Focus on what you can produce and cause, not what you can’t control. This is such an important reminder that you’ve got to work on the areas that you can control. Sometimes it is easy to get distracted by what is happening in the news or any other current event that may be on your radar. To get more done, you’ve got to stayed focus on the critical success factors that will lead to the results you desire that you can actually do something about and that you can control.
Weldon Long makes this point in his book The Power of Consistency. He says:
“Winners think about the things they can control—namely, their own sales performance. Whiners, on the other hand, obsess over matters over which they have no control, such as the economy, competitors offering cheaper prices, and their bosses. Winners think about how they can improve their sales, relationship building, product knowledge and closing skills. Whiners think about how others should be doing their jobs better. Winners focus on ‘I’; whiners focus on ‘they.’ You can basically break everything down in sales and business development into two basic categories: process and result….You have 100 percent control over the processes involved in sales and 0 percent control over the results….Now, I’m not saying you can’t have influence over whether or not your prospect [or property owner] buys from you. You can dramatically sway prospects to buy from you by how well you perform the sales process. The better you are at your profession, the more likely your prospects are to buy from you. You can influence that decision; however, you can’t control it. You will not ultimately be making that decision for them. You can only make your decisions.”—pp. 159-160.
What is the most important thing you can focus on in your property management business?
Here are five areas where you should focus more of your effort that you can control. These five areas are where you should be putting your focus.
How productive are you at closing sales and getting new property management contracts? At following up with owners who didn’t hire you to manage? At getting referrals from those for whom you are already managing properties? Are you focusing on the elements of the process that will lead to the results you want?
One specific productivity area I will mention here is your marketing focus. Here are two questions to ask yourself as you think about your marketing focus:
- Which of my marketing or sales efforts brought in the bulk of my new property management contracts this past month? What percentage of new business comes from this particular effort in the past year? Should I increase that focus?
- Do I test various aspects of my marketing and selling activities to make sure they’re producing the best and most profitable results?
If a marketing approach isn’t working, stop doing it and look for productive ones that will bring in more property management contracts. You have to inspect what you expect. Always be looking for ways to get more back for what you spend. How much time have you spent working on implementing better marketing ideas in the past week or month?
Remember, efficiency is doing things right. Effectiveness is doing the right things. Sales and marketing are productivity areas that you must always be focused on.
2) Customer Satisfaction
The most important thing you do that helps with overall customer satisfaction is to personally interact with and focus on the priorities of the owners and investors you work with. Most of the time when you lose a sale, it is because you are not really focusing on the owner’s needs and what they are really looking for in a property manager.
Here are three questions to focus on in this area:
- What are owners saying about your business? Are you broadcasting the good testimonials to other owners and investors who are considering you?
- Are they talking about their great experiences with you and your brand?
- How can you encourage that better? For example, what kind of monetary reward, gift card, or bonus could you offer for a written or video testimonial?
Many property managers today are re-evaluating the entire way they have been doing business and looking at ways to increase revenue streams that will add to their overall profitability. Such revenue streams can be promoted as services to owners and residents. You or members of your team can earn results-based bonuses when they add more of these revenue streams into every lease or contract that you sign. Property Management Inc. has over 50 revenue streams that you could add into your business to help you make more money per property that you manage. Carefully analyze your P&L statements to help you make decisions about where you can increase your profitability in future months. Here are three questions to ask yourself as you focus on your overall revenue per door and profitability:
- What are our most profitable services? How could we bundle these so they are easier for residents and owners to adopt?
- Are we focusing on selling those services in our interactions with residents and owners?
- What are the things that contribute most to our bottom line? How often are you looking to increase valuable services to owners and tenants that will add to your profitability?
4) Quality of Experience Owners and Residents Have When They Interact with You and Your Business
After every interaction / transaction at your business, a resident or owner is one of three things:
- Disappointed – they got less than they expected
- Satisfied – they got only what they expected
- Delighted – they got more than what they expected
Which one of the three are the majority of your customers?
The goal to delight each of the owners and residents who you work with and for is a noble and a challenging goal. It is something you can strive for. Be better at going beyond just aiming to satisfy your customers.
The first six words of the business classic Good to Great state, “The enemy of great is good.” Never be satisfied with just good customer service. Instead, strive to be exceptional throughout your entire interaction with your customers. Sometimes, you may do something exceptional for an owner that a resident doesn’t think much about. That is an unfortunate reality in the property management business, but we can still strive to be exceptional in any interaction you have with either party.
Jim Collins was asked by John Maxwell about the dangers of complacency prior to the economic downturn in 2008 and 2009. Maxwell said: “At that time, the economy was humming and unemployment was running under 4 percent. We talked about the danger of complacency anytime people are winning. They are tempted to relax and sit back when things are going well. And Jim posed a question, ‘How do we continue to grow and improve and become more, when what we already have is pretty good?’ Complacency: that is the danger any successful person faces. Microsoft founder Bill Gates observed, ‘Success is a lousy teacher. It makes smart people think they can’t lose.’ It also makes them think they don’t need to learn. The biggest detriment to tomorrow’s success is today’s success.” –Sometimes You Win—Sometimes You Lose, pp. 214.
In the end, if you only do what average property managers do, you’ll never be better than they are. You have to aim higher. With the constant innovation with technology and other elements or running a successful property management business, it is key that you stay on top of ways of running your business more effectively. Here are some questions for you to consider as you focus on being more innovative in your property management business:
- Ask: What is your competitive advantage in your area in your market? What makes you better? Are there things that you could change to be even better?
- What ways are you superior to your competition?
- In what way does your business excel? You can’t say you give quality and service because everyone says that. When everyone says something, it doesn’t mean very much at all. An important part of concentrating on what you do best is to specialize. The natural tendency is to generalize and try to be good at everything. Unfortunately, what happens is that you end up being good at nothing.
- Ask yourself: What products or services do I offer to owners and residents today? What will it be tomorrow the way things are going? What could it be? What should it be? Stay on top of what is going on in the marketplace – ask yourself – What is selling and why?
Ralph Waldo Emerson once said: “Shallow people believe in luck. Wise and strong people believe in cause and effect.” Focus on the causes that will create the effect you want. You are in control. You determine what happens. Work on the areas that you can control. Focus on the critical success factors that will lead to the results you desire in your property management business. If you would like to explore the new innovations that can help you grow your property management business in each of these five areas, schedule a portfolio growth assessment with one of our franchise developers here: https://calendly.com/pmifranchising