If you attended business school, one thing you probably noticed once you got into the real world was that there are a lot of things they couldn’t teach you in a classroom. The reality is, great leaders possess certain soft skills that don’t come from a textbook. They come from real world experience and on-the-job lessons that build character and aid in the development of management best practices. Learning these lessons and gaining the unconventional wisdom that comes as a result can help you become a much more effective leader. That being said, here are a few tips that could be the difference-makers in your property management organization.
Don’t get caught in the middle of conflict
Far too often well-meaning managers find themselves stuck in the middle of employee conflicts. It may seem like the right thing to do, but if you really want to be effective, you’re much better off encouraging the parties involved to work it out amongst themselves. You can certainly provide guidance and offer coaching, but enabling your employees to develop and hone their conflict resolution skills is far better for everyone than playing referee.
Ask for volunteers (especially for the unpopular tasks)
Many business leaders believe that tasks have to be delegated and dictated in order to ensure that everything operates as it should. But taking a different approach and asking your property management team to volunteer for certain tasks – particularly those that aren’t the most popular – may yield you better results. You may be surprised at who has a genuine interest in doing those tasks. Besides, volunteers tend to be more engaged and committed.
Focus your time and energy toward top performers
It may seem more logical to spend the majority of your time and attention toward coaching employees that are performing poorly, but doing the opposite may actually be better for your business. That’s because top performers are more capable of leveraging your help and more receptive to feedback and coaching. This will also help to keep your best employees challenged and reduce the risk of losing them to a competitor.
Recognize that termination is sometimes the kindest thing to do
If you’ve got a particular employee who is not living up to his or her potential, even after coaching, not only could it mean they aren’t a good fit for your property management company, but that your company simply isn’t a good fit for them either. Keeping them employed isn’t always the most compassionate thing to do. To the contrary, letting them go will enable them to find another role elsewhere in which they will have the potential to excel.
Hire people from whom you can learn
Bringing employees into your firm shouldn’t only involve training them and passing on your knowledge. Leaders in top performing property management companies recruit talented individuals that they too can learn from. This give and take and mutual respect can do wonders for the overall performance of your company. And when the time comes for you to move on, whether it’s to another firm or into retirement, there will be plenty of capable individuals ready to step up to the plate.
What about you? What life lessons have you learned over the years being a property management leader? We’d love to hear about them! Please share your thoughts and insight in the comments below.