A Simple Tape

A Simple Tape

As teenager, I helped my father build a cabin in North Georgia. I still remember how he loved his Craftsman 6-foot yellow folding rule. I wish I still had one, but unfortunately, I somehow misused them when I was younger and ended up breaking a few. Still, I have great respect for what that simple tool [Read More]

The (Before) Breakfast Club

The (Before) Breakfast Club

There’s a running joke around the office about who has received an email from me early in the mornings, maybe too early at times. I’ve been known to write at 3 or 4 in the morning. I wouldn’t bill myself as an insomniac or a workaholic. I just find my best productivity in the solitude [Read More]

Building Blocks of Problem Solving

Building Blocks of Problem Solving

When I was in Las Vegas a few weeks ago, I took these two pictures on the same day. The first: A bank of slot machines, gold and noise. The second: Wooden building blocks in the corner of my hotel coffee shop, waiting to be taken off the shelf and built into something. Both are [Read More]

4 Rules That Take You Back to the Future

4 Rules That Take You Back to the Future

A while back, when I was working on a project with the CEO of a $2 billion company, his favorite phrase was, “there’s only one opportunity to make a good first impression.” It stuck with me over the years, and I have since boiled the philosophy down to four basic rules that go a long way toward [Read More]

MRED: A Masters in Social Responsiblity

MRED: A Masters in Social Responsiblity

To me, it’s always seemed like a good thing to give back just little of our time–maybe more–toward developing the next generation of professionals in our industry. Plenty of people certainly did the same for me. One way I serve is on the Advisory Council of the Auburn University Master of Real Estate Development program, [Read More]

Trending Now for Open Air Retail

Trending Now for Open Air Retail

Last week I was able to attend ICSC’s Open Air Center (OAC) Summit in Scottsdale. This is my fourth time to attend the annual event, which is closed to 400 attendees running the gamut from landlords to brokers and folks like me. It’s always good discussion of key trends, challenges and the opportunities current to [Read More]

A Layoff Can Be a Kickstarter.

A Layoff Can Be a Kickstarter.

I have never met a strong person with an easy backgroud. Earlier this week I learned that a customer had laid off several members of their construction and real estate department. Losing a position is sometimes like a kick in the stomach and I reached out to the folks who are my business friends, offering to [Read More]

A Circle of Two-Way Streets

A Circle of Two-Way Streets

I have found success in the leverage of our efforts by having solid “two-way street partners.” This is somewhat like loosely connected circles–watching out for each other, touching the perimeter and being able to help each other with opportunities. Sometimes I feel like a high school coach, forwarding my good recruits to my favorite NCAA [Read More]

Manners as a Motivator

Manners as a Motivator

In our industry, I’ve found that many times folks use too much stick and not enough carrot. Let me explain. Because of tight deadlines and performance pressures, resulting in little time, the industry tends to cater to impersonal emails at best, and raised voices at worst. Perhaps we could all practice better manners and carve [Read More]

Listening With Both Ears

Listening With Both Ears

Over the last few weeks, we have been working on the initial stages of a project that will land somewhere between $40 and $70 million, with a 2017 delivery. A really nice, interesting project. Recently when I was meeting with our customer about the project, I asked about two consultants who I thought would be [Read More]