A Step-by-Step Guide to Your Next Office Renegotiation or Relocation: Part I

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By: Scott Pick, Senior Vice President, Jones Lang LaSalle

Office RelocationAs a lease expiration date approaches, many mark their calendars in dread of the administrative tasks ahead. And although moving is complicated, it’s also a unique opportunity to reinvent your culture, address your space utilization and ensure your strategy is aligned with organizational objectives.

At Jones Lang LaSalle, my business partner, Brian Conroy, and I follow a strategically crafted roadmap to guide our clients through the process. This is the first post in a series; each post will serve as a stop on the way to your destination – success.

Before You Begin: Build a Team of Trusted Experts (Internal and External)

Picture This: Your lease expiration is years (or months) away. You know it’s time to get the decision-making process started. Do you renegotiate and renew? Or, do you begin looking at other properties?  What are the right first steps?

The right move can transform (and invigorate) your business. But, to ensure that your final destination drives long-term organizational success, you must start with the right team to drive strategy and decisions.  So, before you begin, build an internal team of individuals from various business lines.  Once the internal team is organized, identify the right strategic partner to quarterback and drive the process.  An impactful team will include the following personas:

  • Lead decision-maker (often the president or CEO) — Internal
  • Financial officer — Internal
  • Human resources director — Internal
  • Senior administrator — Internal
  • Experienced architect — External
  • Legal counsel (well-versed in real estate) — External
  • Real estate consultant — External

The lead decision-maker within the organization will oversee the process from a holistic perspective. He or she must be decisive and keep the process moving, and must also hold an executive-level position within the company to drive support and communicate the right organizational message. Otherwise, decision-making will be slowed and opportunities could be missed.

Once your team is finalized, draft a projected timeline. Identify milestones that signify progress along the way, such as defining the space needs, initial discussions with landlords, and proposal analysis and due diligence. Things are apt to change, but managing to a timeline that accomplishes the business objectives is critical.

In addition, before getting started, we highly recommend creating an internal communications program to keep all stakeholders aware of, and involved in, the coming change. Even positive change can initiate questions and apprehensions for employees.  Have a communication plan that aligns with the timeline.  The timing of the internal communication is as important as the content and message to the company.

Whatever the method of communication, use the channels that work best for your company. Stakeholders and employees do play an active role. Ultimately, your team of trusted experts will make the decision for your company.  However, a far-reaching communications plan will help all team members feel informed and included in the decision-making process, and can truly drive positive organizational energy.

With a team, timeline and communications plan in place, you are ready to begin the process. Stay tuned for the next post in the Roadmap to Success series­–Set Objectives and Requirements.   

Would you like to discuss your next move? Please contact us at spaces@am.jll.com.

Don’t miss out on the remaining posts in this series.

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