Magazine article Journal of Property Management

Discuss Amongst Yourselves

Magazine article Journal of Property Management

Discuss Amongst Yourselves

Article excerpt

Avoid unnecessary complaints by improving communication

I HAVE HAD THE PRIVILEGE TO SERVE ON THE IREM ETHICS AND DISCIPLINE COMMITTEE AS A MEMBER OF THE HEARING BOARD, AND RECENTLY, THE INQUIRY BOARD. The Inquiry Board reviews complaints filed against IREM Members and determines if a complaint should be dismissed, investigated or forwarded for hearing. If a probable violation of the Code of Ethics is found, the complaint is forwarded to the Hearing and Discipline Board. The Hearing Board has the responsibility to hear the complaint; decide if one or more of the articles of the Code has been violated; and establish disciplinary action, which can be a letter of censure, suspension or termination of membership status.

As a complaint is reviewed, it is often apparent that if the parties had been more diligent in the promptness and detail of their communication with each other, a complaint may have been unnecessary. In cases where communication has broken down completely, it is not unusual for the board to review 20 to 30 pages of unanswered e-mails.

While virtually all of the requirements of our employment, and obligations to tenants and clients are spelled out in contracts or lease agreements, it is simply impossible to cover every situation that may develop in a business environment. It is critical to recognize when a situation is not clearly covered in writing and take steps to involve all parties in a discussion of the issue. There must be more, not less, input prior to making a decision and taking action.

When making a decision involving other parties, we should first determine if the situation is clearly covered by the written lease, contract, agreement or bid. …

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