Out to Put a Dent in the Multifamily Universe

Apartment Leasing: The Friendly Factor

Short and sweet post today – could have been a tweet but really looking for a comment or two on the subject.

So here it is -

How much is unfriendly costing you?

I wish I could suggest that this post was inspired by an experience of mine outside this industry but it was not. It was inspired by a couple of emails I received this week suggesting as much about our firm. Yikes! But but but… In my position – it is sometimes hard to separate the juiced up aggressive nature of a hostile prospect or resident who just had a bad day and or the position of the – more times than not -pushed to the limits on-site leasing and management heros. My bias always leans to the on-site team and in the same breath I would say – I have read some compelling prospect and resident statements that made me wonder. That said, it all comes down to delivery – in my opinion.

More times than not – the statement: they are not friendly – comes up.

So, I wonder – How much is unfriendly costing you?

And, have a very friendly day -

Also, a quick shout out to the NAA bound folks from the Multi-family world. Have a great week in NOLA -

About Mike Brewer

Out to put a dent in the multifamily universe. Love compelling conversation...

  • Janet Chiarella

    It's all about great, friendly service isn't it? That's why we conduct annual resident surveys, and reward teams who provide the kind of service we expect. It's also why we survey prospects after they visit our communities, and conduct phone and in-person mystery shops. We just love it when a prospect says, “The place down the street was a bit cheaper, but we rented here because you were so nice!”

    • http://mbrewergroup.com mbrewer

      Janet

      Thank you for taking the time to pen some thoughts. Are your prospect surveys done by phone or email or both? What is your respond rate? Could you share with our readers a couple of questions that you ask on the surveys. What type of rewards to you give to your teams? Is it money or other items?

      My apologies for all the questions but I love this stuff and I think the readers here enjoy tangible take aways.

      Hope your week is a smashing one and thank you again for taking time out of your day to comment – it means a great deal to us.

      M

  • Peggy Crowley

    Everyone that walks in the door should be treated in a friendly, customer service way! I took over managing a community a year ago that had not been trained with that mentality but if your manager does not expect that, then it will not be instilled. I always say…you cannot teach “niceness” and “warmth”…it is either in you or it is not! Having had to make many changes, I LOVE my new team!

    • http://mbrewergroup.com mbrewer

      Peggy

      Thank you for the comment

      I think it boils down to attitude – being friendly is an attitude not unlike being a jerk. And, training a jerk to be nice is about as productive as beating your head against the wall thinking you are going to eventually break the wall. I love the old saying that if you can't change people – change people. At the heart – that customer must be the benefactor of great service. Anymore it's key – if nothing else, it keeps your organization out of the new media headlines.

      Have a compelling week to come Peggy – I hope to see you back often.

      M

  • UrbaneWay

    Hi Mike, We missed at NAA, New Orleans was such a fun city.
    I think about what you have outlined in your post often, although maybe not exactly in the same form. In part, (not always) management is to blame for this issue, in the form of overworked and over burdened staff, silly rules that do not serve the prospect, and lack of training. Before I am attacked here, I am not referring the the rude or obnoxious leasing consultant or manager who should be fired. I am referring the the lions share of rank and file who lease and manage our apartments across the land everyday.

    It is my belief that we put our troops in uncompromising positions, by imposing the impossible budget, the new rule that some desk jockey at corporate dreamed up and an array of other silliness that wouldn't happen if we would all spend more time on the front line and on the leasing floor.

    • http://mbrewergroup.com mbrewer

      E

      Thank you for taking the time to pen some thought –

      I concur that we have the propensity to put more on the site teams than is absolutely necessary. I also would agree, to a large extent, that the byproduct of that is stress and frustration and it often gets misplaced on customers in the form of unfriendly interactions.

      In the same breath I would suggest that we are all responsible for our own behaviors despite the circumstance. That is to say that when the client comes in the door or calls on the phone – they don't care about what the desk jockey, corporate office or otherwise has put on the plates of the person that is serving them. They care about being treated with courtesy and respect but more importantly with kindness and friendliness.

      It's a harsh reality in our offices – your points are genuine and true and the expectation to be 100% on 100% of the time is warranted. I do think the responsibility rests on the organization as a whole and not any one layer of management. Solutions must be hammered out in the way of systems that promote efficiencies or consumer self-help.

      Good stuff – E

      I hope the rest of your weekend is a great one and thanks again for taking the time to further the discussion…

  • http://mbrewergroup.com mbrewer

    Peggy

    Thank you for the comment

    I think it boils down to attitude – being friendly is an attitude not unlike being a jerk. And, training a jerk to be nice is about as productive as beating your head against the wall thinking you are going to eventually break the wall. I love the old saying that if you can't change people – change people. At the heart – that customer must be the benefactor of great service. Anymore it's key – if nothing else, it keeps your organization out of the new media headlines.

    Have a compelling week to come Peggy – I hope to see you back often.

    M

  • http://mbrewergroup.com mbrewer

    Peggy

    Thank you for the comment

    I think it boils down to attitude – being friendly is an attitude not unlike being a jerk. And, training a jerk to be nice is about as productive as beating your head against the wall thinking you are going to eventually break the wall. I love the old saying that if you can't change people – change people. At the heart – that customer must be the benefactor of great service. Anymore it's key – if nothing else, it keeps your organization out of the new media headlines.

    Have a compelling week to come Peggy – I hope to see you back often.

    M

  • http://mbrewergroup.com mbrewer

    Peggy

    Thank you for the comment

    I think it boils down to attitude – being friendly is an attitude not unlike being a jerk. And, training a jerk to be nice is about as productive as beating your head against the wall thinking you are going to eventually break the wall. I love the old saying that if you can't change people – change people. At the heart – that customer must be the benefactor of great service. Anymore it's key – if nothing else, it keeps your organization out of the new media headlines.

    Have a compelling week to come Peggy – I hope to see you back often.

    M