Price VS Service or Vendor VS Partner

In an ever changing market it is imperative to know where all of your money is going.  Property Managers have tasks that pull them in every which way. In the back of their head there is always this little voice reminding them the “Fiduciary responsibility to the owner”.  If you are not a Property Manager you may not understand what that means, but it is one of the main reason Property Managers exist.  They act on behalf of the owners to make smart decisions; to keep tenants happy, keep costs down and revenues high.   At the end of the day what is the highest importance to the owner?  That answer may be different for each property and each owner.

If I was a betting man (which sometimes I am), at the top of the list would be keeping tenants happy and making sure the owner has the highest return they can get on their investment.  Property Managers use their best intuition and lines of communication open to keep all parties happy, while also retaining their positions as the Property Manager.  Only the most talented people can handle this type of work load as it is not just based on numbers and spreadsheets.

What does any of this have to do with price, service, vendors and partners?  If you are unable to keep costs down you may not be retained as the manager for long.  If you do not have the correct level of service whether it is landscaping, trash removal, plumbing, HVAC, etc. your days may also be numbered.  We are currently living in a society where people want the best prices AND the best service.  Well this is just not reality.  In the retail market we have Home Depot, Best Buy, McDonalds, Wal-Mart and these are places that we can purchase items at a reduced cost, but they are not known for their excellent service.  So what do you choose cost or service?   Usually these rock bottom prices are being promoted by very large companies promise to “deliver”.  Sometimes they do, often times they don’t.  When promises are broken, but you are given an outstanding price what do you do?  Couple phrases may come to mind like “Buyer Beware” or “you get what you pay for”.  These coined phrases do not mean anything when you are in a pinch.

This is why it is important to employ people you trust to take care of you where you do not have the means or skills to correct the situation alone.  So what is the difference between a Vendor and a Partner?  Vendor is a company or person that is giving you a good cost of services, but does not know you.  Vendors will bid from a spreadsheet rather than coming onto your property to assess the job they will be doing.  Vendors will not know you as the point of contact and may answer the phone from another state or even another country.   Partners know you personally and take the time to understand your needs prior to bidding out any service.  They are prompt to answer your call themselves and help out when an emergency arises.  Partners can be depended on, because life never is what you expect it to be.  Everyone has had their car repaired at one point or another to where things did not go exactly as planned.  Either the bid was way more than they quoted originally or the repair was not completely fixed.  I am not a “car guy”, but my best friend is one.  He is my partner when it comes to all things automotive.  I trust him to make good decisions for me and my family.  I could take my vehicle to 50 places closer and perhaps more expensive than he.  Taking my car to him gives me piece of mind because I know that I don’t need to worry about him taking advantage of me.  I am probably not alone.  Property Managers need more Partners and fewer Vendors, as they have far too many moving pieces to handle throughout the day, week, month, and year.  Partners make you look good; Vendors don’t really care how you look, only that they are paid timely.

At Arizona Waste and Recycling we consider ourselves Partners to all of our clients.  We may never be able to lower our prices the way the other national brands do, but we will never ship our jobs over-seas or out of your service area. We service each and every property as if it were our own.  Often times the waste and recycling “vendor” is on site more than anyone else.  Wouldn’t an extra pair of eyes and ears be nice if the property manager is unable to be on site all the time?  How quickly can fires be put out when you have capable Partners onsite looking after your interests?  Low costs sometimes equal poor service and rarely ever equals great service.  Has poor service/great cost ever affected your business by actually costing you more in the long run?  If so you may need to identify who are your Partners and who are your Vendors.  The reality is that Partners may end up costing you a little more, but may also save you a lot down the line.  Next time you need work done on your property; take the time to identify the Partners in your life that can help.  Partners go the extra mile to make you look good.  Don’t get wooed by the attractive price because anyone can send out a great price.  So what will it be “Service or Price”, “Partner or Vendor”.  At the end of the day locking arms with a Partner seems like the best way to go.

James Buchanan

Sales Manager

AZ Waste and Recycling

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