management firm may solve community problems
Self-managed buildings often have lower fees, but the lack of professional oversight can lead to headaches for owners. In some instances, repairs and upgrades have taken months or years to complete because personal relationships affect the standards and processes of managing the community. "Hiring a professional management company costs money, but given the hazards of neighbors trying to run a business they all have a personal stake in, I think hiring an outside management company can make sense in the long run," says Karl Swenson, a condo owner in a self-managed building.
why employee conflicts may be the manager's fault
Employee conflict often can be alleviated if the company's executives work hard to foster a positive, team-oriented work environment, Steve Tobak writes. Managers can avoid costly employee conflicts by clearly defining each worker's responsibilities, having effective compensation and review procedures, and holding all parties accountable for their actions.
become a more effective manager
A Harvard Business Review study in 2000 found that a manager's leadership style accounts for 30% of a company's bottom-line profitability -- a number too big to ignore if you're at the helm. Robyn Benincasa writes that you should customize your leadership style based on the employees you oversee, your company's needs and your goals to maximize your leadership success.
have a right to see HOA financial reports
Homeowners who pay into an HOA have every right to see the board's financial statements, certified property manager and broker Barbara Holland writes. If a homeowner suspects the board is using reserve funds for unlawful use, or wants to see where their dues are going, they should request the documents from their management company.
How to find
and maintain the best employees
Part of a manager's duty is acquiring the best employees, but how do you support and cultivate that employee so they remain loyal to your organization? Paul Spiegelman, founder and CEO of The Beryl Companies, says managers need to be able to read an employee's warning signs, nurture their personal goals and build close relationships with them to develop a workforce that will stay for the long haul.
full cost of your decisions
Blockbuster Video's management team learned the hard way that cutting corners can cost a lot more than they imagined. The company refused to make the investments necessary to compete in the modern marketplace, and these decisions turned out to cost the chain more than if they had invested that money in the first place. It's important to make decisions based on strong personal values, because if these are allowed to slip -- even on small decisions -- the price to pay will always be significant, Clayton Christensen writes.
filed during Las Vegas HOA investigation
A lawsuit has been filed that claims several parties, including homeowners associations, a construction company and a community-management company, schemed to take over Las Vegas Valley homeowners associations, causing home values in the subdivisions to drop. The lawsuit alleges that the defendants planned to fraudulently take over HOA boards, file various construction-defect lawsuits and then pay construction contractors to "make superficial repairs that did not address the real underlying defects in the buildings."
like politics, is local, local, local
A record 34% of employees say that their supervisors behave unethically, up from less than a quarter in 2009, according to a Ethics Resource Center survey. That's especially troubling because research suggests that it's workers' immediate managers, rather than top executives, who shape their perception of a company, says Gallup CEO Jim Clifton. "The leader can make breathless remarks about integrity, values, mission and purpose ... but [as an employee] I am going to judge him or her based on the actions of my manager," Clifton says
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