Great commercial property management is dependent on consistent and lasting dedication towards getting things done. Despite this being simple and intuitive, doing so consistently is actually quite difficult. This is because many tasks require coordination with multiple parties and involve many steps, nuances and complexities. As with any process, the more people, steps, nuances, and complexities present, the stronger the likelihood of our progress grinding to a halt. If we aren’t careful, we get caught saying things like:
“I emailed him and haven’t heard back”
“I asked her to do it and they haven’t done it yet”
“We are waiting on quotes”
“I’m not sure what to do next..”
“I haven’t heard back from the landlord”
What weakens our sense of accountability is that these statements are completely reasonable a lot of the time. Everything takes SOME time, and most solutions require a few steps and people. HOWEVER, the problem isn’t with steps or people, it’s with senescence.
Despite not knowing what senescence means (I didn’t), we all understand it. Senescence is the last stage of the fruit ripening process, after the growth, maturation, and ripening stages. Senescence is the stage your half-eaten avocado reaches when you forget about it in a beeswax wrap in the back of your fridge. Senescence is decay.
Just like fruit, the statements above also have a decay stage; where their validity turns and then day after day becomes less meaningful; and eventually harmful to achieving the desired result. They change from being legitimate reasons, to obstacles to progress; from the truth, to a rotten avocado.
Just like fruit are different, all circumstances are different as well, and it takes a high degree of accountability to know when a reason is worth waiting on and when it’s time to move on. The great thing is that deep down, we all know (I repeat: deep down, we all know!). The skill comes from learning to turn this “knowing” into action that propels us forward.
It is not sufficient for property managers to be results orientated; we need to be results obsessed. Sometimes the entire world seems designed for the sole purpose of slowing your progress down, that’s ok. The results obsessed are not impacted by people who have other priorities or are unreliable; they are not impacted by landlords or tenants that don’t get back to them, or things they don’t understand. They wait a moment, think, and then move around, move over, dig under, jump over, push over, climb over, or get a pole vault, catapult, or trampoline (what ever is needed) to help jump over that current obstacle. The above statements are replaced with:
“I didn’t hear back from them via email, so I called him twice and finally got through. It is sorted.”
“I asked her to do it, she didn’t, so I followed up, I’ve been on her and it’s finally sorted!”
“We were waiting on a few quotes. I’ve followed up. After a while, I asked another company who got back to me quickly. Landlord approved and we’re moving forward.”
“I didn’t know what to do, so I talked with Sherry and we figured it out! (Thanks Sherry)”
“The landlord didn’t reply, but I got them on the phone and got their opinion. It is sorted.”
We are tenacious. We are stubborn. We are relentless. We are driven. We are resolute. We are dogged. We are obsessed.
Tip: If you’re stuck, ask for help. Talking it through with someone will often result in the next actionable step becoming obvious.