How do you align internal corporate practices with your
vision of sustainability?
We view sustainability in the light of three core business
First: We are never satisfied with the status quo.
We can always do more, but we are pleased with the
progress that has been made. We implement dozens of
low VOC products, provide training programs for our
maintenance staff in sustainable best practices, employ
energy auditing, benchmarking and reduction strategies,
implement smoke-free initiatives at more than 100 of our
locations nationwide and invest billions of dollars in the
construction of LEED certified buildings.
Second: Sustainability is the norm, not the exception.
We believe that sustainably built and operated buildings
are simply a representation of best practices among best-in-class real estate companies. Our commitment fits in
easily with the decades of clear vision and encouragement
to “do the right thing” by Stephen Ross, CEO and founder.
Third: Sustainability builds long-term value. Regardless
of asset class, we believe that buildings that are not
executed with a commitment to sustainability will soon
lose value and ultimately become obsolete. Our clients
expect the effort from us and are willing to choose our
products over others who do not execute to our standard.
You describe finding/retaining employees as “talent
acquisition.” What distinguishing characteristics do you
look for in your employees?
If you will excuse the sports metaphor, we look for
“impact players.” We are not trying to simply fill job
openings; our recruiters and hiring managers understand
that, while experience in a field may be helpful, it is in
no way sufficient. What is more important to us is the
ability to work and thrive in a culture where excellence is
demanded. We look for team members who will excel in
an entrepreneurial, opportunistic environment filled with
enthusiasm, initiative and flexibility.
In return for their dedication, we provide our employees
with lifelong learning through educational reimbursement
programs, participation in dozens of industry groups and
access to an hundreds of courses and learning options
available through an online learning management system.
Describe your hybrid-building concept and some of the
challenges and opportunities involved.
Related was one of the first developers to create hybrid
buildings, which incorporate both luxury rentals and
condominiums in the same building, using shared amenity
spaces. Mixed-use developments allow us to integrate our
diverse program groups into a master development plan—
each module benefiting from the others and adding value
to the whole—exceeding the sum of its parts.
There were some initial concerns that condominium
buyers would be reluctant to purchase in a building with
renters. Once we were able to educate the market on the
demographics of our rental portfolio, buyers were pleased to
invest side-by-side with Related in our hybrid developments.
Due to our financial stability, well-known commitment to
long-term operational and service excellence, and aligned
interest in developing long-term value for the asset, owners
receive a unique value proposition. They also receive more
expansive amenity packages than traditional buildings—at
a more affordable price.
What is the “Expect More at Home®” service platform?
Through the coordinated efforts of our on-site service
delivery teams, we provide an urban luxury experience
to our residents, and our resident surveys indicate that
we succeed at the highest professional standards. Every
facet of our buildings’ execution, amenities and finishes
is exceptionally designed. We also believe in the luxury of
choice, and seek to offer our residents multiple options as
well as the ability to move within their portfolio of options
at any time. Through offering various rent payment
preferences, cable and internet options, paperless leasing
and a suite of personal assistant services, and many
others, Related provides our residents with the best.
We challenge our employees to not simply fulfill—but to
exceed—resident expectations at every interaction. Building
staff and managers attend customer service training
sessions to enhance their ability to respond personally and
effectively to requests, communicate clearly with residents
and other staff members and achieve positive results.
We know that our competitors can build similar
buildings to ours, but they cannot manufacture the
environment created by our exceptional team. n
To earn the Accredited Management Organization (AMO) accreditation from IREM, a company must demonstrate a high level of
performance, experience and financial stability, and have a CPM in an executive position. AMO Firms must meet high ethical standards and
other stringent requirements, proving their value to the industry.