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Is what you are saying hurting sales and leasing?


After listening to thousands of sales pitches, I can't tell you how many times I lost interest because of what the sales rep said. As an executive I feel bad because I know that the rep is doing what they have been taught to sell their product or service.

I think that too often the sales presentation and marketing slicks are created from the company perspective and not the audience.
So ask yourself, is what you are saying hurting your sales?

Join me to learn how you can immediately improve your sales. 

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Is Responding to Your Co-Worker’s Email Really Urgent? Here’s the Tea

------ We’ve all been there: a resident or client has a time-sensitive or decision-influencing question, and we realize a co-worker or different department holds the answer. We send an email requesting the information, and then… we wait. If we’re lucky, the response comes right away, but many times it can be hours, days, even a week or more before getting the answer we need. And until that response comes in, our work idles, our resident or client goes unsatisfied, and we may become increasingly anxious or frustrated by the delay. Is it unreasonable to expect a prompt reply to an email? Let’s explore. Our employee engagement surveys ask employees to what extent they agree with this statement: "Issues I raise are responded to within 24 hours by my supervisor, peers, or other departments." Depending on your role within a property management company, the experience can be quite different. According to the 2020 Swift Bunny Index: 83% of Corporate Operations employees (executives, director-level, department heads) agreed that they receive responses within 24 hours. However, the rest of the organization has a very different experience. Here’s the breakdown for everyone else: Only 59% of On-Site Team Members (Management, Leasing, Maintenance) and 57% of Corporate Support Services (Accounting, Marketing, Human Resources, IT, Administrative staff) agree that they receive a response within 24 hours. But this begs the question, is 24 hours a reasonable time frame to expect a response from a co-worker? For this, I posed that very question in Multifamily ShareSpace on Facebook t......
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The Importance of Property Manager-Tenant Communications

The Importance of Property Manager-Tenant Communications
One of the most important responsibilities for any property manager is to communicate with their tenants.  In the long-term, communicating frequently with tenants will enable many benefits for the property manager.  Keeping communication at the center of the customer service strategy helps managers to better understand and cater to their tenant’s needs while tenants will have gained better insight into the unit they invest in.  In this blog post, we discuss the long-term benefits that consistent property management communication has for the company. 1) Increased value for your business Tenant retention drives immense value for your business and increases the bottom line, which is why it’s one of the most important functions of managing apartments.  According to RentPrep, when you successfully retain one tenant itself, the company can save an average of $1,750 per unit per month from tenant turnover costs like administrative work, vacancy, and marketing. For a property of 100 units with a 95% retention rate, property management companies save close to $2 million per year.  The best way to avoid turnover and increase retention is to keep your communications with tenants ongoing. 2) A sense of community in your properties Following up with tenants regularly helps you to build a long-term relationship with them.  In turn, they feel that they are part of the community. They will be more invested in the place they call home.  Building positive relations will also lead to more harmony and fewer conflicts that managers would otherwise need to dedicate their time to.  Her......
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How to Communicate With Tenants During COVID-19

Ever since the outbreak of COVID-19, pretty much all aspects of life have been forever changed. So, what does that mean for business owners and their management teams? Well, as the economy continues to take a hit, unemployment rates rise, recently reopened states close again, and new cases steadily surge —it means there is a lot of uncertainty and unpaid rent. Nonetheless, ask anyone in the real estate/housing industry, and they will tell you that they have not been afforded the luxury of being uncertain during this global crisis. Instead, definitive action has been required, especially from property managers and landlords. In particular, open lines of communication during this time are a must. If you are like many property management professionals, you may have noticed that just responding to emails from concerned tenants here and there has not been enough. Thus, as an alternative to playing defense with tenant concerns, it might just be time to get on the offensive and effectively communicate with your tenants. Be Prepared and Informative One of the best ways to effectively communicate with your tenants is to be prepared. Just like everyone else, your tenants are going to have questions. Therefore, you need to be prepared to thoroughly answer those questions, while at the same time keeping everyone calm. The best thing you can do here as a member of the management team is to keep yourself informed so that you can tackle the hard questions, emails, calls, and texts. It is also helpful to r......
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Keep Talking. Employees are Listening.

       As we look toward entering a new phase of management during the COVID-19 pandemic, we have continued to survey multifamily employees to see how they are feeling about the ever-evolving situation. Data from the Swift Bunny COVID-19 Employee Check-In Survey shows that employees' feeling of safety in carrying out their responsibilities tracks with the level of communication and leadership visibility they are experiencing. In other words, the more leaders communicate directly with their teams, the greater the employees' feeling of safety in completing their work.  In speaking with leaders of 30 property management companies, there is a universal perception that it's time to take the foot off the gas pedal regarding company communication, now that we're through the initial tidal wave of change that arose due to the pandemic.  "We're turning into Zoombies!" commented one employee, which perfectly represents the fatigue many team members are feeling in regard to the volume of meetings we all seem to be having. However, while I may agree that the quantity of meetings may need to be toned down, the quality of communication is still critically important. Polling conducted with hundreds of multifamily employees during webinars over the past few weeks shows a shift from general feelings of uncertainty to concerns about how their communities are addressing or planning to address re-opening. In addition, beginning on May 18th, the data from the Swift Bunny COVID-19 Employee Check-In Survey has shown the rating trending downward on the topic of, "I feel well-informed ......
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Leadership by Transparency

        We hear you loud and clear, multifamily employees: you want your leaders to be loud and clear! Over the past 6 weeks, more than 2,600 rental housing employees have responded to the Swift Bunny Covid-19 Employee Check-In Survey.  In that span of time, we've seen a significant increase in employees expressing that they Agree or Strongly Agree that their company is providing important and transparent information that is relevant to their job. What started out in early April as an industry average of 4.27 out of 5 has grown to 4.47 out of 5! Increasingly, we see employee comments such as these: "I think our company has done a great job communicating policies and keeping its residents and employees safe." "I feel that upper management has been very supported throughout all if this.  The emails have been uplifting.  We are feeling well-informed." The topics of "transparent communication" and "leadership visibility" have been tracking incredibly closely over the course of the survey, which is a message that executives need to hear. This tells us that employees not only crave information that is relevant to their day-to-day responsibilities and the state of the company, but they crave hearing it from the top. This is a lighthouse moment that we're seeing more and more successful leaders embrace. However, while we're seeing a positive trajectory on transparent communication and leadership visibility, we're seeing the need for a different kind of information and support at every level of the organization. Increasingly, ......
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The One Vacancy You Want During the Pandemic

     Ivory tower. Corner office. Private beach. La-La Land. Hidey-hole. It's been called many things recently in our COVID-19 Employee Check-In Survey, but ultimately it's the place some employees believe their executive leadership has been hunkering down while front line employees feel they are personally putting their health and safety at risk.  I say "some employees," because the great news is that 85.2% of rental housing employees agree that their executive leadership has been visible and communicative during the COVID-19 pandemic. That's more than 5 out of 6! Whether conducting weekly virtual Town Hall meetings with all employees, showing up at different communities to help sanitize common areas, personally delivering a much needed supply of masks, or announcing new work-from-home guidance to reduce face-to-face interactions in the leasing office - leaders across the country are demonstrating that they won't ask their team members to do anything they are not willing to personally do themselves. Ivory tower = Vacant! A key benefit of seeing executive leadership in action is the strong correlation to the employees' perception that leadership is making good decisions in response to the pandemic. Employees want to have confidence in the direction they are being given. These recent findings support what we learned through the Swift Bunny Multifamily Employee Engagement Study, that "Respect for executive leadership" is one of the strongest influencers on employee engagement.  Employee engagement is critical for every property management company in order to successfully pull through a crisis. It's what enables each team ......
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Data is the Key to any Successful Multifamily Relationship

Data is the Key to any Successful Multifamily Relationship
As the technology revolution reshapes the multifamily landscape—and that of virtually every other industry, as well—one old-school concept remains intact: Information is power. Twenty years into the new decade, that concept contains a bit of a twist. The majority of relevant and potentially game-changing information comes in the form of data, so it’s not only a matter of having it. It’s also a matter of properly analyzing it and converting the metrics into something actionable for your teams to utilize. In the past, it wasn’t a common practice for interdepartmental teams to share data-related information. It was essentially kept in silos for each team to utilize on its own. That shortsighted approach is beginning to shift. Here's a look at a few of the ways teams can utilize information for the greater good of the organization. Use data to provide context for certain metrics Marketing teams can provide a cost per lead, cost per click and other similar metrics, but it doesn’t tell the entire story or how effective those channels have been. For context, imagine learning that an athlete is paid $2 million per year, which sounds hefty. But when metrics are introduced that show the average salary for his or her position is $8.4 million, the context shifts. Likewise, when marketing teams also provide benchmark data points, month-over-month and year-over-year comparisons to accompany their cost metrics, it gives a true indication of how the channels are performing. Establish KPIs from the beginning for all departments Key performance indicators—most often referenced as......
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Resources to Take Your People Skills to the Next Level

Resources to Take Your People Skills to the Next Level
Multifamily housing really IS a people business. Sure multifamily pros spend their days talking about floor plans, rents, notice to vacates, rent per square foot, ROI, capital expenses and more; but ultimately this business comes down to people. Think of all of the people you interact with in a work day: Residents Your supervisors Vendors Prospects Employees Owners Partners Co-workers This list doesn't even include your spouse, partner, significant other, extended family, children, and friends! I started my speaking company in 2011 based on the idea that "Winning with people truly is the heart of success" and after eight years, speaking nationally and working with amazing companies everywhere, I'm even more convinced that this is true! While I'm normally the one giving the people skills advise, today I am sharing with you the resources that have helped me-in the hope that they will help YOU! Selected Key Resources Daring Greatly by Brene Brown: Having great people skills begins with you understanding you! This book will help you do just that. Her work on vulnerability and authenticity is ground-breaking and has been life-changing for me.  The Power of Understanding People by Dave Mitchell: Dave Mitchell is one of my favorite speakers! I first saw him speak in Denver and became an instant fan. As I started and developed my own speaking company he has been a trusted resource and supporter of mine, which I truly appreciate. In this book Dave will help you understand the main personality styles, in a way that is......
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4 Tips to Help Your Bots Get More Done

People love the excitement of getting a new technology; however, your new tech is only as helpful as the user. We like to compare this to getting your grandma a smartphone (if you have a hip grandma this analogy doesn’t really work, but hang with us). Giving your grandma access to a smart phone seems like it would alleviate your obligatory tech support line. She is now able to do things like schedule doctor’s appointments, keep in touch with her family and friends, and look up new recipes easily. This seemingly perfect plan often times backfires. She is left more confused than ever and now you are flooded with phone calls about how to do all of these new things on her phone. The other alternative is that your grandma stuffs her phone in a drawer and continues to do things the old-fashioned way because she doesn’t understand the value it can provide. Adding a chatbot to your website or Facebook messenger can have the same effect if your prospects don’t know why or how to use it. We have come up with four quick ways to help your bots get more done. For readers who might not have a chatbot yet, you can still use these 4 tips to start more conversations between prospects and agents on Faceboook Messenger.   #1 Talk about it The easiest way to get prospects to talk to your bot is to talk about it. Make your Facebook post call-to-action a link to your new bot. &n......
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