CASE STUDY

Canada’s Biggest Landlord Effectively and Affordably Privatizes Property Management

“One of the best investments of time, when I felt I could least afford it. Very well crafted: interesting, humorous and mind opening, giving us the tools to do an excellent job as a team. It resulted in good concrete actions in a painless manner. Very well presented and outlined.”
Senior Director
Federal Government of Canada

Challenge

The federal government is Canada’s biggest landlord. When it decided to privatize the property management for its real assets, it needed to find a way to minimize disruption to its own operations and to other tenants. Additionally, the situation was complicated by vast numbers of government employees who would be transitioned to the private company that won the bid. Unions were weary, a significant percentage of employees were highly resistant, and tenants were concerned that a new property manager would not know the required idiosyncrasies for smooth operation.

The bureaucracy also saw the situation as an opportunity to standardize the quality of service across the country, as it had previously been highly variable.


Solution

In collaboration with senior leaders from the government, the private sector proponents and various other key stakeholders, Being First clarified the key goals and helped to elevate them into broader, over-arching principles that could be applied across the country for a consistent level of excellence. A series of over 30 workshops was designed and deployed in English and French across Canada that brought together public and private leaders, employees, unions, and tenants. These workshops aimed at bridging the wide gaps that existed, including public-private mindset and behavior differences, union-management strife, and the different expectations between property managers and tenants.

Being First facilitated agreements that spanned the country, and provided practices for the maintenance of productive relationships to deliver on the efficiency targets and service-delivery targets.


Results

  • Cost efficiencies were achieved with tremendous ease and speed
  • Institutional memory and know-how were retained during transtion
  • Agreements on standardized service targets were reached and operationalized with stunning speed and freedom of strife
  • Reporting relationships smoothed
  • Public employees transitioned into the private sector with dramatically reduced resistance
  • Federal government resources were redirected back to core functions
  • Organizational complexities were simplified
  • Developed country-wide plans for ongoing productive relationships to deliver on efficiency targets and service-delivery targets

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