Understanding Tenant Coordination in Commercial Real Estate with Rick Goldman

In the intricate world of commercial real estate development, the term “tenant coordination” often sparks debates and misconceptions. But what exactly is tenant coordination, and how does it impact the evolution of retail spaces?

To answer those questions, we sat down with Rick Goldman, the founder of Rethink Projects, a pioneering company reshaping the landscape of tenant coordination. Join us as we dive into the complexities of this often overlooked aspect of commercial real estate development and explore how Rethink Projects is revolutionizing the industry through its innovative approach.

Rick Goldman, Founder of Rethink

What is tenant coordination in real estate?

From lease negotiations to space design, from approvals to grand openings, tenant coordination spans every phase of retail development, ensuring that both landlords and tenants work symbiotically towards success.

According to Rick Goldman, tenant coordination represents “the intersection where landlords and retailers connect in the world of retail development.” He emphasizes, however, that the term itself is somewhat antiquated, originating from the early days of shopping center development. Presently, tenant coordination encompasses much more—it’s about tenant development. From lease negotiations to space design and from approvals to grand openings, tenant coordination spans every phase of retail development.

Why is there a negative perception of Tenant coordination?

Rick acknowledges that negative perceptions surrounding tenant coordination stem from outdated methodologies and misconceptions about winners and losers in leasing agreements: “I think [the]  fundamental problem in the concept is that, there needed to be a winner or a loser in the leasing process.


He believes that true success in commercial real estate comes from aligning the goals of both landlords and tenants, emphasizing collaboration over competition. “And whether it’s retail or anybody in CRE, there really shouldn’t be a winner or a loser. That’s the beautiful thing about real estate is that everybody should win.” By fostering open communication and understanding, tenant coordination becomes tenant development, where everyone benefits from a better store that opens on time and within budget.

What are some key factors that contribute to successful tenant relationships and leasing agreements?

  • Early transparent coordination

Rick emphasizes the importance of understanding tenants’ needs and fostering open dialogue from the outset. By involving development teams early in the leasing process, both landlords and tenants gain valuable insights into space requirements and potential challenges.

  • Open as quickly as possible

Time is of the essence, and swift decision-making can prevent delays and enhance project efficiency, ensuring a smoother tenant coordination process. “Identify the issues, track them and get them resolved quickly and then move to getting a lease executed sooner than later. A day of lost rent is a day you never get back. So the sooner a tenant gets open is the sooner you get to do business and the sooner a landlord can charge rent, everybody wins again, right?”

  • Enhance tenant branding

Rick shares an interesting success story where creative tenant coordination transformed a struggling restaurant space into a budding establishment. By painting the shopping center facade to match the restaurant’s branding, visibility and identity were enhanced , leading to increased foot traffic and a vibrant atmosphere “We went above and beyond and encouraged the tenant to paint the entire corner of the big area black… so I went to the owner and I made a presentation and I said if you don’t like it we can always paint it back, let’s give it 6 months… turns out it was wildly successful”. This example highlights the power of creative collaboration in tenant coordination, benefiting both tenants and landlords alike.

Watch the full podcast here

Learn more about Rethink

Rethink stands at the forefront of this transformative approach, bringing harmony to the commercial real estate industry one project at a time.

To learn more about Rethink and their innovative tenant coordination solutions, visit rethinkprojects.com. Whether you have a challenging project or a straightforward one, Rethink Projects is ready to collaborate and redefine the future of commercial real estate development.

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