DGS 215: How Not to Suck at Property Management

how not to suck at property management artworkWorking with amazing, hard-working property management entrepreneurs is what makes being a coach worth it.

Join property management growth expert Jason Hull in today’s episode as he interviews DoorGrow client Jeff Garner. Jeff went from 150 to 420 doors in 4 months! Learn how he did it and figure out how not to suck at property management.

You’ll Learn

[02:35] Why would anyone get into property management?

[12:40] Fixing the foundation of a property management business

[15:14] Importance of culture in a business

[25:05] Why you need a coach

[27:34] Navigating operational issues


“No matter what market we’re in, it’s good. If we’re going to the moon, management’s great. If we’re crashing, it’s even better because people can’t sell their properties and they go, ‘Oh shoot, we’ll turn them into rentals.’”

“Go where they won’t go and do what they won’t do. That’s where the money’s at,”

“It all starts with your mindset.”

“Weekly commitments, and you’ll start to see the momentum build big time when the team are all visible and can be seen and there’s accountability and they get recognized because you have that system installed, performance sometimes goes up.”


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[00:00:00] Jeff: I have 420 doors and I have more peace of mind, more direction and I know where I’m going to be and where I’m going and how to get there.

[00:00:12] Jason: Welcome DoorGrow Hackers to the DoorGrowShow. If you are a property management entrepreneur that wants to add doors, make a difference, increase revenue, help others, impact lives, and you are interested in growing in business and life, and you’re open to doing things a bit differently, then you are a DoorGrow Hacker. DoorGrow Hackers love the opportunities, daily variety, unique challenges, and freedom that property management brings. Many in real estate think you’re crazy for doing it. You think they’re crazy for not

[00:00:38] because you realize that property management is the ultimate, high trust gateway to real estate deals, relationships, and residual income. At DoorGrow, we are on a mission to transform property management business owners and their businesses. We want to transform the industry, eliminate the bss, build awareness, change perception, expand the market, and help the best property management entrepreneurs win. I’m your host, property management growth expert Jason Hull the founder and CEO of DoorGrow. Now let’s get into the show.

[00:01:08] And today’s guest is Jeff Garner. Jeff, welcome.

[00:01:14] Jeff: Thanks man. Glad to be here.

[00:01:17] Jason: So Jeff, what’s the name of your property management business?

[00:01:19] Jeff: Homes Stretch Property Management

[00:01:21] Jason: Homes Stretch. All right, cool. And why’d you pick that name?

[00:01:26] Jeff: I feel like real estate investing it’s a long-term play. It builds wealth over the long haul. And for our home stretch of our life, whether you decide your home stretch starts at 40 because you retire early, or whether it’s 60 or 70, if you are buying real estate, really it, you know, It’s about letting the tenants pay down, you know, principal balance, pay down, depreciation, tax, write-offs, appreciation. Sure cash flow’s nice every month, but you can make millions over, you know, 20 year period, 25 year period. And so I see the real value in real estate is being that, so we want to get our owners to the home stretch and, you know, that’s kind of how we look at it. So we want to improve and maintain your property so that someday you can either sell or refi and it’s in great shape and it’s an easy process. Or you just want to keep it in cashflow forever. So our job’s to give you freedom and peace of mind knowing that your properties are being taken care of better than you can or anyone else so.

[00:02:29] Jason: Nice. Love the brand. So Jeff. Why don’t you give people a little bit of background on you. How did you start getting into real estate and what made you decide to do the crazy thing of starting a property management company? How did this all happen?

[00:02:43] Jeff: Yeah, it was the crazy thing because– so I’ll tell you a little bit about me. Real estate’s the only business I’ve ever been in. I got my real estate license when I was 22. I was going to be a real estate agent. Found a niche working with investors because when you’re 22, you know, growing up doesn’t come overnight. And so when you’re got all your, “oh shoot, I’m showing property today,” and you have to crunch the beer cans and put them under your seat. because you just turned 21 a year before, you know, it can be a little awkward putting the 40 year old mom and dad and their kids in the car to go show them property.

[00:03:18] Right. Which I did okay at. I did fine. But I found a niche in working with investors because you could sell them one house and most of the time they don’t even want to get in your car. Half the time, once you get know what you’re doing, you just give them a lockbox code and tell them to call you back and tell you what you think, and they give you a number and you write it and put it in. You could sell them 10 or 20 houses. So I developed a niche at that. I got really good at finding deals and I would send them to my guys. Shortly after that, I decided that I was on the wrong side of the table, you know, three or four years of that. I go to closing, I collect my $2,500 commission check, and he gets a check for $20,000 because he flipped it, right? And I just thought, wait a minute, I’m finding the deal. I’m calling him up, I’m telling him what number to put it in at and he’s making all this money. What am I doing wrong? So I got into that side of the business, you know. So, 08 hit crashed. All of us really put me in a position to where I to make a decision on what I wanted to do because all my investors were gone. Right?

[00:04:17] They were trying to stay alive. Yeah. You know, in 08 for the people that didn’t go through it, was like If you worked in Walmart and all of a sudden the next morning you woke up and no one will shop at Walmart again.

[00:04:31] Jason: Right?

[00:04:31] Jeff: Yeah. Never walks through the door.

[00:04:34] Jason: Yeah. So must have been scary.

[00:04:37] Jeff: Yeah. And so, I thought, “well, this investment thing’s really what I want to do. So I’m going all in. It’s time to restart. So that’s what I’m going to go all in at.” So I really looked at what happened and I realized that history, you know, tells the story and that everyone was riding this wave and had no idea it was a wave because no one does the research to, you know, see what the cycles are. I didn’t know there was a cycle. I was young. Yeah. And so the common sense thought came, well, we were at a high. If I was a real investor and I was really good at what I did, I would’ve been taking vacations, waiting for this crash to happen, and then I’d go out and buy everything I could find and hold it. Yeah, so I did that. I bought 110 rentals over a three year period, all at, you know, probably 20% of what the market is today. And outsourced the management a couple times. Horrific. Cost me more money than you know, one, when I was at 110 properties, I had to take them back overnight because I realized that I had 16 vacants and they didn’t even know about half of them.

[00:05:42] Really? Yeah. It was horrible. They just they got overwhelmed and so I built a management company overnight to manage my own properties and had zero desire. It was the last thing on the absolute planet I wanted to deal with was tenants and toilets. I did not get into rentals to deal with tenants or maintenance. It didn’t, yeah. So I put together a makeshift management company and decided I’d never take on another property of anyone else’s. I’d only do my own, because I was going to do this, it was going to be for myself. There certainly wasn’t going to make a hundred dollars a month on a property and do all this for somebody else. Right. That’s, that was my thought on being real. And a few years went by ’16, ’17, realized that I’d gotten tons of equity and I had properties sitting there with 50, 60,000 in equity and I’m making 200 or 300 a month. And I thought, this math doesn’t make sense anymore, right? So I sold off over a two or three year period, about 50 of them. But everyone apparently, everyone knew management is a tough gig and there’s not a lot of good management companies out there. Why? Right? There was no DoorGrow then that I’m aware of at least. Right? So everyone in the management business just thought, “this looks like we can make some money, let’s do this.”

[00:06:57] But they had no idea. The machine, it has to be to run well. Yeah. And so they said, “well, I’ll buy that property. I’ll even give you retail for it, but you have to keep the management.” So to this day, I still manage all 110 of those properties, even though I only own 60 of them. Right. So to get the money I wanted, I had to keep the management. And then I just kind of started looking at it is in the last couple years when I realized that we could potentially be getting to another place. If you look at the charts and you look at history that we’re you know, we’re at a high now, will it last four years longer? Probably. So I had to kind of reevaluate what I wanted to do and I looked at all my businesses, flip business, wholesale, you know, my rental portfolios and my management company, I went, wait a minute, what am I doing? I’m focusing all this energy and chasing down deals and having all these, you know, taking all the risk on everything I buy and just grinding away constantly. For over 20 years now. And I got this management company, although it’s not sexy, everyone tells me it’s the worst thing in the world to do. Yeah. You know, I realize it was the one thing that was repeatable, scalable, and I could predict. And no matter what market we’re in, it’s good. If we’re going to the moon, management’s great. If we’re crashing, it’s even better because people can’t sell their properties and they go, oh shoot, we’ll turn them into rentals. I thought, “wait, what am I doing? I’m looking at this all wrong.” I just started to look at it and so I started working on getting really good at it and filling all the holes on my own, right, with my own. And it’s, you know, and I realized that with the right team in place and the right mindset, you know, which is we want to help landlords, right? I want to take 20 something years of resources and try to convert over this management company and give them to everyone else– that it could be a great business. And then I realized, like I preach, because I did some coaching in the real estate space throughout the years “go where they won’t go and do what they won’t do. That’s where the money’s at,” right? So if everyone’s going after retail flips and a really nice b and b areas, then go look in the C areas because they’re being neglected. If everyone’s after all the C properties because the cash flows, so well then go up to your A or B areas and start doing flips because those are being neglected. Nice. Certain town everyone’s afraid of? Good. Let them be all fighting in one place and you go there. And so I realized that was what was going on in the real estate market for the management business. So I decided that’s what I wanted to focus my energies on. So I literally burned all the other boats, man. No marketing, no wholesaling, no flipping.

[00:09:40] Jason: Wow. You went all in on property management?

[00:09:42] Jeff: All in on property management, period. I got online, I did what I did 15 years before, after 08 happened, and I thought, “I’m going to redo myself. How do I do this?” And so I just got online and I started digging around and trying to teach myself things and I got coaches back then, and even though I knew 90% of what they were trying to teach me, because I got coaches in the flipping side, right? I knew you know, 80, 90% of what they were teaching me was that 10 or 20% where I knew would bring me all my money, right? So I did the same thing here and that’s how I came to DoorGrow is I found you guys really were the only real system oriented, you know, nuts and bolts teach the how and not just the why. You know, a lot of people want to tell you why you do. Oh, well, you know why? They want to give you the why on, you know, but they don’t want to give you the nuts and bolts of the how and tell you connect A to B to C to D and you’ll get your results, right? And so, I found you guys, and I knew that’s all I was missing to having success because the rest of the management companies all had bad raps. You couldn’t talk to a landlord that really loved their management company. Yeah. So I knew I could fix, put those pieces together and really treat it like a business based off of giving people their freedom and peace of mind, knowing that their properties are being taken care of better than theirs.

[00:11:10] If you can do that, anyone listening to this, if you can wrap your mind around being of service. No one else is doing that in the management business. Right? Yeah. You will dominate, it’s like I used to say when I had lots of rehab crews going, if someone shows up and does what they say and has half of the talent that I need them to have, they could be rich. That’s all they have to do. Just not be the best, but do what you say and show up so it’s predictable and we can communicate well and get stuff done. So if you did that, and you can do that with a mindset of, “I want to be of service to the industry.” Be the best. You’ll dominate, end the story, but you have to wrap that around your mind, you know, and it’ll come out in your calls. It’ll come out in your conversations at the grocery store. It’ll come out everywhere.

[00:12:00] Hell, I pulled 16 doors out of my gym in the first 30 days after joining DoorGrow because I just got the structure when we went through mindset and and some sales stuff of. Really taking what was in my mind and putting it in paper and going through the process of splitting the page into four spots and right. You know, going through everything. I got to dial it in and then boom, that was it. There’s nothing else to talk about, but what I came up with there, you know, home stretch was the name of the business because it fits what I’m trying to do. I know what our mindset is, the culture for my company and you know, we started just plugging in systems and processes.

[00:12:40] Jason: So let’s talk a little bit about it. because you said nuts and bolts, but to most property managers, they’re like, “nuts and bolts means how do you like do maintenance and how do you plunger a toilet?” you know, like it’s like the practical stuff where you know how to manage properties. Yeah. You know how to deal with tenants, you know how to like do all that. What challenge were you dealing with that brought you to DoorGrow and how did that help?

[00:13:04] Jeff: It’s really hard to explain that. What I really had was is I had a business and it functioned and I did okay, but I did not feel at 150 properties, I did not feel I could bring on 10 more doors. I felt like it would all crumble and break because I had no idea what I was doing really. Right. I had nothing to model. I had just said I got maintenance, my maintenance was horrible. I had all these guys that that was one of the hardest parts to find. But I had all these just subcontractors and every once in a while we’d find someone to come on full time, but you’d have to trust them to be out there all day doing what they said they were doing. And I didn’t know how to run that. I didn’t know how to manage that. I didn’t know how to systematize that where I knew what was going on at all times. And I didn’t feel comfortable going any bigger because, I felt like I could see why other management companies had problems, and I don’t think they want to suck, right? No, I don’t think so. But they just don’t want to say no to the money.

[00:14:06] “Hey, I got 20 doors.” oh, we’re going to do a great job for you. Let’s bring it on. And they’re already struggling with what they have. Yeah, right. Just think it’s magically you’re going to work, or, you know what? It’ll give me more money in that way. More money will mean I can do more things. And no it doesn’t. It creates more problems that cost more money. So I needed the systems, I needed the processes. Those are the nuts and bolts I’m talking about. Got it. Who to hire to do what and to, because that’s it.

[00:14:34] Jason: I mean, so what’s changed then? Like you had 150 doors, you came to DoorGrow and we started helping you change a lot of stuff, right? Yeah, absolutely. So, what things have you changed since joining DoorGrow? Yeah. What are some of the first things we start working on with you?

[00:14:51] Jeff: Okay, well, really it was just getting my mindset right was the biggest one because once my mindset was correct and I knew and I had our, what we were trying to do, where we could be of service, that opened my mind up to, ” how do we do that then?” Right. So that’s sort of answering questions for me, you know.

[00:15:14] Jason: So with mindset, what you’re saying is I believe you’re talking about all the culture stuff that we took you through stuff. Just the culture stuff and just kind of, I mean, that’s the core foundation of the business. Like if we want to make this business built around you, we’ve got to figure that piece out, right? So we started with that and that probably had a significant ripple through everything.

[00:15:33] Jeff: Imagine like this, you have children, you all of a sudden you, “I’m going to be the best dad ever and I’m going to have kids.” Next thing you know, you got two or three of them, they’re under five. You have no, literally imagine your parents weren’t good. I don’t know. They didn’t model worth a crap. Okay. Like, how do I do this? Like, I can feed them, I can put them to bed and I can keep them from killing themselves, but do I really know how to raise them to have commitment, how to be honest, how can I make a five year old a strong member of society at 28 years old, right? But if you have a culture and a mindset, you know, “I want my children to be like this. I want them to have this belief system,” and how do we give them that belief system? Okay, “well, let me look into that. Okay. Well, if we go to this school, it’ll give them these values and then I can back them up at home. And then with bedtime and, oh, I did a little research here. If I put them to bed at this time, get them up at this time. Oh wait, the sugars and dyes are bad. It makes them spastic and oh, well I’ll take that out.” And you start learning, right? But it all starts with your mindset. Right. And so my mindset changed and it started making me go down the rabbit holes that are all in DoorGrow of, “Okay. Leasing– my leasing person that we’re just winging it and working out of this software that we really were just doing all workarounds and spreadsheets because we really didn’t know how to use it. Watch this. Watch these videos on leasing, watch these videos on placing tenants.” And then I would watch them and then we would meet and put together a process and a system on how it’s going to go instead of just winging every call we got.

[00:17:17] So I started building it out position by position. I went and I found a new property manager that had the capacity to be a really good property manager and grow from some of the– I’m still new inDoorGrow. I’m only six months in. Right? And honestly over the last month I’ve had a two months, I’ve had a really hard time getting into DoorGrow because I.

[00:17:42] I’m up 420 in doors. Right.

[00:17:45] Jason: So, yeah. So, and let’s get to that. That’s interesting. But so the children, in your analogy here, this is your team you’re talking about, and this is my team. Yeah. And you were in it for what, maybe a couple months and then you started replacing the entire team?

[00:18:00] Jeff: The entire team is gone except for two people. And one of the two was almost gone. Because of just be all of a sudden having this parent mindset, I kind of coached him, or you know, raised him in a way in this little short period of time to where he’s changed. Nice. And he is just, and the reality of it is, what I found out is he was so unhappy because of how screwed up systems were that everything rolled down to him that once I realized that I got to take things away, put them create and find out what was broken on his role. And he was a main construction manager that we created a different systems and now he’s probably one of my strongest pieces. So everyone knew the whole team is new.

[00:18:50] Jason: So new team, you installed a good culture, you’re then able to work with us on the hiring piece and getting good team members in place. Absolutely. You’ve leveled up some team members because you have culture and you know, like what you deserve and want as a business owner and what have the type of team and we want to build around you. Absolutely. Most business owners build teams around the business, and that’s probably what you did before.

[00:19:15] Jeff: Absolutely a pure necessity. And I, I didn’t but hire people that fit the culture or what I was looking for. I just hired a warm body that seemed like they would work, and I thought, we’ll just teach them what we need them to know. Yeah. And their mindset or what they did in their off time or their goals didn’t mean they were their business.

[00:19:36] Jason: Right. Yeah it’s amazing. Some simple frameworks like just understanding the three fits to hiring. Yeah. Like culture fit, skill fit, personality fit can shift hiring significantly. So then you started working pretty quickly with one of our coaches on acquisitions. You went out and found a deal. And in four months you were at 420 units.

[00:19:59] Jeff: Yeah. Yep. 420. And I’ve got probably we’re I’m just, we might be at four 40 or four 50 because we have 20 or 30 vacants that Okay. That are under, that are kind of on make ready that we took over that we haven’t been able to fill yet because we have this construction backlog, not on our end, but on his backend. The guy that I bought the management from, which was part of the deal, and one of the reasons he sold was because he had done exactly what everyone else did. He got too big and wasn’t saying no, and got backlogged and yeah, he was starting to provide really horrible service, so I went in, bought it from him at a really good price for me, but I think it was still a good price for him because if you’re at a point to where you’re going to, it’s stressing you out, you can’t get it all done.

[00:20:46] It’s affecting anything, all your other revenue streams and people are getting ready to start leaving you. Someone walks in “wait, you can take this off my hands and give me money? Okay. Where do I sign?” You know?

[00:20:59] Jason: So what are the things did you do with our team? Have we done a website for you?

[00:21:03] Jeff: You did a website.

[00:21:05] Jason: What about your branding? Did you change your brand at all?

[00:21:08] Jeff: Yeah. Hell, hell yeah. I was starting point property management. I changed my brand. We rebranded a week before this acquisition, which I was like, I’m going to put this rebranding thing off because that’s another, and then we sat down and I was talking to the team and I don’t think they loved it, but they agreed that doing it before we transition all these new owners and tenants over was going to be the way to go because then we would have to change it all up in a couple months anyway when we rebranded and had them in a new website and portal and such so.

[00:21:38] Jason: How about pricing? Did you change your pricing?

[00:21:41] Jeff: I’m on the hybrid pricing. Okay. The three plans. The three plans now, which is exactly from you guys. Which was another thing that really helped me because with changing the pricing and doing the hybrid plan and going through that training, and it was, once again, it was all the why’s we’re doing it. I got to design the plans that fit our culture and provide the service we wanted to provide. It gave me more confidence, honestly, in what we were doing, even though I was going to be charging more now. So yeah, we’re on the three tier pricing, hybrid pricing.

[00:22:19] Jason: So you’ve changed your team, you changed your branding, you changed your website, you changed your pricing model. You’ve probably made some adjustments to your pitch. Do you do the Golden Bridge stuff?

[00:22:31] Jeff: I didn’t have a pitch before. You didn’t have a pitch? I didn’t have a pitch. I’d just say, “Hey, we do management. Can we manage your properties?” And I just like, that’s what I’m saying, when I didn’t know, like I couldn’t wrap my mind around, because I’d been flipping houses and wholesaling. I had that down to a science. I am a fricking ninja in that. Yeah. But the management side, it was just, “Hey, we manage properties.” Yeah. This is what we charge if you want to come over. Cool. If not, I got to go. I got other calls with me, you know, and to have a pitch. So it was literally everything and the pitch made it. That’s what I’m saying. I pulled 16 doors out of the gym. Yeah. Just “what are you doing now? Oh, I’m doing management and it’s–” ‘boop,’ just going into my pitch casually, just real casual because we’re at the gym. “Do you know anybody that manages any properties? Yeah, I do. I got this buddy. Cool. Could I talk to him? That was it.

[00:23:23] Jason: So I love clients like you, Jeff. because you implement, like you went through the rapid revamp and you did it rapid, like you got that stuff done. Yeah. Pretty quick. And then you start working on acquisition because you saw that opportunity with our acquisitions coach and you’re like, “I’m going to do that.” and you’re just doing stuff and I think that’s a testament to you. You know, this is part, I think when we work out more often at the gym, and I think our brains work better. I think that’s science, like that’s been proven. Like there’s something released in our muscles. And you’re a big dude. I got to get to your point. I’m trying to work out to catch up to you.

[00:23:59] Jeff: I’m going to be pitching you on coaching you in that area.

[00:24:02] Jason: But I think I appreciate that you’ve been implementing this stuff rapidly and I asked you at DoorGrow Live, I was like, “where do you see yourself, you know, do you think you could get to a thousand doors?” And you were like, “yeah, probably a year and a half.” Like it’s nothing. Like it’s nothing. And you’re like, “well, maybe two years.” And I was like, “do you know how ridiculous that sounds to most people?” Yeah. So, but I believe it. I believe it for you. I believe it’s possible for you. And I believe any of our clients could do it if they just. Take action and implement. And in order to do that, they’ve got to trust us. And I appreciate you putting your faith in us and trusting us and just putting your head down and doing the work.

[00:24:41] So what would you say to other property managers that are maybe like the company that you bought or maybe like the way you were before if they’ve just been watching DoorGrow on the sidelines and they think they know what we’re about and they think we’re just marketers or something that like have a decent sales pitch, but they don’t know if they can trust us? You’re behind the paywall. What would you say to them?

[00:25:04] Jeff: Well, I mean, besides being behind the paywall and doing it and having experience with it, I know coaching and I know that space, and so I recognized DoorGrow immediately from watching your marketing and just digging in a little that you guys taught the business. It wasn’t a marketing ploy to get people to sign up to you. Actually, it wasn’t like I was just going to get a bunch of motivation, “go out there and do it!” right, right. Because I motivated it was, like I said, it was the whys and the hows and and the all the processes and systems. And so man, it’s all there for you to just do it. You would just do it. You would literally just go, “okay, I’ll start at one and work to 10.” I had a management company already. If I had to redo it all when I got real life processes and systems, and then I saw that there was people in it that had a hundred doors, 500 doors, a thousand doors, and I’m like, “that’s what I need.” I need to be surrounded by people that are at a higher level of success and have been where I am and now are where I want to go. And so if you are watching and you have management already and you are struggling, and it sucks. Whether it’s for you or your customers, or both?  I have 420 doors and I have more peace of mind, more direction and I know where I’m going to be and where I’m going and how to get there. And more time to myself if I wanted to take it. I don’t take it because I still have big goals and so I’m working a lot. But then I did with 150 doors. That’s awesome. I had more certainty with 3x almost than I did where I started. I got the team in place. I watched them problem solve all day long on the chat and working systems and the processes and everything happens the same over and over again.

[00:27:01] So it’s really a business in a box, but you have to do it. You can’t question yourself. You can’t make excuses. You just have to do it. It’ll be really easy if you just one foot in front of the other and take the steps. It’s all there. And I had to stop because I can’t wrap my mind around everything until I get to another place. Right. Yeah. Like I can only do so much and it’s growing and working and so like, I’ve got to pause and then I’m going to dive back in and I don’t know I’m still in DoorGrow obviously regularly.

[00:27:34] Jason: Well, let’s do some co coaching live on air. Let’s figure out what’s your next step? Ready? Okay. Yeah. You open? Okay, cool. So you’re at 420 units right now. Yeah. Yeah. You’ve finally got a good team, you’ve got good culture. Yeah. So the next level to get to, you know, to break past that next kind of major barrier, which maybe is 600 doors, you have to have a great team, but you got to get three major systems installed. Those three major systems are going to be, you have to really get a good process system installed. Not just process documentation, but a system to where they’re running the processes each time. So we’ve got DoorGrow flow. You can use that, lead simple, process street, something, but you need a good process system. That’s one piece. The other piece you need is you need a really good people system. So you’ve started to create the culture, you’ve started to install that system. Then we want to make sure– and did you use DoorGrow hiring and do grow ATS and work with Sarah on some of that stuff?

[00:28:32] Jeff: I watched the coaching and implemented some of the things I learned just like I did with Clint. So yeah.

[00:28:38] Jason: So we want to make sure we have a solid system so that as you scale, you can get the right people and get those people quickly. So it sounds like you’ve done some work on that. And then we want to make sure you have a really good planning system. So once you have a team of people you trust to execute, your executive team, then we want to install a planning system. Now these three systems should not be run by you because as a visionary and an entrepreneur, it’s not fun for you to do this. So the key person, the most important hire you will have on the team will be an operator. Somebody that runs the operations. Do you feel like you have that key person right now?

[00:29:15] Jeff: I do, but she is one of the people I brought on the most valuable hire I’ve made after I came to DoorGrow. And it was to have that operator, but she’s a CFO. Okay. And she’s grown another insurance company to probably where we’re at now from scratch, which, you know, I think I’m blowing her mind a little on where we want to go, how fast we’re going. But yeah, my goal is to make her the operator. She’s the CFO. And so you know management’s an accounting business, really at the end of the day, and so we are doing so many changes to our software and our accounting to make sure that all those processes and automations are in place that she is buried every day, but she helps with the team. She helped on the hiring. And she’s going to be the operator to try to shorten that. We’re working her into that role because as she figures pieces out, we hand them off. So it frees her time up and she’s not doing the 15- $20 an hour work because they’re paying her more than that. Handing it off and it’s freeing up her time and she’s. Then we’re putting in place some of that more operation stuff, so in process.

[00:30:23] Jason: Nice. Yeah. Cool. Awesome. So when she’s ready, one of the things we’ll want to do is start to get her to show up on the Friday coaching call, which is operations, and to do that super system breakout and work with her and you to get DoorGrow OS installed. Once you get DoorGrow OS installed, the planning system is that next level system. This is going to allow you to have your team start to function like a visionary, like the entrepreneur, they’re going to start to innovate and move goals forward without you having to, you know, push them. And she will run that system. She’ll run the meetings, and then you’ll be able to set goals and break them down from quarterly to monthly to weekly commitments, and you’ll start to see the momentum build big time when the team are all visible and can be seen and there’s accountability and they get recognized because you have that system installed, performance sometimes goes up. When I first install a system like that, we grew 300% in a year. And so that is kind of the next level I think for you guys is when she’s ready for that, we start to get DoorGrow OS installed and get that planning system and cadence. Because cadence in a business is the communication, cadence is the culture, cadence creates all of this, and it gets everyone rowing the boat in the same direction. So instead of you saying, “Hey, let’s do this to everybody, watch this video at DoorGrow,” et cetera. They will start to innovate and move outcomes forward because they’re given goals and deadlines and then support instead of tasks. And that’s where you’ll start to see your team really perform. This is where you get like three times the output from your team members. This is where your operational costs drop significantly in relation to the number of people you have per door. And so that’s what I see next level for you guys. And once you have that system installed, 600 doors is going to be a piece of cake.

[00:32:17] Jeff: Yeah. The other thing too is that I know we need a sales funnel. The funnel right now is this mouth, that’s it right now.

[00:32:27] Jason: We got to get you out of that. So what’ll be next is either we get you, if you don’t have this already, we get you an assistant, a setter, or a sales assistant. And that person will then help you double your capacity currently. because they’ll be doing all of the follow up, getting you on calls to close and you can use tactics like the double barrel close and some of these things we talk about. That’s maybe, that’s like level one, baby step. Level two, we just get you out of doing that all together. We get you a full-time BDM. Just like James Wachob ‘s team installed Brad, he’s been showing up to each of our Wednesday calls where we support the BDMs or the people working on growth and I think he’s helped him add like 250, something like that. They’ve added 400 doors organically in less than a year.

[00:33:18] Jeff: Is that Brian Bouler guy?

[00:33:20] Jason: Yeah, Brian Bouler’s their operator. And he’s, he actually just, yeah, he’s a stud. He just became the director of the property management. So he’s running all property management and he just hired an operator to replace himself from a Fortune 50 company. Right? So this is like once you have your operator fully functioning as an operator, you get her out of CFO role and you get her into being an operator, then we can start to install DoorGrow OS, get that team to the next level. And part of that plan, I think for your 90 days would be to start to focus on that sales side. If you’re ready to ramp up lead gen and growth, then we get you maybe a setter initially, and then we get you a full-time BDM or you can jump straight to getting a BDM and we help you find somebody that can just crush it at sales. We identify the right personality type, they’re great at this, and they will go out and just make it rain and create business for you.

[00:34:13] Jeff: I got the hiccups all of a sudden, so I’m like, this is going to look great in the podcast.

[00:34:17] Jason: You’re just so excited about the future. Excited. Yeah. And you know, and that BDM could also, and then I think what you would do, if you want to focus on the growth side, if that’s still fun for you, you just go out and find more acquisition deals. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah, that’s fine. You can even get your BDM to start hunting for acquisition deals as well and feed them to you, and then you do double barrel close that way. They’re feeding you to close it. Right? So, anyway, I think that’s going to be the next level for you and, you know, maybe what I would maybe have your CFO do is do a time study and maybe you do a time study if you haven’t done one for a while, so that you can see where can you support her even more and more quickly to get things off of her plate. What are you doing? Which things do you love the most? Which things don’t you? And start to take some things off of her plate and give them to other team members as quick as possible. So, and then you’ll know like, this is what she spent her time doing over the last two weeks. You’re like, cool, we, these are minus signs. These are things that are lower level dollar an hour work. Let’s define these processes and we make that a goal and all that. When you have a cadence and a planning system, you can plug all that into your goals. Like one of your quarterly goals would be transition CFO to operator, for example. Yeah. So we could start to build out those systems even right now with her, we just need to get you and her on board with that. And then you’ll see things start to go even faster because you’re already working a plan. When we put the plan in a way that everyone else can see it and everyone can contribute, the whole business starts to go faster. Otherwise, it’s you pushing her and her pushing everybody else, and it’s very top down. When you create a bottom up system, you’ll start to feel a lot of momentum. Okay. It’s a weird feeling when you start to feel the team pulling you forward instead of you pushing them forward.

[00:36:10] Jeff: So, when you say that, what does that, what do you call that then? Like when you’re saying bottom up, you know? When you, everything you just said, like, what is that? Like, what do I call that?

[00:36:21] Jason: So I call that the planning system or DoorGrow OS, the operating system. The operating. So we want to get this operating system installed so that there’s this planning cadence and communication. So I’d start with by doing a six core functions assessment with your team brainstorming session. That’ll be quarterly planning and it’ll take like an hour and a half or two hours. First time you do this as a team.

[00:36:44] Jeff: That’s all in os. That whole process is an OS. The step-by-step on that. That was my direction. I need OS, and I need Flow, and I’m like, oh, another thing I got to plan.

[00:36:53] Jason: Yeah that’s DoorGrow OS. The planning system. What’s cool about it and, if you do the math on this, right? Let’s say you do in your annual planning, you spend maybe an hour, a half. Your quarterly planning, you do four times a year. You spend maybe an hour, a half, two hours, right? Each of your monthly planning meetings, which you have 12, that adds up to 12 hours, maybe an hour each, right? Then you’re doing your weekly commitments meetings every week. Maybe you’ll do about 50 of those a year. Maybe those take an hour, sometimes even just 30 minutes, depending on the size of your team and the aggressiveness of your goals. And the goal on a weekly basis is to hit 80% of your weekly commitments. That’s a lot of goals getting achieved. This is outside of the tactical work, outside of the day-to-day work. This is innovating and moving the business forward towards your core functions and what the business needs most and what you need most.

[00:37:49] If you stack and add all this up, maybe even add a culture meeting here or there, and you add your daily huddles with your teams that are like maybe 15, 20 minutes, all that combined adds up to, you can run the entire business on 300 hours a year, and it eliminates a massive amount of ‘got a minute?’s, sneaker net communication, interruptions, and it makes the business far more efficient.

[00:38:14] Jeff: And that’s all lined out in OS. Like I start OS, it’s like everything step by step. I can do this. How?

[00:38:22] Jason: Yes. However, my disclaimer is, this is not stuff that you’re going to want to do. This is stuff that your operator will probably enjoy doing. Okay, but not you. Okay. Like me, I hear a bunch of meetings. My initial gut reaction is like, “oh gosh, shoot me now.” Right? Yeah. Like that sounds like a cumbersome and a waste of my time. It actually speeds you up and speeds up the business and gives you more time, but you don’t want to run it. You need somebody else to run it because otherwise you end up as the emperor with no clothes because everybody’s going to agree to you, say “whatever Jeff says,” you need somebody else to run it. And you’re last to speak in all these meetings. Yeah. Then you’ll start to see the magic and the genius of your team. because some of them are more closely connected to some of the things that need to shift or move or be innovated or move forward than you are, right? Your maintenance coordinator can see what’s going on in maintenance and they probably have ideas. And so this will allow them to start to, you know, bubble up some of these ideas and it’ll allow them to innovate. When team members don’t get deadlines and outcomes that they’re given to achieve. And then they can see that there’s need for improvement, instead of innovating, they go and try and spend more of your money. Yeah, exactly. And so the team gets more expensive. And then you, if you give them a blank check, they’ll just spend like, “let’s go buy this new thing and let’s buy that. And that might do this,” right? When you give your team a deadline and some constraints and an outcome, they will start to get creative and innovate, and you want your team members to start to think like that. That turns them into intrapreneurs. So getting this system installed, I think will be the big next level thing, and we can start getting that installed right away so Sarah can help you get that set up. And set up a call with you and your operator and you’re already working on some goals. So let’s just get those goals into a system where everyone can see and make sure you start to move the plan forward, create the plan, work the plan, and you’ll start to see the team move forward way faster.

[00:40:16] So I’m excited for you man.

[00:40:19] Jeff: Can you believe I got the hiccups? I get hiccups like once every 10 years. I get in the middle of the podcast. Yeah, I’m very excited about that because here’s the truth is you’re right, like you get to this place at, you know, 150 doors on my own right, that’s capacity really no capacity would’ve been much higher. But doing it well, capacity was 150 doors. Now I’m at 400 something and we’re going, well, yeah. I think I could add another a hundred doors before anything breaks, but I know we’re there. We’re 50 to a hundred doors away from having to do new stuff again. Yeah. I can feel it. And so that’s exciting, but dreadful to think, to have to implement myself.

[00:40:59] I think that’s why I’ve kind of like, “let’s just wait till we get everything we’re doing dialed it perfectly before I get into that,” but I need to just suck it up. I got to call with Sarah coming up the next couple days and I just need to tell her, okay, let’s do OS, whatever. Tell me what to do next. Let’s go.

[00:41:14] Jason: Yeah. And really we’re just going to start working on creating a plan. Then we’ll put in the software and you’ll start to see when you start having these weekly meetings with your team, you’re going to start to see stuff move forward. Like our goal, we sometimes have like 40 things in a single week that we’re working on as a team outside of our daily work, like 40 tasks that are assigned to different team members.

[00:41:38] And my team members do not want to show up with a red ‘no.’ Yeah. And this increases their performance level, like you would not believe. They want green yeses when they show up on Monday for our weekly commitments meeting. And that means we are really likely to get all of our 30 day goals done, which means we’re really likely to get all of our quarterly goals done because they’re all connected.

[00:41:59] Yeah. You’ll start to see your business move forward really quickly. This is a next level thing. So I’m excited for you to get that installed. because first, you got to have an operator. because I’ve tried to do it on my own without an operator and I really, I get lazy because I just don’t like it. Like, I don’t like running the meetings. I’m like, “all right, anyone’s stuck on anything? Let’s move forward faster.” And I just skip steps and I tell people, do things, but when the team starts to run this, your operator will start to run the business. The business will start to run itself. Things will start to move forward without you, and then instead of you feeling like you’re the entrepreneur pulling your entire team up the hill in a wagon, which is what it feels like until you get a system like this, you’re going to start to see them moving forward ahead of you, and you’re going to be the one that is in the wagon and they’re pulling you up the hill. You’re just going to be there like giving some feedback, coaching them, supporting them, but you’ll start to see the business move forward. I’m the biggest constraint on my team. Sarah and the team are using DoorGrow OS, and they’re moving the whole business forward constantly. And they’re like, “Jason, keep up. We need more from you.” And so they’re keeping me accountable now. I don’t need to keep them accountable because I’ve got A players and I’ve got a system that brings that out in them. So that’s the next level. Cool, man. Awesome. Well, hey, thanks for coming on the podcast and being vulnerable and sharing some of your struggles and your wins.

[00:43:23] Really appreciate you as a client.

[00:43:25] Jeff: Yeah. Appreciate you too, man. It’s been a huge life changer. So cool. Well, keep pushing me.

[00:43:32] Jason: Yeah, we’ll keep going. We’ll get you to that next level as well. So, thousand doors, here we come!

[00:43:37] Jeff: Here we come. All right.

[00:43:39] Jason: All right, thanks. See you. All right, so if you are a property management entrepreneur and you’re wanting to get some coaching, you’re tired of not having anyone in your corner, maybe nobody’s believing in you, maybe not even your spouse is believing in you right now, and you need some hope, you want to have some results like Jeff, you’re wanting to move your business forward. We would love to coach and help and support you. Join our mastermind. You can check us out at doorgrow.com. If you’re looking like to get nurtured and warmed up a little bit more and you’re not really sure about those DoorGrow people, then go to doorgrowclub.com. Join our free Facebook group. We give out better free stuff than most coaches in this industry give out that’s paid, and you’re going to get access to our master classes and some really cool stuff in there. Join that and you’re going to see that we care and we want to see you succeed. And that will hopefully be a nice pathway into you becoming a client and working with DoorGrow and taking your business to that next level. And finally getting what you deserve, getting paid what you deserve, and having the business that you dream of having.

[00:44:47] Until next time everybody, to our mutual growth. Bye everyone.

[00:44:51] Jason Hull: You just listened to the #DoorGrowShow. We are building a community of the savviest property management entrepreneurs on the planet in the DoorGrowClub. Join your fellow DoorGrow Hackers at doorgrowclub.com. Listen, everyone is doing the same stuff. SEO, PPC, pay-per-lead content, social direct mail, and they still struggle to grow!

[00:45:18] At DoorGrow, we solve your biggest challenge: getting deals and growing your business. Find out more at doorgrow.com. Find any show notes or links from today’s episode on our blog doorgrow.com, and to get notified of future events and news subscribe to our newsletter at doorgrow.com/subscribe. Until next time, take what you learn and start DoorGrow Hacking your business and your life.

Enjoyed this episode on how not to suck at property management? Get equipped with more content like it by exploring past episodes of the #DoorGrowShow.

Jason Hull

Jason's mission is "to inspire others to love true principles." This means he enjoys digging up gold nuggets of wisdom & sharing them with property managers to help them improve their business. He founded OpenPotion, DoorGrow, & GatherKudos.

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