As we begin the process of reentry into our offices and slowly getting our properties and tenants reopened (under various phases and restrictions), I wanted to send out a heartfelt THANK YOU to everyone involved in this unprecedented—and ongoing!—journey over the past few months.
I’ve been in the commercial real estate industry for quite some time now. We’ve certainly seen our ups and downs over the years, but I don’t think any of us could have ever seen this coming. The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted businesses, industries and individuals across the spectrum and around the world.
But through the barrage of unknowns and worries over the last few months, I have taken great comfort in knowing that we have a great team in place, who have gone above and beyond to help us weather this storm. As I’ve said before, we can’t choose our team after we go to war, we fight with the team we have—and I’m proud to have this one.
Thank you, Team Stirling, for your hard work and dedication during this extraordinary and defining moment for our company. People from every department, every office pitched in and pulled together to keep us going as best as possible:
- We were able to get everyone working remotely and equipped with the hardware and software needed to be productive and efficient
- Consistent internal and external communication, which is essential in difficult times; the various, (and sometimes, multiple) daily Zoom meetings were a significant contributor to keeping us in touch and on track
- Our property, tenant, legal and lender teams assisting with countless issues, like the barrage of rental abatement and deferment requests on a property by property basis; working with lenders on forbearances; and the building engineers who came to work every single day
- After wading through the confusing and changing guidelines and having to submit applications 6 times, we were successful in getting the much helpful loan via the PPP
- Our Reopen, Reentry & Recovery Task Force for helping to prepare us for reopening our office and retail properties, as well as our Stirling offices
- Our brokerage team for keeping up with tenants, clients and colleagues from your back porches, kitchen tables and peculiar home offices
- Our external work with lobbying efforts on both a local and national level, as well as the various task forces and coalitions on which we have served
- Our Stewardship Committee’s Feed the Frontlines efforts in delivering roughly 360 meals, snacks and notes of appreciation for our healthcare heroes across the Gulf South region
- I also want to thank our clients, vendors, lenders and partners for your patience, support and understanding through this difficult situation, and for continuing to work with us moving forward
Through all this, I’m reminded of how strong our company culture is at Stirling Properties, how committed we are to our team and our work. This will be a defining moment for our company, and it’s going to show our true character in how we move forward. When times are the most challenging and difficult, the resilient people rise to the top. Resilient people reinvent. Resilient people learn and become stronger.
Our company has weathered many storms before, economic instability, oil crashes, Hurricane Katrina. Each time we’re knocked down. But, we evolve, we change and we get better. Because that’s the thing with defining moments, you can either rise to the challenge or you can diminish. With our Stirling Properties’ team, I’m confident we have the capabilities and the right people and talent in place to succeed.
We surely aren’t out of the woods yet with the COVID-19 crises. Recovery of our industry and businesses will be long, uneven and painful. But I believe, even in the dark days ahead, opportunities will present themselves. And, we will overcome more challenges and have even more successes in which to be proud.
I look forward to the time when we can all come together to celebrate our collective accomplishments (at a socially acceptable distance, of course).