Much of Condo Association planning and strategizing is based on maximizing resources. How do you make the most of Condo Association assessments? Does your community budget well? How do you maintain reserves? The answers to these questions are vital to a Condo Association’s survival. But there is another resource that’s important – one that is not given nearly the same level of respect or planning – good will. The importance of Condo Association good will often goes unnoticed and unappreciated, much to the detriment of communities.
Why Does Good Will Matter?
Good will is one of the critical resources that fuel social interactions – that “neighborly” feeling of trust. In an Association, it facilitates progress. To someone without emotional intelligence, the absence goes unnoticed. To everyone else, it is readable in body language, enthusiasm, and energy. This is important. You want people who work with your community to act like they live there – not treat it like another crappy job. Without Condo Association good will, your community becomes just another crappy job for them. That’s never good, so it is paramount that a Board foster Condo Association good will.
Good Will With Vendors
Business is driven by relationships. While money might make the world go ‘round, it’s only part of the equation. Your vendors are people, and they are motivated by the same things as most people. They’ll go the extra mile for someone they care about. They’ll mail it in for a jerk. It is critical that you treat your vendors with respect, compassion, and fairness. Yes, you are paying them and you are the boss. But that’s no excuse to squander good will. Good will can be the difference between a vendor doing out-of-scope work gratis as opposed to charging the Association. And the bigger the project, the more you’ll likely need that good will.
Good Will With Management
Even more so than vendors, good will with your Management company is key. Management and the Board are partners. You work together hand-in-hand for a successful community. As with vendors, bad Boards assume that the fact that Management is on the payroll makes them subservient. That is true. However, Management has far more impact on your day-to-day Association operations than anyone else. Fostering good will and respect with them is a must-do.
Good Will With Owners
Fostering good will with Owners is a little different. In general, you’re only going to directly interact with five to ten percent of your owners. As a result, you need to approach them a bit differently. Building Condo Association good will needs to be done by broad action. Start by focusing on the big three – transparency, safety, and financial stability. If your Board puts out information effectively and is responsive to Owners, you’re on your way. You often hear people complain that their Association hides information, but you rarely hear them complain about too much information. Finally, in your individual interactions with Owners, always treat them with respect. Make sure they understand why rules are the way they are. Some will be jerks, but the even-handed ones will understand and be supportive.
Condo Association Good Will Fights Apathy and Builds Respect
Like all investments, the key to Condo Association good will is to keep saving and build a good reserve. This will enable your Association to draw upon good will when you need it. In the meantime, you’ll be building a healthy and happy Condo Association, and a better Condo life.