Just what DO employers look for in senior management staff?

Just what DO employers look for in senior management staff?

 
Life is good, you’re feeling content in your current role and you’re happy coasting along.
 
But then you look around the office and little kernels of doubt start to bloom in your brain. Your co-worker sitting across from you is half your age and has double your qualifications. Not to mention boundless enthusiasm and new ideas.
 
Before you know it you crash into the hard wall of reality as realisation dawns that over the years you’ve failed to climb that career ladder. And even worse, at least a clutch of potential promotions have passed you by.
 
Stop! Like the ghost of block management future, let’s leave that potential path behind and look at the present.
 
We all know that the market has many roles to choose from and that candidates are in a strong position when it comes to job opportunities as a Property Manager. But at the point of taking that next step into senior management the tide certainly turns in favour of the employer. There are many highly skilled and experienced professionals eager to take those top level positions. So the question is:
 
‘How do you get noticed and what do you need to act on now to make sure that you and your CV sparkle for future employers?’
 
Qualifications:
MIRPM, MRICS, NEBOSH/ IOSH
Like many in our industry you may have landed in block management purely by accident, but if you want to enjoy a progressive career (which rewards well financially) getting qualified will certainly make you standout. There is a huge focus on Health and Safety in our sector at present, so why not work towards your NEBOSH.
 
Training Courses:
Customer Service, Management of Staff
“I’m great at customer service” and “my people management skills are second to none” are statements bandied about liberally on the many CVs I’ve read over the years, but they’re also claims that are rarely evidenced by official training.
 
Don’t get me wrong, this skill can be learnt by mentoring and learning from experience but this will only make you the same as everyone else. As the saying goes ‘the world accommodates you for fitting in, but only rewards you for standing out’.
 
Experience:
A steady work history will show that you’re reliable and committed to a future employer. Having several jobs where you’ve only stayed for 2 years or less makes employers’ nervous. Ideally you want to stay for three years+ with each employer.
 
As much as having too many jobs is bad for your CV, having too few (or one!) is just as detrimental. Candidates who’ve only worked with one company during their career can be seen to lack wider industry knowledge. Sure they’ll undoubtedly know their current company’s systems, procedures and clients inside out but how will they fair at a new company? Having exposure to a varied portfolio type (New Build, Mansions Blocks, Conversions, Retail and Commercial), different ways of working and a variety of clientele all serve to add value.
 
With very few options for official training in our sector (and a lack of money to spend on it) senior members of staff should offer themselves up as a mentor. This not only cultivates respect and trust within a team (don’t forget people often leave their managers not their jobs) but also allows some much needed introspection on why we’re motivated to make the decisions we do. Explaining thoughts and actions can be cathartic!
 
Forge good connections throughout the industry with contractors, developers, RMC’s and industry bodies. Networking is a great way to stay current in our market and there are many events held throughout the year. As well as making it your business to network, be just as aware of knowing your competitors. Who are they? What are they doing now? What are they doing next? Being clued up on your closest rival(s) is vital.
 
How’s your commercial acumen? If you understand how and where money is made in leasehold you can apply this to decisions and ideas within your role. This will shine a spotlight on you as somebody seeking progression.
 
New Business and Tender Writing:
As a senior member of staff, you will need to have had exposure to the mechanics of bringing in new business. Can you work alongside a team member at present to gain this knowledge?
 
Awards:
Having a few awards under your belt will really showcase you as a ‘stand out’ candidate. There are many to choose from, so get entering. If you don’t try you definitely won’t succeed!
 
So now you know what that future employer’s looking for it’s time to look at the present and create a roadmap highlighting opportunities for your development in the here and now. Act now to secure your future!
 
Article by: Alice Cadfan-Lewis, Director, Block Recruit
 

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