Property Management Lessons from the Golden Globes

Did you watch the Golden Globes last night? If you missed it, you missed out. There were gorgeous movie stars, gorgeous dresses, flowing champagne, George Clooney in a tuxedo and property management lessons. Seriously.

In case you missed it, here are some property management lessons I gleaned from watching the awards show.

Go for mass appeal. Unlike the Emmys or the Oscars, the Golden Globes give awards for both movies and television. And they also have separate categories for comedies and dramas. There’s pretty much something for everyone, unless you’re one of those people who only likes the book, but even then you could watch the awards and explain to everyone in earshot that Piper Kerman’s Orange is the New Black book is way, way better than the Netflix show. That’s something everyone could enjoy! This is something to think about for your resident events. Do you only have exercise classes? Or kids’ parties? Or happy hours? Try to find something that will appeal to a broader range of residents. (Hint: It always, always should include a make-your-own-sundae station.) You’ll get more people participating that way, which will lead to better events and happier residents.

Be Spontaneous. One of the most fun moments of the night occurred during a skit where Margaret Cho, in character as a North Korean entertainment reporter, wants a pictures with Meryl Streep. Which wasn’t that exciting a skit. But then Benedict Cumberbatch photobombed the picture. It was unexpected, and it was funny, and it is pretty much all that anyone remembers from that skit. Spontaneity can definitely be a good thing. When your showing prospective residents the community, go “off script.” It sounds boring when you recite the same facts over and over again and show no emotion. Point out your personal favorite parts of a unit or tell an anecdote about apartment life there. Mix it up a little, and don’t be afraid to try new things.

Stick with a winning formula. While it was great to see some spontaneity at the Golden Globes, that doesn’t mean that everything was on the fly. In fact, they kept the same hosts they had the previous two years—Amy Poehler and Tina Fey, who are awesome and hilarious. Hosts can be pretty awful at these types of awards (such as Anne Hathaway and James Franco at the Oscars a few years ago), so it was nice going in and knowing that the hosts would be funny. So if you have something that works well at your community, such as a way to easily pay rent or a way for residents to get packages, don’t change it up for the sake of change. If it’s not broken, why fix it? (But if it is broken, have a way for renters to easily let maintenance know, and then have a quick turnaround for fixing it. Obviously.)

Don’t be afraid of teamwork. I’m sure it’s shocking to hear, but there are a ton of big egos in Hollywood. There’s always stories of “diva” behavior, or actors refusing to work with directors, etc. Luckily, Poehler and Fey seemingly put their egos aside and worked together. And they were great together. At your community, are you encouraging teamwork? For example, some communities offer incentives to leasing agents who lease the most apartments. But then everyone is competing against each other. Your building will run a lot smoother if everyone works together as a team.

Always educate yourself. I consider myself a pretty big pop-culture enthusiast. (I think this is best exemplified when, years ago, Heath Ledger died, and my coworkers at the time all texted me to make sure that I heard and that I was OK. And, yes, of course I had heard, and yes, I was fine.) But, at this year’s Golden Globes, I hadn’t seen roughly 95 percent of the movies and television shows that were nominated. Maybe it’s because some of the movies weren’t in wide release. Maybe there were just too many options, and too many platforms to watch everything (Movie theaters! Premium cable! Netflix! Amazon Prime!) Maybe it’s because I have a kid now so I couldn’t get to the movies as often as I would have liked. But, really, if I put in the time, I could have seen a big chunk of the nominations. It’s my own fault, and I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to forgive myself. As a property manager, have you become compliant? Sure, you have a community Facebook page, but is that what the industry is still using? Maybe you need an app for the community to stay competitive. Keep up with industry standards. Go to conferences, read up on industry blogs and talk to your colleagues to see what’s going on out there. Or, you too, will end up missing out on your metaphorical Birdman.

When all else fails, have George Clooney show up in a tuxedo. I mean, it couldn’t hurt, right?

What else can property managers learn from the Golden Globes?

-Jessica Fiur, Senior Editor