Five techniques associations can use to make members happier are not difficult or expensive.
Charlotte, NC (PRWEB) September 19, 2013
Association Management Group (AMG) President, Paul Mengert, whose firm has achieved outstanding customer satisfaction results, says there are five easy steps any association or association manager can take to increase satisfaction.
Here is what Mengert had to say:
1. Return Calls -- This sounds too simple; however, after teaching hundreds of association seminars across the country, the number one reason for homeowner dissatisfaction is failure of the manager or board members to respond in a timely fashion.
2. Be Transparent -- Again, this sounds too simple; just tell people what's going on. I have seen many Association disputes stem from boards that are reluctant to share facts with homeowners. I have rarely seen board members act poorly (on purpose), but sometimes boards don't relish advertising difficult decisions. I recommend associations develop a policy of sharing reasonable information with homeowners so that when an uncomfortable situation arises, a decision doesn't have to be made on a case by case basis. Keep in mind there are situations (for legal reasons) when an association is well within its right and perhaps has a duty to keep certain information confidential such as personnel, legal and collection matters.
3. Make Communications Simple -- I like the sixth grade test…if the average sixth-grader can't understand what we're talking about, you haven't made it clear enough. It's not that association directors or homeowners aren't intelligent, most are, but most will not spend very long analyzing what we are trying to communicate. A little extra researching and more succinct text or words will make things easier for people to understand. Remember, if it appears too complicated, many people will not understand it and assume it's wrong. In most cases, fewer and smaller words are better.
4. Maintain Friendly Disposition -- Again, pretty easy. Just be friendly and nice to people. Even if faced with a difficult conversation, there's no additional cost for being nice.
5. Hire Quality Contractors -- Few associations get in trouble for hiring high quality contractors. Conversely, many problems stem from well-intentioned boards that hired an inexpensive contractor "to save money" but ended up with inferior work. Boards actually get few compliments for hiring the "cheap" but will get a lot of criticism for contracting for poor work. I highly recommend that associations focus first on hiring high-quality vendors and only then make sure they can also achieve competitive pricing.
Paul Mengert's organization, Association Management Group (or AMG as it is often known) has 6 locations in the Carolinas, features state of the art management techniques as well as “hands on” customer service that have enabled AMG to obtain better than 98% overall customer satisfaction. AMG’s unique and proprietary management systems allow them to offer a consistently higher quality of service than their competition. The six independent AMG companies manage over 300 condominium, townhome, and planned unit developments from their offices in Greensboro, Winston-Salem, Research Triangle Area, Asheville and Charlotte, North Carolina, and Greenville/Spartanburg, South Carolina. AMG’s philosophy is simple: "Provide superior performance at a competitive price." AMG does this by utilizing state-of-the-art management systems to enable Homeowner Association (HOA) communities in North and South Carolina to operate more efficiently, increase member satisfaction and increase property values.
About Association Management Group, Inc. (AMG):
An effective community association must have effective management in order to protect the interests of the residents within their community; AMG is the company to provide such management. Enforcing the rules and covenants of a planned community is no small task; this enforcement often consumes budgets and adds undue stress to officers that help manage the community. AMG has a proven set of processes to help manage these concerns and can also assist Community officers with contracts and insurance and can provide a full range of audit services to protect the community's interest.