WASHINGTON, DC — More than 250 corporate execs, real estate professionals, and facility managers gathered at the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center here for the Fourth Annual National Summit on Building Performance, to focus on the latest approaches to create synergies between people, technology, and facilities.

Sponsored by Johnson Controls Integrated Facility Management, the American Institute of Architects (AIA), the International Facility Management Association (IFMA), and NACORE International, subjects covered at the day-long symposium included boosting workplace performance in critical work environments, and implementing eco-sensitive workplace designs and best practices.

“As corporations enter a new century, the connection between productive work environments and the ability to improve company performance is paramount,” said Michael Lamach, vice president and general manager, Johnson Controls Integrated Facility Management, Commercial North America.

Look beyond short-term solutions

Doug Aldrich, global manager of laboratory facilities, Dow Corning, stressed the need for corporations to look far beyond the short-term operational and tactical issues associated with managed work environments.

“Long-range strategies are essential,” said Aldrich, “because corporations need adequate response time to met inevitable changes in market conditions.”

Eco-sensitive designs must find the middle ground between environmental responsibility and other corporate goals, noted David Nicks, manager for planning, design, and construction, Armstrong World Industries, Inc.

“Being environmentally friendly should not cost more,” Nicks said. “However, you have to strike a balance between environmental stewardship and other goals, such as productivity.

“The essential element of eco-sensitive designs involves planning and charting where you want to go.”