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Heading to NMHC's 2017 Annual Meeting in a post-inaugural world

A week from today, I'll be boarding a jet with my good friends at Delta as I journey to San Diego for the 2017 annual meeting of the National Multifamily Housing Council (NMHC), along with the preceding Apartment Strategies Outlook Conference.   As I was checking the agenda against my calendar to figure out the best windows for a few conference calls, it hit me that this will be the first NMHC conference in some time with a new U.S. administration in place. A brand-spanking-new and really different administration. No matter what your political leanings, or how you feel about our incoming and outgoing Presidents, it's safe to say we can all acknowledge this will have an impact on our industry. We just don't yet know what that impact will be.   And all the more reason I'm anxious to attend this year's meetings. What will our industry leaders and data experts project?  Who will feel bullish and who will be more conservative? And speakers like former secretary of state Condoleeza Rice and former presidential candidate and Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney are sure to be queried for their opinions of the newly-inaugurated President and his cabinet choices (think HUD secretary, for example). I'm personally looking forward to Emmy-winning comedian Dana Carvey and award-winning political journalist Jeff Greenfield to add some levity and political scrutiny to the mix.   So, it promises to be a very interesting few days, to say the least. If you're also attending, I hope to see you......
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7 Tips for More Effective Meetings

7 Tips for More Effective Meetings
Budget season is upon us, which means your calendar is most likely packed full of meetings. In-person meetings are an important part of running a successful business, but if those meetings are disorganized, they can be a drain on your time…time that’s already stretched thin as it is (especially during budget season!). Do you frequently lead meetings in your office? Here are five tips to help ensure your next meeting is effective and efficient. 1. Ask Yourself if a Meeting is NecessaryThere are many instances when a meeting is necessary, but sometimes, a phone call, email or quick stop at your coworker’s desk will suffice. 2. Determine the ObjectiveHave you ever left a meeting and thought to yourself, “What was the point of that?” It’s frustrating to attend unproductive meetings…especially when there are piles of work waiting for you at your desk. Make sure the meetings you organize have clear, concrete objectives. 3. Set (and Stick to) an AgendaWhenever possible, distribute an agenda in advance so attendees know what to expect and can come to the meeting prepared to get to work. And during the meeting, stick to the agenda! If something comes up that isn't relevant to the meeting’s objective, set it aside for later and bring things back on track. 4. Keep it ShortI don’t know about you, but most meetings on my calendar seem to be set for an hour. Do you have a meeting objective that can be achieved in 30 or 45 minutes? Then only book 30 or 45 minutes.......
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1:1

1:1
I was asked to be the manager of a small team of 5 people about a year after I finished college. At the time, I was sure this was due to my management skill, but in hindsight, I believe the promotion was largely due to my performance as an individual. Very often, managers are promoted under similar circumstances, and this practice is not just limited to software companies1. Many of the Property Managers and Regional Managers I meet were at one time the best leasing agents in their office now promoted to be managers. Being a new manager is difficult, not in the least part because now all of a sudden you’re accountable for the work of other people. And people can be so… unpredictable. New managers all go through a phase where they ask themselves, “how can I be a good manager?” To add to the proliferation of opinions on the internet, I’d like to share one more through the lens of a simple weekly meeting: the 1:1. Managing Sam (my perspective; name changed to protect the innocent) Sam was one of the first employees I managed. He was bright, fun to work with, and methodical. Previous to my promotion, we had been peers. As a new manager, I just presumed that since Sam was such a nice guy, he was surely being productive. We didn’t really meet to discuss his work, but I was able to observe his output. We were good friends, and often went to lunch as a team to lau......
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12 Step Trade Conference Survival Guide

b2ap3_thumbnail_Fotolia_41800069_Subscription_Monthly_XL.jpgBrace yourself.  Spring is here and with flowers that bloom come a dizzying array of industry meetings to attend, exhibit halls to walk, booths to man, speeches to sit through, and networking events to navigate.  The following is a list of survival techniques to make the most of your trade conference experiences so that all that time away from home can add up to more than a bag of great swag:                 Schedule Appointments – Before you even get on a plane, take the  time to search the meeting website to see who will be attending or exhibiting and who you want to be sure to meet.  Appointments are your ticket to making the most of your time so reach out to people in advance with a few possible times to talk at your company’s booth or get together for a cold drink. Love the One You’re With – Remember in advance to reach out to current associates and key contacts to get on their calendars too.  There’s nothing worse for business than making someone feel less valuable once they’ve started working with you. And think of the money you can save by scheduling face time with a contact at a meeting you both attend. Respect Time – It’s important to remember that everyone attending or exhibiting at a trade meeting is hoping to leave with a better solution to a problem, a new approach to maximize a need, an acquisition or disposition of assets, or something simil......
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