I recently attended Catch up with the Property Girls. This is a relatively new event that brings women who work in real estate together.
This event is unique in that the emphasis is on giving women the opportunity to network with like-minded women and discuss, in a safe and honest way, the challenges they face in both their career and personal life.
Leanne Pilkington, director of Laing+Simmons, is the brains behind this event and one of her passions is mentoring young women agents and property managers, which is a big theme for this event.
It will be no great surprise to anyone that property management is an intrinsically stressful and demanding role with competing deadlines and priorities, emotive clients and never-ending ‘emergencies’. With the average tenure of property managers being 18 months, there’s a strong argument for more support in this industry. There is something that you can do at an office level to stop the burn and churn we are experiencing currently. Pairing your more experienced property managers up with newer recruits could not only strengthen your workplace culturally, but also give your team the confidence and added buoyancy to work through the inherent daily challenges of property management.
When it comes to the wisdom that you need to help advance new recruits in their careers, mentors are priceless. They are there to guide and help maximise potential. A mentor will also help to open doors and empower, engage and enable a recruit to focus on strict goals, helping them to realise what they are capable of achieving regardless of the challenges.
Here are some tips for starting up a mentor program:
- Discussions between the mentee and the mentor are confidential.
- Meetings are mentee-driven, so they must take the initiative and do the legwork in the relationship.
- As the mentee, any action points are their responsibility.
- Make it interesting and enjoyable for the mentor; less paperwork, as mentors are usually busy people. All discussions should be fun and goal-focused.
- The mentor will always empower the mentee to make their own decisions and turn them into actions.
- Define the type of help the mentee is looking for in a mentor.
- Establish goals for the mentoring relationship.
- Discuss and agree upon the goals of the relationship and what you, personally, are going to do to make it a successful mentoring relationship.
- Establish communication methods and the frequency of meeting and contact from the beginning.
- Manage expectations and build trust.
Sometimes people don’t even know they need support until they are offered it.
You will see the most value in your property management team if this program is set up properly and both parties invest time and energy to get it right.
Speaking from personal experience as both a mentor and a mentee at LJ Hooker, the investment your team makes in this initiative will come back to them tenfold. When people feel supported, they tend to have more confidence and strength at work; they are happier and look to help others. All of this should go toward longevity and greater productivity in their role. That’s what you call a win-win.