4 New Year’s Resolutions for the Property Management Professional


It’s the last day of 2012!

As the final words are written on an eventful year in the multifamily industry, our eyes turn towards 2013 with optimism and excitement.

Like most people, I’ve crafted a few New Year’s resolutions for my personal and professional growth. I also created four resolutions for you, the property management professional, to consider for 2013.

Resolve to Be Mindful of Data Quality

It’s easy to focus on the sexier aspects of business intelligence such as reporting, analytics, and forecasting. But how much time and effort do you spend on the quality of data itself? Put another way, the people entering the data need to care about the quality of the data. You know the saying, “Garbage in, garbage out?” Same goes for your data. Crappy data means crappy reporting and wonky forecasting.

Resolve to Be More Social, and I Don’t Mean on Facebook

If I’ve learned anything from the articles on Property Management Insider by Jen Piccotti and Lia Smith from SatisFacts Research, it’s that service matters when it comes to resident retention. And you can’t overlook the potential effect your on-site maintenance staff has on marketing your apartment community. Yes, social engagement on your online community is important, but don’t overlook the power of human engagement at your physical community.

Resolve to Be a Mobile-Optimized Business

There’s been a lot of talk lately about responsive design, also known as multi-screen functionality. Meaning, your future and current residents are using a combination of phones, tablets, computers, and TVs to consume digital content, which includes finding a place to live. So while making sure your property websites are compatible for viewing across multiple devices, your online services—such as submitting and tracking service requests and paying rent—must be functional on mobile devices.

Resolve “To Be” Rather “To Do”

Did you notice a pattern in the previous resolutions? They are written as items on a To-Be list rather than a To-Do list. Last January I wrote an article about creating To-Be lists rather than To-Do lists. It included this quote from blogger Angela Maiers:

“To-Do lists are great for keeping us organized and helping us get through our busy days, but do they really help us accomplish creating the image, person, and character needed to run our business or live our lives more successfully?”

I have To-Do lists for both work and my private life, who doesn’t? But the idea of transforming New Year’s Resolutions into something I want to be rather than to do is more introspective. Put another way, it’s pretty simple to create a list of goals or improvements we’d like to accomplish that are typically long on good intentions but very short on the details; creating a state of being, on the other hand, requires more thought and planning

Here’s an example from my own personal goals:

I resolve to be more organized at work by learning and utilizing the note-taking application Evernote to its fullest extent, making it my primary means of note taking and my exclusive source for storing and organizing information.

Doesn’t that sound better than writing, “I want to be more organized at work?” Using the phrase “to be” forces me to think beyond the goal and focus on the execution.

What Are Your Resolutions?

What kind of resolutions are you making for yourself and for your apartment communities? Do you have a To-Do list for 2013 or will you now be creating a To-Be list? Please share in the comments below.



Contributor, Property Management Insider

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Michael Cunningham is Content Marketing Manager at ProofHQ, and the former Managing Editor of PropertyManagementInsider.com. He worked as a social media manager for RealPage, Inc., a provider of on-demand software solutions that integrate and streamline single-family and a wide variety of multifamily rental property management business functions. He is responsible for promoting the company through various media channels, including editorial, print and online advertising, and social media. Michael received his education at Indiana University where he majored in English.

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