So you've finally landed a role in Property Management.... Where do you go from here and what are your options?
Leasing / Property Officer - so you've landed your first role in Property Management and you’re learning the ropes - this is now your first real chance to see where your strengths lie and what you enjoy. Do you enjoy the administration side and problem solving part of the business which includes processing repairs, working through sometimes problematic situations and where you need to be able to build solid long term relationships with your clients? Or, do you prefer the "sales side" of Property Management where you are out and about showing properties, negotiating leases and inducting tenants into properties? If you enjoy the relationship building, administration and problem solving parts of PM then you are sure to head down the Property Managers career path, if you enjoy the Sales side it looks like career in leasing or even business development is the right path for you - this can also set you up in good stead for a career in Real Estate Sales.
Property Manager? You will need to spend a good year as a Property Officer learning the ropes before you are ready to step into a Junior Property Managers role, this will see you working under the guidance of a Senior Property Manager generally managing a smaller portfolio so you can learn the role "on the job". Once you become more familiar with the legalities of Property Management and have mastered the skill of multitasking and prioritising then you are ready to take on the task of a larger portfolio without as much guidance. Within time you will grow into a Property Manager then eventually a Senior Property Manager where you will have a larger portfolio, more responsibility and perhaps even a junior under your wings to train and mentor.
Department Head - this is the most senior you can go in Property Management before taking on a larger team leader role in a corporate or you may decide you want to go into business on your own. Bear in mind though that a department head isn't just a Senior Property Manager who has been running portfolios for a long time. A true Department Head understands the compliance and financials of a Property Management business and is able to set KPIs around all parts of the business including growth. You will also be required to train and mentor staff whilst having the resilience to deal with any escalated issues that come into the department. This is generally a very well paid position that can earn you an income well into 6 figures, so if you are serious about your PM career, I suggest doing lots of internal and external training and learn as much as you can from seniors along the way.
Leasing and New Business - If you chose to stay on the path of Leasing and New Business the same career path is on offer as Property Management but in other ways. Once you have mastered the art of Leasing or Business Development there are many larger agencies that have “Head of Leasing” or “Head of Growth” where you will be responsible for the growth and development of this side of the business and again where you will understand all compliance and financials and demonstrated ability to train and mentor staff to ensure profitability and growth for the department.
Whatever path you choose in Property Management you can guarantee you will be able to build yourself a solid, personally rewarding and financially solid career. Word hard, constantly upskill and put yourself out there – the sky is your limit!