Lead by Example

By Alter, Shannon | Journal of Property Management, September/October 2010 | Go to article overview

Lead by Example


Alter, Shannon, Journal of Property Management


Passion and Positive Energy Can Help Market a Company Vision to Employees

STOCK MARKET CRASHES. BANKRUPT COUNTRIES. VOLCANOES. THERE'S ALWAYS SOMETHING NEW TO CATCH OUR ATTENTION. With layoffs and unemployment at unprecedented highs, our workforce is understandably wary.

Today's business challenges are seemingly endless. How can we market our properties and our companies when there's little money, and often less time?

Here's the secret: It's all about your employees. In the words of Walt Disney, customer satisfaction is directly related to positive interaction with employees. Period. We're often so consumed by just trying to keep our properties filled and rents collected that sometimes we miss the obvious: Happy employees directly impact our bottom line. They are our own best return on investment.

FUTURE SENSE

All too often leadership resembles a covert operation. We don't tell employees where the company is going, and we expect them to not be concerned. Employees are smart. As a colleague says, they can sense if the ship is on the rocks. From their employers, employees want integrity, credibility, a sense of the future and someone to follow. Jack Welch (www.welchway. com) suggests the best way for leaders to gain buy-in and beat skepticism is to "invent the future now."

And it's easy to start. Begin with the small things, like offering recognition for a job well done. In my first job as a management trainee for Westin Hotels, my boss made a point of saying "thank you" to each team member, every day. …

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