IS THERE EVER ENOUGH TIME?

 

Do you ever wonder where time has gone?  If you are like most people then you know that there never seems to be enough time.  Serious study has been devoted by efficiency experts to find the best ways to make the most use of our time.  We will discuss time management.  Some of the solutions are no-brainers, yet sometimes it is less obvious moments that cause a loss in productivity.

If you are naturally inclined to live a busy, fast-paced life you might notice that a rigid schedule can maintain order and enhance productivity.  The predictable and planned often do lead to accomplishing goals. Yet when the unexpected occurs such as traffic, sickness, childcare glitches then you can suddenly find yourself feeling overwhelmed and off track.

It seems to be an oxymoron when trying to be more productive to hear someone say take time to relax.  There is something to be said for taking a well-deserved vacation, or simpler moments in the work day to go on a short walk.  Unfortunately, today’s fast-paced society has given a green light to go and go as fast as you can, all day, every day.  This ‘Type A’ living can be detrimental to your health. Taking breaks has been proven to reduce the stress that puts you at medical risk.

Another thing to consider are the things that steal time.  In this modern age, we are in constant contact with the world.  We wear smartwatches, carry cell phones, and travel with tablets and laptops.  We are connected 24/7.  Checking emails and surfing social media can easily rob our time.  The next time you are in a public place look at those nearby.  More often than naught, they will be looking at their phones not engaging with each other.  In the workplace being ultra-connected can be counterproductive.  Avoid distractions by scheduling blocks of time to interact with emails, texts, and social media.

There are other less obvious things that interfere with productivity.  Be aware of when you work best, and save more challenging tasks for that time of day whenever possible. When we try to do things outside of our body’s natural rhythm, we can find it harder to stay focused.   Keep in mind creature comforts have an impact, such as getting enough sleep or being hungry.

Good record keeping is essential to working more effectively.  For many people, untidy work areas and clutter can create mental blocks.  If you find yourself procrastinating or searching for lost items, take a look around your physical and digital workspace. Start each morning or end each day with reorganizing and decluttering your desk.  If you lack inspiration, just spend a few moments searching for ideas on Pinterest. By doing this you will quickly see that some people have too much time on their hands.  Although joking aside, there are many great ideas to save time and money.

Finally, we make it to the obvious productivity tool: the list. There are endless ways to create a good to-do list.  A popular way of list making is to create a priority matrix.  By dividing tasks into 4 quadrants it is easy to prioritize.  The labels can vary, but usually gives each square a status like: do now, do later, urgent, or not urgent.   Once you have a list, is there anything that can be delegated to someone else? Decide which things can be broken down into smaller tasks.

At Newby Management we value strong work ethic, but also value serving others.  These two ideals are well paired together, yet sometimes clash when we are swamped with work.  During these moments you may feel compelled to keep at a work task.  It is easy to find yourself annoyed at having to direct focus to a resident coming in simply to chat. It is in these moments that your response can have an immense impact on the way you are perceived in your community.  Think about the Bible story of Mary and Martha.  Jesus put emphasis on knowing when it is important to lavish in the social rather than focusing solely on the tasks at hand.  While there are moments that you cannot have a conversation, the way that is conveyed by your body language will speak volumes about your character.

Setting the Right Tone and Why

 

Fun and friends at Camelot East in Sarasota.

Community managers often set the tone for the mood of their communities. This phenomenon can be observed in other business environments as well, where the front line management often sets the tone. These subtle atmospheric influences can be noted in other social scenarios such as churches and schools.  Pretty much anywhere that people come together as groups we can see this underlying trend. resident relations, serving residents, manufactured home community, 55+ community Florida, property management, manufactured home property management, RV property Management

Something unique to note about community relations, in particular, is that if the manager of a community is perceived as warm and friendly there are likely to be happy and satisfied residents. There are some theories behind this, and they all involve the give and take of relationships.  In a community setting, the manager will often find themselves in delicate role balancing relationships, rules, and conflict.

Relationships are important. Even in the animal world, there are many kinds of animals that appear to be engaged in friendship and deep connections to one another.  This bonding is often essential to survival.  The animals with the strongest social networks tend to live the longest. It is also notable that for people that connection is also a factor in health and longevity.

 

As humans we bond over food, through laughter, singing, dancing, telling stories and empathizing with one another. So why then is it so hard to make new friends as an adult? We deeply need connection, yet as we age at times we find ourselves sometimes isolated.  As you get older, making friends is more challenging than the days of running up to some random kid on the playground and becoming an instant BFF.  Here are some of the reasons it is staunchly more difficult as an adult.

•More obligations
•Meeting fewer people
•Exhaustion
•Fear of the unknown

What do you look for in a new friend? Think about how much of what you think makes a good friend is representative of yourself?  Many of us make friends with people that have similar interests and connections.  Joining a club, volunteering, engaging in activities are great ways to meet new people.  Perhaps you already are part of a community but are not finding it easy to meet others.  Here are some helpful things to consider.

•Look for common interests
•Be consistent
•Radiate joy
•Be Welcoming

Most of us have some fear of rejection. Yes, even the bravest of extroverts. Let’s look at the list closer. When we find things in common, it is easier to strike up a conversation.  Be welcoming and be consistent. Show up at the same events, shop at the same time of day.  Let yourself become a familiar face.  Create a routine, where you immerse yourself in your environment.  It takes more than just being present though, radiate joy.  Give the first smile or quick wave.   Think of some leading questions that give an opportunity for thoughtful answers.  Avoid being negative or gossiping, as those can leave a bad taste in the mouth of a potential friend.

If you are a community manager reading this, take an introspective look at the kind of environment you are creating within your community.   Do you instinctively smile and warmly greet guests, even when you are inundated with work issues and other conflicts.  Do you encourage your residents to gather by hosting events?  Events can be simple as coffee and walking clubs.  Do you encourage residents to solve problems with one another, rather than listening as they spew negativity and gossip about others?   Many times, the community manager can help resolve conflict and create new friendships by focusing on handling the conflict right at the source.  Often a small misunderstanding not handled effectively can lead to great woes.  Remind yourself that as the community manager you are setting the tone for your community, and that has immense relational repercussions or can be deeply rewarding when done well.

Why Manufactured Home Communities Need Involved Management

property management, resident services, serving residents, manufactured home community, manufactured home property management, resident relations, newby management, tim newby, newby management fl, property management fl
Tim Newby, CEO of Newby Management, serves residents cake at Camelot Lakes during their annual Summer BBQ.

A manufactured home community can seem like a business investment. It can be easy to forget that each community is a living, breathing entity that has its own individual character and personality. There isn’t a magical formula for managing manufactured home communities, and that’s why you need a hands-on property management company.

At Newby Management, we have been serving manufactured home and RV communities for 40 years. This has given us the experience we need to foster communities where people love to live. We know what works and what doesn’t, and we’re always trying to better ourselves as a company.

We have set certain standards for ourselves, like being close to our communities. This allows us the benefit of face-to-face interaction on a regular basis. It means being able to respond quickly in the event of crisis. It means being present and knowledgeable on all aspects of the community. A property management company who wasn’t readily available would not be able to accomplish this.

As manufactured home community property managers, being onsite means you can be aware of problems and address them proactively. You won’t have to wait for something to be in disrepair before you hear about it. If the pool looks dirty or the bushes need to be trimmed you’ll be  able to take the steps necessary to correct the problem.

This hands-on approach is carried out daily by regional managers who oversee specific communities and make regular onsite visits. They become familiar with each of their communities, the residents and the specific issues and concerns that each community might face. It’s this level of customized care that sets Newby Management apart from other companies.

Hands-off management companies will often try to apply a one-size-fits-all solution to each community. While these solutions may act as a band-aid for the community in the short term, they will not address the long-term needs of the community as a whole.

Having an involved management company sometimes means that every team member helps resolve issues that may arise within a community. At the community level, our team members have personal relationships with our corporate staff that makes it easy for them to handle everyday problems with ease. Plus, the community managers can speak directly to the person who can handle their specific issue.

As a Christian company, we also pay special attention to the needs of both our team members and residents. This often means going above and beyond to offer specialized service and care. Whether it’s prayers, our chaplaincy program or something more, we strive to provide personal care to our communities.

Managing manufactured home communities requires knowledge of a constantly changing product, the most important aspect of which is people. It’s requires sensitivity, availability and a strong business sense. These are all strengthened and added to when a hands-on management company is present.

How do you handle the demands of your manufactured home community?

Why a Christian Company Prays Every Morning

prayer, christian corporate company, property management company, corporate prayer

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” Philippians 4:6

At Newby Management’s corporate office, the work day begins with prayer. At 8:30 everyone gathers together to bring prayer requests for themselves, loved ones, team members and the company. It’s a time for team members to lift each other up in prayer.

In doing this, the company has created a culture where team members feel confident in sharing their struggles. Rather than feeling alone in their problems, everyone knows they have a work family surrounding them, supporting them and caring for them.

Prayers aren’t just lifted up in the morning though. If team members in the corporate office or the field are experiencing something major, the team will stop what they are doing and meet together to pray. It isn’t uncommon to find the team gathered in the hall praying for someone.

This culture is about more than prayer. It’s about an entire company taking the time to put people first, it’s about feeling safe in the workplace, it’s about knowing that God is bigger than our problems. Whether it’s family trouble, illness or problems at work, our team members feel comfortable bringing them to the table.

When it’s something that a team member might not feel comfortable sharing at the time, they ask for unspoken prayers. These unspoken prayers are something we’ve all dealt with from time to time. They are the things we aren’t ready share or don’t know how to. When those come up we lift them up to God too. We know he hears even the prayers we aren’t ready to speak yet.

It’s not common to hear of a company that starts each day with prayer. At Newby Management it’s acts like this that make it such a great place to work. From prayer and Bible studies at staff meetings to the corporate chaplain and Bible program, it all contributes to a workplace that loves God and people.

5 Ideas to Serve Residents in Your Manufactured Home Community

Serving your residents is important. At Newby Management, it’s one of the most important things we do. If you’re at a loss for how to serve residents in your manufactured home community, here at 5 ways our team members go above and beyond in our communities.

1. Holiday Cheer
mobile home property management, manufactured home property management, holiday cheer, resident relations, serving residents

The holidays are fast approaching, and as they do we are gearing up for spreading some holiday cheer to our residents. Each year, we pack food bags full of non-perishable items for the needy families in our communities. It’s a simple act, but it helps alleviate some of the stress that comes with the holidays. We also deliver poinsettias to families who could use a little cheer. These are great ideas to begin implementing in your own communities.

2. Involve Residents
resident relations, serving residents, manufactured home communities, rv communities

 

When things are happening in your community, it can be tempting to limit your resident’s knowledge on the topic. At Newby Management, we encourage resident involvement in community issues and happenings. Not only does it help residents feel at ease when changes are being made, it also helps them feel involved. In one of our communities, Camelot Lakes, the team members held a pre-construction party to help prepare residents for what was to come. It was a great way to answer questions and give residents a good feeling about the future.

3. Consider Your Surroundings
Property Management Florida, Manufactured Home Property Management, RV Property Management, Hurricane Preparedness

What do we mean by this? Think of the state in which your communities are built. Does it snow? Does it rain a lot? What unique challenges does your state face? In Florida, our manufactured home communities are susceptible to hurricanes. That’s why Newby Management established the Newby Management Emergency Action Team (NEAT) in 2005 to respond to disasters that may occur in our communities. These disasters include hurricanes, fire, tornadoes, flooding and terrorism. The goal for NEAT at the community level is to equip community management to be prepared to deal with disasters when they happen within their communities in a professional and organized manner, that will help protect people and property. In this way, we are serving the residents and meeting their needs.

4. Establish a Servant Heart
serving residents, resident relations, manufactured home communities, rv communities

At Newby Management, we try to encourage all our team members to establish a servant’s heart. This is the most consistent way to serve residents. Having a servant’s heart means serving others without expectations. For example, we don’t serve our residents with the expectation that they never have complaints, refer us new residents or bring baked goods to the office. We do it out of humility, love and respect for those we are called to serve. When you consider serving a blessing, it becomes something you want to do, instead of something you have to do.

5. Do Random Acts of Kindness

manufactured home communities, mobile home communities, serving residents, resident relations

We serve our residents in some many ways every day. Many of them are tangible and business-related. These are expected and required of a management company. What’s unexpected is going above and beyond in service and care. Random acts of kindness are so special because most times they’ll never be traced back to you. When they are, you can remind people to pay it forward. Do you know of a lonely resident’s birthday? Drop a card in their mailbox. See a resident with a really nicely manicured lawn? Stop by a let them know! Have a resident who is always offering to help out? Send them a thank you note. These simple acts are great ways to serve residents, but are also great ways to find yourself doing a lot more smiling.

How to Serve Residents at the Holidays with a Single Bag

service, serving christ, christian company,acts of service, property management, property management florida, florida property management company, mobile homes, manufactured homesRows of Cherrios lined the walls and boxes of food filled the conference room. For one day, the team members at Newby Management turned into a food packing assembly line.  As holiday music plays, team members gather to serve residents. For some team members, like Kelly Horalek, a corporate office accountant, this is her favorite day of the year.

At the holidays especially, we notice the needs of people around us. At Newby Management, the team noticed that some residents were struggling to feed their families, something that becomes especially difficult around Christmas. That was when they started delivering holiday food bags to residents in their communities who needed an extra hand.

This year the corporate office team packed an astounding 1,500 pounds of nonperishable food. It’s the kind of food most people take for granted, like peanut butter and jelly or oatmeal. But for some families, those staple items will go a long way.service, serving christ, christian company,acts of service, property management, property management florida, florida property management company, mobile homes, manufactured homes

138 bags were given away in total. The bags are personally delivered by a corporate team member, so the residents aren’t just getting food, they are getting encouragement too. While some residents need food care packages, others just need a bit of holiday cheer. For residents who had a difficult year, the team delivered fresh poinsettias to their homes. It’s just a simple reminder that they are being thought about during the holidays.

Serving residents in your mobile home community during the holidays can take on many different forms. Whether you do something big or something small, know that it can go a long way to boosting morale in your community. Sometimes the best thing you can do is to meet people where they are and love them.

Merry Christmas, from everyone at Newby Management.

See More Photos from the food drive on our Facebook page!

The Three C’s that Will Change the Way You Hire

Ruth Hall, a treasured Newby Manaement team member who retired after 21 years of service.

What makes a good team member? At Newby Management, our team is carefully selected based on three primary principles for hiring. When you follow these principles, you’ll find that your team is more engaged, more teachable and more willing to grow with the company.

In hiring, there’s a common phrase “we hire people for what they know, and fire them for who they are.” When we value skills over spirits, we’re making a huge mistake. That’s why the Three C’s + 1 of Hiring are so important- Character, Chemistry, Competency and a Spirit of Charging. Too often, team members are primarily chosen based on competency, but that doesn’t create the best team possible. We’re going to show you how Newby Management hires the right team member for the right position.

CHARACTER: At Newby Management, there’s a culture based around Christ-like service. Our team is helpful, caring, thoughtful and giving. It’s a team that comes together in times of happiness and crisis to stand before the Lord in prayer, to lift each other up and to help out those in need. You’ll find people stepping up to take action without being asked to help other team members. They embody the culture of Newby Management, which helps all team members work well together from the start.

CHEMISTRY: As discussed above, it’s important that a team member fit with the culture of your company. At Newby Management, we do a series of interviews and personality tests to ensure that each new team member has the right chemistry to gel with our current team. This involves looking at their character and spirit and learning about who they are as a person, which is a vital step in the hiring process.

COMPETENCY: This is often the most valued trait when hiring a new team member. At Newby Management, competency is important, but when we find a team member who’s chemistry and character fits, we try to look for a position that will suite them. Sometimes it’s a different position than the one they applied for, sometimes it’s a position that doesn’t exist yet. When people have the skill sets they need to succeed, we look for the +1 of the Three C’s: a Spirit of Charging.

SPIRIT OF CHARGING: Does a team member take initiative to get the job done? These team members take charge and will go above and beyond the call of duty, pioneering new phases and new ventures that help move the company forward. They are always looking for new opportunities and creating them.

At Newby Management, our HR department takes the Three C’s +1 into account and then starts the process of determining the specific gifts and talents of the candidate. Our current team has a depth of service that you won’t find anywhere else in the industry.

Are you interested in learning more about how to hire the right team members for the right positions in your manufactured home or RV community? Check out our website, learn more about our team and contact us to see how we can help!

Just One Word Will Change Your Customer Service

resident relations, property management, property management company, manufactured home, resident services One of the first things we learn as children is our name. It’s our identity. It’s often the first thing someone knows about us. When someone uses our name, we feel connected.

At Newby Management, the first of our Three Steps of Service states: “Always use a warm and sincere greeting. Use a person’s name if and when possible.” We covered the importance of using a warm and sincere greeting, and today we will discuss the importance of using a person’s name.

Imagine you go to a local coffee shop for the first time. The owner introduces himself, chats with you and makes you a latte. The next time you go in, the owner remembers your name and drink order. You’ll likely leave that coffee shop feeling very positive about your experience. You’ll feel appreciated as a person and as a customer.

We train our team members to use people’s names when possible because it not only encourages good customer service, it also encourages compassion. The simple act of using someone’s name can make their entire experience with you more positive. This is especially true if they are coming in to voice a complaint. When you use their name, they will feel as though they are important and that their issue will be addressed.

Remembering resident names may feel like a challenge if you’re bad with names. We have a few tips to help you start getting those names down.

  1. Repeat their name out loud. For example, if they say their name is Jerry you can say “It’s nice to meet you, Jerry.”
  2. Write their name down.
  3. Associate their name with a picture or another person. Have you ever met someone and they said “Well, I won’t forget your name! It’s my dad’s name.” Think of a way to associate their name with something already in your memory.
  4. Stay focused on the person as you interact and continue to use their name throughout the conversation.
  5. Write down a small fact you learned about them next to their name, like “Jerry, from Ohio with two dogs.”

It’s easy to forget the importance of using someone’s name. In fact, it’s one of the most important resident relations tips we can give. If you’ve never been good at remembering names take it one person at a time. You’ll start seeing a difference in the way you interact with people right away!

How a Wallet-Sized Piece of Paper Helps One Property Management Company

credo cards, team work, resident relations, guest relations, customer serviceWhether your team is large or small it can be hard to get everyone rowing in the same direction. What can you do to give your team direction? Make sure they know what’s expected of them at all times. At Newby Management, we help our team members stay the course with a wallet-sized Credo Card that defines our team’s goals each day. When we all remember these simple statements, we can present a unified front, offer better customer service and keep our team moving together.

In fact, the Ritz-Carlton, a top contender for customer engagement reads their Credo Card aloud each morning in an all-staff meeting dubbed “the line-up”. Their wallet-sized Credo Card is part of the Ritz-Carlton team members daily uniform. This small card helps keep their team members on track so they can offer the best customer service possible, and it shows. Ritz-Carlton consistently wins the the top spot in PeopleMetrics’ Most Engaged Customers study.

Newby Management’s Credo Card reads as follows:

Smile! Always maintain positive eye contact.

Smiling is a great way for our team members to communicate that we are here to serve happily. Much like at other service-based organizations, we want our guests, residents, and vendors to know that we are serving with pleasure and they are our top priority. Plus it takes 43 muscles to frown, but only 17 to smile, so let’s see those pearly whites!

Uncompromising levels of cleanliness are the responsibility of each team member.

Cleanliness is one way to show that we are proud of our community and work environment. Part of keeping our spaces uncompromisingly clean is to ensure that each team member takes responsibility for not only their own messes, but the daily needs of the community. When we all work together, we can keep our environments looking professional to help increase work productivity and offer good first impressions to all who visit.

Create a positive work environment. Practice teamwork.

Teamwork isn’t just good for the company, it’s good for the team members too. In fact, about 75% of employers rate team work and collaboration as “very important”. When we all work together, we can accomplish our goals faster, but also in a more diversified way. We learn different ways of doing things and we come together to realize a common goal. That’s how strong teams are built.

Be an ambassador of your community inside and outside of the work place.

We should all be our community’s best ambassador. Each team member is helping to shape the community’s story one day at a time. This means that we accept and live out the company’s core values not just at work, but in our lives. It means being as enthusiastic about your position at 6 PM as you are at 6 AM. It means sharing that joy with others and letting it become part of who you are.

Any team member who receives a resident complaint “owns” it. A one-hour response time is the goal.

Have you ever placed a customer-service call to a company when you were really upset and somehow everyone you talked to told you that you needed to speak with someone else to get your issue resolved? It’s not only frustrating, but also makes you feel devalued and even more annoyed. You start to wonder if there is anyone at the company who can actually help you. At Newby Management we have a different approach. If we receive the complaint, we help solve it from start to finish. Even if other team members need to get involved, it’s the responsibility of the first team member to own the complaint and follow through.

Escort residents and guests rather than pointing out directions to another area of your community.

Escorting residents and guests to their destination shows them that you not only have time for them, but respect them. Excellent customer service companies like Publix know this to be true. If you’ve ever asked where the bread is in a Publix before, chances are the team member stopped what they were doing and walked you to the isle. They let you know that you were more important than whatever task they were doing. That’s what we strive for at Newby Management.

Be knowledgeable of all Newby Management communities (location, amenities, etc.).

Being knowledgeable about your community amenities shows that you have a commitment to the community. You are telling your guest, resident or vendor that you love the community and know it inside and out. If you aren’t sure about basic community amenities it shows that you don’t care to learn about the place where you work, therefore you probably don’t care about the people either and that’s not a good sign. People feel confident when you have the knowledge, and especially insider knowledge, on the place where they call home or want to call home.

Use proper telephone etiquette. Always answer with a smile.

Often times, phone interactions are people’s first impression of a community or business. We want them to know that their call is important and that their needs are respected. People can tell when you answer with a smile and are ready to help them. At Newby Management, our team members answer by saying “Hello, thank your for calling Newby Management, this is Mary. How may I serve you?”. Right away, the person on the other end of the line knows we are happy to be speaking to them and are ready to serve.

Work clothing should be clean and neat. Community shirts are to be worn when and where appropriate.

When you dress nice you feel nice, and that means you are more likely to be productive. It’s true! A study published by the journal Social Psychological and Personality Science, showed that people engage in higher levels of abstract thinking when they dressed up, compared to when they dressed down. So dressing for success is not just good for your looks, it’s good for your brain too. Making sure to wear the proper team uniform also presents an organized and put-together company that people can trust.

Protecting the assets of your community is the responsibility of every team member.

When team members think of the community and the assets inside them as their own, they are much easier to protect. It’s the responsibility of all our team members to ensure that our community’s are protected. When we work together, we’ll see that less incidents happen and that our community’s run smoothly and efficiently with happy team members and happy residents.

How do you feel about Credo Cards? Does your community use them? Are your team members rowing in the same direction? Learn more about how Newby Management builds up and encourages both residents and team members by checking out more blog posts or browsing our website.