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Ten Ways Property Managers Can Switch-Off After Hours

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Why is it so hard for property managers to switch off afterhours?

Perhaps it is because property management requires a lot of energy, focus but most of all, ‘the care factor’ -and lots of it!

But it’s also the care factor that means we are at higher risk of taking our work home with us to dwell upon, finding it really hard to switch off.

Most of these keys were shared as part of a Facebook post where we asked our audience how do they switch-off after-hours.

Not part of our Facebook page? Click here to ‘like’ our page.

Here are ten ways you can switch off:

1-   Induct Your Tradespeople- most repairs that occur after-hours are either plumbing or electrical, and some might need a handyman. Induct your tradespeople to understand how to handle calls after-hours. After-hours calls must only be attended to if they are emergencies (also explain the nature of an emergency), then let your new tenants know your policy at sign-up and your current tenants by letter. Warn them that anything attended to after-hours must be an emergency (as outlined in the induction process or letter) otherwise they may be at risk of paying part of or the full cost involved of the after-hours callout. Then let your owners know what your policy is.

2-   Educate and induct your availability- let your owners and tenants know you are available, but during business hours and what system is available for after-hours emergency repair calls. Once people know, they should not have a problem with you being unavailable outside of working hours.Its all about training them ahead of time!

3-   Have an effective after-hours phone message- letting people know after hours that you’re unavailable and what they can do in an emergency for repairs really will deal with a lot of after-hours calls. Your after-hours message could be:

“Hi, this is (name) and I’m unavailable at the moment. If you are calling after-hours about an emergencyrepair and cannot wait until the next business day, please call: Bill the plumber on (number), or John the electrician on (number). Otherwise please leave a message and I will get back you tomorrow or the next business day.”

This type of message helps people prioritise their request.

4-   Don’t give out your mobile number- yes, many property managers don’t give out a mobile number on their business card and the office is trained not to make it available, asking all queries and calls to come by email, or an office number only. The property manager that has an issue with doing this has never tried it and the ones that have,swear by it. At the end of the day, it’s those property managers that have less burnout because they can switch-off more effectively after-hours.

5-  Get active- when you get home, being active with something completely different helps you to take your mind off the job. Some property managers say they’re forced to switch off as they have a family to look after the moment they walk through the door. Others go the gym and also walk the dog. Work out what works for you!

6-   Write out your to-do list- Before you go home, write out what you need to do for the next day. This helps you to take your mind off the job, because technically all you need to worry about is right there waiting for you in a list for the next day. You don’t have to be dwelling on it until then!

7-  Drink Wine!- We had so many people say they enjoy drinking some wine after a hard day, and this assists them to switch-off. We felt we’d better include this as so many people mentioned it!

8-  Turn your phone off- If you’ve set up your tradies to take after-hours calls, and you’ve got a good message, why do you still need to be on call? Just having your phone on, knowing it could ring any moment means you still cannot switch off.

9-   Switch off all your gadgets- get into the habit of ‘digital detox’ as best you can. Or at least the work ‘kind of digital’ on your laptop or even on an iPad. Don’t look at your work emails. On the weekends, some people also go to the extent of taking off their watch, as ‘watching time’ was very much part of a work practice.

10-  Deal with the issue NOW!- If you’ve been procrastinating all day on an issue and deliberately ignoring it, then allowing it to ‘fester’ overnight in the corners of your mind, isn’t good practice. Just deal with it before you go home, and you’ll feel so much better for it when you leave the office.

 

Darren Hunter- darrenhunter.com
National Property Management Trainer, Consultant and Systems Specialist
Associate of BWT (Bob Walters Team)
Australia’s leading property management trainers and consultants

Mobile: 0468 800 730
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Web: www.darrenhunter.com