Married to the Solution


The daily work of property management is full of problem solving. Unexpected maintenance issues, staffing problems, late payments, constant interruptions, the list of little fires goes on and on. Then there are days with bigger issues. Days when the accountant calls with bad news, or your owners drop in without warning and you haven’t had a chance to take care of your daily to-do’s. It’s true, property management is riddled with challenges of every caliber. But how do you solve these issues, both big and small?

I recently heard some interesting insights from a best-selling leadership author, John Maxwell. He said “sometimes we are married to the solution and not the problem, so when our solution fails, we give up. Or worse, we are so focused on the solution that we misdiagnose the problem, therefore missing the mark completely.”

I started to think about this theory’s application to the world of property management. Are there problems we could be using better solutions for? Have tired procedures proven outdated? Are there systems in place that are causing more work instead of building efficiency?

In any business, it’s important to keep a clear head and look at situations critically. I’m not sure what that looks like for every property, but what I do know is that in my own life, personal and professional, there always seems to be a better way of doing things.

So are you married to the solution? Are you so focused on running through the fix-it checklist that you forget to stop and think how this problem might be approached differently?

It might be time to shift your loyalty; to be married to the problem. Because when the problem is your focus, its true solutions are easier to find.