Communication is the most critical skill a property manager can have. Your success largely depends on communicating clearly and effectively. After all, you communicate with many people daily. Whether with suppliers, tenants, or staff, you always speak with someone.
Property managers who are good communicators are highly sought-after in the industry. Strong relationships are good for business. They lead to customer loyalty and resident retention.
Here are some communication strategies that can help you strengthen your business relationships.
1. Listen to Hear, Not to Answer
As a property manager, you’re expected to provide quick answers to various questions. You must engage your brain and your ears to interpret what is behind the words being said. By actively listening, you build strong personal and professional connections.
Carefully listen to hear the words and the intent behind them. By intently listening, you build good rapport with colleagues and tenants. It’s essential to take the time to understand the issue you are tasked with resolving. Only then can you effectively handle challenging conversations.
Along the way, you garner the confidence, respect, and trust of the people you communicate with.
Effort and Practice
Becoming a good listener requires effort and practice. Even if you have heard the same complaint multiple times, fight the urge to tune out or disconnect. Could you wait until it is your turn to speak? Waiting means letting the other party finish while making them feel like you’re listening to them.
When it is your turn to talk, ask clarifying questions. While the other party speaks, make respectful eye contact.
Similarly, if you’re having a conversation on the phone, use affirmative sounds. Making sounds lets the other person know you’re listening and want them to continue speaking.
2. Controlling Nonverbal Communication
Body language, although unspoken, can be just as powerful as verbal communication. Your body language as a property manager can either weaken or enhance the words you say.
Pay attention to your facial expressions, gestures, and body movements. Your body language and facial expression should harmonize together. When they sync up, you’ll be able to convey what you’re trying to say.
Learn Forward While Speaking
Unfortunately, many people are unaware of their body language. So, they unintentionally make a negative first impression. A simple thing you can do is lean forward as you talk to someone. Now, you don’t want to get too close and make a person feel uncomfortable. But generally, leaning forward makes someone feel you are paying close attention to them. This can work in your favor when you’re trying to rent a unit, for example.
Another simple action is to uncross your arms when you speak. Turning your palms upward is something else you can do. These non-verbals are positive signs that state open-mindedness.
Nod Your Head
Nodding your head encourages the person you are speaking with to communicate freely. Try not to touch your face or fidget, especially during teleconferences. These are signs that you are not confident in what you are saying.
Decipher Their Body Language Too
Besides being in tune with your body language, you must also understand other body languages. Watch their gestures, movements, and eye contact. If you identify a disparity between the words they are saying and their body language, dig deeper. It’s vital to understand what they are trying to say so you can make a good impression.
3. Communication During the Hiring Process
You must pay close attention to potential hires’ verbal and nonverbal clues. Paying attention to certain clues is especially important when looking for critical positions. For example, you may be on the hunt for an apartment maintenance technician.
The perfect apartment maintenance technician is the adhesive that keeps your complex working. They do more than repair leaky faucets and broken A/C units. LeaseLeads goes into depth about how to find the ideal apartment maintenance technician.
Give some forethought to what you want your tech to do. For example, are you looking for someone who does electrical work, major plumbing, and heavy-duty carpentry? Or are you looking for someone to do general upkeep and preventative maintenance? Knowing these answers allows you to communicate your needs in a job posting.
In closing, as a property manager, you must focus on being a confident communicator. Improving your communication can help you build strong relationships.
Focus on positively communicating with others. Perfecting your communication will make you a more successful property manager in the long run.