It's been nearly a week since our conversation between Parkway's Chief Operations Officer, Mike Fransen and our Chief Product Officer, Geoff Lewis. The fireside chat-style webinar, Managing Change through Adaptability, was full of great information and learnings about Parkway, Honest Buildings, and the future of CRE.
Who is Mike Fransen?
A category 4 hurricane. Taking the company private. Adopting new technology. Mike Fransen builds value as Chief Operating Officer of Parkway, Inc. He led this thriving organization through all manner of turbulence, navigating major planned and unplanned shifts in Houston’s vibrant commercial real estate market.
In the 12 years since joining, Fransen led Parkway’s reinvention from publicly-traded to privately-held entity, including the repositioning of its portfolio of properties into the one of the largest urban, high-rise class A holdings in the region.
Fransen shared a fascinating narrative regarding the process of re-engineering Parkway’s operations, including during a downturn in the local economy, and some of the rationale for investing in Honest Buildings as a partner in their business operations, and how that relationship has grown.
What Parkway Hoped For; What They Discovered
Fransen told Lewis about how the partnership between Honest Buildings and Parkway came to be, which began as a search for the right resource to support their repositioning of several properties. They’d dabbled in technology, mostly as a tactical tool to make operations more efficient, aimed at making better use of the team’s time. There were looking for someone to “help us out,” initially. Enter Honest Buildings.
Originally, Parkway shortlisted Honest Buildings’ platform for project management for its capacity to save them time, given the scale of their holdings. What they discovered was Honest Buildings’ ability to support Parkway in reshaping not only their operations but also their corporate culture through organizational adoption, offering a high degree of transparency and full visibility across teams and business units. Fransen reflected on the beginning of the relationship with Honest Buildings and thinking, “I still remember, after one of our early meetings, going, "I can't believe this hasn't been out there yet. This is so logical. I love solutions that meet a need."
What Parkway Learned
In organizations where spreadsheets are the primary tool for project management cost tracking and analysis, data, trends, and institutional knowledge may be isolated or unintentionally obscured from participants who could offer insight or recommendations. Fransen and his team experienced an elimination of the silos that minimize shared learning and continuous improvement. Honest Buildings has become more than a “bolt-on” to their workflow, growing into a fully integrated resource.
Want to hear more of the story? Listen to the full recording