Up Close with Georgina, Vice President of Brokerage

It’s a tough time in the world right now with a lot of decision makers wondering how to get their employees back to the office.  Georgina – or George, or G, as we often call her – gives us the scoop.

George – Tell us a bit about your background in the commercial brokerage industry.

G: I fell into it by pure happenstance! I moved from Denver to NYC in July 2014 – without a job or many connections/friends in the city. Back in Denver, I was working with at-risk youth and obtained my Master’s Degree in Legal Administration from the University of Denver. My first job in New York was working the counter at NY’s best beer and cheese store – Malt & Mold! 

Needless to say, I was completely green when I entered the real estate industry. My first “real job” in NYC was with Boston Properties, working as an administrative assistant. This was an incredible opportunity for me, and I will always be so thankful for this experience, as it helped open doors for my career. After Boston Properties, I worked at CBRE & JLL, two of the largest brokerage firms globally, where I focused on landlord and tenant advisory. 

I started at Artisan in 2021 and feel so fortunate to be at a startup led by two powerful and inspiring women, surrounded by industry specialists in brokerage, design and build. 

What are you seeing in the market and how do you feel Artisan can be of help to decision makers?

G:  Companies are continuing to figure out their office needs, trying to find the right balance in terms of in the office full-time or a hybrid approach. There’s a range of needs in the market right now, from companies looking to grow, downsize, and/or reconfigure existing spaces. Artisan’s full-service advisory approach helps clients understand not only how much space they need, but also how to reconfigure existing spaces. Companies still need the right office to attract talent and develop a culture that is truly sustainable. So much of the workforce wants to physically be in the office, collaborating and engaging in mentorship opportunities – and that goes for both seasoned office workers and people who are just getting started.

If you’re reading this and you’re interested in meeting with our team, please fill out our quiz and we’ll be in touch soon to discuss your office needs!

Outside of real estate, what are a few things you enjoy? 

G: I am a perpetual tourist in my own city, and I’m constantly exploring new restaurants, museums and getting lost in the beauty of NYC’s diverse offerings. I love to run in Prospect Park (I ran the 2017 and 2021 NYC Marathons!) and getting out of the City to camp, hike and ski. I’ve recently started getting into pottery and just completed my third pottery course at BKLYN Clay – it’s been fun to learn a new hobby! 

Up Close with Katie | Head of Furniture

Finding, designing, and building out office space are equally important and necessary – but it’s the furnishings that pull all of those things together in the end, and can make or break the space. 

Katie – Tell us a bit about your experience in the industry and how you came to work with Artisan.

KL: My background is in interior design with a focus on branded environments. I’ve worked for amazing companies during my career, such as Casper and Herman Miller – helping them create beautiful spaces that best represented their brands. My time at HM in particular really helped build my foundation for great furniture design and a keen knowledge of some of the best workplace products in the industry. After creating spaces and designing custom pieces of all kinds, I wanted to hone in on furniture. Artisan gives me the opportunity to focus on sourcing and curating beautiful furniture, but also building my design skills by creating custom pieces for our clients and sourcing great local fabricators to bring them to life. 

What is your favorite part about procuring furniture?

KL: My favorite part would have to be discovering new designers and brands bringing innovative and unique products to the market – it keeps us at Artisan inspired and excited! It’s the most fun going to showroom visits with clients and seeing their faces light up with excitement to see pieces in real life and test them in person. 

You also help to create custom furniture for certain clients of ours.  How does that differ from choosing ready-made pieces? 

KL: When we design custom pieces for our clients, we have more freedom to create what we want, exactly how we want it. With custom furniture, we always approach it with the lens of solving for the clients needs while ensuring the piece still works with our aesthetic direction. We have more control over the materials, finish, and details so each piece is unique for our clients. 

Want to learn more about how Artisan can create a space that suits your needs? Click here to take our 5 minute quiz and get started today.

Up Close with Tucker | Head of Project Management

How do you describe Project Management?

It’s a complex discipline that requires a broad set of skills. Generally, the PM team helps the client to establish goals for the project, creates and maintains the project budget, and develops and drives the project schedule. 

And the role of the Project Manager?

The PM typically acts as a ‘coach’, responsible for developing a plan and strategy for the project, while the ‘players’ (architects, engineers, designers, and contractors) execute on that vision. Their role often extends to the management of the project team and day-to-day activities. The PM will interact with multiple disciplines throughout the project lifecycle. They must be efficient and forward-thinking in every stage of the project. 

Why do we need it?

It is very often the most overlooked component of a project. Put simply, PMs are responsible for the success of a construction project. The Project Manager is accountable for the outcome of each discipline’s roles and responsibilities. Was the project on time? Was it on budget? Were the goals of quality and workmanship met?

A construction project typically involves dozens of people, all experts in their specific field. A Project Manager is no different. They bring objective skills and technical expertise with the sole purpose of representing the best interests of a project and their client. Tenants are often asked to make decisions without having all the information they need to give an educated answer. A PM makes sure all information is presented in a clear and concise manner (what is the budget impact?, what is the schedule impact?, what is the deadline to make this decision?).

How would you qualify the value of PM?

A PM is often a Tenant’s greatest resource. Their expertise and understanding of both design and construction can save their client time and money. 

Bandwidth – Many Tenants do not have an in-house PM team. Having a PM allows Tenants to focus on their business and reduces the stress and disruption of daily life that a full scale construction project comes with.

Cost Reduction – From the early planning and pre-construction phases through closeout, the PM will offer input on decisions that impact costs, making sure each dollar spent is used efficiently and goes towards meeting the project goals.

Time Reduction – The PM is responsible for establishing, monitoring, and meeting all critical project milestones. They have a bird’s-eye view of the entire project that can help identify how delays in site selection, lease negotiations, design, and procurement may impact completion. 

Give us an idea of your expertise and experience.

I’ve been a Project Manager for over 12 years, working as both a Tenant Representative during my time at Jones Lang LaSalle and as an in-house PM for Owner/Developers at SL Green Realty Corp and WeWork. As a result, I’ve been fortunate to work on commercial office fitouts, building redevelopments, and assets repositioning projects. I’ve managed budgets upwards of $225MM and created schedules for projects spanning nearly two years. My expertise is in commercial interiors (office space), where I’ve spent most of my career. I love partnering with clients in the very early stages of a project to help create a vision, establish project goals, and then bring that vision to life.

Take a glimpse into the future of Project Management, what do you see?

The hybrid model is becoming more and more common, requiring companies to evaluate their real estate portfolio and needs. A Project Manager can be instrumental in that effort by helping companies to understand their needs and plan for a changing future. As companies explore digital options in the Metaverse, they will need PMs just as they do in the physical world. In this role, a PM serves as the point person, coordinating across a multi-functional team inclusive of real estate professionals, designers, programmers, and more. 

Thanks for sharing, Tucker! We look forward to seeing the future of Project Management at Artisan.

Want to learn more about how Artisan creates spaces that suit your needs? Click here to take our 5 minute quiz and get started today.

Officemates | Meet the Artisan Brokerage Team

When in Doubt, Choose Change!

The number of workers quitting their jobs hit record highs in November 2021, with 4.5 million people voluntarily resigning in the US, according to the latest Bureau of Labor Statistics report. The workplace is certainly changing and Artisan is excited to be a part of its next chapter.  Companies are scrambling to figure out how to not only attract talent, but retain and develop it in the wake of the pandemic fueled “Great Resignation”.   The solution according to Artisan’s experienced brokerage team? Flexibility and innovation.

WFH? Hybrid? More space, less space, no space? Help!! 

Don’t worry, Artisan’s experienced brokerage team is advising clients across various industries on their post-pandemic return to the office.  Based on your concerns and current space configuration, they will work with you on the ideal workplace strategy then help you find it and implement it.  What makes Artisan different from other advisors? The brokerage team works in collaboration with its in-house design, furniture and project management teams to transform both physical and virtual office spaces.  Artisan creates environments that employees want to go to and want to be in. The team is confident if companies embrace change, flexibility and innovation we will all be entering the “Great Return” soon.

Meet Artisan Brokerage

Leading Artisan’s brokerage team is Co-Founder and COO, Sarah Pontius. Sarah is a seasoned industry veteran with over 18 years experience of deal structuring and transacting across NYC’s commercial real estate industry. Georgina Cook is VP of Brokerage Services with over 7 years experience at the two largest brokerage firms worldwide and manages the client relationship through the brokerage process, overseeing the market research efforts, negotiations and deal closings. Brokerage Services Associate, Carleigh Bettiol, supports deals and client relationships, internal coordination across the business lines, as well as Artisan’s social media presence. They’re a dynamic group ready to find you the perfect space. Are you ready to work with the Artisan team? Click here to take our 5 minute quiz and get started today.