As owners of commercial real estate seek to preserve the long-term viability of their asset, they often turn to their property management team for assistance. Colliers Real Estate Management Services (REMS) is full of advisors who create solutions out of the challenges our clients face.
This year we launched the REMS Recognition Awards, where, among other areas of excellence, we recognized team members who successfully model an advisory mindset for the benefit of our clients and stakeholders. Brian Nann, Alan Yamamoto, Harry Choi, and Maricel Dorillo are among our winners. We asked each of them what being advisor means to them.
“To be an effective advisor, you have to have the courage to be curious,” explains Brian Nann, General Manager, Vancouver. “I ask a lot of questions. Asking pointed questions helps me understand the needs of our clients and often leads to solutions we may never have considered.”
“Brian calls it ‘asking questions,’ I call it ‘getting under someone’s skin,” says Alan Yamamoto, Property Manager, Vancouver, while laughing. “But in all seriousness, when you ask insightful questions, you get to know the unique needs of your client. By understanding these needs, I’ve been able to customize our service offering accordingly. When a client of mine needed to hire a contractor who was outside our vetted list of vendors, my understanding of the challenges they faced outside the central business district allowed me to connect them with the right person.”
As an advisor, you have to be willing to question the status quo. When Harry Choi, Senior Operation Technician, Montreal, was given an external quote that said corrective measures to resolve HVAC discomfort could be as high as $100,000, he brainstormed alternative options. Harry successfully advised the client that by recycling existing equipment and reprogramming the building automation system, the cost could be significantly reduced. With Harry’s advising, the corrective measures were 20% of the original quote.
How do you grow as an advisor?
“Being comfortable in unchartered territory,” says Maricel Dorillo, Controller, Toronto. An accounting service agreement was signed requiring that the financial statements for a U.S.-based client’s Canadian asset be reported in USD. It was a first for Maricel and her team, but they ultimately advised the client on the various foreign exchange reporting options available. “An effective advisor draws on their experience,” Maricel added. “You must be willing to try something new to grow as an advisor.”
“Our advisory culture is one of our prime differentiators,” explains Amy Vuong, Vice President, Strategy. I look forward to further recognizing our advisors across Canada and seeing how this mindset continues to drive results for our clients.”