Condo Media - August 2011 - (Page 44)

OPERATIONS by Julie Adamen A Love/Hate Relationship Vendors and Managers Must Work Together once had a manager friend of mine comment that I had joined “The Dark Side.” He was referring to, of course, the fact that I left actual managing to become a “vendor” or “associate.” It is unfortunate, but many managers feel that way about vendors — I know, I did too. But now that I have run a marathon in their shoes, let me see if I can create a little more understanding about the vendor and manager relationship — and help us better understand that our professions are intricately and necessarily woven together. respect. When treated with that respect, vendors can be your best allies in community management. These are the guys who will take a service call at 5:00 p.m. on a Friday without your having to worry about whether or not they are going to show up. Pay the vendor on time. Paying a vendor on time is good business on your part. It ensures loyalty and their desire to work for you and your association. If your association or company has specific dates for action on invoices, make sure and let the vendor know those dates and times (See “Pet Peeves” below) so they can operate within your system and they can meet payroll. Be truthful with the vendor. Once, many years ago, I took over an association that was flat broke — yet, I didn’t know it prior to having a considerable amount of remedial maintenance work performed. By the time the bills came in, there was less than zero in the bank. I didn’t run, I didn’t hide, and I didn’t place the vendor on hold until he hung up because I was embarrassed. I called him, and explained the situation. He wasn’t happy, but he was grateful that I had called him so he could make arrangements to meet his payroll. Give credit where credit is due. Have you ever had a vendor pull your fat out of the fire? Of course you have. Did you say thank you? Did you tell your board what the vendor did? This small amount of recognition could make the difference between a great relationship with a vendor or a mediocre one. Don’t take all the glory, share it. It will come back to you ten-fold. I Working Effectively with Your Vendors We all have known managers who were able to create and sustain great working relationships with their vendors. These are the managers who are able to pick up the phone and get their vendor to take care of problems quickly and efficiently, while other managers can’t seem to get the lawn mowed on the right day. How to do that? Start by creating a productive working relationship. As the manager initiates the working relationship, it is up to that manager to lay the foundation for a productive affiliation. Here are some tips. Treat the vendor with respect. Most vendors are competent in their discipline and deserve 44 CONDO MEDIA • AUGUST 2011

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Condo Media - August 2011

Condo Media - August 2011
From the CED’s Desk
Editorial Board
CAI News
CAI Regional News
Asked & Answered
Homeowner’s Corner
Smooth Operations
Vendor Spotlight
Industry Perspective
Advertisers Index
Classified Service Directory

Condo Media - August 2011