By Rachel Jefferson
Property managers are proud members of the customer service industry. Whether it’s speaking to a prospective resident, discussing market analysis with a home owner, or improving business relationships with a fellow property management professional, having great customer service skills is a must. In the competitive marketplace it is no longer enough to say “please and thank you.” You must go above and beyond the call of duty to meet the demands of every renter, owner, and guest who walks into your property management office.
The most professional and successful property managers will have the following traits in common.
Attentive. You need to pay attention to what a client is actually saying. Truly listen to each and every word, without letting your focus waver. You must be willing to pay attention to the details. I can’t emphasize enough that you should notcheck your email or text messages mid conversation (even though your guest might do it). It’s also important to be on time for appointments and alert clients of cancellations in a timely manner. A real customer service agent must be attentive to the unspoken needs of both residents and homeowners, as well.
Positive. Remaining upbeat and using positive language when presented with the most challenging or frustrating of situations is critical. In simple terms, “keep your cool.” As a property manager you will meet confrontation head on and often without warning. You never know who will walk into your office and for what reason so approaching every situation with a smile and a good attitude will help you resolve issues quickly and effectively. But there is a fine line between positivity and sounding disingenuous or sarcastic, so just be aware of how you’re coming across.
Personable. As a property manager, you need to relate to tenants, owners, and other employees. You must be able to put yourself in another person’s shoes so that you can better understand and respond to unique situations. Everyone is from a different background; however, customer service agents must be able to relate to each person on a one-to-one basis. Most likely you’ve rented in the past or are currently renting—think about how you would like to be treated by your own property manager.