What Counts

What you become as a result of the work (not job) that you do?

What counts?

What you become as a result of the work (not job) that you do?

Work is art.

A job pays the bills.

Get straight on the work you do.

And, get ready for what counts.

Get ready to build your character.

The end goal is to come full circle in your life and see your start point anew.

Your challenging you to get your WORK straight Multifamily Maniac,



When you wake in the morning and stand in front of the mirror – ask yourself “Am I better person today than I was yesterday based on my experiences.

I am often struck by a person’s need for validation/recognition by people of authority.

In my head – the best measure of success and validation is the mirror test.

When you wake in the morning and stand in front of the mirror – ask yourself “Am I better person today than I was yesterday based on my experiences.

If the answer is yes – boom! If not, acknowledge it, make a new plan, execute it and check in the following morning.

Don’t look for your inspiration out there because the world has a funny way of letting you down.

Look for inspiration in there (inside your heart, mind, body and soul). This world has a funny way of kicking ass and taking names.

Your challenging you to look inside not outside Multifamily Maniac,




What do you burn for? What gets you inpired to do the work YOU want to do?

What do you burn for?

Who are you?

What do you believe?

What do you do when you are alone with your thoughts?

What are you doing when you feel most authentic?

What do your instincts tell you?

What do you crave?

What do you long for?

What does your intuition swell up inside of you?

What do you burn for?

Do that…

Your ever anxious Multifamily Maniac,


In the Absence of Rules

Amazing culture allows for Insanely Great people to do Insanely Great Stuff.

In the absence of rules – there is Culture.

It allows for moment of truth conversation.

It allows for courageous conversation.

It allows for blunt truth.

It allows for in-your-face awesomeness.

It allows for character building.

It allows for sharpening the saw.

It allows for vision.

It allows for mission.

It allows for Insanely Great people doing Insanely Great Stuff.

Your Culture is where it’s at Multifamily Maniac,



Curb to Contract

Compelling apartment living experiences start with curb to contract thinking.

I hate the word contract. But I needed a C word to fit my attempt at a new Axiom.

Curb to Contract

It’s a revision to my Curb to Commode axiom. Over the years I’ve preached and promoted a very high standard of excellence as it relates to everything from the curb to the commode. Everything from freshly swept and painted curbs to a very fresh bead of caulk around the base of the toilet.

Just the other day it dawned on me that it doesn’t stop there. It extends to the transaction side of our business. It extends to paperwork, it extends to personal presentation, it extends to website experience design, it extends to mobile experience design and so on and so forth.


Everything is Marketing. Everything backs up your Brand. Everything from Curb to Contract and beyond.

Your curb to contract multifamily maniac,


Organizational Success

Serve the people well and they will serve people (customers, owners, vendors) well.

As Mills Properties moves through the process of Scaling Up; I’ll be sharing some random thoughts along the way. Today will be really random – or not. We shall see.

Scaling a company ranks as some of the toughest work one will do in their professional life. The saving grace being that the nature of scaling anything requires the collective force of many – not just one. But there are keys to being successful. Three of those keys are Vision, Mission and Values.

It’s been said many times over but Vision, Mission and Values are central to the success of any organization. Everything an organization does, says or decides should ladder up to the Vision, Mission and Values. When you sit down to make a financial, human resource, operations, capex or marketing decision – view them through the Vision, Mission and Value lens. Easy enough but not everyone sees the value in sitting down to go through the process. Or, they see it as a fifteen minute back of the napkin exercise.

Vision Mission Values are not Important

Let’s skip all that crap and get right to the people, processes and systems. Okay – let’s do that. Let’s create systems and processes that leave the voice of talent, customers and owners out in the blistering tundra of ignorance. Let’s ignore the impact we will have on any or all constituents. No worries – we are the biggest, best and most well-known company in the market. People will come by default. When you think about it they have no other choice. We have the best market intelligence. We have the best people. We have the best benefits. We have the best pay. We have the best processes. We we we… It rolls right off the tongue so nicely.

Now I do agree that creating Vision, Mission and Values is not valuable for the paper statements you deliver at the end. I do posit however that the process you go through to get there is where the real value is.

It’s about who/what you become as you dig into the dirty little secrets, the unspoken rules and the super sacred cows of the company.

It’s about facing your company today and diving in for all that you and the people you work with will become. It’s about coming full circle a year or two from now and seeing the company anew for the first time. Not because the company has changed terribly but rather because you have changed as a person/professional.

Growing People

In the end it’s all about the people. People do business with people. They do business with people they like. And, as I like to say, organizations are in place to serve the people who serve it. Serve the people well and they will serve people (customers, owners, vendors) well. Serve them in amazingly and they will serve people (customers, owners, vendors) amazingly.

Your doing stuff that matters Multifamily Maniac,


Programmatic Advertising

i’m sitting in traffic this morning wondering about end-to-end advertising solutions.

A solution that anticipates specific unit vacancy. And automatically cues up programmatic advertising. A solution so robust someone could lease an apartment and move in without ever visiting a leasing center. So robust that a marketing director morphs into an analyst. And apartment related content marketing dies or changes dramatically. 

Makes me wonder if Costar buys Yardi or Yardi buys Costar. Or they create partnerships that allow for sharing the critical pieces of data that would make it ILS more effective. 

Or better yet apartment companies develop their own internal systems that achieve the same result. 

Your wondering multifamily maniac,


And One – Idea

Take this as an opportunity to respond +1.

It happens from time to time.

A customer arrives to take occupancy of their apartment and it’s not ready.

Take this as an opportunity to respond +1.

Tell the resident they are in luck!

Tell them the apartment is receiving a little extra time and attention.

That means they get a free lunch/dinner on us.

They also get a free hour of move-in help (pre-arrange with a local moving company).

Your And One is the differentiator Multifamily Maniac,


The Next Big Thing in Multifamily

All reasons for concerned over the next 36 months.

The War for Talent

Vilfredo had it right. Vilfredo Pareto that is.

His 80/20 rule is a measure that applies to just about anything including human workforce production.

Look around your apartment management organization – 20% of the people do 80% of the stuff.

Problem is that a war is breaking out and 80/20 won’t cut it.

Construction boom. Raising minimum wage. Skills gap. Caring.

All reasons for concerned over the next 36 months.


Now is the time to create your “why”. It’s time to craft a story and tell the reason “why” someone would entertain the idea of coming to work for you.

Make sure the story includes “how” coming to work for your organization will make a real difference in their personal/professional life.

Tell them how your organization is set in place to serve the people who serve it. Tell them your company’s purpose for being in business.

Help them see the path of progress and personal/professional advancement.

But – and here is the all important punchline – mean it. With the advent of the internet and the proliferation of information and devices to access it – B.S. has a stronger aroma than ever.

Facades don’t work.

The war for talent is real – are you ready to win it?

Your consistently thinking about ways to “move people” Multifamily Maniac,