Balancing Work and Life is Easy at Merkburn Holdings
Work-life balance is one of many buzzwords going around these days. Many companies claim they have it, but when it comes down to it, employees report they are falling short.
Merkburn Holdings is one of the ones doing it right.
Celebrating 50 years in business, Merkburn Holdings is a commercial leasing and property management company that offers turnkey solutions for commercial real estate in Ottawa. “Once we fit up the space, we give you the keys and you can move right in,” says Marlene Piitz, the head of leasing at Merkburn. Between office space, warehouses, retail, and flex spaces, Merkburn owns and manages close to a million square feet of space, most of which is in Ottawa, although they have some properties in Florida as well.
With all members of the board being from Ottawa, Merkburn strives to be an equitable employer and a great place to work within the community. Piitz took a job there as a receptionist after being out of the workforce for ten years while she cared for her children, and she hasn’t looked back since. “I started at Merkburn in 2006 part-time, which was great for me at the time,” she explains. “I started in reception and within six months, I switched over to leasing. It’s been 13 years, and I’m still here!”
“When I started, I thought I would only be here for a couple of years,” she goes on. “I thought I would get back out in the workforce then move on. But I really found that I liked the work environment here, and there were so many opportunities to learn about an industry in which I had no previous experience. It’s a very family-oriented company; it allowed me to be able to balance my work life and family life. If I had to leave the office to take care of a sick child – that was never an issue.”
In addition to leasing, Merkburn offers property management for third-party owned buildings. In celebration of half a century, they are breaking ground on a new building in Kanata this year – the first time in years they will be constructing a new building.
This move is going back to their roots as a construction company. Merkburn Holdings was founded by William S. Burnside and the late Cameron Merkley who were joined shortly after by Frank Dooher. Together they led Merkburn into their future of leasing and property management.
Now they are leading the way in commercial real estate, providing expert guidance to potential tenants to find the best fit for their business.