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The Vast Benefits of a Strengths-Based Organization

The Vast Benefits of a Strengths-Based Organization
A football team wouldn’t draft a quarterback and then try to convert them to a linebacker. A restaurant wouldn’t hire a Michelin chef and then make them perform waiter duties. And it’s doubtful that a Team USA coach would recognize an elite speed sprinter and attempt to transfer them to the swimming team.  Yet in many industries, including multifamily, organizations hire associates and immediately try to mold them into something that they aren’t. Not only is it counterproductive in most cases, but it also prevents the associate from functioning within their natural abilities and tendencies. That’s why some forward-thinking operators are adopting the model of a strengths-based organization. Rather than viewing associates from the perspective of weakness and how to reshape their shortcomings, strengths-based organizations celebrate key attributes and aim to cultivate and maximize them.  To be clear, this is not to discourage the idea that associates can learn new skills on the job in an effort to expand capabilities. Nor is it designed to constrain those with broader skill sets who enjoy taking on multiple roles. It’s simply a method to further develop an associate’s true niche engrained in their DNA as a person, so they can function within their own exceptionality. One approach to a strengths-based organization is outlined in the book StrengthsFinder 2.0 by Tom Rath, which utilizes a Gallup study that identifies the top 34 natural strengths all individuals possess. The strengths are then ranked for each individual through an online assessment, which usually takes about 10 or 15 minutes......
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Rewarding a Job Well Done: Why Recognition for Associates Is So Important

Rewarding a Job Well Done: Why Recognition for Associates Is So Important
A little acknowledgement can go a very long way. That’s especially true when it comes to rewarding successful employees in the multifamily industry. Apartment companies recognize and honor their associates in any number of ways, including financial bonuses, paid time off and annual award dinners. Recognizing strong associates and making sure they know they are valued will offer numerous benefits for apartment owners, from improved employee morale to communities that are better positioned to retain existing residents and attract new ones. Below are some essential reasons to reward a job well done: Motivated employeesAppreciation is a core human desire, and being rewarded for good work – whether it's through a simple "thank you" note or a financial reward – motivates employees to maintain and even improve their performance. Associates who are recognized for their contributions and who feel valued develop a greater sense of pride, loyalty and dedication towards the company they work for. A strong company cultureCompanies that reward strong employees do more than create a workforce full of associates individually motivated to improve their job performances. They also create vibrant, healthy overall company cultures. When employees feel valued, it strengthens their relationships with their superiors and peers, and these happy, satisfied associates can serve as powerful teachers and mentors for their fellow co-workers. A robust rewards and recognition program can truly set the stage for a great working atmosphere.  Good for businessTeam members who receive positive feedback and are rewarded for success will be more engaged. And in the multi......
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How to Effectively Manage Millennial Associates

How to Effectively Manage Millennial Associates
In all my years in human resources and the apartment industry, I don't think I've seen a generation of employees pinned with as many negative stereotypes as millennials. "Snowflakes," "job hoppers," "entitled," "needy," "easily distracted" … the list seems endless.  The list is also extremely unfair.  At ROSS, millennials have proven to be invaluable members of our community leasing and management teams. Their energy, entrepreneurial spirit, technological skills and overall creativity have provided a boost to operations across our portfolio.  Sure, millennials may have different attitudes and preferences than their baby boomer or Generation X counterparts. But that doesn't make them bad employees. It just means they need to be managed differently to keep them inspired and engaged.  Here are some tips for managing millennial associates: Be transparentThe days when a manager could be tight-lipped and aloof to associates are long gone. Millennials – as well as workers from other generations – demand transparency in the workplace.  How can apartment companies provide this transparency? For starters, a team leader has to be crystal-clear from the beginning of an associate's tenure about opportunities for advancement and what they need to do to earn promotions. Knowing they have the chance to grow at your company will help millennials feel more engaged with their jobs. Also, as much as possible, keep onsite team members in the loop on company news and how it may impact their jobs. When employees feel like they’re in the dark, their anxiety grows and their job satisfaction dips. Be a good ......
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How to Recognize and Reward Strong Associates

How to Recognize and Reward Strong Associates
Working in the multifamily sector is immensely rewarding. It's also extremely demanding. Community team members juggle a lot: keeping current residents satisfied, screening and engaging prospects, and making sure the apartment community is kept in tip-top shape, to name just a few of their responsibilities. The most successful multifamily companies find ways to consistently recognize their hardworking and high-performing associates. In addition to simply being the right thing to do, rewards are a great way to keep morale high and boost employee retention.  So what are some of the most effective ways to show your best associates some love? Below are some suggestions. Financial bonuses. Keeping associates happy is about more than just compensation. A company's overall work culture and its commitment to employee development are perhaps even more important factors. But let's face it: everyone likes a little extra cash in their pockets, and there is no shortage of reasons for which apartment companies can award some much-appreciated bonuses. At ROSS, for instance, we award $250 gift cards to high-performing leasing associates, as measured by their Telephone Performance Analysis (TPA) scores; these scores reflect how well associates interact with prospects during phone calls. We also give bonuses every quarter to associates who work at communities with strong scores on customer-satisfaction surveys. In addition, we provide bonuses to maintenance workers who perform well, associates who serve as mentors to new employees and associates who reach particular length-of-service milestones with the company. Paid time off.  Today's associates, particularly millennials, place a laudable......
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