“If you’ve going to manage a property, why not follow the comprehensive guidelines available in the TOBY judging criteria? It’s a win for your team — whether you win a TOBY or not!” Alana Guinard, Foundry Commercial, Real Estate Manager
The Foundry Commercial property management team, led by Alana Guinard, won the BOMA Orlando TOBY Award in the 100,000 – 249,000 sq. ft. category. A1 Orange asked Alana to share Foundry’s TOBY preparation experience to encourage other property managers to enter the TOBY Awards in the future.
1. Why did you decide to enter the 2018 TOBY Awards?
When the engineers and I came together in 2017 as a new team at the Gateway Center, there were many things that we wanted to achieve operationally. We used the 2018 TOBY competition to give us focus and a deadline.
2. So you used the TOBY entry criteria as a checklist to organize your “plan of attack” operationally?
Yes! While the property was well maintained, as a new team, we wanted to review and update all policies and procedures in place. From day one at the Gateway Center, we began preparing the property by updating emergency and security procedures, engaging in energy efficient projects and coordinating tenant events – just to name a few. Entering Gateway Center in the TOBY competition challenged each member of the team.
3, What does winning a TOBY Award mean to you and your team?
Winning the TOBY Award was a great achievement for our team and vendors. It highlighted the Gateway Center as a Class A building — with an operations team that follows industry-best practices. Our vendor partners were recognized for their hard work and dedication to quality service.
4. Based on your experiences, would you recommend that other property managers and engineers make the time investment to participate in their local TOBY Awards? If so, why?
The time invested in TOBY preparation is valuable because the judging criteria actually serve as guidelines on what is expected in a well-maintained building. Everything that is done to prepare can only improve the operations of the building. I would highly recommend all property managers to enter their buildings. Even if you do not win, you will benefit greatly from the preparation and feedback from the judges.
5, How are you preparing for the Savannah BOMA Southern Region TOBY Awards Competition in March?
Southern Region is an online written submission. The judges for the Southern Region do not physically tour our building, so it important that we use our words to paint the picture. We are fortunate that BOMA Orlando has several past international winners who have volunteered to mentor us through the process.
Best of luck to Alana and the Gateway Center team as they prepare for the BOMA Southern Region TOBY judging process! A1 Orange is proud to be part of your amazing team.