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How to Manage Property Management Staff

Managing Your Team Could be Simple and Creative

Your staff are likely your most important business asset yet keeping their performance optimal is an ongoing challenge. Most managers could use a refresher in staff management, and we’ve got some tips that might help.

Let’s take a quick look at some ways to re-energize and guide your staff to keep them able, sharp and motivated:

  • Recognize and reward staff’s outstanding performance by giving positive feedback, delivering certificate or a spot bonus, implementing a “Employee of the Year Award, and promoting employees.
  • Hold staff accountable for their performance by giving timely verbal or written counseling. Any disciplinary actions should be documented.
  • Empowerment should begin when a team is established. Each team member should be given opportunity to input and participate in decision making process. Reinforce their ownership during problem solving and let your help be the last thing.
  • Encourage staff to take continuing education classes and develop new skill sets.

What is the most effective way of managing the day-to-day work of your team?

Individual check-in – manager and staff can talk about the progress of individual projects; identify challenges or hurdles which may jeopardize or interrupt the project; prioritize projects and allocate resources appropriately among projects.

For instance, a project of rehabbing multiple units may require additional maintenance capacities to turnaround the units timely. A licensed contractor is needed to complete a project which complies with building codes and inspection requirement.

Staff meeting – make sure an agenda is set prior to the meeting and staff drives the agenda. While the agenda can start with update, it’s important to let team members to share success and lesson learned so that everyone has opportunity to learn from each other. Each participant should discuss any back-burner items and be proactive in asking for support.

The other key question to consider is what you and your staff want to get out of the meeting. Without a clear direction and expectation, it’s not uncommon that no conclusion can be reached or action can be taken.

In addition to meetings, managers may consider using a checklist to track progress and the property performance with their staffs.

A sample checklist should include the following suggested components:

  • Administrative: review move-in/move-out report, vacancy report, marketing strategies, incident reports, manager’s response to tenant’s complaint, 3-day notice, legal proceedings.
  • Financial: review rent roll, rent collection procedure, delinquency report, variance reports,
    receivable report, income and expense statement, balance sheet.
  • Staff Management: review work goals, set up staff meeting with site staff, identify staff’s training needs, spot check tenant files, assure a safe working environment.
  • Maintenance: review work order status and confirm the work order completion rate; review preventative maintenance plan; plan on capital improvement such as the number of units will be replaced with new flooring and appliances; update inventory and equipment list.

In a future post, we will go through each of the above components and provide some recommendations for managers to achieve the highest operational efficiencies.


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