New technology in the workplace should yield improvements with user productivity. Yet after all the work done to deploy that new technology, what we typically see is little productivity gain.

There seem to be two causes: lack of training, and reluctance by users to change their behaviors. And the lack of training makes it even easier for users to resist changing their behavior.

Yes, when the 20- to 30-somethings get a new laptop with Windows 10, Office 2016, Skype for Business, Slack or HipChat, and so on, they respond with, “It’s about time!” But many users are ensconced in older versions of Windows and Office, so they hesitate to learn new versions or disrupt their work to make the shift. That hesitation is exacerbated by the lack of user training that would help ease the transition effort and — often forgotten in training — explain the benefits of making the change.

Too often, all the time, effort, and funding for a migration is spent on the technology. IT stretches itself thin to do the technical setup and migration. IT takes user adoption for granted, almost expecting users to hug IT in appreciation. Instead, faced with tools that don’t work like they used to, users often end up cursing the day the IT staffers were born.

IT has to take a step back here and try to understand the human element of unleashing new tech in its environment. Ask yourself what the migration’s goal is for users. If for users the result is to just keep doing their jobs as they did, but with changed or new new tools, all that new tech will be a waste to them.

When users don’t meaningfully benefit, the back-end benefits alone have to justify the cost to both IT and users of the change — and it’s rare that companies acknowledge that’s what’s happening. If that reality is what’s common at your company, it’s time to do something different.

Tactically, there are ways to ease users’ cost adoption and even encourage adoption when the user benefits are not clear or dramatic.

For example, you might stagger the rollouts so the disruption is spread out. Rolling out a series of smaller changes takes more time, but it also lets users get more comfortable with the changes, reducing the disruption to their work. It might even let some users get deep into new capabilities and share their excitement with colleagues, who won’t be so overwhelmed with changes that they can’t focus on the benefits.

Another technique is to sell the changes before they occur. Begin an email campaign before the rollout that talks up a few great new features coming to users. Explain how this will make their lives easier, such as how it might improve their communication and collaboration capabilities. Perhaps include a video or two to whet their appetite.

And, of course, you need to provide training, both before and after the rollout. (I’m a big fan of choose-your-own-adventure, task-based online video training.) Even if users don’t take the training, they at least they know you care about them.

Actions like these are what make the difference between a hug and a curse.

IT needs to change its mindset so that a win doesn’t mean simply a successful technical deployment but instead means a successful user deployment. After all, users are the ones using the technology you’re rolling out, so if it’s not working well for them, what’s the point?

Credit: Info World – June 22



Written by John Charles Robbins on June 21, 2016

In the shadow of I-95, where Brickell meets East Little Havana, a Chilean developer plans a unique mixed-use project to be called Megacenter Brickell.

The city’s Urban Development Review Board recommended its approval June 15.

The project is to include two buildings at 420 SW Seventh St. and 427 SW Eighth St.

A planned 12-story structure would include nearly 75,000 square feet of mini-storage space wrapped in changeable art, four levels of office space (about 6,670 square feet), rooftop terrace, street level retail uses and parking for about 111 vehicles.

The other building is eight stories with ninth floor rooftop amenities, about 57 residential units and ground-level retail space.

All told, the project would be home to about 10,000 square feet of retail.

The residential units are described as multi-family, workforce rental units and the building faces Calle Ocho or Eighth Street.

Attorney Carlos R. Lago with Greenberg Traurig LLP spoke on behalf of the Megacenter developers, along with architect Reinaldo Borges of Borges + Associates Architects.

Mr. Lago said the project will activate an underused one-acre site “uniquely positioned” at the convergence of three major streets, Southwest Seventh and Eighth streets and Southwest Fourth Avenue.

The retail, storage and office uses will face Seventh Street, while the residential building will front Eighth, he said.

Adding color and dimension, large panels of artwork will cover the lower floor façade of the 12-story building.

While the artwork will be replaced periodically on the building’s main facades, it will celebrate the evolution of Miami’s art scene, according to Mr. Borges.

The art shown in conceptual images represents the work of several artists, while the main image being shown is the work of ABSTRACT, who operates out of Miami and works internationally.

No official commitment has been made with any artist but Mr. Borges said, “Megacenter U.S. will be working closely with select artists to make this a very special and artful building that celebrates the art culture that Miami is nurturing.”

Mr. Borges described the art walls as temporary, saying the artwork would be rotated.

They plan to “curate the best artwork for this great location,” he said.

The developer is requesting nearly a dozen waivers to the Miami 21 zoning code, including allowing a 30% reduction in required parking, a 10% reduction in setbacks above the eighth floor, increasing lot coverage from 80% to 84.2%, allowing vehicle entry off a primary frontage and more.

The 12-story building is to have about 80 basement parking spaces, of the 111 planned, with the rest above the second level.

Mr. Borges said there will be six levels of storage and four levels of offices.

Board member Fidel Perez said the very important site at an exit off I-95 and the entry to Brickell sees a lot of traffic.

With so many uses, Mr. Perez said, “I see conflict between the uses.” He mentioned the challenges of in and out traffic due to the storage units.

Mr. Borges said some storage units would be used by retail tenants to store specialty merchandise, while office tenants are expected to us other storage units.

As for the art walls or panels, Mr. Perez said, “The word ‘temporary’ bothers me.”

He added, “Will they be up today but gone tomorrow?” Mr. Perez suggested a covenant from the developer promising to maintain the large panels.

Mr. Borges said the changeable art would be switched out much the way a gallery works.

“It’s art for the life of the building. That is the intention,” he said.

Mr. Perez said he felt the design left blank walls on the east and south, on the southern residential building next to an existing gas station. He suggested different façades with art or glazing.

“I do think those walls need help,” said Mr. Perez.

Mr. Borges said the designers worked a long time to develop the planned façades on that building, running through numerous options.

“This is a tenth variation,” he said. They didn’t want to overwhelm the main façade of the project, he said.

Board member Robin Bosco said he liked the project, calling it nice and exciting, but questioned the need for so many waivers.

Mr. Borges said it is an urban infill site with challenges and he felt they have “managed the complexities” of the property as best as possible.

Board member Neil Hall said he was a bit surprised by the project. Holding up the thick packet of drawings and renderings, he said this is the first time he can remember seeing finished plans brought to the board.

Mr. Hall said it put pressure on the board to approve the project, yet the developer was asking for a host of waivers.

“I would have liked to have seen this earlier,” said Mr. Hall.

Mr. Hall went on to say he was puzzled by mixing storage with an office complex, that it seemed to be a contradictory marriage. “I see problems with it.”

He also noted the site is at “a very important corner.”

Mr. Borges said no disrespect was meant, and that the architects have been working on the project with city staff for 10 months. He said the city’s planning staff is so busy they almost had to beg to be assigned to work with one of the city officials on the project.

As for the many mixed uses, Mr. Borges said they like the hybrid plan, calling it unique and unprecedented.

Mr. Bosco and board member Anthony Tzamtzis agreed with Mr. Hall about the concerns raised by bringing an entirely finished project to the review board. Mr. Bosco suggested all plans come to the board for initial review, long before nearing the final stage of drawings.

Mr. Tzamtzis said, “It puts this board in a very difficult position – the project is fully developed. Any comment we have will impact you a lot.”

Mr. Tzamtzis even suggested the board abstain from a vote and leave it to the planning department. But an assistant city attorney advised that the board could not abstain.

A motion was made to recommend approval as presented, which passed 3-1. Mr. Perez voted no.

In a statement released after the meeting, Mr. Borges said, “The Megacenter project is vital in that it represents the future of the surrounding neighborhood with a visionary approach to the integration of art which welcomes you from the I-95 off ramp into the emerging mixed-use, world-class Brickell neighborhood.”

Developer Megacenter U.S. was founded in 2012 in partnership with Chilean-based Red Megacentro to develop its business model in the US, under the guidance of developers Patricio Ureta and Pablo Wichmann. The company offers office, warehouse and self-storage space in Chile, Peru and Miami.

Credit: Miami Today – June 21



Spanning an area of only 1.084 square miles with a population growing at an exponential rate, Brickell, Miami is one of the densest and fastest-growing neighborhoods in the US. Many call it the “Soho of the South” due to the city’s high rise buildings and quick access to nearby stores, retailers, and restaurants much like New York City. It’s no surprise that Brickell Link, Miami’s premier executive suite center located at 600 Brickell is expand-ing by leasing an additional 10,000 square feet.

What do you offer your tenants?

Tenants have access to a host of amenities such as a top-of-the-line fitness center, multiple conference rooms, garage and valet parking, exclusive use of their complimentary neighborhood shuttle, recycling program, document shredding, high-speed Internet and security, private meeting rooms, kitchen and lounge area offering gourmet beverages, bi-lingual receptionist and on site management.

We recognize that not every business professional traveling to Miami needs an office. Therefore, we continue to have a small number of hoteling desks for those who need a place to hold meetings, prepare that last minute presentation or a professional place to call their office when they are in town.

Andrea Salazar’s expertise in real estate spans over seven years, and you can read her blog on theLINK at to find the latest forecast on the market, Brickell trends, construction, news and events around town.

What type of business professional do you target and how much is an office space?

Our offices start at $1,200 monthly. We target business professionals who are ready to take their enterprise to the next level. At Brickell Link,

our clients tend to be established business men and women who want a single person office, have formed a new company or need a presence in Miami to grow their Latin America or their American market share. By choosing to office at Brickell Link, they join the elite and exclusive tenant roster of 600 Brickell.



Miami waterfront skyline at night across Biscayne Bay from the Rickenbacker Causeway

Brickell is deemed the “Soho of the South” due to the city’s high rise buildings and quick access to nearby stores, retailers, restaurants. Most are all within close walking proximity from building to building, much like that of the Soho area in New York City. One resident from the condo Brickell on the River Laura Weiss Martinez says, “I’m from Manhattan and living here reminds me of all the perks I used to enjoy in the city, like the convenience of a café on the first floor of my building. Now I have sunny weather year round and more closet space after I threw away my winter coats.”

According to the Miami Downtown Development Authority (DDA), during the 15 month period from Census Day, April 1, 2010, through the mid-point of 2011 it is estimated that the downtown area gained approximately 3,300 resident households representing a corresponding increase of nearly 6,000 people. The downtown area has become a genuine “live-work” environment attracting a diverse population including an increasing proportion of young working professionals.

Miami’s position as an international gateway and hub of international trade and business attracts large numbers of foreign national visitors, investors and part-time residents, particularly to downtown. The high percentage of foreign national buyers and corresponding high percentage of ‘all cash’ condominium purchases evidenced in the downtown market area during the past several years indicate high net worth individuals are investing in and taking residences downtown. The extensive development of high quality new housing product, recently available at reasonably affordable rental rates and sales prices, have been key factors driving the average annual increase of 2,600 residents and upwards of 1,600 households per year during the past decade.

Increasing employment opportunities in and around downtown Miami will continue to drive
population growth. With clusters in finance, bio-sciences and technology established in downtown Miami, private and institutional entities are employing professionals at the upper end of the pay scale. These important sectors garner employees from the strong downtown resident workforce.

There is a growing demand for commercial retail, restaurants, entertainment and cultural facilities as well as enhancing the area’s drawing power as a destination for business and tourism. The prospect of new private development, from residential to office and mixed-use projects, planned for construction in the next year or two is remarkable testimony to the attractiveness of downtown Miami. Major public infrastructure projects, including museums and parks, roadway beautification and a pedestrian and bike friendly focus will continue to make downtown Miami a desirable place for new residents. The vibrancy of the area is unheralded considering the general state of the US economic recovery. It’s no wonder we are seeing trends of more and more businesses calling Miami their home.

(Information approved and sourced from Miami Downtown Development Authority, Goodkin Consulting, and the U.S. Decennial Census and ESRI).

Source: Goodkin Consulting – May 2016



LEED, or Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, is changing the way we think about how buildings and communities are planned, constructed, maintained and operated. Leaders around the world have made LEED the most widely used third-party verification for green buildings, with around 1.85 million square feet being certified daily.

LEED works for all buildings—from homes to corporate headquarters—at all phases of development. Projects pursuing LEED certification earn points across several areas that address sustainability issues. Based on the number of points achieved, a project then receives one of four LEED rating levels: Certified, Silver, Gold and Platinum.

LEED-certified buildings are resource efficient. They use less water and energy and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. As an added bonus, they save money.

All buildings in. LEED is flexible enough to apply to all project types.

LEED was developed to address all buildings everywhere, regardless of where they are in their life cycle. From hospitals to data centers, from historical buildings to those still in the design phase, there is a LEED for every building.

LEED is pushing the green building industry further.

The LEED certification process is designed to inspire project teams to seek innovative solutions that are better for our environment and better for our communities.

Here’s how to get started.

  • Select a rating system for your project, and learn basic program requirement
  • Review our series of LEED certification guides
  • Decide which credits your project should pursue
  • Equip your project with the right tools



Pharrell Williams must be happy – the producer and singer songwriter sold his Brickell penthouse for $9.25 million.

After being on and off the market since 2012, Williams finally sold the two-story unit at the Bristol, at 2127 Brickell Avenue. His former penthouse, complete with a Venetian plaster spiral staircase that leads up to a translucent dome, has five bedrooms, six and a half bathrooms, seven parking spaces, a rooftop terrace with a pool and summer kitchen, and a home theater, according to the listing.

Dora Puig of Luxe Living Realty represented Williams, according to the Wall Street Journal. Julian Johnston of Calibre International Realty represented the buyer, a businessman from New Jersey. Williams first listed the 9,000-square-foot unit in 2012 for $16.8 million, then dropped the price to $10.9 million the following year. Jill Hertzberg of Coldwell Banker’s the Jills team previously had the listing. Records show “The Voice” judge paid $12.525 million for the unit, which previously belonged to developer Ugo Colombo, in 2007.

Colombo developed the 146-unit building in 1993. Williams even sued the developer over leaks in his penthouse in 2009, taking a $525,000 settlement from the condo association.
In addition to its Pininfarina-designed kitchen, Italian travertine floors and teak hardwood floors, Williams decorated the penthouse with his pop art collection, Puig told the Wall Street Journal. She said he relisted the unit because his primary home is in Los Angeles.– Katherine Kallergis.

Source : The Real Deal South Florida Real Estate News  – June 20.