Bolotin, Partner, Funkhouser, Vergosen, Liebman and Dunn

Brad Factor, President, Chicago Messenger Service

Jerry Holisky, Managing Partner, AGDG

Rashod Johnson, President and Owner, Ardmore/Roderick Group

Michael LaVista, CEO, Caxy Interactive

Kim Robinson, President, Frontline

Sapan Shah, CEO, Flagship

Ann Simms, CFO & COO, American Planning Association

Karen Villaflor, President, Algonquin Bank

Chicago’s Next Top Neighborhood


CHICAGO'S NEXT TOP NEIGHBORHOOD - Tag

The South Loop, River West and West Loop each have taken their turn as being Chicago’s “it” neighborhood. Now it’s time to turn our eyes towards the Clybourn Corridor, the thin strip of land on the western edge of Lincoln Park between Clybourn Ave. and the Chicago River. This area already serves as a main shopping destination for Northsiders, and the recent addition of Newcity is part of a continuing trend in this area. There are many developments currently in progress with many more slated to come online for the near- and long-term future.

High Demand

The Clybourn Corridor is currently exploding with new developments planned and in progress. Despite the rising vacancy rates from the influx of new buildings, retail rent has remained steady and even reached higher levels in recent years. This stretch of well-located land is continuing to attract businesses, both large and small, and they are not shying away from the increasing rents. With retail, professional and residential buildings on the dockets, the Clybourn Corridor has the attention of the city.

Room to Grow

In the last five years, over two million square feet of commercial real estate space has come online with over 1,000 new residential units. Even with the high amount of proposals, there is plenty of room for development and redevelopment in the Clybourn Corridor. Most famously, the Finkl & Sons steel plant is one of the headlining redevelopment projects. Sterling Bay has recently unveiled their vision for the redeveloped Finkl & Sons steel plant which includes a mixture of office, retail and residential buildings to be built on over 30 acres of riverfront property.

A Fresh Start

One driving factor behind the surging demand to reshape the Clybourn Corridor is its ability to act as a blank canvas. Large developers are purchasing old properties with dated buildings and redeveloping these sprawling sites into efficient retail, office and residential buildings. Its extreme demand is also fueled by the dense nearby population and affluent neighborhoods near the Clybourn Corridor, which attracts shoppers and businesses. Additionally, Metra plans to update their Clybourn train station to match the rapid updates the area is receiving. The proposals to revamp the community expects to draw a large, new employment base and add thousands of residents, all creating a positive influence on Chicago’s economy.

Chicago’s real estate industry continues to grow as a plethora of new buildings come online each year. The city’s lively entertainment scene, attractive amenities and its role as a booming international business hub make it a highly sought after location for corporations, and the employees who work for them. It will be exciting to watch the plans for the Clybourn Corridor unfold into a redeveloped, bustling stretch of Chicago.

How to Find the Right Office for a Startup


HOW TO FIND THE RIGHT OFFICE FOR A STARTUP - Tag

Startups, by nature, are always changing, and the last thing a budding business needs is to constantly search for and move into new spaces. As a company grows in both size and revenue, the physical office space will need to provide the flexibility to house the necessary changes (e.g. additional computer stations, conference rooms, etc.). Here are a few pointers to consider when looking for a location to help the business stay put longer.

Consider Rapid Growth

In order to avoid overcrowding an office, search for an office space that accounts for reasonable projected growth. Oftentimes, an extra ten or twenty percent of space can prevent a lot of issues from arising. While it may seem like an unnecessary expense, it has the potential to provide greater returns in the future by avoiding terminated lease fees as well as eliminating the hassle and expense of needing to sublease and seek a larger space before the lease expires. One way to compensate for the increased rent expense could be to use that extra square footage as leverage to receive better lease concessions, such as more rent abatement, tenant improvement allowance or termination rights.

Consider the Location

When it comes to real estate, the location of the property will play a critical role in the success of the business. You’ll want to consider the office’s location in regards to current and potential clients, vendors and employees. If the space is hidden, it’ll make it difficult for prospective clients to find the business. The location will also play a role in employee retention and talent acquisition. An office that is far out of the way will reduce company morale, and will be unattractive when trying to acquire top talent. It will go a long way in increasing employee happiness if the location is near quality amenities, such as trendy restaurants and entertainment.

Consider Your Needs

A critical aspect that should be heavily considered during the search is the layout of the office and its amenities. Does it fit the company brand and culture? A financial services startup may need a more structured environment with cubicles and sound proofing. Whereas a creative firm will want an office with open spaces for collaboration. Regardless of the industry, the layout should be conducive to the business. Also, the amenities of the office should play an important role in the selection process, as they can make a difference in employee morale, which will impact productiveness of the workforce. Will there be enough conference rooms, kitchens, restrooms or break rooms? Confirm if the space will be able to accommodate the specific needs of an industry. For example, a company with heavy IT needs will want a space that is able to power and protect all of the equipment.

Finding an office that is a perfect fit for a business is a challenge, especially for a rapidly growing startup. When beginning the search consider the projected growth, business plan and the needs of the company to find the best suitable space. The office search is a daunting task that should be tackled with a long lead up time, preferably one year in advance. The long lead time works in favor of the tenant, and is necessary to account for the lengthy processes of site selection, touring comps, term negotiation, attorney review and architectural design, permitting or construction work. Working with a qualified commercial broker can save a growing business tremendous time and money throughout the leasing process.

TAG’s August Networking Adventures


TAG’S AUGUST NETWORKING ADVENTURES - Tag

Tenant Advisory Group had an exciting August, hosting multiple events including an Executive’s Breakfast, Executive’s Luncheon and Networking Boat Ride. TAG is committed to making connections that matter and hosts these events for the purpose of helping those in our network grow their businesses by coming together in relaxed, intimate environments designed to help build new strategic relationships.

Thanks to all who attended!

TAG Executives Breakfast Guest List

Eddie Lou, CEO, Co-Founder, Shiftgig; Rhonda V. Jensen, President, Jensen Litigation Solutions; Keith Glantz, President and Chief Creative Officer, Glantz Design; James Taylor, Managing Partner, Taylor Group; Stephen G. Daday, Klein, Daday, Aretos & O’Donoghue, LLC; John Fakhoury, CEO, Framework Communications; David Crowell, Managing Director, CEO, rmc International; Nick Espinosa, Chief Security Fanatic, Security Fanatics & BSSi2 LLC; Craig Castelli, CEO, Saber Hill Advisors; Mark Meyer, President, ICI Staffing; Michael Erin, CEO, Progressive Management; Fletcher Boyle, VP of Business Development and Strategy, Chicagoland Smile Group; Amber Autumn, Business Development, Summit Design + Build LLC; Daniel Porcaro, Managing Partner, Porcaro Stolarek Mete Partners, LLC; Adam J. Glazer, Schoenberg Finkel Newman & Rosenber, LLC; Tyler E. Mose, CEO, Indirap Productions; Jim Anderson, President, Switchfast; Andrea Fox, Managing Director,

TAG Executives Luncheon Guest List

Stephanie Storkel, COO, Pedersen & Houpt; David Diamond, Partner, Kutchins Robbins & Diamond; Haskel Weiss, President, TWG Benefits; Jennifer Masi, Partner, Torque Digital; Bridget Brennan, Founder and CEO, Female Factor; Dan Walsh, CEO, Aurora Management Partners; Steve Dinelli, CEO, Blackbird Garage; Rich Bartell, CFO, 8th Light; Tom Patterson, Managing Partner, Patterson Law; Adam Glazer, Managing Partner, Schoenberg, Finkel, Newman & Rosenberg LLC; Brian Gurber, Partner, Pokorny & Marks LLC; Lisa Mirabelli, Business Performance Advisor, Insperity; Morrie Elstein, Cendrowski Corporate Advisors; Joanna Sobran, CEO, MXOTech; Jonathan Rothstein, Senior VP, MB Bank; Colleen Warner, CEO, LulaFit; Laurel Bellows, Managing Partner, Bellows and Bellows; Margaret Pagel, Partner, 8th Light; Irwin Cohen, CEO, Affiliated Equities.

TAG Networking Boat Ride Guest List

Josh Golden, CEO, Table XI; Tim Schumm, Founder, Carver Peterson; Joanna Sobran, CEO, MXOTech; Bruce Johnstone COO, Apex Design/Build; Dave LeTourneau, COO, Gregg Communications; Jordan Matyas, Managing Partner, 1818 Advocacy Group; Mark Meyer, CEO, ICI Staffing, E&M Development; Jim Anderson, President, Switchfast; Tim Smith, Managing Principal and COO, Catalyst Consulting; Tom Goldblatt, Founder, Ravinia Capital; Larry Levy President and Founder, CFO Options Inc.; Amber Autumn, Business Development, Summit Design + Build, LLC; Scott Nicholson CEO, KindredOnore; Tyler Mose, CEO, Indirap Productions; Pierce Hutchings, Partner, Club1 Hotels; Melanie DeCaprio, CEO, New Sky Strategies; Steven Thomas, CEO, BizIntro; Morrie Elstein, Cendrowski Corporate Advisors; Dr. Gabriel Martinez-Diaz, Dermatologist, CompHealth; Jonathan Rothstein, Senior Vice President of Commercial Banking, MB Financial Bank; Dave Stolarek, Partner, PSM Partners; Greg Fenton, CEO, VirDocs; Samuel P. Gussis, Managing Partner, Gussis Lichtenfeld & Alexander LLC; Grant Gochnauer, Co-Founder and CTO, Vodori Inc; Sanjay Sharma, Co-Founder, Bridge; George DePalma, CEO, DePalma Group Architects and Design; Andrew D. Bell, Spain, Spain and Varnet, P.C.; Kaitlin H. Reimann, Co-Founder, uBack; Sam Barhoumeh, Managing Director, ReadyNetworks; Joel Wicks, CFO, Belly Card; Brian Kasal, CEO, Four Star Wealth Advisors; Jay Breeden, COO, ACT Dental Practice Coaching; Becka Bates, CEO, Bates Moran Design; Michael Ward, Partner, Riley Safer Holmes & Cancila; Doug Harris, CEO, Kaleidoscope Group; Pete Cunningham, CEO, CCO Healthcare Partners; Elizabeth Peterson, CEO and Founder, Eastwood Group; Stuart Baum, CEO, Larger Pond; Alap Shah, Co-Founder, SoMe Connect; Paul Raya, CEO, Cook Alex Law; Angelika Coghlan, Founder, Success Catalyst; Stefan Birrer, CEO and Founder, Phoenix 2P; Brendan Flanigan, CEO and Founder, Smark Labs; Jim Mattei, Sandler Sales

Tenant Advisory Group’s Affiliate Architect


New Architect Affiliate - Tag

We are excited to debut our newest affiliate architect, George DePalma of the DePalma Group. This partnership opens up new opportunities for our clients to take advantage of elite space planning, architectural services and interior designers. Tenant Advisory Group is able to provide a variety of new services to help your business thrive.

About DePalma Group

Since 1977, our professional team of Corporate and Retail Strategists, Architects, Interior Designers, Space Planners, Graphic Designers and Visual Merchandisers have worked together as the DePalma Group, providing comprehensive, integrated service and innovative solutions for business and public spaces. The DePalma Group is dedicated to providing highly personal service from a proactive and focused multi-disciplined staff.

Expand Your Office Space to the Great Outdoors


EXPAND YOUR OFFICE SPACE TO THE GREAT OUTDOORS - Tag - Blog Header

Companies are always tweaking their work environments to boost productivity and employee satisfaction, but are they running out of ways to change the office? Not yet. Businesses are electing to create outdoor office spaces to help staff relax and reconnect with nature. However, are outdoor office spaces a good idea?

The Perks

A well-designed outdoor office space makes for an effective recruiting tool, attracting top talent to the unique design. It increases employee satisfaction, reduces turnover and boosts productivity. Allowing employees to wander outside to work will give them more of a feeling of freedom, exposing them to much-needed natural lighting and fresh air. It can also contribute to the company culture, as an outdoor workspace offers a relaxed, casual way to connect across departments.

The Pitfalls

Weather can be unpredictable and sometimes brutal. Outdoor workplaces will be unusable for a large chunk of the year, due to cold, heat, wind, rain, etc. Another downside of an outdoor workspace is it can be more difficult to keep secure. There is also a fine line to walk when creating an outdoor workspace, as it can quickly become a distraction if it is too recreation-centric.

The Right Mix

If executed properly, an outdoor workspace can add a fun, unique dimension to an office. A large majority of the office should remain indoors while still incorporating outdoor elements such as natural lighting and plants. Well-developed indoor spaces will always be necessary, especially for roles that demand an environment with limited noise and distractions.

Corporations are finally thinking outside of the box and creating outdoor workspaces where employees can elect to work in a new setting or simply recharge. With the reversal in workspace design comes a number of benefits and pitfalls. However, as with most office designs, the best layout incorporates a mixture of styles to cater to every unique employee.

Adjust Your Office Layout, Increase Employee Productivity


Adjust Your Office Layout, Increase Employee Productivity - Tenant Advisory Group

Increasing employee productivity has been a challenge faced since the early days of the traditional office space. Unfortunately, many companies overlook a simple yet crucial solution: office layout. Improving the overall design of a space can do wonders in improving corporate culture, leading to better productivity.

Small Changes for Huge Impact

Creating a healthy environment is essential to increasing productivity, as it impacts both the physical and mental health of your employees. The first step is to make sure the office is physically comfortable by maintaining a reasonable temperature, comfortable office furniture and adequate lighting. Consider natural sunlight and plants to make the room more approachable and improve the overall mental health of workers. (Poor lighting can cause people to feel more tired, experience eyestrain and can even amplify the effects of depression.) When planning the design of an office, it’s also important to consider the furniture, as your employees will be using it in a full-time capacity.

Distraction-Free Zones

To foster a comfortable atmosphere in your office, limit noise in designated areas so employees may concentrate. While the open office layout is feasible for some industries, the best design will incorporate zones dedicated to employees who need to be on the phone as well as workspaces that focus on minimizing distractions. Additionally, place noisy office appliances and equipment in a separate area to decrease noise.

Adaptive Workstations

Rather than creating an office that is either all cubicles or one open room, design an environment that incorporates the advantages of both styles. Designated workstations will give your employees the benefit of an organized, private work environment, while an open area will promote collaboration and camaraderie. An adaptive workplace will also allow workers to find an area that best suits their current project to help their individual productivity.

The design, layout and future planning of an office is critical to the success of a business, as it can eliminate a variety of problems and induce stronger results for the company. With so much to consider when searching for a new office, working with a knowledgeable, professional broker can save you time and money, while achieving better results.

Bill Himmelstein Moderates Panel at TechWeek


TechWeek 2017 - Tenant Advisory Group (1)

At the 2017 Chicago TechWeek, Bill Himmelstein was a moderator for the Building Company Equity panel at the TechWeek Chicago Launch Startup Showcase.

Launch is the place to see exciting companies pitch, and to learn about different business models in the trending, local tech ecosystem. This event is the place where future hero companies get discovered, and it provides an atmosphere for early startups to meet mentors, obtain professional evaluation and global recognition. It features the best entrepreneurs and their businesses in front of regional and local angel and VC investors.

 

Techweek photos 2017 - Tenant Advisory Group

Techweek photos 2017 - Tenant Advisory Group (1)

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