After over 15 years as a brick and mortar business, it was time for a fresh start. The way we engage with our clients and each other has changed. We now heavily rely on technology, while also encouraging in-person interactions. Our teams often meet clients at their preferred locations, such as restaurants or networking events, but meetings at our office have become a thing of the past.

We knew that moving would be a significant undertaking, especially as we transitioned to a remote business model, a new frontier for us and our industry. Whether it’s an office or residential move, relocating a business that so many rely on is a formidable challenge. As experts in real estate property management, we excel in finding solutions that support both our clients and team members.

The intricacies of packing and moving weren’t our top priority, given our busy days focused on finding solutions for our clients. However, this endeavor demanded continuous planning, flexibility, and the determination to overcome unexpected obstacles.

Here are some valuable lessons we learned from our move:

1: The Overwhelming Amount of Stuff We Forgot We Had
In our pursuit of embracing a remote work future, we decided to eliminate paper (almost entirely) from our processes and procedures. This involved extensive scanning and shredding, leading to moments of reflection like, “Why did we save 250 postcards from the 2009 marketing campaign?” or “Does Smart really need this many wigs?” We take pride in reducing our paper load by over 90%. As for costumes and wigs, we had a good laugh reminiscing about the trade shows we wore them to, making tough decisions like keeping the Flintstones Wilma wig but parting ways with the Katy Perry blue California dreaming wig. (Ok maybe that one got thrown back in.)

2: Everyone Experiences Change Differently
Not everyone responds to major changes like moving or going remote in the same way. Some team members embraced the changes immediately, while others needed more time and answers to feel comfortable. We realized early on that clear communication was vital. Over-communicating the steps of the move and discussing the future direction helped prevent chaos. We initiated conversations with our team early to ensure no one was caught off guard. Although business remained a priority, we acknowledged that the move was disruptive and kept our team well-informed about the timeline and logistics, despite the evolving information.

3. The Importance of Logistics Strategy
One recurring question was where to store supplies we still needed and how to turn this storage challenge into a solution. This question became the most frequent one, and our solution involved renting a small storage unit near my residence in Brighton, MI, for the 10% of paper items we were required to keep, along with half of our marketing supplies. We also purchased a small shed for our Staffing Coordinator in Makita’s backyard, containing employee uniforms and the remaining marketing supplies for outreach and job fairs. While we initially searched for a 24-hour storage facility with concierge service, we couldn’t find one near Makita, so the onsite storage shed offered convenience.

The change has been rewarding, and we are excited to see the new opportunities it will bring to Smart!

I am delighted to share that our new mailing address, effective October 1st, 2023, is:

100 Orndorf Dr
Brighton, MI 48116

For more of the story, check out our press release here:

Check out our story on what led to going Remote here: