Magazine article Journal of Property Management

In General, Specialize: Property Managers with Niche Prove Invaluable

Magazine article Journal of Property Management

In General, Specialize: Property Managers with Niche Prove Invaluable

Article excerpt

Years ago, I interviewed with a national real estate company. The interviewer inquired about my strengths as a property manager. We all know property management requires someone with skills in everything from financial analysis to marketing to building systems, and on and on.

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So I told the interviewer I was a generalist--competent in the many disciplines required for property management. It seemed like a great response. But after a few weeks, and no follow up calls, it dawned on me I made a critical mistake. I was unremarkable and unmemorable, leaving the interviewer to wonder, "Who was that guy?"

That interview was a point that changed my thinking. If you want to be of real value to your employer or client, become the go-to-guy for something. Become someone people seek out for a key skill or experience you and no one else brings to the table.

I once worked with a property manager who had a sincere curiosity for the mechanical side of the business. If the engineers had a ceiling open to work on the HVAC system, he undoubtedly would be in the thick of things, learning what they knew. When an electrical contractor came to the building to perform annual maintenance on the electrical systems, he was there.

I soon realized this individual had developed skills benefiting our organization. He became my go-to-guy on due diligence and engineering inspections, freeing me up to concentrate on what I care about most--providing superior customer service. …

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