Monday

Managers & Corporate: Bad Relationship Signs

You are a resident just looking to get some assistance about an ongoing issue in your apartment that is going to cost thousands to fix.  You speak to the community manager, then the manager speaks to the regional boss, and he in turns speaks to the corporate boss.  After a week or two, you follow-up only to hear from the community manager, "I have passed on your concern to my boss who is speaking to our corporate office about the matter and I should know something soon."  However, another week or two goes by and still nothing.  So you follow up again and this time the reason for delay has changed only slightly, but still means the same thing--still no help.  Now what do you do?  Contact the health department, the media, file a complaint with the Better Business Bureau--what?  Some residents hope the problem is solved before it comes down to such drastic measures, but sometimes it isn't.

There are those issues that happen behind the scenes that residents shouldn't know about, but what is in darkness, often comes to light.  A corporate boss or property owner may not be a likable or friendly person and unfortunately doesn't get along very well with those who he or she manages.  This person may be demanding or worse insulting.  Ordering his or her people around like slaves while expecting no objections.  Those that are weak-minded and desperate for income will go along with the program, while others who are strong-willed, will not allow the disrespect.

Don't be surprised if you see your favorite community manager, leasing consultant, maintenance guy, service coordinator or others suddenly leave one day.  The apartment management industry is known for having a high turn-over rate especially with leasing consultants; however, what many don't know is that sometimes there is a poison at the top that leaks down to lower-level employees who are out in the field dealing with none other than residents.  If there is no remedy in site for that poison than it will only spread.  In time, it shows up (in cases like the one I started this article with) where a resident doesn't get major repairs done on his or her suite.  When the leak spreads it results in incomplete paperwork, bad accommodations, attitudes, and more.  Managers and leasing consultants may not assist residents as much they once did.  The grounds may go weeks without being tended.  There are those at the corporate office who may not like the staff over at XYZ property for whatever reason, and may overlook their requests, change budget spending or refuse to acknowledge needs while blaming staff for everything that is wrong with the property.

So when you start seeing things going down hill at your community and you know it is owned by a large property management company, don't put all your concerns on lower level management, go straight to the top!  Contact the leasing office and put in additional work order requests while warning staff that you will be escalating the matter if things aren't done.  Other things that you can do to try to get your work order requests completed:  write letters to both the leasing and corporate offices mentioning dates you made your requests, make phone calls, and request a resident meeting  asking that someone from corporate be present.  Now some reading this might say, "If I have to do all this, then there is no reason why I should remain where I am?"  Exactly.  But until your lease is up, you either live with the problem or get a remedy for it.

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Over 20 years office work experience, six years completed college coursework, background in print media and communications, recognized for exceptional attendance and received merit increase for past job performance, self-published author and part-time entrepreneur, Internet marketing and social media experience. Interned for non-profit organization, women's group and community service business. Additional experience: teaching/training others, customer service and sales. Learn more at Nicholl McGuire and Nicholl McGuire Media