Following her first year in property management, Danielle Skinner has found that her people skills and organisational tenacity have helped her really love the industry.
When did you first join the PM industry?
12 months ago.
Why did you join the PM industry?
I enjoy dealing with people of all ages and walks of life and I thrive in a fast-paced workplace that is constantly throwing new challenges at me. Property management provides all of this and more.
What were you doing before PM?
I was a functions co-ordinator at a busy establishment and also did a bit of real estate sales for another agency.
What would you like your next career step to be?
To further my skills and knowledge in property management, and eventually direct a property management team.
What piece of technology do you find most useful for your business and why?
The good, ol’ fashioned telephone. My biggest skill is communicating with people and I find this to be the most valuable tool for property management. Communication is the key to keeping everything running smoothly.
What area of PM needs more training focused on it and why?
Keeping your knowledge on legislation updated and relevant, as it is always changing and it can have a big impact on many areas of property management.
What skills does a PM need to be successful?
Communication, organisation and people skills. These are all things that can’t be taught; I think it takes a certain type of person who naturally holds these attributes and can further these skills in order to be successful in the role.
Where do you believe a PM’s responsibilities should start and end?
I believe the role of a PM starts from the moment you wake up and ends the moment you go to sleep. Besides the normal work hours, I always find myself checking up on the exterior of my properties when driving past and constantly communicating with local people after hours. Real estate is a job you need to have a passion for; managing people’s investments is a big responsibility and should not be taken lightly.
How do you deal with disgruntled and aggressive tenants?
In my experience, keep a calm and level head. Take an interest in what they are telling you, be understanding and use your own experiences to relate. I have always found this technique the most effective solution. Nine times out of 10, people will respect you if you show them respect.
What would you be doing if you weren’t in the PM industry?
I have a passion for real estate, so I would possibly be in another role within the real estate industry, whether it be marketing or sales, etc.
What do you enjoy most about your job?
I love that every day is different; you are constantly thrown new challenges and obstacles that usually require their own unique way to be effectively dealt with. It is fast paced and never a bore.
What are the most stressful aspects of your job?
Property management can be very demanding and sometimes all the organisation in the world cannot prepare you for some of the obstacles that occur all of a sudden. Disgruntled tenants and things that are out of your control can sometimes take their toll on you.
How do you relax after a stressful day at work?
I find exercise the best way to wind down after a stressful day. I enjoy social team sports. Sometimes a nice glass of wine or two with friends is a good cure as well.
How would you describe a perfect property management day?
All of the day’s issues resolved by the end of the day. Leaving the office knowing I have done everything in my control and taken all required measures to care for the properties I manage.