Positive and productive communication is the key to a strong business relationship.
In most agencies I have worked with, I have always suggested how the department can improve communication between their members and their clients.
By Tara Bradbury – BDM Academy
There are too many opportunities for poor communication in a workplace, and awareness of this is the first step toward discovering the issues and solving them within your own department. No matter how big or small your agency is communication is always the main reason behind the complaints we receive.
If the BDM is not confident about the way the team members are communicating amongst themselves and with the landlords/tenants, it will be extremely difficult for them to sell the product and the Guarantee.
The best way to ensure your PM Department is engaging in effective communication with the landlords/tenants is to conduct client surveys and put a detailed follow up strategy in place.
If you complete a short client service survey over the phone or by email it will provide you with positive and negative information about your service and team. Once you have collated the information, you should hold a team meeting to share the feedback with everyone. If you find you have direct negative feedback about a team member’s performance, it is important to bring it up with that person, but come up with a solution before you speak with them. While it is hard to give someone negative feedback it is vital for the growth of your PM department that you do.
Don’t forget to share and celebrate the positive feedback! Your team members will feel fantastic when they hear that the landlords are really happy. It will boost team moral and everyone will enjoy coming to work knowing they are making a difference.
The current landlords of a business are, unfortunately, often overlooked. However, it is important that they are happy with your service so that you can continue to get future business from them. Don’t be scared to ask for feedback from your landlords and communicate with them to ensure they are happy with their property manager. During your conversation, take the time to ask them if they have any other investment properties in your area. You will be very surprised how many do have properties that are with other agents or a privately managed.
Current landlords will speak about you and, trust me, they will spread information to people when you least expect it. I have a friend who was a cab driver in Brisbane. He picked up one of my landlords from his home and drove him to the airport.
They got talking and my friend mentioned he had just been to the Fraser Coast for a weekend to catch up with family. My landlord said, ‘I have several investment properties on the Fraser Coast. It is a great little area.’ My friend then asked, ‘Who manages your properties?’ and my landlord answered, ‘Tara from Wide Bay Prestige Properties manages my investments. She has for the last 5 years. They are a great company and I would highly recommend them. If Tara was able to manage my properties in Brisbane and Melbourne I would have her in charge of those properties as well.’
When I heard that story I was blown away. I’m sure you will all agree that in our industry you tend to hear more concerns then positive feedback. This is why it is so important to make sure your landlords are not only happy with you but also the Property Manager who is assigned to their properties.
Remember, the main reason communication generally fails and the clients get frustrated is because they are left hanging. In a lot of cases we listen and pass the concern onto the staff member who is involved but we don’t follow up. If you want strong communication in the property management department then it starts with you. As a BDM, you are a leader and need to ensure your level of communication is replicated through your team members. It doesn’t matter what you say, it only matters what the other person hears.
Tara Bradbury is the Director of the highly recognised consultancy and coaching business BDM Academy, specialising in business development and rent roll growth training services throughout Australasia.