My team and I manage multiple projects outside of managing our luxury Loudoun Escape property. I work full-time as a network security consultant. I also teach part-time at George Mason University during traditional U.S. semesters and teach for a few weeks in the summer at OsloMet University in Norway. My team and I also provide security services and work on automation projects through our SecurityMySanity brand. Our latest project involves our rental management platform, Jervis Systems. As you might have guessed, we like to keep busy. Through managing so many projects, I’ve learned the immense value of having trusted partners.
In working through our existing projects, I learned the importance of developing solid partnerships. Everyone I work with, I treat as highly trusted partners: from direct employees to indirect team members, such as our local handyman and cleaning companies. The strongest working connections are led with the mindset of working with others, versus hiring individuals.
I generally know who I can trust at the time of meeting someone, whether in person or virtually. I gravitate toward people who are outspoken but respectful, internally motivated, and who give attention to minor details. There’s a sense of trust that’s built based on people’s actions, what they say, and also what they don’t say. This is certainly not a perfect approach; although I find many positive and long-term partnerships based on these initial impressions.
That being said, once you hire the right people for your team and trust their work, you move forward without the need to micromanage. For example, I no longer have a property manager onsite at my rental property to review the work of handyman companies or cleaning companies. These companies do the work correctly the first time and I trust that they will be honest in the work they complete and fees they charge.
I also find that if you treat your team members (direct or indirect) as trusted partners, they are far more likely to be honest with you on their thoughts and suggestions. You don’t want a team working on projects and tasks if they feel dispassionate about the items at hand. At the end of the day as a company owner, I take collective inputs and make an executive decision on a specific vision I am trying to execute. Bouncing ideas off my team members makes for better solutions through varied perspectives. The different viewpoints and pathways to a solution are valuable and often yield thoughts and conclusions that I would have not been able to come to on my own.