5 ways to appreciate your tenants virtually
Traditionally, building managers organize unique experiences to show appreciation for their tenants. Some might desk-drop small gifts and others host large gatherings such as themed breakfast buffets or BBQs with entertainment and décor. As we continue adjusting to the realities of our new world, these typical tenant appreciation activities are being re-evaluated to ensure that health and safety guidelines are followed and that all tenants – whether they return to the building or continue to work from home – still feel engaged and appreciated.
Why is tenant appreciation important?
Tenant retention is top of mind for building operators. Many are now recognizing that attracting and retaining the best tenants requires more than just desks and space. Tenant appreciation programs are an important part of building long-term tenant loyalty. While a large percentage of tenants are still working from home, this does not mean that opportunities to connect and engage should be forgotten.
Hilo’s Return to Workplace Survey found that 83% of users see themselves working from home more often in the future. This means that building operators must find alternate ways to build strong relationships with tenants and remind them that their building community still exists and is thriving. Yes, the reality is that large events and gatherings are on hold for a while so now is the time to get creative. What do tenants need most right now? What will make them feel valued and important? How can they feel connected to their physical workplace while working from home?
Here are five ways to appreciate your tenants virtually:
1. Health & Wellness Programming
Treat your tenants to online wellness programs such as a yoga class, cooking class or music lesson. These exclusive opportunities can be available on-demand or hosted as a live class during the lunch hour. It is likely that tenants are looking for breaks during their workday and wellness programs are the perfect feel-good activity.
2. EDUCATIONAL WEBINARS
Reach out to some of the key tenants in your building and ask if they would be interested in hosting an educational webinar related to their business, industry or current world events. These sessions can be held online and conclude with a Q & A session. This is a great opportunity to build community as tenants are able to engage directly with each other. As an example, if the accounting firm on the 8th floor is leading the session, the business on the 4th floor who has been in need of some accounting services now knows who they can contact in their own building community.
3. LIVE MUSIC
With concerts and theatre performances on hold, try connecting with a local musician or group to host a virtual concert for your tenants. A musical experience in your own home can be very intimate and comforting during this time of uncertainty. Tenants will feel a part of something exclusive and unique, which are the perfect ingredients for a successful tenant appreciation program.
Who doesn’t love a chance to win? Contests are a great way to spread joy and engage with tenants. They can also be used as a way to collect useful information and data. To enter, ask tenants to answer questions or provide feedback on returning to work. The results might influence decision making at the management level to ensure that new policies or procedures are implemented with an understanding of how tenants are feeling.
A charity raffle is another way to engage with tenants while achieving social good all at the same time. Put together a great prize pack and ask tenants to make a small donation online for each raffle entry. All proceeds can be donated to a local charity. It’s a win-win!
5. GIFT CARDS
This idea supports both tenants and the retailers that make up your building community. Many retailers are struggling right now due to closures during the pandemic. Purchasing and promoting gift cards will not only financially help the retailers, it will also remind tenants that their favourite local spots have reopened for business. In turn, everyone will feel connected, and a part of their building community.
Whether tenants are in the building or working from home, all of these ideas can be effective ways for building operators to connect and engage with them. Retaining and attracting the best tenants requires time, attention and some creative thinking. However, implementing just one or two of the programs outlined above will add value, contribute to long-term tenant loyalty and ultimately, build community.
How are you planning to appreciate your tenants virtually?