Twenty Ways to Boost Your Energy

About The Sundance Company
Established in 1976, The Sundance Company has the experience to help you with your commercial real estate needs throughout the Boise Valley. If your requirements include property management, leasing, real estate development, project planning, construction or space planning then look to us. The Sundance Company has more than 1.6 million square feet of office and industrial space available in prime locations in the Boise metropolitan area. More information is available at www.sundanceco.com or 208.322.7300.

Effective Collaboration Strategies for Distributed Teams

We need to stop assuming that old ways of work will come back and start anticipating working with distributed teams most—if not all—of the time. This will require that companies transition to an agile-first mindset that allows them to change habits on how teams work.

During Group Futurista’s “The Future of the Digital Workplace Webinar 2.0”, Jarom Chung, Product Director at Lucid, gave a keynote presentation on how to drive collaboration across distributed teams.

Chung argued that we need to make a bigger effort for teams to be in sync; otherwise, distributed collaboration will continue to fail. This effort requires that company leaders and employees alike rethink their approach to meetings and collaboration.

In Chung’s words: “The pandemic has resulted, for most of us, in too many meetings, with too many people, that take too much time.”

Meeting times may have increased, but collaboration has decreased since people started working remotely. To make matters worse, Chung argues that there is a deep loss of connection with lack of understanding of the full picture, which increases distance both physically and emotionally.

The goal of Chung’s discussion was to change the current mindset from surviving remote work, to thriving in remote work.

But wait, aren’t companies ready to welcome back workers into the office?

While companies have announced plans to welcome back employees in the office as soon as July, the reality is that companies are changing and adapting how they work.

Again, “we need to stop assuming that old ways of work will come back”.

It’s true that workers will return to the office, but they won’t do so full time. And many companies have already announced a remote-first approach to work moving forward.

What does this mean?

It means that distributed teams are here to stay, even if some workers do go back to the office.

Back to changing our mindset from surviving to thriving remote work…

For teams to succeed in remote work environments, companies need to transform their mindset from endless meetings to deeper team collaboration and connection. This means shifting from e-mail to Slack or Teams, and saying good-bye to Whiteboards and PowerPoint presentations and embracing visual collaboration tools that get the nuances that allow for the connection of ideas in a virtual environment.

Easier said than done, right?

“Distributed teams demand collaboration solutions that work anywhere, any time. Just as in the office I’m able to turn around and talk to someone behind me, I need to be able to know where my distributed colleagues are and how to find them.” – Jarom Chung, Lucid

3 Types of Team Collaboration to Transform Endless Meetings into Deeper Team Collaboration

  • Ad hoc collaborative sessions.
  • Facilitated, prepared collaboration with your team.
  • Building a distributed war room.

Let’s take a deeper look at each of these.

Ad hoc collaborative sessions

These are one-off meetings around a specific topic or discussion. Pre-remote, this type of meeting usually happened in a conference room, had a whiteboard, and were often initiated through casual conversations.

This type of meeting has failed in remote environments because:

  • It is difficult to collaborate simultaneously; remote collaboration requires is a higher activation energy.
  • Different levels of engagement and participation; people participating remotely aren’t necessarily willing to jump in during remote collaboration meetings.
  • Most people participating in remote meetings are multi-tasking, which creates silos.
  • Silos are created by multi-tasking because people aren’t bringing their whole attention and expertise to collaboration sessions.
  • Hard to efficiently synthesize ideas, Chung argues that this happened even pre-pandemic and in remote environments it’s even harder to get all ideas together, make sense of them, and plan action.
  • Lack of clear next steps.

To avoid the above pitfalls and increase the chances of your distributed team collaborating efficiently, Chung proposes the following:

  • Transform unengaging calls into team visual collaboration by embracing the right tools and platforms.
  • Have a shared location for knowledge (I.e., the cloud)—this is key for synchronous and asynchronous collaboration.
  • Have a shared communication channel.
  • Invite participants to engage—this means calling people out by name and asking them for their input.
  • Always end the meeting with clear action items and next steps.

Facilitated, prepared collaborative meetings

This type of meeting is designed to draw out people’s ideas and input. Think of brainstorming sessions or sprint planning meetings. This type of meeting typically has one person leading and driving the discussion.

Common pitfalls of this approach include:

  • Unprepared teams and facilitators.
  • Poor time management.
  • Unengaged participants.
  • Difficulty synthesizing ideas.
  • Difficulty deciding how to take action.
  • To avoid these pitfalls with distributed teams, Chung suggests the following:
  • Assign pre-work and set the stage.
  • Create an agenda and share it with participants beforehand.
  • Start off with ice breakers, especially if there are people that don’t know each other present.
  • Make sure every voice is heard—again call people by their name and ask for their input or feedback.
  • Time bucket activities—otherwise meetings will go on forever.
  • Determine next steps.

Building a virtual war room

Virtual war rooms, pre-remote, where basically a centralized meeting space where key people met together to solve a difficult problem. Often, this type of collaboration meetings required iterations and multiple sessions.

Some virtual war room examples include:

  • Strategic planning
  • Pre-mortem exercises
  • Release planning
  • Big room planning
  • Competitive analysis.

With remote work, virtual war rooms face one particular challenge: there is no centralized workspace, which means teams don’t have a physical spot for their war rooms.

For war rooms to be effective in a virtual environment, you will need to:

  • Find technology that supports effective team collaboration.
  • Use technology to augment what you would do in real life.
  • Make sure you are prepared.

Portions of this article originally appeared on the All Work Space website.

The Sundance Company                                                                
Established in 1976, The Sundance Company has the experience to help you with your commercial real estate needs throughout the Boise Valley. If your requirements include property management, leasing, real estate development, project planning, construction or space planning then look to us. The Sundance Company has more than 1.6 million square feet of office and industrial space available in prime locations in the Boise metropolitan area. More information is available at www.sundanceco.com or 208.322.7300.

How to Power Through Your Workday

About The Sundance Company
Established in 1976, The Sundance Company has the experience to help you with your commercial real estate needs throughout the Boise Valley. If your requirements include property management, leasing, real estate development, project planning, construction or space planning then look to us. The Sundance Company has more than 1.6 million square feet of office and industrial space available in prime locations in the Boise metropolitan area. More information is available at www.sundanceco.com or 208.322.7300.

CRE Tools that Industry Professionals Should Explore

Technological advances in every industry have the potential to optimize business operations and change industry standards. Commercial real estate (CRE) technology is rapidly evolving as professionals focus on revolutionizing the current commercial real estate market. Here are 13 examples of a newer CRE technology real estate professionals should embrace:

1. Social Media Platforms

Residential is so far ahead of commercial in using social media for thought leadership, awareness and transactions. The best thing someone in commercial real estate can do right now is get educated on using social media platforms for their business. 

2. Data Analytical Tools

Technologies that significantly cut down on time spent in evaluating a deal and a submarket at a macro and micro level are emerging right now. Aggregated demographic trends and patterns allow sophisticated investors to make decisions quickly and zoom in on deals that fit their criteria.

3. TRIMM Software

TRIMM (turns, renovations, inspections and maintenance management) software for maintenance and facilities management is increasingly popular. The demands today are greater than ever before. Thousands of activities, people and third-party vendors must be highly orchestrated to deliver on the promise of frictionless operations and a great resident experience.

4. Smart Locks And Access Control

Real estate is the original subscription service. Managing the subscription of who can come and go from the four walls and a roof you manage is the fundamental job of a lock.

5. Process Management Tools 

Process management tools are increasingly necessary as they empower and enhance client service and communication. Look for tools that help your commercial brokers be more efficient, track information better, provide clients with better operational data and get more done. This is also useful from a risk-mitigation standpoint, as it ensures that processes and procedures are followed and documented.

6. Apps Equipped With Machine-Learning Algorithms

Emerging real estate apps that use machine-learning algorithms are valuable resources in helping investors discern potential acquisitions. The algorithm is able to determine property specifics, location preferences and return thresholds. These efficiencies allow investors to simplify and expedite the process of acquiring real estate.

7. Virtual Tours

Unedited video tours should become an expected part of a property listing. Consumers should not have to rely on enhanced pictures taken from special angles and cameras to get to know the reality of how the property looks.

8. Blockchain Technologies

Blockchain and decentralized finance are already here and will most likely upend traditional industries involved in CRE including brokerage, title, financing, property data, etc. While people may not like change and are concerned about the role they’ll play with newer technologies, DeFi will not remove the need for humans. If anything, it will allow us to focus more on the buyers and their needs. Lean into it.

9. Green Financing Databases

CRE owners will benefit from green financing databases like EnerYields, which will allow them to identify and apply for government incentives and low-cost financing to carry out green upgrades. Most CRE owners aren’t even aware of the over $1 billion in such financing that is available to them.

10. Automated Data Entry

The CRE industry would benefit tremendously from embracing technology that can make manual data entry more efficient. Using technology to streamline the logging, organization and upkeep of data through machine learning platforms, artificial intelligence or concierge services can empower CRE professionals with a database of market intelligence that is wholly unique, proprietary and actionable.

11. Innovation In Other Industries

CRE professionals need to look at other industries as benchmarks. Other industries have long made the shift to asking individuals what type of experience they are looking to have. Personalization for consumers with things like varying tour options versus just in-person options is key, yet CRE professionals still fit clients into specific ways of doing things because that’s how it’s always been done.

12. 3D Technology

While the residential sector is adopting different technology, CRE has yet to catch up. 3D tours (such as Matterport) are one of the most popular tools used in RE today. Implementing this technology to the client sector would allow consumers to move faster on decisions for CRE purchases

13. Keyless Entry And Video Monitoring

One of the key elements is to analyze current need. One of the big needs is automation and data analytics. As our needs in CRE shift, we can use this to help guide us to the next level and take appropriate steps. Automation has currently been very helpful and widely accepted like keyless entry, thermostat control, video monitoring, etc. Automation may also shift the future of ALF.

Portions of this article originally appeared on the Forbes website.

The Sundance Company                                                                
Established in 1976, The Sundance Company has the experience to help you with your commercial real estate needs throughout the Boise Valley. If your requirements include property management, leasing, real estate development, project planning, construction or space planning then look to us. The Sundance Company has more than 1.6 million square feet of office and industrial space available in prime locations in the Boise metropolitan area. More information is available at www.sundanceco.com or 208.322.7300.

Junk Foods From Around the World

About The Sundance Company
Established in 1976, The Sundance Company has the experience to help you with your commercial real estate needs throughout the Boise Valley. If your requirements include property management, leasing, real estate development, project planning, construction or space planning then look to us. The Sundance Company has more than 1.6 million square feet of office and industrial space available in prime locations in the Boise metropolitan area. More information is available at www.sundanceco.com or 208.322.7300.

Survey Shows Why People Want to Return to the Office

Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

For many employees who worked from home during the pandemic, returning to the office is not about sitting at their desk.

It’s about the interpersonal contact with colleagues that can lead to new ideas and insights—things not likely to happen in a video conference.

As vaccinations increase, coronavirus restrictions lift, and more people return to the office, a new LinkedIn survey shows that a majority of employees are looking forward to engaging with their co-workers.

The survey of more than 4,300 people was conducted from May 22 to June 4 as COVID restrictions were slowly rolling back.

Productivity Impact

Only 26% of people fully working remotely for the past year expect a productivity impact from a return to the workplace, the survey shows.

But 51% who worked partially from home and in the office for the last year say a full-time return to the office will help them do more focused work, while 65% of those who never left the workplace are optimistic about everyone returning, the survey shows.

CBIA president and CEO Chris DiPentima says Connecticut employers are eager to get their staff back in the office because they know better things happen when people are in the same space.

“Overall, human beings crave interpersonal relationships and the ability to have those relationships occur in person drives and strengthens social bonds that are critical in order to have a high-functioning team,” he said.

“The collaboration that occurs in person is more natural because you can voice thoughts, ideas, and opinions very easily versus the clumsiness of talking over each other during a video conference or waiting to speak, only to have the meeting leader turn to another topic.”

Sometimes, he said, this positive body language and expression can drive higher levels of collaboration.

Innovation and Relationships

Baby boomers (born between 1946 and 1964) are most upbeat about having everyone in the same room for a meeting, while millennials (born between 1981 and 1996) are most eager to enjoy workplace perks and see the return to work as valuable in advancing their careers, according to the survey.

Among other findings are that 25% of respondents say dressing for work is a positive, but 32% would prefer to remain in loungewear.

What’s missing for many remote workers is what’s known as the workplace value proposition—the organizational culture and benefits, interacting with colleagues on site—the “why we come to the workplace.”

“Higher levels of collaboration drive higher levels of innovation as the collective team feeds off of ideas and energy, which results in better problem solving and solutions,” DiPentima said.

“And this happens beyond the conference room as collaboration physically takes place in all areas of the office space, including at the water cooler, and other areas where meetings are not planned but where natural interactions occur.”

According to the Society for Human Resource Management, employers want their staff back in the office because they believe productivity increases for some roles, and it allows executives and managers to better assess performance.

SHRM also notes that interacting in person helps employees foster relationships with co-workers, build trust, collaborate more effectively, and advance within the organization, which drives worker productivity and morale.

Portions of this article originally appeared on the CBIA website.

The Sundance Company                                                                
Established in 1976, The Sundance Company has the experience to help you with your commercial real estate needs throughout the Boise Valley. If your requirements include property management, leasing, real estate development, project planning, construction or space planning then look to us. The Sundance Company has more than 1.6 million square feet of office and industrial space available in prime locations in the Boise metropolitan area. More information is available at www.sundanceco.com or 208.322.7300.

A Penny For Your Thoughts

The Sundance Company                                                                
Established in 1976, The Sundance Company has the experience to help you with your commercial real estate needs throughout the Boise Valley. If your requirements include property management, leasing, real estate development, project planning, construction or space planning then look to us. The Sundance Company has more than 1.6 million square feet of office and industrial space available in prime locations in the Boise metropolitan area. More information is available at www.sundanceco.com or 208.322.7300.

Wellness Tips While Working at Your Desk

Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

For many people, much of the workday takes place in front of the computer. In fact, 81% of office workers spend between four and nine hours a day sitting at their desks. This adds up to 67 sedentary days annually, according to a survey released by office equipment firm Fellowes. Unfortunately, sitting for too long can increase your risk of chronic health problems like heart disease, diabetes, and some cancers. Whether you’re making a return to the office or continuing to work from home, now is a great time to assess your workspace and put any damaging habits you formed during the pandemic in check.

Perfect Your Posture

Good posture is about much more than just sitting up straight. The term actually refers to the way you hold your body while you sit, stand, or lie down. However, anyone who has ever worked in an office is well aware that it’s the way we sit that tends to create problems.

Keeping your feet flat and positioning your hips slightly above the knees will support the spine and the rest of the upper body, including your head. As a result, your joints are protected as you type, answer the phone, or perform other tasks at your desk. Practicing good posture at your desk is also an important component of body language, since it can impact your confidence and shape how you are perceived by others.

Setup for Success

It can be tempting to slump over in your favorite comfy chair, especially if you’re working from home. However, it’s doing you no favors when it comes to helping your back health, and the same goes for choosing a stylish chair that doesn’t provide a suitable level of support. Like many things, chairs and desks are not one-size-fits-all; the ideal seat depth and width vary by person, and the height of your desk should allow your arms and wrists to sit in the correct position, forming a right angle. Some people find footrests, seat cushions, and monitor stands to be tremendously helpful when customizing their setups to best fit their bodies. Clearly, employees see high-quality setups as an indicator that their employer is willing to invest in them. The same Fellowes study previously mentioned found that 85% of those surveyed said providing better ergonomic equipment would help show their employer cared.

Eyes on the Prize

It’s not just your back that needs to be cared for while you work. Spending so much time at your computer can be harmful to your eyes for a variety of reasons. Excessive blue light waves can cause vision problems and disrupt sleep and sitting too close to the computer screen can strain the eyes. Make sure you’re sitting at least 20 inches away from the computer screen, and practice the 20-20-20 rule, where you make sure to look 20 feet away for at least 20 seconds every 20 minutes to reduce eye strain. Also, blue light blocking glasses have special lenses that lower your exposure to harm. There are many different options to choose from, ranging from inexpensive picks to stylish designer brands.

Keep it Moving

It’s no secret that sitting all day long at a desk without taking any breaks can be hazardous to your health. In fact, the CDC states that taking a break to stand frequently throughout the day can have significant benefits. Many people choose accessories like sit-to-stand desks, elevated monitor stands, and under-desk pedal exercisers that encourage small habits to improve circulation throughout the workday. That said, it’s not mandatory that you purchase fancy equipment to stay healthy at your desk. There are many stretches you can do without breaking a sweat that help to prevent aches and pains and stay limber. Take a look at short videos like this one that offer easy movements you can do while sitting in your chair or during a quick break. If desk yoga isn’t your thing, simply take a break and go for a walk around the block. With the summer weather ahead, a little extra sunshine and fresh air can make a serious difference.

Often, we think of employee wellness as being group fitness classes or healthy snacks in the break room. But with so much of our day spent at a desk, even tiny changes you implement into your regimen go a long way when it comes to positively affecting happiness and health in the long run.


Portions of this article originally appeared on the CRESA website.

The Sundance Company                                                                
Established in 1976, The Sundance Company has the experience to help you with your commercial real estate needs throughout the Boise Valley. If your requirements include property management, leasing, real estate development, project planning, construction or space planning then look to us. The Sundance Company has more than 1.6 million square feet of office and industrial space available in prime locations in the Boise metropolitan area. More information is available at www.sundanceco.com or 208.322.7300.

Growing Your Business with Video Marketing

The Sundance Company                                                                
Established in 1976, The Sundance Company has the experience to help you with your commercial real estate needs throughout the Boise Valley. If your requirements include property management, leasing, real estate development, project planning, construction or space planning then look to us. The Sundance Company has more than 1.6 million square feet of office and industrial space available in prime locations in the Boise metropolitan area. More information is available at www.sundanceco.com or 208.322.7300.

How Data is Driving Real Estate

Photo by fauxels on Pexels.com

In the past, when meeting with current or prospective clients, we did not often rely on data as a primary talking point. After all, these conversations instead solely revolved around the proposed execution of transactions, the vast reach of the firm, or market-specific strategies. But while those topics are undoubtedly important and will continue to remain key points of emphasis, in recent years we’ve seen the shift of how data tends to peek its nerdy little head into the conversation as well. Real estate portfolios are rich in data, and we are beginning to lean on this information to formulate strategic decisions more than ever.

Data in the Present Day

We need to be smarter about understanding the different types of data we have access to and what it can tell us. Publicly available data sources such as the Bureau of Labor Statistics and Census Bureau can help us gain a better understanding around labor and population trends. We can also tap into internal resources like integrated workplace management systems, HR software, badge readers and employee surveys, and draw insights into who sits where, for how long and what their expectation is for returning to the office. Is your space big enough? Is it too big? Is the layout working for your employees? Are your employees traveling too far to the office? What does the headcount growth forecast look like and how will it affect my office requirements? What would a hybrid work model look like? These are questions we can answer using quality resources that produce reliable data.

Lease-related data like critical dates and upcoming lease expirations can help us have proactive discussions with our clients about their future and how using occupancy and HR data can help fortify those decisions. Occupancy data driven through workplace software and badge readers can tell the story of attendance trends and popular seating or collaboration areas. From an employee growth standpoint, HR data can assist our planning needs and equip us with data points regarding where our employees are commuting from and if the location is working for the team and key stakeholders. As we plan to transition back into the office post-COVID, extracting and analyzing the right data from internal and external resources will be extremely important in building the right strategies to retain current employees and attract new talent.

We Have the Data, Now What?

Collecting data is crucial, but continuing to track, interpret and analyze that data is just as significant. By collecting data frequently, findings become more compelling, and help to determine trends that will indicate what the future holds. It is a practice in being more proactive and educated. Some companies rely on complex modeling and trend analysis to get a better understanding of “What’s happening today?” and “What does the future hold?”. Others go a little further and leverage business intelligence technologies and geospatial platforms to comprehend their real estate landscape at both macro and micro levels. These models and types of software enable the data to tell the story of where we are and how we can be successful going forward, particularly regarding the return to office.

Portions of this article originally appeared on the CRESA website.

The Sundance Company                                                                
Established in 1976, The Sundance Company has the experience to help you with your commercial real estate needs throughout the Boise Valley. If your requirements include property management, leasing, real estate development, project planning, construction or space planning then look to us. The Sundance Company has more than 1.6 million square feet of office and industrial space available in prime locations in the Boise metropolitan area. More information is available at www.sundanceco.com or 208.322.7300.