A sprinkler pipe bursting at 3am, a bomb-scare alert in peak shopping hours, pigeons invading the food court, graffiti in the entranceway, a broken lift, a customer breakage; Property Management problems range from the critically urgent, to the persistently frustrating to the mundane. How we deal with them and communicate with our landlords is the difference between our clients sleeping well at night or being a ball of stress on high-alert for the next issue!
Property Management done well means tenants and customers have a pleasant (and in many ways uneventful) experience. Good property management is often what goes on behind the scenes; a graceful clean-up here, a discreet but helpful conversation there. Carl Foreman, MD of PM+U says “Running a centre is a bit like being the mayor of a little town; you’ve got to have your ear to the ground, anticipate problems before they happen where possible, respond quickly and decisively when the unexpected arises and just generally maintain the harmony of the place.”
At PM+U we adopt the counter-intuitive attitude of welcoming problems. They are going to arise anyway so we may as well embrace the problem solving part of our role. A ‘can-do’ attitude, a thick skin, determination, a bit of lateral thinking and a Zen-like ability to remain calm are all helpful qualities when it comes to managing these frequent challenges. Carl explains “we plan and prioritise constantly, we ensure deadlines are met and we always leave space for unforeseen issues.”
We give careful consideration to how we keep clients informed at PM+U. If we need to update a property owner about a problem then you can be sure we will also be presenting some strong workable solutions too. There are clearly issues that landlords need to know about urgently, such as those involving reputation management. In such instances we work collaboratively, supporting our clients to a good resolution. However, on many occasions landlords really don’t need to be bothered with the day-to-day problems that we manage. We work hard to develop a trusting relationship with our clients so they know that they can rely on us to do the right thing. As Christian Dalby, our head of Facilities Management puts it “we see it as our job to look after their peace of mind”.