Cash Flow With Joe

Do your tenants meet your core values?

Do your tenants meet your core values?


We recently welcomed a business consultant by the name of Gary Harper into our office. Gary is with Sharper Business Solutions, and He and his wonder wife Susan, helped us with a number of things ranging from writing out a vision for our company to properly defining all of our departments. They also helped us set up an accountability chart for those departments, and they helped us map out the processes for the major procedural things we do. The purpose of mapping a process is to give you a birds-eye view of all the things you do to get from, say, a seller phone call to putting the property under contract.


Having this birds-eye view of how your company works is huge. It allows you to see inconsistencies and eliminate waste, thus streamlining how you do business. The added bonus to process mapping is that it shows you where you need to write standard operating procedures. Once you accomplish this task, you have an efficient way to train new employees and scale your business.


On the first day, Gary and Susan did an exercise with us that I’d like to share with you. It goes like this:


I want you to choose three people who have had an impact on you and who you feel would allow you to dominate your industry if you added them to your company. Also, make sure these three individuals are people you’ve had personal contact with.


Next, write their names across a piece of paper. Under each name, write three to seven traits that makes you admire that person. You should have no more than 21 attributes when you finish.


You’ll notice something interesting when you do this. These three people will likely share many of the same qualities. As a matter of fact, you should be able to combine the 21 attributes into three to seven values.


The last question you ask is, “Which of these values can you budge on?” In other words, if one of our employees violated any of these values, would they still be allowed to work for you?


Strike from the list any value that isn’t an absolute must for employment. In other words, get rid of anything you’re not willing to fire someone for.


The resulting qualities are called your core values.


Defining these core values is huge because it sets the tone and standard for your company and gives you a way to evaluate who you bring into your team. Once everyone shares the same core values, it will make for a more harmonious work environment. And you will notice that if someone is lacking one of those core values, it will cause discord and unease.


We recently had to let someone go because they didn’t possess one of our values. Once they were terminated, morale improved, and productivity increased. I didn’t realize just how much one person could poison our company well.


Now, as a landlord, you have employees you may not view as such. They are the tenants you’ve hired to live in your houses and take care of them.


We always tell our tenants we’re hiring them for four things. No. 1. is to take care of the property. No. 2. is to pay on time. No. 3. is to be easy to work with by maintaining good communication and being respectful. And No. 4. is be a good neighbor.


Having Gary and Susan help us define our company core values made me realize that the above list represents our tenant core values. And every time we’ve had tenant troubles, it was because they violated one of those values.


Oftentimes, that meant it was time fire them and hire someone who shared our values. And just like with the employees in our company, when all the tenants share our core values, it makes for a more enjoyable environment.


If we allow someone to stay that does not possess our tenant core values, we are poisoning our rental well.


Joe and Ashley English buy houses and mobile homes in Northwest Georgia. For more information or to ask a question, go to or call Joe at 678-986-6813.

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