What’s Your New-Tenant Welcome Strategy?

welcome_matOne of the ways that my company, Eservus, introduces ourselves to new tenants in the office buildings we serve is to hold a prize draw for the company’s employees. We ask the employees to create a free member account with Eservus and their name goes into a draw to win, say, one of ten pairs of admit-one movie passes. It’s a fun way to engage the new employees and welcome them to the building. So that got me thinking … how can property managers welcome new tenants to the building?

Let’s face it … often the key to starting a strong relationship is making a strong first impression. This holds true in personal as well as professional relationships. The new-tenant move-in is a great time for property managers to kick off the landlord/tenant relationship on the right foot. So here are a few ideas that can help you make a strong first impression on that all-important move-in day:

The Basics: 

  • Send a bouquet of flowers, a gift basket or other goodie with a card welcoming the tenant to the building. Better yet, hand-deliver it during the first few days of move-in so you can introduce yourself (if you haven’t already of course!)
  • If you’re not able to make it in person, leave the flowers or gift basket along with the card in front of the suite’s door on a residential-style welcome mat. It’s a little kitschy for sure but it will definitely be remembered!
  • Put together a tenant welcome kit with information on the building, coupons from retailers and gift cards from nearby restaurants. Sometimes retailers and restaurants give away free gift cards or coupons in exchange for promoting them to your tenants. To add some pizazz, have the folder designed to look like a little welcome mat. (Love those welcome mats!)

Upping the Ante:

  • Show up on moving day with enough pizza and soft drinks to feed the entire team. If you can’t make it in person, have the pizzas delivered.
  • Deliver a few dozen cookies or cupcakes customized with a welcome message and the company’s logo. (It’s not as hard as it sounds … Eservus works with companies who do a great job on custom confections!)
  • Buy a large tool kit and fill it with move-in must-haves (paper towels, window cleaner, tape, small tools, etc.). Wrap it with a large bow and include a nice card welcoming the tenant to the building.

A well-executed welcome strategy doesn’t have to break the bank, and can set the stage for a great landlord/tenant relationship!

Have you done something especially creative or unique to welcome your new tenants to the building? If so, I’d love to hear about it, so please click on the “Leave a Reply” link at the bottom of the page and post a comment.

Kirk Layton is the president of Eservus, an online corporate concierge company servicing over 30 property management companies in Toronto, Calgary, Vancouver and Boston.

“Always/Never List” Helps Codify Service Standards

Two of the most important components of any service quality strategy are:

  1. Having a well-defined and consistent set of service standards in place
  2. Effectively communicating those standards throughout the organization

Even if your company doesn’t have a formalized service quality strategy, you probably have a number of service standards that at least some of your employees practice some of the time. So how do you formalize something that may be ad hoc, but probably has a ton of potential value for your business?

One thing you can do right now to formalize and communicate your company’s existing, yet undocumented, service standards is to create an “Always/Never List.” Putting an “Always/Never List” together is pretty easy: Just meet with your team and brainstorm eight to ten service actions your employees already do that complete the phrase “At our company we always ______” (e.g. you always return client phone calls within one hour, or you always take responsibility for a customer’s complaint, even if it’s not your fault). Then come up with eight to ten actions that complete the phrase “At our company we never ______” (e.g. you never bad-mouth a co-worker, or you never leave a customer on hold on the telephone for more than 30 seconds). You’ll be pleasantly surprised by how quickly you’ll come up with a list of “always” and “never” actions that will help crystallize your company’s service quality standards and make it easier to communicate them throughout the company. Once you have your list, you can print them up on 3”x5” cards, get them laminated and hand them out to the front-liners.

An example of something that’s on the Eservus Always/Never List is that we always say “you’re welcome” or “my pleasure” when thanked by a customer or co-worker. We never say “No problem.” Just that one little thing sets us apart from almost every service company out there, and it shows that we have a well-trained, service-focused team.