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 member to do their best work and support their peers and residents. Every employee needs to hear news, updates, and encouragement from their own direct supervisor. But the companies who are the most cohesive, the most optimistic, and the most resilient are those whose executive leadership is an obvious presence providing reassurance and guidance every step of the way.