What is the #1 differentiator in the growth and success of your company? In the recording of this live debate, industry leaders Todd Ortscheid and Alex Osenenko take questions from the audience as they talk about the best way to get team buy-in, getting the right people in the right seats, and why it’s so important to defend your team.
Andrew Smallwood moderates as you decide the winner in these debates in our first ever Triple Win LIVE.
Follow the conversation PMs are having about this and more in our Facebook group.
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Todd Ortscheid: I believe this is just an issue of having the right people. I just don't think that's something that you have to force. I think if you're having to try to find a way to force that, then you have the wrong. Or you haven't laid out your vision and values, right? I mean, that's always a possibility also it could be that you're just not communicating with your team to use that terminology. What your vision is.
Andrew Smallwood: Hey everybody, we, we decided to do something a little different this time and rather than just Alex and Todd and I getting together and having a conversation, just the three of us, which would have been very enjoyable, we could still do that.
We probably will still do that. But we said, Hey, you know, there could be something kind of cool here. If we invited a live audience that actually could bring some questions live because we got some topics to talk about.
So this is Triple Win Live. The first, maybe the last. We'll see how it goes, but I want to introduce our special guests. So we've got none other than the Todd father, Todd Ortscheid with us today. And Todd, no surprise is in the attire that he's in. If you know, Todd likes to dress professionally. So he's got a shirt tie.
If you're listening to some podcasts, you can just imagine what's going on here. But Todd is the CEO of Revolution Rental Management which is growing fast and has made some acquisitions, has some exciting news. And also Todd is a member of the Facebook pot stirrer hall of fame. That is an official and real thing.
He's even got a name tag to prove it. So listen, if you're not following Todd on Facebook you can expect some great and brilliant insights about property management. You can expect memes, you can expect updates on 75 hard and you know, maybe some takes that bring some people in like Alex that at least start some conversation. Right. So I'll hold ...
Todd Ortscheid: You can also expect to see me in jail on a, quite a few occasions, Facebook jail,
Andrew Smallwood: Facebook, facebook jail for the record. That's right. So listen, we appreciate Todd that you. Put yourself out there. You say what you really think you know, and we encourage everyone to be their authentic selves here. No need to hold back.
This is being recorded. There's a live audience, you know, it gets produced, but we appreciate Todd that you, you share what you think. Alex, I want to do an introduction for you as well. Alex has, recently actually left the industry and it's Sweeney Sports
Alex Osenenko: I. Well, go ahead. Go. I'll clarify.
Andrew Smallwood: You'll clarify. Okay, good. Well here, let me just mis- introduce Alex real quick for everybody. And then he can just come in and correct everything. But I think at Sweeney Sports at least play a role there. I know Alex also is, is a prop tech growth consultant. So he's still connected in the industry, I should say.
And previous to that was the chief growth officer at Mynd M Y N D Management. Four and a Half, which many people know we've probably got a couple of customers on here founder and CEO there, the PM grow conference. And even as a history dating back to like, I think Appfolio and Propertyware if I'm not mistaken.
So, I mean, Alex has really got some interesting perspective from the technology side of things. He's somebody people go to as a marketing mind and just a business strategy mind. He loves entrepreneurship and entrepreneurs. He loves this industry, the people in it and Alex, it's great to have you here.
My friend, please, please clear up whatever I stepped in, right there.
Alex Osenenko: First, Andrew, let me just say that you are you, you and the company, you, you are passionately believing in and you are a team member of and probably, you know, probably more than a team member, probably at this level, you, you truly like this is part of your future however it turns out to be is amazing.
You you're doing amazing work. You guys like have these wonderful ideas, like out of the box, like, Hey, well, let's rent Ferrari's and pick people up at the conference. I mean, come on. Brilliant, brilliant. As a marketer, as a growth guy. Brilliant. So, so I want to give you that credit and I wish you would participate as much as Todd and I just kind of just go at it.
I wish you could throw in some wisdom as we talk, but just real quick. I have to give Todd a credit because I acquired Sweeney Sports. That's a sporting goods retailer here in Napa, California. By the way, if you guys in Napa for like CAL NARPM or whatever, you better swing by and say, hello. It's an awesome little shop.
Been there since 1970, really good shop. And so I called, I called like three or four or five people I really trusted to get the acquisition advice and guess who was one of them, Mr. Todd, right there. So terrible advice. Todd it actually worked out really well.
The jury's still out. It's only been a year.
Todd Ortscheid: Definitely looking forward to how that turns out, man. That's going to be super interesting since it's such a different industry and everything. It's just I'm looking forward to seeing how that all goes.
Alex Osenenko: Yeah, no, it was a good advice and it really gave me pause and way to think about it.
Cause, cause something that you said is like, Hey, you know, it depending depends on your risk appetite, right? It's it sounds risky. It's a different industry. It's a different, the numbers look pretty good, but like, you know, we don't know what happens to retail it's pandemic. Like what are you doing? Anyway.
So I did that acquisition. I have a general manager, Ronnie, I have a great team. Then I do prop tech consulting for you know, companies who get funded to, you know, do something interesting in the SFR space. I don't touch MFR. So I do that and I'm also a partner and growth executive at a company called ARC-IT.
It it's a smaller company, but it's an IT company that only focuses on architects. So we, we do a podcast there. We do a lot of content there. We do a lot of collaborations there with influencers, but we're growing pretty good. That's a good, good little business that I'm connected with. So that's kind of where I'm at enough, enough rambling.
I have a whole page of notes. Everyone is like a nail in your coffin, Mr. Todd.
Todd Ortscheid: I'm not nearly as well-prepared. So now I'm worried.
Andrew Smallwood: He came prepared, Todd. And by the way, did you notice the the subtle use of, of team and team member in I mean, maybe that was not so subtle. That was good, Alex. I liked that planting a seed of what's going to come in and just a minute or two, Hey I'm going to do this because just like one minute before we were jumping on, I I'm generally the worst with birthdays.
Like, I don't know, friends, family members, like it's I'm not good with birthdays, but I did see actually right before we were jumping on that Regina Ingram's birthday is today and she's here live with us so we can throw some love in the chat. Regina. I hope we can celebrate over some skyline chili at some point and and happy birthday to you and Jen Newton.
If you're listening to this on recording just wondering, wish you a happy birthday as well.
Alex Osenenko: Happy birthday.
Andrew Smallwood: Happy birthday. There we go. All right guys, we're going to get into it. We're going to get kicked off with the, with the planned discussion here and we'll move to questions. You know, people, people might have questions on this topic and want to go deeper on it.
They may want to circle back to it later after they've thought about it. We may meander around we're the people who wear purple suits. So there's not a lot of rules over here other than have a great time and enjoy each other and have some great conversations. So staff versus team, and what I recall, I was trying to find by the way, this Facebook post just a few minutes ago to see if I could screen share it for the people here live.
But unfortunately, Todd it's it probably would have taken me a half of my lifetime to scroll down your feed, to go, go find that. But I really enjoyed everything I saw on the way looking for it. Here's what I recall. And actually I'll have you guys, you know, correct my perception of, of what was going on here and, and what you think the discussion we should be having is, but Todd, what I recall your posts being about was a lot of property managers get stuck implementing change in their organization, driving and leading change in their organization.
And as somebody who talks to a lot of property managers in, and we recognize that that's a challenge for a lot of people. And as you're talking to them, one of the big challenges they cite is I can't get my team on board. I can't get my team buy-in to do this thing that I know is going to be beneficial for our business.
I know it's where we need to go and I need their buy-in. I need them to be on board you know, on this. And I think you, you just pushed back on rejecting that premise is what I would describe it as saying, Hey, you know, maybe you look at this differently, like the, the role of the leader in the organization and the relationship and the conversation, as far as how you know, how that, how that goes, you know, how that conversation goes and ultimately how things get executed in your business.
And it, you refer to your, your folks as a staff, and we'll talk about this language thing and see how important that is or isn't. But I would say we, we think language is pretty important. at Second Nature, like calling somebody a resident versus a tenant. It seems subtle calling somebody an investor and not an owner, you know, it, it changes how people might think of themselves, how they're perceived.
You know, a non-property management example is we used to call people bums that now are called homeless. Right. And there's just like an immediately different emotional wake, you know, following that word when you say bum versus when you say homeless. Right. And so, you know, language is important, I think, but we'll see kind of where we agree on this stuff.
Alex came in hot in the comment and said, Todd, I love you, man, but you've been drinking too much water out of that giant water bottle and you're missing it. I mean, the greatest organizations on the planet. They are full of passionate, invigorated people, right? Who are working together as a team to accomplish something together.
And, and that's how they should be referred to team team members. That's how they should be working together. This buy in this passion, et cetera. It's so important for differentiating your company and ultimately driving brand perception, your reputation in the marketplace. It's it's number one. I think you said Alex even was the claim that you made in the comments.
So that's a little context from an outside observer. Can you guys, we'll start with Todd Todd, add a little more context on what you think the conversation is really about here and what's worth discussing.
Todd Ortscheid: Yeah. So if I remember right, I think what, what prompted me to make that original post? If I remember, right.
I think we had just come back from PM Nation. And we had done a panel, as we frequently do talking about resident benefit packages, you know, you and I do those, you know, all over the country all the time. It seems like almost once a week at this point, it seems and I got the same feedback that I get every single time we do one of these, I get people that come up to me and they say, yeah, I want to do this.
I think this is a great idea. It's going to make tons of money. It's going to make owners happy. You know, it's going to make my staff's life easier, but I don't think I can get staff buy-in so I'm don't know if I'm going to do it because of that. And that's just like nails on a chalkboard to me. When I hear that it's something that the, the entrepreneur knows is the right thing to do, and they still hold back.
Because they're so worried that they're not going to get their employees to go along with this. And that just drives me crazy. So that's what prompted me to post that and say, Hey, there needs to be somebody who's willing to pull the trigger. Who has the courage to go into a room, a meeting with their staff, yes.
Staff, employees, whatever term you want to use and say, this is the direction we're going. Now I want your feedback on how we might go about this, but this is the direction we're going. We're going to implement a resident benefits package because I've made the decision that this is the best thing for it's a triple win.
It's the best thing for everybody. So that's why we're going to do this. Now. It's just a question of how we go about it. That's how I view that that sort of thing should go on. And all too often, it seems like what's really happening is the entrepreneur goes back from a conference. They go into a meeting with their staff and they say, well, let's talk about this idea and see if you're okay with it.
And that is not the way to do this. That's just a recipe for disaster in my view.
Alex Osenenko: You're not wrong. In this context you're not wrong. So this is the end of this podcast.
Todd Ortscheid: That's a good way to start I like that.
Alex Osenenko: I'm just kidding. No, no, no. There's a lot. There. There's a lot that we've got to unpack, man. Ooh. First thing I'll open up is typical founder. Including myself and I'm, I'm disciplining myself, but a million miles, an hour million ideas. How does your staff know that this idea is the one you actually want versus the 16 others you mentioned last week?
Todd Ortscheid: Oh, so, yeah, that's an actual question. So, I mean, this goes back, I I'm a big advocate of EOS.
So, you know, what you're saying is absolutely a hundred percent true and that the kind of personality type you're talking about there, EOS would call the visionary. You know, this person comes up, like you say, with a million ideas. And in my company, that's Christine and Christine is constantly coming up with a million different ideas.
And the difference is we have Christine as the visionary and we have me as what EOS would call the integrator. So she's coming to me with all these ideas and I'm picking them out and saying, no, these 80% of the ideas, those are unworkable. We can't do those, at least not in the next year, but these few over here, there's 20% of these ideas.
They're wonderful. And we're going to go make these things. You know, we're going to do these. And you know, it's not a question of, you know, talking to a staff of 20 people and trying to come to a consensus. It's a person who is responsible for making those decisions. It could be a department. Head could be a CEO, could be an integrator if you use that term, but there needs to be somebody actually responsible for it who can make a decision and move forward and not governed by committee because that just doesn't work.
Alex Osenenko: Ok. Yeah. So, so let me actually step down a second, actually. Let's upstream to EOS the whole concept it's one of my notes. It's, it's one of my key arguments here. So you just brought it up fine. I'll I'll close it. The whole concept behind EOS is leadership team. Right. Is the integrator does not make a decision on whether to implement this idea or not, or maybe you interpreted as such, or maybe I misinterpreted what you said, but the way that in Four and a Half man, a hundred percent of us like we've self-implemented and, and it worked really well for the firm we, we, we had now I'm not sure what they're doing, but I'm sure it's, it's similar version of it.
And the idea is the leadership team has different viewpoints on the slice of the business because as the business gets bigger and I'm sure, you know, by now you have all these locations, you're, you don't have the visibility into everything nuts and bolts of the business. So that's, that's important and bring those people in the leadership team and actually give them a decision making power, as well as at least collaborative power that somehow they get to mold the forward vision.
Todd Ortscheid: Well, I would encourage you to go back and look at the chapter in E in traction that talks about the, the leadership team meeting, because there's actually a part in there where Geno specifically states the leadership team is not a democracy. We don't take votes. You don't get to, it's not majority rules the entrepreneur, or if there's a group of owners, general partners, whatever it is, they still get the final decision.
So you might go into a leadership team meeting and have a conversation, and that's great, but there's still somebody who's going to make a decision. We're not going to sit there and keep going, hashing this out meeting after meeting, after meeting, because we can't reach consensus. That's not how that that's not how EOS works.
And you know, it's very clear about that.
Alex Osenenko: Not what I'm proposing. But what I'm saying is the team, the team makes a contribution to a decision. And a lot of times when I brought issues, when my integrator brought issues into, into the forefront, like the ideas that the solutions that flowed from the team were just unbelievably creative.
And most of them was really nothing that we could implement because they didn't see the other angles of the business. So it didn't connect. But some of those things connected really, really well. And I would never come up with it. So I think we took it a little to a little bit different level to where it wasn't death by committee.
It was more like, here's the problem, not a decision. Here's the problem. How would you go about solving.
Todd Ortscheid: Sure. And I, I think we're mostly on the same page there. I think where the difference I would come in there is, you know, you're talking about the leadership team. So let's say you've got a company of, you know, let's look at a bigger company like MYND.
So you came from MYND. What is MYND. To have now 200 employees, 150, you know, something in that range.
Alex Osenenko: It was four fifty last year. So, yeah.
Todd Ortscheid: Okay. So for 400 and some employees, you're not going to go when you think, you know, if you're in MYND and you're deciding to implement a resident benefits package, you're not going to get all your property managers and your leasing agents together and hash that out.
What you're going to do is you're going to get your key leadership people together, which your leadership team, I don't know what it might be at mine, but let's say it's all the department heads, all the VPs. That's, who's going to make those decisions. It's not going to be. Let's sit down with all of the employees who do all this work day in and day out and make sure that they're okay with it before we move forward.
And all too often, that's what I'm hearing. You know, when I go to these conferences and we talk about things like a benefits package or like revenue maximization, the answer is I'm not going to do that because you know, the people who talk to the residents they don't like that. You know, they, they think that that's going to be a bad idea when I went back and talked to them about it, they weren't happy.
So I'm just not comfortable doing it unless they're, they have buy-in, which is the term I always hear. So, I mean, I'm with you on the leadership team. I, a hundred percent, you know, I don't know any, I'm the first one to tell you, I don't know anything about sales and marketing. I don't know anything about a million different things that go on in my business nowadays, cause I'm not involved in it.
So I do need to hear from other people before we make decisions. But it needs to be the right group of people. You can't have 150 people or 450 people involved in making a decision.
Alex Osenenko: Now let's go down to those let's flow down, keep flowing down. So the leadership team, we agree. I think we're in a hundred percent alignment, not even 99, it's like a hundred percent.
Yeah. All right. So we get contributors to contribute. Andrew, by the way, I want to hear your thoughts on this. Let's go down to middle level management and actual foot soldiers who are out there representing your brand, your company, your, you know, your identity to the folks. If they're just going through the motions, doing their job, do you think that it's in their interest to do more work or to change the way they do things?
Just because. Somebody said so like, perhaps, but they know their job was not on the line if they just, you know, if they just look left, look right. You know, stall a little bit, complain a little bit, and they're going to get their way. So I'm just curious, how do you get those guys to believe in the cause, because now outside of like your regular labor, you're asking them to do something else, which, you know, whatever, if you were talking about job descriptions, you may or may not be in the job description, but they can sabotage your project.
Andrew, what do you think about that? I'm just curious. Where's your, where's your mind at?
Andrew Smallwood: You know, so I'm just going to reflect back a little bit of what I've heard so far and, you know, making decisions by committee, you know, is something that, that Todd said. And I think the challenge with that is you see a lot of times it like great ideas get diluted, right?
Cause you've got potentially competing interests and it's like, well, how you end up with a lot of compromise. In chances like that. And it kind of a lot of de-risking you know, from people's perspective versus like, Hey, Alex is the guy we've hired to answer questions about what our company's strategy is going to be about marketing.
Right? And so we, as a leadership team, we need to be able to have conversation and, you know, probably he wants people to understand what he's proposing and why why they should be excited about it. But ultimately I think it was Amazon or where they talk about disagree and commit. Right. And that ultimately I do think decisions come down to you know, there should be good communication throughout the organization so that people understand them, what decisions being made when that decision was made, how it was made and you know, what the implications of it are, what are the next questions we need to answer?
But good communication and accountability, ultimately, you know, line for one to one person, because if you're splitting accountability across a lot of people that that can be, that can be difficult, right. For individual decisions like that you know, as far as I'm hearing, like, what should we do? I'm hearing Todd say, at least his perspective is, you know, that that's the decision of the leadership team.
Like where are we going? Right. What direction are we going as an organization? Those are questions, tasked to leadership. How do we get there? Right. It involves other folks. And then the last thing I think that you both seem to agree on is getting input, like great ideas, which I wholeheartedly agree with.
Great ideas can come from anywhere in the organization. In, I know our culture at Second Nature is ideas are welcome, you know. And, and Jeff Hoffman, I guess Todd, this phrase ideas are welcome. Execution is worshiped, right? And so, Hey,
ideas are welcome and execution is worshiped. And so you know, we'd like to have a lot of conversations when we do our, our quarterly meetings when we do our annual meetings you know, rather than just treat those as information transfer of one person talking to a group of people Hey, we're not flying a bunch of people in and getting hotel rooms and it's like, that could be an email or a slack message, right.
Or, or what have you, or happen at any time, but the kind of relationship building that happens there, the trust building that happens there, that's a focus in conversation specifically, you know, high stakes conversation on the team of where we're going, what we're doing this year, what's important to each person.
You know, that's how we want to use that, that time. And so. So, anyway, I just wanted to reflect back. I think you're actually asking a question about something specific, which I've already forgotten.
Alex Osenenko: So how do you get, and Todd, I think you get to answer next cause, cause I want to hear both of your opinion.
Cause I will write things down. How do you get foot soldiers, people who represent your brand in front of customers who get the Yelp reviews, who actually do the work, how do you get them to, you know, act representative to your brand, to who you are, to who you think you should be, or maybe even inspirationally who you think you should be?
Andrew Smallwood: You know, the language you're using. I almost like I'm kinda like squinting one eye because the way I, this is my perspective, I'm not sure I can speak for Second Nature, but I'll speak as Andrew Smallwood at least and say like I don't believe you create motivation in other people. So much as you align to motivation and other people like convincing people, they should be a certain way that they should treat customers generously that they you know, they should go out of their way to do things that they, they want to build great relationships.
Like I think you have to look for and find that, or find, you know, what's in the person that is going to connect the dots, right? To that, that behavior, the right that's going to drive, drive success. And so I think Second Nature has said, we want to define our culture and the way things are done around here we want it to define our values.
We want to talk about those. We want to recognize those. We want to find people right, who are naturally inclined to operate, right. The way that we've defined, we operate differently. You know, and so I think as far as just great service and great customer, a lot of that is. Looking for that character and talent in just the appetite and desire to be that way with people.
So I mean, we have many of these people on the call and I think many of the folks who are here that our customers would just say, they're impressed with the Alexandra Hurlmans, the Carol Housels the Laura Macs of the world, everyone that's here. You know, that's a big part of it. And Alex, your question is like, Hey, how do you get people aligned to a strategy of the else?
You know, I would say Second Nature this year, if you talk to folks, they would say, wow, ambitious, lots of change went from one product to six products. You know, in a matter of months an entirely new service level, all kinds of changes. And the team just did a phenomenal job. And the last point on this, I think that people often overlook.
And in talking about culture and its impact on this is it's not just connected to the vision. It's not just connected to the mission and what we're doing. Yes. That and connected their personal motivations. Again, that aligned to that. It's also, I think the greatest teams or staffs they are connected to each other in a way that's important where they care about the person next to them, their success, and seeing everyone do well together.
Like I, I see photos of Bob Hansen's kids. I see Glen's kids, you know, on zoom it's in, like, it motivates me. I know to get up a little earlier or stay, stay a little later and put it in beyond just the intrinsic excitement for like, what we're doing is the idea that, Hey, my work makes a contribution. To, to these people.
Alex Osenenko: So you guys feel like a team don't you?
Andrew Smallwood: I would, that's what I would describe at Second Nature that we are a team.
Alex Osenenko: Mr. Todd.
Todd Ortscheid: And also, I mean, I, I love everything that Andrew just said there. I think the biggest thing on this is, you know, you can't, like Andrew said motivate people to do something that they're not really inclined to do. So the biggest part here is putting the right people in the right seats, which is another EOS idea, which is, you know, if you're putting someone in a sales role, who's not fitted for that sales role, or let's say they aren't fitted to your company's values.
So if you're operating on EOS, you have core values. Andrew was kind enough to send me Second Natures earlier. I think earlier in the week that he had in a presentation, which are great. But I mean, every company has to have those and you need to hire according to those, I mean, the, the key here is getting people who actually fit what you want to do as a company.
You know, their personality, their skills are fit for that. And you're putting them into a place where they want to be and where they're suited for it. That's going to give them the motivation. They're going to be motivated to do that job because they're where they want to be. And they're good at what they're doing.
All too often, the problem is we're putting people in the wrong positions or we're hiring people that don't fit our values, or don't have the experience they need. And then you're trying to motivate somebody who you're never going to motivate. You can't motivate someone into being something they're not.
If you're putting an accountant, you know, personality type into a sales role, they're going to be miserable. And there's no way, no matter how many pizza parties you throw, no matter how many nice buzzwords you come up with, to refer to them as they are not going to fit into that role and be happy. You're not going to motivate them to do it.
So it's, to me, it's all about how you set up the business, how you have your core values, how you hire into those roles is going to make 99% of that difference in my view. And if we use culture index, by the way for that, which I I'm a big fan of.
Alex Osenenko: So I think those are this is the foundation. And I'm assuming that we're all at this level of entrepreneurship, you know, having already run businesses, some of us multiple, some of us single ones.
Sort of get that, get that at least mostly done. Right? I mean, you guys there on the phone, I mean, you, you, wouldn't you say that 95 plus percent of your staff, there's usually one or two fluctuating, but like 95% of your staff on the right place, right time, if it's less than 95, maybe you're in a process, you know who those are and you're transitioning them out.
But like, let's say 85, I mean, 90, like it can't be, if it's less than then, you're just you know, it's a slow March to death March, but
Todd Ortscheid: I think that's the big problem though, Alex, you know, you say, we look at it there, we're there. And I think a lot of us who do industry speaking or consulting, we are there.
I think the problem is the average person who's walking up to me after we make that presentation at a conference and they're telling me they need to get staff buy-in they're not. That's the biggest problem that we have to remember that the property management industry, there's a hundred thousand property management companies across the country.
There's a small handful that are the people that everybody knows that NARPM conferences who speak and consult and all that kind of stuff. Those people might have it together, but by the way, some of them don't even have it together. Some of them are going out and needing help, but you know, assuming that all that groundwork is already laid, I don't think that's a safe assumption for the vast majority of the people that are going to listen to the podcast. To be honest with you.
Alex Osenenko: But let's, let's assume one second. I'm just, I'm just gonna, I'm just gonna take one step further. Let's assume there is a company A that has those things in order and the right people in the right seats. Now what motivates those people in your opinion, Todd, so as a staff member, your job is to execute policies and procedures of the company.
Todd Ortscheid: And to carry out the company's core values, I would say that's part of it all.
Alex Osenenko: That's very squishy. But it's not, you know, fine for as long as they don't screw up too much. Right. You know, since I'm doing good work, you're gonna keep, but like, what is the, what is the it for me? Like what is, what what's in it for me? Like, how do you, yeah. How do you, I know you hate motivational speakers, which is fine.
I shared that in, in 90% of the people. But there's some really good ones out there. But anyway, so how do you, yeah, how do you get those people to actually represent your company with passion?
Todd Ortscheid: I, again, I believe this is just an issue of having the right people. I just don't think that's something that you have to force.
I think if you're having to try to find a way to force that, then you have the wrong. Or you haven't laid out your vision and values, right? I mean, that's always a possibility also it could be that you're just not communicating with your team to use that terminology. What your vision is, where are we going?
What are, where do we want to be 10 years from now? What are we trying to accomplish here? What is our overall goal? And if you're not communicating that, then yeah people aren't going to be motivated. But I think if you have all those elements put together, I think it's the wrong question. I don't think we need to go out and motivate people.
I think if you've got the right people, you've got the vision, you've communicated it, you've got the values laid out. They're going to feel motivated just by nature of the fact that there's somewhere where they want to be doing what they want to do. I just don't think this is necessary.
Andrew Smallwood: So I want to ask a question of you guys, and I want to keep going down a path that I feel like Alex was going down here of just like one or two additional questions that are quick.
And I get the sense, Todd, that like, I feel like I remember you saying you have some very tenured staff. There's a lot of people dealing with turnover in talent right now. Great resignations. And like people just opting out of working in general. And and it's, it's, it's interesting in the talent space, inflation and everything that's happening going on affecting wages, et cetera.
And I feel like Todd, you've just got some strong managerial skills, like people know what to expect when they show up at work, you know, compared to the typical workplace. And I know you've laid out and shared your opinion on things like here's what people can expect in their compensation over time.
Right. In laying that out in a way that others, I don't think most people do. And you give people a very predictable kind of certain environment to work in, you know, generally which in property management with all the, the unexpected that happens every day, I bet that's appreciated. And what I hear Alex talking a lot about is out, can you strike me as the it's?
It's not like the, it's not quite the trite, like a management versus leadership, but a little kind of in that direction of, you know, you're asking questions, like how do we get people to really bring their best to work on a daily, like to each moment and show up and bring that energy and passion. And, and again, I would agree with Todd that you want, like finding dispassionate people and trying to make them passionate is, is is a difficult task, right?
But you can certainly put passionate people into a context or a work environment. Right. That makes it very hard for them to be at their best. And you know, what are the things, Alex, in your opinion, that leaders should be doing, thinking about influencing how should be shaping the work environment in such a way that brings out that voluntary energy?
Not the, like I'm showing up at nine I'm there at five, I'm getting the number of tasks done that are assigned to me, like meeting expectations. Like what, in your opinion, leads people to come together as a team and say, I want to put in a little bit more and pick people up in a Ferrari at midnight, or like whatever it takes.
Right. What's your thoughts on that? And then I want to come to Todd.
Alex Osenenko: All right. Let me be thoughtful about this response. Like I don't have those bullet points written out, but let me be very thoughtful and talk about what I've seen, what I've read about. And then what I implemented will actually work.
One authenticity like radical transparency. And I dunno, Todd, to what level you do this. And he work for airlines unions. It's really hard to be transparent there. It's just it, the business the business is different, but I think it's it. I think the, the passion that the first kernel of passion that you would ignite with your team, and this is when I walked into the retail environment, people getting paid minimum wage, selling sporting goods.
You know, this is a challenging, challenging individual to motivate beyond their passion for the sport. And this is like, the first thing is, is, is this radical transparency? Hey guys, here's what we're doing in revenue. Here's what this company does in profits. Here's what we need to do to stay in business.
I'm not here to run a small business. I want to make a hundred million dollar company in 10 years. Here's a high level plan, but I need you all input in this, you know, let's get started hurrah you know, give me your thoughts, give me a feedback. So that's one, so authenticity and like surprising and radical transparency.
I think that's step one. Step two is it might sound stupid, but like the first thing I thought of is touch physical touch. Like I, I feel that, you know, and maybe it's not always physical, maybe it's, you know, Jennifer happy birthday, you know meaningful touch from the leadership. That shows it doesn't have to be scripted, but just always be mindful human.
Right. So go down to human. And then at the end of the day, people come home with paychecks, aligning performance with, and I think Todd is doing that aligning performance with comp. Like performance with vision and, and plus of course, everything else that Todd says, cause those things must be in place. There's no vision, no values, like, you know, touches meaningful. Like what are you touching me for? You, go away you creep.
Andrew Smallwood: Todd, we're going to get your opinion on hugs and just a second. And and I hear what you're saying, Alex say like, Hey, we're not talking about touch in like a HR violation kind of way here, where service, Hey, there's a connection. Right. And showing genuine care for other people in a way where they feel thought of and cared for. Am I interpreting that? Right?
Alex Osenenko: Yeah. The physical tap on a shoulder could be like, sure, great job. Like, like you, you know that if you work remotely touch, but yes, whatever. Th that, that, that I guess human connection that, that comes out of touch, whether it's physical or, or emotional or supportive is, is just it's, it's a bond, right?
It, it reinforces other things that you were talking about. You become more believable, more real, more authentic.
Andrew Smallwood: And, and then the last thing you were talking about was, you know, incentives lining up with what what's critical to get accomplished in, in this role, making sure that those are really tightly aligned, that you're incentivizing the right things, right.
Structurally and I want to come to Todd on this because Todd, I think this is where, you know, some people as they talk about buy-in and everything else, you know, there are some employees who say, okay, well you want me to do this new thing right on top of my job, or in addition to it's one more thing is kind of like the perception.
And maybe that's a miscommunication from leadership. Right. But it's one more thing. And am I making more money as a result of doing this? You know, maybe it's good for the business. Is it good for me? And I think there's some, there's a communication challenge. Some leaders find at that point and, and some may like, over-rotate on that.
And they said, oh, we gotta incentivize people to do this. And that that's, that's not really what's driving behavior there. How do you think about that? As far as incentives, lighting to performance and the people actually carrying it. the work.
Todd Ortscheid: So, I mean, I think the, one of the big issues here is there's so many companies who frankly, underpay their employees.
There's just no way around that. There it's either in compensation or benefits or time off. I hear so many entrepreneurs who are just so proud of the fact that their employees are working 70 hour workweeks. They just think that's the most wonderful thing ever. And I just hear that, and I think you are killing your employees.
You are slowly killing them and making them miserable and you're proud of it. And that's why you run into these problems. I think when you go to your employees and you say, Hey, I've got this new thing I want to implement. Here's what I need you to do. And what you have as an employee, who's looking at it and saying, I make 35 grand a year.
I could probably leave and go make a few thousand dollars more. I get no time off. And I'm working 70 hours a week tied to my phone. And this wants me to do something. That's where that's coming from. And I don't think you have that problem when your employees are paid. At least fairly. I frankly, I pay my employees above market rates.
I provide them benefits. I provide them tons of paid time off. And I tell everybody when they start, I do not want you working more than a 40 hour work week. In fact, if I can get your work in 35, that's, what's going to make me happy. So, you know, when you have somebody in that kind of position and you come to them and ask them to do more, they're a little bit more willing to do it because the way they view it is you're taking good care of them to start with. So I think that's a big part of that problem, to be honest with you.
Andrew Smallwood: Hmm. I've got a question for both of you that I'd love to get your response, a response from each of you on this question. And it came in from the chat. So thanks for whoever submitted this. The question is what do you do when your staff does not buy in to your idea?
Or your goals. And so, Hey, you've presented what there is to do. There's friction, there's resistance. It might even be as dramatic as refusal. But there there's something there that tells you there's not wholehearted agreement and ready for accountability on whatever has been proposed. And I'd like to come to Alex first and then we'll come back to you, Todd.
Alex Osenenko: Just go back to your first principles that, right. It's just you know, let's, let's talk about this very important concept that I've built my whole career around and it's very simple. It's called Maslow's hierarchy of needs. Yeah, you guys all believe that that's, that that's a thing, right? So, you know, you below is your safety, your, your physical needs, you know, food shelter, whatever, then, then your belonging, then your self-esteem then you are self-actualization.
So what I do is I, in fact, even before this. Happens right before this happens. I make sure to communicate out the vision, then the particular project that will connect to the vision and then how that project will benefit the company and the immediate people within the company. So that's hence the performance comp.
So the way I structure comp is every quarter it's connected to initiatives. So there's a base pay. And then there's a bonus component that's connected to that quarter initiatives. Just how it is. And you know, I get to decide, you know, there's a, there's a measurements KPIs and what we get to do, but ultimately I get to decide, you know, if we, if we accomplished it or sometimes I pay it anyway, because the effort was there, but the bottom line is it go, go back to the person needs and figure out, are they still looking for shelter, right?
Are you working them dogged 70 hours a week and you're asking them to do this. And, you know, I just had a conversation with my GM, like we're building inventory for Christmas and it's nuts. He is absolutely just buried right now. It's the it's that time of the year where retail goes into the black, right.
That where were we making some money. And so guess what, I stepped back from initiative and I'm like, okay, Chad, we couldn't do this, but I I'm glad I talked cause he talked for like 15, 20 minutes of how many things were on his plate right now that wouldn't be otherwise that I didn't understand. So it's a simple answer to a simple question.
Find out what motivates them and find out what, what they care about? Because Chad was at the, you know, at the food level and I'm trying to get him into the self-esteem and above.
Andrew Smallwood: And it's did I hear you right Alex? And you're saying. Actually you tie compensation to completion of these kinds of change initiatives or rocks or whatever, whatever terminology people want to use that. Yep. Okay. So if somebody is refusing it ...
Alex Osenenko: Quarterly objectives and part of their compensation on top of, on top of their base is based on that on the achieving those objectives for the organization.
Andrew Smallwood: Follow up question before we come to Todd on that. So, you know, Alex, have you dealt with in your teams like, Hey, we've set our rocks or we've set these objectives and here's the compensation for them for the quarter.
And then 40 days into the quarter, you know, are you exercising the discipline of saying no, no, no, we're maintaining our rocks and anything or emergent opportunity we're going to look at that for, you know, next quarter or, Hey, this is the kind of opportunity where we actually, we needed to defer this thing now we need to do this right now. And have you had to have that kind of conversation before, have you had to make that kind of decision and how does that go.
Alex Osenenko: Very very good question. Yeah. When you're running fast, you might be tripping over a dollar. So to grab a penny so yeah, this happens, right.
If it's a penny initiative and we see dollar on the floor, we pivot. These are the cases where I pay out anyway, these are the cases where we pre-agreed, that we're going to refocus on this one and there's people, well, we're not going to get this old initiative done.
I'm like, okay. That's okay. Yeah, we'll put it. That, that rarely happens. I'll be honest with you looking at last 14 years running companies, I don't know, maybe two quarters happened two or three quarters and we were growing fast in, in, in, in many of those years.
Andrew Smallwood: Cool. Yeah. Thanks for taking that quick question.
All right, Todd, back back to you on the original question, which I'll just read it here. Cause it came in through the chat. What would you do if your staff does not buy into your idea or goals?
Todd Ortscheid: So, I mean, it's, I it's honestly not something I've had to deal with. I mean, we've just, haven't had this situation where someone has just said, I'm not going to do that.
And if they did, I mean, I'm sorry, that's just gross insubordination. They're not going to be working here tomorrow. I mean, it's, I, I think there's an understanding that that's not the kind of thing I'm going to tolerate. So I, I, we just don't run into those situations. You know, part of it might be also that we employ a lot of people in Mexico.
So, I mean, it is it's a cultural difference also where, you know, there's not that pushback that you might get from people in certain other cultures, like United States, where, you know, especially in certain demographics, you know, certain age groups where there's a different perspective on that, where there's more willingness to push back.
And I don't have to deal with that so much with employees in Mexico. I'll just be honest about that. That's just not the culture there. But even when we had staff in the United States, we didn't have those issues. I think a lot of that comes down to, you know, communication and radical transparency like Alex was talking about. I'm in a hundred percent agreement with all of that, you know, are all of the employees of our company receives our profit and loss every year.
And I think quarterly, if I remember right, I think that goes out in our quarterly packet also. So everybody knows what our payroll numbers are. They know what our profit is. They know what our revenue per door, this is all open information. Everybody knows what our rocks are. So I think when you have that degree of transparency and everybody knows what's going on and you don't have the issues where people are underpaid and overworked, I just don't think you run into those issues.
I think those issues come up where people. At base unhappy at work because of compensation or time that they're working or whatever it might be, or because the company is just not very open about it, how it's going about business, and that's why they push back and don't see where this is going to go.
What's the purpose of this. So I, I really think that's where those issues come from. I think people create these issues for themselves with how they're running their business, and then they wonder why the staff doesn't, you know, quote unquote buy in.
Andrew Smallwood: Hmm. I you know, I'll chime in and that, I remember there was a time where we were making a, whether you want to call it a pivot, probably probably more than that would be probably a bigger word than that identity shift.
We went from Filter Easy to Second Nature. Right? There's been some big changes at times in leading a large group of people through big shifts like that. No question. It was the right decisions. Is that in hindsight, that's always easy to say at the time it can make some people at least feel a little bit nervous because.
The vision that I signed up for, right. Todd, where you said we were going in 10 years that we're climbing a different mountain now, or, or the way we're talking about climbing, the mountain is not straight up with crampons and whatnot. We're going to be taking, you know, the circuitous route up, right?
The conservative route up or, or the other way around, Hey, we were going conservative and now we're trying to go this way. Right. And dealing with those kind of changes there was an executive in our company communicating the changes, you know, the day of et cetera, in a small group that I was in. And I remember somebody in the group very reasonably asking a question and I could tell there was just like, I'm not sure I'm bought in to where this is going.
So to speak. And the response from the executive was very respectful, but it was decided it's like, this is where we're going. I understand that's not what you signed up for. And so if you're looking for something different, you know, we can absolutely help, you know, find a, a transition for you, right? And it's not this like push away type, you know, it's not manipulative it's it was just genuine.
Totally get your perspective. That's your right to have it. You may be uncomfortable with this. This is where we're going. And we'd love for you to be a part of it. Here's how we see your talents contributing to this. But if you're not excited about that, you were excited about this originally, you know, we can work with you to facilitate a good transition to something that is going to work for you.
And I do think about these kinds of conversations with folks that, that are, there's a sense of conflict and like, Ooh, like how do I, you know, how do I deal with this? For some, it can be uncomfortable for folks to have these conversations as a leader. I come back to Chris Voss, go check out that podcast episode.
Right? But I think about labeling the emotion behind what they're saying to demonstrate empathy and that you understand what, what they're saying, that they're thinking mirroring, right? To invite them, to tell you more, right? You don't believe in the goal. That's going to invite them to tell you more about what's going on there.
Right. As opposed to just reacting to the statement without understanding it better first. So anyway, you can go catch up that podcast. That's not what this one's about, but some, some tips in there for you. Okay. I've I've got a question that came in from social media.
Who is the change agent in your organization or like, you know, who singular or plural, how would you answer that question? Who's the change agent in your organization?
Alex Osenenko: There's an absolute answer to this question in my opinion, and if it's not that person, it's nobody. It's the CEO, it's the founder, it's the president, it's the owner. It's the majority owner. It's, it's somebody whose life is on the line whose wellbeing and well, you know, and, and everything on the line as an entrepreneur, that's, there's not even, there's not even a remote consideration for anyone else, in my opinion, that that people can't take responsibility for your business. Shouldn't expect.
Andrew Smallwood: Awesome. Todd.
Todd Ortscheid: No, I agree with that a hundred percent. We're in agreement there. I mean, if you're, you know, someone who is a great you know, operations manager, for example, director of operations, whatever you have, you know, that's the kind of person who is wonderful at executing on things and keeping things going.
But when it comes right down to it, as far as, you know, directing the organization, making the big decisions about big changes, you're absolutely right. We're, we're on the same page there, Alex, that it is, you know, either the visionary, you know, or the CEO or however you term it at your organization. But that has to be the person who's trying to figure out where we're going and how we're going to get there.
Alex Osenenko: There's one more your CPA.
Andrew Smallwood: That's funny. What's interesting. I kind of have a different perspective on this actually. That maybe you guys can tell me what I just haven't experienced yet that would have me singing your song. But the way I view what happens at Second Nature, and and other companies that have been a part of in the past is you know, in very rich culture, like full of leaders. And the way I think about leadership or define leadership is influencing change. People who influence change, like that's a leader, right? And every single day in our organization, I see things happening in all kinds of different places where people are making change happen in various ways, in various places, and demonstrating leadership, all across the organization, all across different departments and making, making things happen making things better, taking initiative in doing those kinds of things.
And so I have also been a part of staff team wherever we're following on that. Where it, it was very much dictated, right? Like here's the change. And there was one person really, you know, there are people who are acting performatively, right. But, but not really not really investing themselves to influence change in the organization, so to speak.
Now, if you got, I think you guys are talking more about like, Hey, at the strategic level, like where are we going to be in five years? You know? And so maybe if it's, if it's kind of limited to that scope of where's the company going strategically, directionally on a long-term basis, how can that not be the CEO?
Like, I don't, I've never heard of an organization where that's not the case. At least one that made it right. But but I do think of this. Like there's an exciting idea. I think in a culture, at least for certain types of companies that would value this of everyone's a leader and there's multiple leaders proactively leading.
Every day. Right. And, and lifting others up, helping others on the team make things happen and make change across the organization in their scope of responsibility. Right. So what are you guys' thoughts on that? Is that, is that out of alignment with what you're saying or actually know that you agree with that? What are your thoughts?
Alex Osenenko: If that person on social media, a good person could please help us define what change agent is. Cause I think that might be some from Gary Vaynerchuk, early book. I can't remember what, so, so we were just missed a definition. I have. I'm sorry.
Todd Ortscheid: Yeah. That's good question. What is he exactly looking for there? But I mean, the other thing I would say to what you were talking about Andrew is I think it depends on what kind of organization it is too. So, I mean, you have organizations like a sales organization at a fast growing company like Second Nature you're going to need a bunch of leaders there, you know, like you guys have. On the other hand, if you're in an accounting department, at a mortgage company, it's a little bit different. You need a different personality type there, you need someone who's just going to follow the procedure every single day, day in and day out. And they're not looking to be change agents. You know, you don't want a change agent at your, you know, controller level at a company. That's not really what they are. So, you know, it really depends on, you know, what kind of company you are and what department you're in. You know, a lot of places you need change agents and some places you don't.
Alex Osenenko: Can I introduce something that I, prepared?
Andrew Smallwood: You got stuff on your paper, Alex. I mean, we can go a few minutes over here. I'd hate for you to write all that down and not get to it. So let's do it.
Alex Osenenko: The only thing I was going to say is this it seems because I thought deeply about what Todd said, cause I always do, cause he's not he's not just saying things, even though sometimes it seems that way. I thought deeply and I thought, okay, globally, let's elevate and look at things. Okay. So there's there's knowledge work and there's labor. Like I wanted to sort of like, okay, there's a building a house and there's designing a house.
There's a pitching a house to city, getting permits, all that whole process. And then building a house is like brick, brick. That can be measured in the day you accomplish this, you put up the sheet rock. You've done. Great. You didn't do good. Some decision-making is required. Cause either sheet rock is too long, too short and you caught it.
So, but at the end of the day, it's skilled labor versus knowledge work, knowledge work is this architect team. You know, Jimmy hates Susan. And so he's going to delay his plans so this Susan does not like really outpace him, like whatever the case is that that's a team dynamic. In my opinion, knowledge work it's a lot more profound pronounced than it is in labor where specific like the right people on the bus in labor would be just happy doing that work. And, you know, they self-actualize elsewhere, you know, out and catching fish like I do. What are your thoughts, Todd?
Todd Ortscheid: That makes a lot of sense to me. I mean, there, there are two really, I mean, not just necessarily two, I mean, there's a lot of different kinds of, you know, teams, you know, departments, whatever you want to call them. And yet you've got people who are working in, you know, professional capacities, knowledge workers, however you want to refer to them.
And then you have people who, like I say, sit in an accounting office all day and go over numbers. I mean, these are completely different roles, different challenges, but what it ultimately comes down to is that same idea of making sure you've got the right people in the right seats. And, you know, a lot of that comes down, you know, I wanted to come in and mention something you had said about, you know, touch, you know, using that as a, as a way to motivate people.
And, you know, I think a big problem that a lot of entrepreneurs run into is they assume that everybody's like them. You know, we, we see this at a lot of, you know, small businesses. When they start hiring employees, they hire a bunch of clones of themself and that doesn't work. Another problem you see that a lot of entrepreneurs have is that they hire a bunch of people that are further, you know, they put the right people in the right positions, but then they try to treat them as they'd want to be treated themselves even though these are people with entirely different personalities, you know, someone who works as an accountant is not going to really get along well with someone who's an enterpriser, you know, that CEO type. I mean, if you try to motivate them the same way and with some people, it might be touch it with some people it might be money.
You know, some people want recognition, you know, there's lots of different things that motivate different kinds of people. And if you just assume that everybody wants to be motivated in the same way you do. I think a lot of entrepreneurs do that. And I, that just, I think is a huge problem. You have to look at what's this person's personality type. What do I need to do to make them happy? Because it's going to be different for every kind of person.
Andrew Smallwood: So I heard Joe Mullins or mulling, something like that. And he, he runs a talent firm like a search firm and it's in I think med tech or something totally unrelated. But you know, what he talked about is, Hey, competing for talent right now and talking about talent, you know, as you're getting to the point of making people offers, you know, thinking about it as like, Hey, we've got like four or five switches here.
Right? So there's like your base compensation. There's maybe performance compensation. There's like work from home or work from anywhere, you know, flexibility, et cetera. There might be equity involved and it's Hey, like we can't max all five of these things. Right. But we can turn some knobs.
And as, as there's more people having those kinds of conversations, they realize, Hey, there's there's talent that they really could, could have gotten and could have been in a good situation if they were willing to be flexible there. And I think this is always a tough decision for any business owner or leader of saying, Hey, are we going to kind of like set things and have them be simple and then go find someone to fit and it's easy to administer or are we willing to be flexible, whether that's with a customer or whether that's with talent Alex, how do you think about making that kind of decision of, Hey, we're going to kind of cater this and, and be flexible versus we're going to be decisive about this and keep it simple.
Alex Osenenko: Wow. That's a very good question. There's no way in two minutes, I can do it any kind of justice, because I'd want to, I've thought some questions and maybe you, and then we sort of come up with a reasonable advice, but I keep a sizable portion of comp in a performance column. That gives me the flexibility to adapt it to the company's direction and goals.
And I think it also attracts the kind of people that are willing to you know live on the base, but strive for, you know, performance comp. I, that's not the right answer for everyone, but I, you know, I don't know if that's answering your question, but to me that's kind of, that's my number one mode of operation.
And then, you know, vacation time, like Todd said, you gotta pay people. You gotta, you know, benefits. Those are like, I think it was a table stakes. Really?
Todd Ortscheid: Yeah. I mean, I think I, one of the things I would say on this is that, you know, the reason people are having to do trade-offs so often in small business is that they don't have the revenue and the profit to be able to do what they need really need to do. So they always end up having to make trade-offs. So they're not able, like you say, to deal with those six, you know, six items they have to pick, oh, I can only do two because that's all the revenue I've got to deal with. So I can't give them time off or I can't give them pay or all of it has to go into incentive-based.
I can't provide any base because they don't have all that profit to pull from. So, you know, that's why I focus of course, on maximizing revenue and profit. Because when you have that there, if you've got a 25 or 30% profit margin, you're not having to compromise so much. If you're able to give people what you need to give them to attract the right people and make them happy.
So, you know, I would tell people, it all starts with running a profitable business. That's really where you need to really get down to brass tacks and make sure that's there. Okay.
Andrew Smallwood: Revenue solves a lot of problems, maybe not every problem, but a lot of problems. That's true. Guys, here's it. Here's how I want to actually wrap because last night actually, as I was posting and inviting people to share questions for this, I saw something on Facebook, that treatment, this is gonna be our last one.
And then we're, we're gonna, we're gonna take it out from here and thank you guys in advance for your time. Everybody here, if you have any questions hold them for another Wednesday, maybe we'll get these guys back. But I saw this on Facebook and you know, essentially what I saw was a property manager who said, I've been doing this for 50 years and in 50 years, I've never given a rent credit or a gift card or financial recompense to a resident or owner ever in 50 years and presumably for 50 years to come, assuming they live to be 140 or whatever. Right. So that's the way it has been. And that's the way it's going to be. And, and what was interesting about that was they said I've made mistakes. Like they admitted making mistakes that affected other people, but never never willing to go into their pocket or an owner's pocket in the case of potentially for some kind of issue of a resident and do that.
And I think there's an interesting paradigm and lens that many property managers look through, which is listen, we're property management is full of liability and risk and exposure. It it's full of upset people that kind of seem impossible to please in general at times, and. And, you know, to, to, to your point, Todd, like, Hey, I've got to protect my business.
Right. And, and I feel like I'm giving up something here, right. Or I'm getting the, a smaller slice of the pie and I'm giving up some of my slice right. To somebody else. And that that's the way it feels, I think to this person. And if, if not them, then it, at least we encounter that kind of perspective elsewhere.
And the whole point of the triple win lens that we talk about is saying, okay, how, how do we influence change? Right? How do we make things better in such a way that it's better for everybody residents, investors, team, right? Everybody's experience is getting better and transforming and moving things forward.
And certainly Second Nature is culture is a culture of taking risks, being generous, investing in relationships, willing to make first move. And something, a manager in my previous company taught me was, don't ask the least you can do what's the most you can do. And when a mistake happens or whatever own it and ask, like, how could you make them happy that this even happened?
Right? Like, instead of very upset, like what could you do in response? I go, if it costs them $50, I give them a hundred and do some other things, like send them balloons, whatever. Yeah. Just go way out of your way. Right. In response. And just see what that feels like. And I remember the first time I did it how it felt.
And so I'm just curious, how do you guys think of this? Do you see that perspective in property management, pervasive, where people are like, moment to moment, I've got to maximize this transaction and if I give somebody an inch, right. I'm missing out on the transaction value at a moment in time, versus what's the lifetime value.
Of this relationship and you know, investing in that and looking at that perspective, I'd love to close with your guys' thoughts and perspective on this. Todd, can we go to you and then we'll finish with Alex.
Todd Ortscheid: Yeah. I mean, I, I responded to that post that you were referring to because I, I was kind of shocked that, you know, just the idea that, you know, I made mistakes and admitting that I made them and I'm not gonna do anything to make them right. That just kind of grates on me. I just don't know even know how you do that. I mean, earlier today we, we had onboarded a couple of properties for a new client too slowly, you know, it didn't take him too long and I basically threw them a few hundred dollars to make him happy. I mean, again, I'll refer back to the fact that revenue makes a lot of things easier.
I'm able to do that because I don't have to worry about that. And I think a lot of people make bad decisions because they're worried about revenue or, or lack of it. But yeah, you have to be willing to do that. You have to be willing to admit, Hey, I was wrong. And do something to make it right. And sometimes it is with the landlord's money.
Sometimes the landlord did something wrong that he shouldn't have done. And he's going to have to take a little money out of his pocket and give to the resident for that. I mean, that's just reality. That's part of, like I said, on that post that's part of being a landlord rather than a slumlord you have, there is a distinction there.
So, you know, I think that everybody has to be willing to admit when they've done something wrong. Now, on the other hand, I am famous for saying, you know, I stick to my former CEO, Herb Kelleher 's advice that the customer is not always right. And you know, we're not going to just bow down to someone just because they scream and holler the loudest.
We had an owner a few weeks ago who was basically a quintessential Karen and thought that she was going to get her way just because she screamed the loudest. And I basically just told her, no, that's not going to happen. So we will admit when we've done something wrong and we will make it right. But we are not going to we're not going to back down if we've done nothing wrong, I'll defend my employees to the hill.
Alex Osenenko: Yeah, that goes along the way, defending your team goes a long way. This is where the leader CEO has a chance to step out, put themselves in front of the issue and get it done. But even more importantly, I think empowering your people to make those kinds of decisions on the spot is the significance of a team.
And I think it's an important very important thing. And look at Costco, Nordstrom versus Sears and Radio Shack. I worked at Radio Shack. It was great, but it was a very strict 30 days return policy. And God forbid, Todd, you opened up voice recorder to try it and then can't put it back in the box. The way it was.
Holy cow, my friend, you ain't taking it back to me. Maybe you get your store credit anyway, you understand the concept is like, do the best you can for the right client. But the right client and, that's a winning formula. But as Todd says, not everybody's a right client. I firmly believe that.
Andrew Smallwood: I love what you guys shared there. And it gets me thinking about one of the exciting conversations. I think that we'll be having forever and ever in this, at least for the foreseeable future in this industry is we're just noticing shifts, right? Like a few years ago, again, many people it's a it's tenants viewed very transactionally, not really a lot of care there suddenly there's a lot of people who are caring about resident experience and there's a client of ours who has a seven year average tenancy. Right. And you just think about what that does for everybody in the SFR. I mean, residents so happy with where they're living and how they're being treated and their experience there that they don't want.
And what that does for the investors, saving them, the turn costs, the maintenance costs, everything that is impacted by those turns. Right. Holy cow and obviously happier investors and residents makes it a better experience for the team that's often caught in the middle. Right. And, and so I just think it's so interesting to think about, you know, picking your client carefully.
Like you said, Alex, of like, who do you want to be married to? Like, who do you want to be in business with for seven years, 10 years, 20 years. Right. Longer and being willing to make investments, being willing to go into the red at a moment in time, knowing that we're investing in a relationship here, like this is who we want to be working with right.
In the longterm. And there's going to be opportunities to create value together and do well over a long period of time together. And you can only afford to be generous. Right. As Todd said, right? It's like, that's why revenue is so important and running things while I'm doing things well, because it, it allows you to be generous and keep that flywheel turning over and over again.
So with that, everybody, listen, this was Triple Win Live. We tried this live audience. We got some questions. Thanks for everyone that was shooting those in the chat. And gents so I just want to say thank you again for doing this. This was fun. Great to get together. Always interesting conversation. I've got some notes of things I wrote down that you guys shared today.
I'm excited to relisten to a couple of things you guys shared today. So thanks for being here. Last words for you guys. So if you have anything.
Todd Ortscheid: No, I'm just glad I was able to bring Alex out of retirement here. It was great to get back and start talking about some stuff, property management related
Alex Osenenko: Dude I, I live and breathe this business, man.
I still consult for people. Like I, you know what, I'm under, you know, I'm reading stuff, you know, I'm listening to stuff, you know, you know me, Jordan and I chat all the time. Todd, I always look at your stuff, Andrew, thank you very much for everything, man. You guys are inspiration. You know, your company comes up in a lot of examples people give you know, out, even people that I wouldn't think even know who you are. So keep it up, keep it going. Appreciate you and see you all. Thank you all for sticking around.
Andrew Smallwood: All right, everybody. That's it take care of happy Triple Winsday, that's it nice. Credit Brandy Hammond for that one. There we go. Take care, everybody.