Five Ways to Improve Your Business for the Last Half of 2021

Ready to improve on your property management business? The first half of the year is now past. If you’ve hit your goals for the last two quarters, congratulations! If you’re not where you want to be, it may be time for you to re-evaluate your focus. If you haven’t achieved the goals you’ve set for yourself so far, you’ll likely generate similar results in the rest of the year without changing something. It is easy to get caught up very quickly with all that is happening because it gets so busy so fast.  Unfortunately, the busyness can also lull you into a sense of security that can lead you into a slow decline due to complacency.  If you haven’t already planned and articulated your marketing calendar for the year, you’re already a little behind the eight-ball.  I’ve found it is much better to be consistently working toward better solutions with a well-articulated plan than trying to play catch up all year long.

Because it is so easy to fall into this trap, I’ve identified five ways you can work consistently on the improvement of your property management business and avoid the lure of complacency and decline.

Integrate new ideas into your proven marketing successes. Commit to spend the time to work on your business and not just in it.

Too many property managers don’t take the time to work on their marketing and their business.  They are caught up working in their business and take little time to think about how to really attract new property owners into their businesses. For the rest of this year, resolve that you are going to break out of this stagnant cycle and integrate new ideas into what is working to get more properties into your portfolio.

Reward those who point out problems that you weren’t aware even existed.

In the past with businesses that I’ve owned I’ve introduced new product offerings to clients at the recommendation of employees.  I once had two employees who quantified the number of prospective clients who were asking for a specific product that we didn’t offer and presented their ideas to me. Both were rewarded with new opportunities within my business because of their initiative. Having this attitude ensures that you are constantly innovating and responding to new opportunities because you are listening to what others in the market are saying. You would do well to do the same in your property management business. What systems do you have in place to reward those who bring new ideas or opportunities to you?

Ask for help when you don’t know what to do.

Throughout my career, I have entered markets that I didn’t know anything about initially. I’ve had to ask people I trust for help and guidance as I’ve entered this area. One thing I’ve learned over the years is that it is better to ask for help than try to reinvent the wheel on your own. If the people you know don’t know the answers, look for experts who can guide you and direct you to success.  I recently visited with an entrepreneur who asked me for some advice on how to do something in her business. I gave her direction and advice and within forty-eight hours, she emailed me to tell me what she had already done with a list of five more questions about what to do next. Her initiative to implement and take action as well as continually ask for help at the next step is what this principle is all about. You show your willingness to learn more when you’ve done what you’ve been asked to do and come back with specific questions about what to do next. Are you around mentors who can guide you to the next steps based on your implementation of great advice? If not, you could greatly benefit from being a part of the PMI franchise, where you will have a franchise business coach assigned to help you with specific areas of your property management business. You can learn more about the PMI business systems and how you could utilize them in your property management business by scheduling a time with one of our franchise developers here:

Set target and optimal goals. If you are feeling really ambitious, set optimal plus goals that really stretch you and your team.

It is impossible to hit a target you can’t see, yet many entrepreneurs try to do just that without setting higher goals for themselves from year to year. The only way performance will improve is if you start measuring everything and truly care about what you find. You’ve got to focus on the critical success factors that will make a difference, but improving your performance won’t happen if you don’t focus on it. Are the goals that you’re setting for your business motivating or demotivating you? If you aren’t consistently taking action daily on your most important priorities, your target and optimal goals won’t happen.

Make incremental improvements week in and week out. Steadiness will always win over flash in the pan implementation followed by long periods of inactivity.

What are some things you could do that would help owners for whom you are currently managing properties feel important and special so that they feel they are getting preferential treatment as one of your valued clients? How often are you sharing new investment opportunities to them of additional properties that you could manage for them?

The way you answer those questions reveals a lot about you. Be steady in your improvements. It is easy to get overwhelmed in this business. Choose what battles you will focus on and that you can and will win.

Here are two areas where you should focus on making incremental improvements this month:

Who you sell to: Don’t waste time attracting property owners that are bad for your business. Think of who your best customers are: they never complain about your management fees, they think your service and quality is better than your competitors, and they were referred to you by other property owners who also own properties that you manage. Focus on where these customers came from and then advertise more in those areas and advertise less in the areas where you got the problem clients who are only interested in the lowest price.

Start calling 1 property owner who you manage proeprties for every day and make this a habit. Have a goal to call at least five property owners in your portfolio a week at a minimum. If you don’t have more than five owners, then reach out to prospective clients. By doing this, you will find out so much from those you serve and will find out the little things you may have missed. You will also learn a lot from those who weren’t happy with your service as well. By doing this, you will be able to catch small situations and resolve them quickly before they become bigger issues. Start this habit now. I really like this statement by Bill Gates: “Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning.”

It takes commitment to implement what I’ve just talked about. A great example of this kind of commitment is found in the goal that many have of losing weight each year. We may go out and buy books on how to lose weight. We may not even read the book, but the real problem is that we don’t really want to lose weight. We will always ignore the “how to” until the “want to” is strong enough. The diet doesn’t matter, it is the commitment to do it. Marvin Ashton once observed: “The difference between those who are committed and those who are not is the difference between the words want and will.”

One of my favorite statements by author Steve Chandler is that: “People confuse courage with practice. It is a real misconception that we need courage. People believe that courage is needed. The most important thing is to take action first, even if you are afraid while you are doing. People ruin their lives by thinking that courage is the issue, when it really isn’t. It is action. You have to practice and do it and do it and do it and then you will get better at it.”

He continues: “What about someone who jumps out of a helicopter or plane at a training school?  What is it that they are afraid of: heights or jumping? When they jump 40 times or more, they no longer are afraid of jumping. They have practiced so many times that they no longer need courage.

Action is what we need to commit to, not trying to muster up courage. All of our actions become our defining moments.”

Get back out and do what needs to be done in your property management business, even if you’ve made mistakes in the past. The more you practice and take action, the better your business will get and the better you will get.


James Butler

James Butler is Director of Franchise Development at Property Management, Inc. He has built four companies from the start-up phase to over a million dollars in revenue. He is the author of the best-selling book The System is the Secret and helps entrepreneurs take action in their businesses. He and his wife Heather are the parents of five children.