We are all fascinated by shiny objects. In the community association management world, these shiny objects may come in the form of a certain prestige community. For us, it is high-end associations near the ocean in South Florida. These communities are our niche, and we pursue their accounts regularly. We have enjoyed serving these communities, for the most part, BUT we had held on to one association far too long at the expense of our peace of mind, and the realization that we did not model the kind of behavior we want our employees to emulate.
As a new company, we were dazzled by the revenue this account was bringing into our company which accounted for approximately forty-percent of annual sales! It was a prestige account, and we were super proud to have secured it. Yes! We were on our way, baby! The problem was that the board was distant and uncooperative, the community members were abusive, and the vendors began to blacklist the community due to their treatment by the board making it difficult to accomplish needed maintenance and repairs! It was obvious we could not sustain the level of stress the account caused everyone in the office. A wise man told me there is a word for people who trade their value for money. It’s not a nice word, and it was not a nice feeling.
We decided to resign the account. We could not afford to, but we did it anyway. A man’s pride will bring him low, but the humble in spirit will retain honor (Proverbs 29:23). It was not easy, but we have never regretted it. We began trusting in our Provider for our provision.
We were able to replace the account and the revenue shortly after the resignation. We have learned the lesson of humility, and what kind of company we want to be. Our staff is happier, and we are relieved and grateful. Every company owner, management or otherwise, wants to grow their company and revenues, right? Of course! We still do too. We took a step back, to leap forward, and have not second-guessed the decision. If you are blinded by your own shiny object, you may have a tiger by the tail. Make sure you don’t get devoured in the process.
Endeavor to persevere.
Tanoa Lynne Poirier is the Managing Principal at Poirier Enterprises Inc., specializing in the management of community associations, commercial and investment properties, and individual residences in South Florida.
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