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Schultz: brokers roles are changing. (Suburban Markets).

In one of the most profound changes affecting the commercial real estate industry, today's successful brokerage professionals have seen their roles undergo a dramatic transformation. This trend has been in the making for several years, but has really taken shape during the current market cycle. As corporations have had to refocus their business strategy to cope with the changing market, successful brokers have adapted to their clients' needs by adhering to a more consultative approach to their real estate business.

At The Schultz Organization/TCN Worldwide, we've seen the change coming for several years and have embraced it. We view our role as first being a value-added advisor to our clients and secondarily providing the tools necessary to manage an effective real estate transaction. It is only through the understanding of a client's business plan that a broker can devise an appropriate real estate solution.

The new realities of today's highly competitive marketplace mandate that brokers become experts on a myriad of issues including approvals, architecture, construction, planning, development, financing and marketing. The old model of showing space and hoping for a fit is long past. An emphasis on continued training and education within the real estate profession must be maintained in order to advise clients on all areas of importance in the real estate process.

One of the biggest changes that has emerged in our industry is the accessibility of information. All brokers and most tenants now have easy access to rental rates, availabilities and new development projects. With market information no longer being a major competitive edge, brokers have had to refocus their efforts by approaching the business with a consultative perspective.

Here are just a few of the ways the new breed of brokerage professionals are leading the industry's service revolution:

* Strategic planning. Before an effective real estate solution can be devised, a broker must understand their client's business plan. What their growth objectives are, where there labor is coming from, how they can compete more effectively ...all issues that a broker must factor into a space plan.

* Understanding the client's business. Advise clients on what the real estate trends are in their industry and how they can maintain a competitive edge.

* Creative solutions. Whether a company is downsizing or upsizing, a broker must create a real estate solution that meets each client's unique needs. What financing options are available, what incentives are being offered and what the right terms should be are all factors considered by the effective broker.

* More options. One of the most interesting trends today is the integration of office and industrial development into a high tech flex/office space. This option has proven to be an effective solution for a great many companies.
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Title Annotation:real estate industry
Author:Schultz, Jonathan B.
Publication:Real Estate Weekly
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Oct 9, 2002
Previous Article:Wells acquires 58th property. (Suburban Markets).
Next Article:Industry braces for impact of layoffs.

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