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Enhancing Employee Engagement in Maintenance

RELEASED ON 5/3/24

Join Paul as he delves into improving employee engagement and retention. Discover fresh perspectives and practical solutions for the multifamily industry. Paul shares personal anecdotes and insights to help you foster a productive and satisfied workforce.

[Intro Voiceover] (0:00 - 0:38) Join the Widewell team May 9th at 3 p.m. Eastern for part one of our three-part virtual event series, Voice of the Resident, where we will look at the tour and move-in lifecycle stages. We've built a data set of 400,000 Google reviews from residents of hundreds of top multifamily groups, including the NMHC Top 50. Using AI and topic sentiment analysis, get a unique perspective on resident preferences.

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[Paul Rhodes] (0:40 - 23:58) Hi there. Today's episode of the Maintenance Mindset podcast is brought to you by Appwork. Now, Appwork is more than just business intelligence.

They're actually an advanced maintenance operations organizational machine. They have digital make ready boards, gamification, the ability for a maintenance technician to actually work in ranking and in standings of their property and others around. It's a really unique solution to a lot of property operation issues or problems, especially those that concern maintenance.

So check out Appwork at www. For today's episode of Maintenance Mindset, I thought we would try something a little bit different. You know, there's this trend on the interwebs and on the various video services called React videos.

Quite frequently, they're with a song or a music video or with a event or something happening. And I'm fascinated by them, especially when it concerns music that I like or events or things that that mean a lot to me. To be able to see somebody else experience that thing or that lyric or that feeling or that harmony or that whatever it is for the first time.

So I got to thinking, is there something that we could do, especially applying a maintenance mindset to it? Quite frequently, as maintenance technicians, we are given a work order and that work order has very, very small amounts of information in it. Matter of fact, one of the most unique work orders I ever dealt with was one that I pulled out the piece of paper.

Yeah, it's old school enough to where we still had work orders on paper. But I opened up the service request and it said, broken. Yeah.

What do you do? I actually went into the apartment, gained entry, went into the apartment, stood in the middle of the living room and just kind of looked around and then said, fixed. Please call the office and provide more detail.

And there's a whole nother story there that probably will be an episode at some point. But the end result is that maintenance technicians, we often go into unknown situations with information provided by other people. So I got to thinking, why not react to some information that's relevant to the maintenance industry in multifamily.

So I started looking and the wonderful service that is provided by the social media platform, LinkedIn, tells me what articles I need to read. I started looking at some of them and one caught my eye. And I confess, I haven't read this article.

I don't know anything beyond like the title, which is 30 ideas to improve employee engagement and retention. This article is available on LinkedIn. And that caught my attention because right now, multifamily maintenance is experienced.

Well, you know, if I finish that statement, you're going to look back at me and say, gee, thanks, Captain Obvious. Yes, we need maintenance people. But there's there's two parts to that equation, right?

There's the recruiting aspect of going out and finding new talent, or somebody else to add to your prop. But then there's that second piece. That second piece is employee retention.

How do we keep our employees? So the title of this article, once again, is called 30 ideas to improve employee engagement and retention. And truly, I read the title and a little bit of the below.

And that's it. I don't even know what these 30 things are. So I thought just to do something different.

Let's try a react video with an article. Now, here's the challenge to you, viewer or audience. If this works, you actually have a part to play.

I'm going to have to need you to send me articles or videos that you would be interested in me reacting to, if this works out, if it makes sense. If not, then, okay, this was a great experiment. And maybe we can both learn something together by trying something new that we've never done before.

So we'll go ahead and get started. And basically, I don't think I'm actually going to read the entire article to you word for word because then it would turn this episode into a book on tape. And while that does sound like a fun thing to do, because I like to read, I don't think that I'm going to do that.

Essentially, what the article starts with is in the midst of the great reshuffle, it's crucial to keep top talent. And then what it does is it goes on to there are plenty of other reasons why retention matters. When they stay at your company, our organization's productivity remains consistent.

And you know, the first little bit of insight into that is, that's one thing I don't believe that any service or data point has ever truly captured. And that is something I like to call legacy knowledge. In other words, if I'm a maintenance technician, and I'm on a property for two or three years, there's going to be things that I know, because I've opened up that wall, or I've traced that circuit in a breaker panel, or I had to find the valve that was hidden.

And it wasn't in the logical place where it would have been that I only know. And we haven't captured it anywhere. It's not written, it's not shown on any plans, there's no schematic or diagram where it's found.

So if we have a high turnover at our property, employee turnover, how much of that legacy knowledge is lost? And consequentially, if we're able to reduce our turnover, we can increase that legacy knowledge. That's food for thought.

It also might take, you know, there's a lot of pressure on many organizations right now to onboard. Well, maybe we also I'm not saying we take anything away from from the onboarding process. But maybe we look at putting resources at retention.

Because there is that legacy knowledge piece that we're losing. So okay, back back to the article. So we're going to look at 30 ideas to improve employee engagement and retention.

And the very first one it says is listen to employee feedback. That that rings very, very true. Especially I had a property one time that that our occupancy was was dipping.

I was the assistant maintenance supervisor there. I was in charge of make readies at that property, had the system down, we had it going, it was operating. But for whatever reason that I'm sure the leasing team knew or understood, our exposure was very high.

And we didn't have enough traffic coming in to cover it. So in other words, our occupancy was continuing to do continuing to decline. And the property manager, Lisa, brought the entire team in.

And she said something to the effect of, you know, we're trying all of these regular marketing channels, and and all of the different ways to get the word out that we have apartments for people to rent, and we're a great community and and set. But does anybody here have an idea that maybe we haven't thought of? And our groundskeeper at the time, a guy by the name of Reggie, Reggie very, very shyly put his hands up.

And he said, you know, Mrs. Esposito was complaining that they were removing the bingo game at the senior center. And he just made that statement. It turned into the property hosting bingo for the senior center.

And just because the property hosted bingo and made it open to the market. They ended up I think it was if I remember, right, it was like the second or third game, they did it every other week. And it was like the second or third game, one of the players, these wonderful older people decided to lease at the community, and it only took one.

And all of a sudden, our numbers turned around. And it was just an idea from the fact that our office listened to a groundskeeper. So he felt confident enough to actually say something.

And not only that, he was valued enough that the property manager actually turned that into action. And he was so proud when when those numbers came up the next month, two months later, in our meeting, Lisa had a little trophy occupancy hero made for it. So just listening to that feedback was a huge thing for Reggie.

And and it was absolutely amazing. Okay, the second one says, create an inclusive work environment where everyone feels like they belong. I kind of think that goes along with the very first one of being having, giving everybody a voice.

And the article says, the very next line says nearly half of black or Latino employees have quit a job because they've experienced or witnessed discrimination at work. And, okay, I can understand that my mind went somewhere different. An inclusive work environment ensures that we are all seeing the way that each other work, regardless of taking all the demographic information out of it.

I'm actually interested in or curious and my mind goes to the inclusive work environment differences between maintenance work, and office work. You know, during the the recent during the pandemic, there was a lot of offices that were able to close down. And yet, the maintenance team still had to show up for work, they still had to go in.

And I remember being maintenance and having a maintenance technician come to me when I was the director of maintenance come to me and he says, he says, I'm not going into that apartment. And you can't make me go into that apartment. My grandmother is living with me right now.

And I can't go into that apartment. And if you force me to go in there, here's my keys. So do we have an inclusive work environment that includes the way other people's jobs have them work?

Just just that remote versus office environment. Because let's be honest, maintenance workers, we can't work remote, there's no way to run a plunger over a zoom call. It just doesn't function that way.

Alright, so the third one is flexible working arrangements. I've got this idea, I don't know how we can do it. But flexible working arrangements.

I wonder if it would be a good idea for a management company to try turning apartments overnight. I mean, stick with me. I mean, you know, the very first thing is Yeah, but what about the noise?

Well, how much noise is actually required to turn an apartment to get an apartment ready? It may vary community by community. But ultimately, the majority of it is like running water, changing parts.

And on a lot of our appliances and things that we're changing parts on, they're just held in place by screws or nuts or bolts. In other words, we're not beating or pounding things with hammers. We could go in there and roll paint.

Yeah, I know a pressure sprayer or a paint sprayer could does have some noise associated with it. But I wonder if that maybe could be investigated for a flexible working arrangement. Maybe that would help our college age people or people going to school or maybe if there's a part time position, somebody who would be interested in going from full time to part time.

Just something worth following up. Pay your employees fairly. That's a big one.

I can't tell you whether you're paying at market rate above market rate below market rate for what what you have at your property for what we all have at our property. I do know that statistically speaking, based on a survey that NAA did several years ago, the rate of pay for maintenance workers had not kept up or kept pace with other related industries. Now, this was about 2017, 2016, if I'm remembering the date on that survey.

But I can tell you that right now, all employees are looking to comparable or related industries. And by that, I mean, it's my understanding we have a state that now has entry level fast food workers that are making 20 bucks an hour. And I got to be honest, if I was living in that state and I was working entry level, maybe even a little bit above entry level job, and I was not making 20 bucks an hour based on that, I would look very, very seriously at that wage.

Recently, I attended a session that looked at generational drivers. And the our younger generations, generally speaking, widespread, widespread stereotype is they will make a change for money, irregardless of the benefits or the bonuses or things like that. So that becomes a challenging thing.

It is something that needs to be looked at the rate of pay. And you can't we can't just continually compare it to other maintenance technicians in our areas. In other words, like the same way that we do rent comparisons between our property and the property across the street.

We can't do salary comparisons between our property and the property across the street. Not when HVAC companies, plumbing companies, tradesmen, those wages are continuing to rise. And if we don't keep pace, there are other opportunities out there.

Alright, so the next one, give one time cash incentives. You know, early on in my career, I came up with a solution to a problem, we had a drain line issue, the building was settling, and it was breaking a drain line. And I had an idea at this property on how we could repair it in house, as opposed to calling the plumber.

And if I remember right, the cost for doing the repair from a plumber was 300 bucks, 250 to 300 bucks, that's what it was. And my repair that I came up with this, this other way I tested it and worked it out, verified it with a plumber that it was safe, it was allowable, it was available, and it was durable, so it would last a long time. But my repair actually cost less than five bucks, it was just a different kind of coupling.

And a little bit different way of thinking. I went to went to my property manager, and I explained it to her, and I showed it to her. And she went to a contractor friend, showed it to him, and said, that's great.

And she came back and she says, Paul, this is a great idea. What would you what, what what are you expecting for this? And I told her, at the at the time, I wanted a DeWalt cordless kit that had a cordless sawzall and saw, circular saw and drill.

And she says, how much is it? I said at the time, it was 540 bucks, I remember it. And she said, she said, the third time you make that repair, you come see me, because it paid for itself just in what we saved.

I innovated, she recognized it, and she wrote the check for that kit. I still have that kit today, I've taken care of it, I still use it. And that I remember, she recognized me, by giving me something, it was like an early Christmas.

I mean, it was it was so cool. And I continued to try and think of new and innovative ideas. Be transparent about compensation.

You know, I'm not really qualified to react to that. It's a really challenging one, because the workload at one property to another, based on legacy employees, based on systems, based on the amount of preventive maintenance and deferred maintenance that has occurred on the property can be huge. So actually, I think my reaction would be that yes, pay transparency is good, as long as there's transparency on what you get for that money, you know, you get what you pay for.

Well, that should mean for me as the worker, if I'm getting paid more, I'm required to give more. In other words, those two things have to be together. And if we're going to be pay transparent, we also need to be transparent about what expectations are.

All right, provide generous benefits, including mental health care for employees and their families. That's interesting. Because I've worked for and I've been around several organizations that they have, like employee helplines and employee help help numbers that they can call for mental and financial and other counseling types of counseling.

But I have not, I'm not aware of it being extended to beyond them. You know, one other reaction to that is which goes in to the benefits. A lot of apartment management companies provide discounts for their employees.

What about for their employees, children, or, or, or, you know, immediate family? That would be very interesting to contemplate or to see. Support working parents by offering childcare benefits.

Yes, that's great. Especially, I mean, right now, there is I read a study here a couple of weeks ago saying that the birth rate is continuing to decrease in the US. Overseas, it has gone very, very low.

As a matter of fact, that article went on to say that our birth rate is below replacement, meaning that on average, for a two parent household, you are having less on average than two children. That's a scary thing to think through. All right, when recruiting, be realistic about the job upfront.

Yeah, I think that goes that goes exactly back to pay transparency with setting expectations. I think that that's the only fair way that a pay transparency thing can happen. And I do agree that that the full listing of the job upfront that might be a good opportunity for a stay interview question.

You know, we do exit interviews. And I really like this idea of a stay interview, to where we ask questions about, okay, you're still here. If I'm the leader, and I'm talking to the employee, you're still here, we begin to ask questions like that, like, what about the job you're doing today is different than what you understood your job description to be last year, or whatever timeframe we want.

That would be an interesting thing, especially if we are an inclusive and idea diverse workplace. That way we can have that conversation.

[Intro Voiceover] (23:59 - 25:13) This episode is brought to you by Wide Whale, the reputation partner for BH Avenue five trilogy and more. Join Wide Whale on May 9 at 3pm Eastern for event number one in our three part virtual event series, voice of the resident. We will be looking at in depth topic and sentiment analysis from 400,000 Google reviews from residents of the largest multifamily groups, including the NMHC top 50.

Throughout the series, we will report on resident preferences and trends found in reviews by lifecycle stage, retention, residency, and for our first event, tour and move in. You'll leave with insights to optimize your operations, creating better resident experiences and driving better reviews. Put your dollars to work in the right places, hear it directly from the source, the words of 400,000 residents.

Go to widewhale.com slash data to sign up or find it on the revised community in virtual events. Attend live or watch on demand. That's widewhale.com slash data.

[Paul Rhodes] (25:15 - 48:41) Create a strong first impression with your onboarding program. You know, this article is about retention. But this point says a first impression with your onboarding program.

You know, that does bring up something. You know, a lot of management companies, a lot of employers, they give swag, they give branded wear to where you get a shirt with your name on the side of it, or a nice thermos, coffee mug or, or some other swag like that. And you see as a as a remaining employee, I see my new co worker get the really cool thing.

That would be awesome. Hey, I've been here. I'm here.

What about me? Maybe I want that really, really nice coffee mug. That's, it's kind of like the the cable or the cell phone company that says, come to us and you get half off your normal price for 12 months.

And as the customer, I'm looking at that going Yeah, but I've been your customer for eight years and you haven't given me jack squat, just something something say think about conduct employee stay interviews. Hey, it's almost like I promise I did not read the article encourage boomerangs. What is a boomerang?

Even if an employee is leaving, you can always urge them to come back with a positive exit interview. Okay, okay. So in other words, you're you accept the fact that somebody has left for maybe a different opportunity.

Maybe they are maintenance supervisor that is experienced enough and they're ready for that regional level promotion. And your company doesn't have an opening there. So they're taking an opportunity at a regional level there.

They're cycling up. That's an interesting thing. You know, Mary Gwynne, the the people experience podcast, she and I have had a couple of conversations about how novel it is that her management company I I've heard her talk about this on her podcast, too.

They actually celebrate when their employee leaves their company. And this the I've never heard it called a boomerang. But that makes sense as being a really neat way to do it.

And you know, the other thing that that would do is when people ask tour if I've left if I've left an organization, you know, and I'm active on LinkedIn, that's the only social media I'm active on. But if I'm active on LinkedIn, and they see I left an organization, I've had people reach out to me and ask me, what was it like working for that organization? And that last impression will, I've got to think it leaves an impression on what I'm going to tell this potential employee for that organization.

That's a that's a neat way to go. Promote internal mobility. And I'm assuming that the article is talking about, let's see, there's a number here.

LinkedIn data shows that employees stick around 41% longer at companies that have strong internal mobility programs with employees that compared to those that don't, you know, another conference session, or maybe it was a podcast I was listening to talked about, instead of having a career pathway, or a career line that you go into, think of a career like a lattice. In other words, instead of going from entry level, position one, position two, position three, assistant supervisor, manager, director, you know, up that linear straight line, what if you go entry level, one, two, wait a second, I'm not sure I like this. What if I go back to entry level of this other thing over here, and then start one, two, three, four, it's not what I designed for, let me go back to three of the first one.

So in other words, I'm wondering if in maintenance, we could come up with a way to help in that lattice concept instead of a career, singular career pathway. That's interesting. Establish career development plans so employees can chart clear paths to growth within the company.

This I think we as a maintenance career, we don't do enough of for multiple reasons. And honest, I'm not assigning malicious intent to any way. But I do think we need better.

Maybe we need better marketing for what a career path and maintenance looks like. Maybe that's it. I have to talk with some of my marketing friends.

Maybe we've got that. Create plenty of opportunities for upskilling. Okay, we finally got into one that I really truly think that maintenance does right.

If somebody wants to grow, all you need to do is go get a different work order, something that you've never done before. And then ask one of your other maintenance technicians to mentor you or walk you through or help with that. Not only that, we do have the video platforms that you can go and help find them.

Yeah, some of those videos are a little bit off. All I can say is, look, if you're looking around the, okay, the YouTubes, and you see a maintenance technician who is brazing in an air conditioner and flip flops, that's not the person you want teaching you how to do or perform any task. So yes.

And the next one says make good use of skills your employees already have. Yes, yes, that that would be great. At my properties for the management company, I was a director of maintenance for it was always amazing to me when I'd go and find one technician who was really good at this one thing.

I had one one one property that the building had this entrance keypad on that was regularly failing for whatever reason. I don't know why, but this technician was really good at resetting it. He even turned it into a game to where he would time himself, use a stopwatch, even bought himself one of the old style stopwatches on there to reprogram that thing.

Well, we found out that he was really, really good at that entrance lock and software and recoding. And we harnessed that and took him to another property and he became the subject matter expert on those locks. So we actually acknowledged that and we advanced him and gave him some notoriety and he loved it because he got to do that.

He actually enjoyed doing that more than his regular nine-to-five job, which you know he had to do this the regular job too. But it was really it was a really neat way to make use of that skill while simultaneously acknowledging an expertise. Encourage open and effective management.

I'd have to read that more to find out what the difference between that and taking those two of inclusive workplace and the career path. That would be... Keep your employees engaged.

Well, isn't that what this article is for? I mean, this article is telling me how to do that and now it tells me I need to do that. I'm sorry my reaction there is, you know, you can't use a word as its own definition.

So I almost feel like that was a little bit of a maybe a little bit of a cop-out. Promote a healthy work-life balance. Yes, this.

This one topic, a healthy work-life balance, is such a challenge for a job that by its definition there are times that you will have to be on. How that works? I think, I can't remember where I got the idea from the fact that far too often we think of work-life balance as a set of scales to where, in other words, if I work for eight hours I need to live my life for eight hours and then I sleep for eight hours because you're not actually living your life.

You're just sleeping, you're recovering, you're being healthy. And I know that during the pandemic and during our recent times and even based on this generational workshop I attended recently, our younger generations are looking for that work-life balance and they're looking for more time off from work. And I confess it's a little something I'm having a hard time with in conversations.

I mean, I'm trying it. This is the first year I'm taking all of the vacation that I have allowable. I won't lose any at the end of the year.

Just the way that I work and do, my work-life balance looks different from somebody else's. So I guess then the lesson or the reaction is we definitely need to be sure that we're listening to our employees for what that means and then it may be a case of getting in touch with our HR departments to ensure that we can provide or meet, if not halfway, somewhere there in the middle. Schedule reoccurring check-ins with employees.

It's fascinating to me how much in recent memory the discussion is how to have a good one-on-one and the need for one-on-one communication. And I wonder if that's an offset in very recent history of the remote push. It used to be that we all worked together and it was just understood that if you had an idea or you needed to talk to somebody, you went through to what that...

You remember the open door policy? Maybe that was back before we had all of the open offices that we have now, but I can remember managers having a closed office and they would say, we have an open door policy. You can come into my office anytime you need to, respectfully, you don't interrupt and all those things.

But I wonder if the one-on-one or reoccurring check-ins that need to be scheduled is an offshoot of the fact that we don't work together as often anymore as a workforce. I mean, maintenance technicians, I'm not sure that that one... Write in, write in, send me a comment.

Let me know if you think that the one-on-one thing for maintenance is a big issue. My assumption is it's not because we're out in the field running around the shop, we're doing things and we're interacting with each other. The refrigerator never breaks on the ground floor.

It's always upstairs, which means I got to talk to my coworkers and get their help. So do I need to schedule a conversation with my coworker to schedule a time to talk about when we're going to go move that refrigerator? Maybe I'm taking that one to an absurd level just because I'm in a good mood.

That's kind of funny to me. Seek feedback often. Yes.

I would couple that also with the inclusive environment or the open to new ideas concept. In other words, in order for me to seek feedback from somebody, first of all, I need to trust that somebody. I need that somebody that I'm going to for feedback to know something about me, to be able to relate to me and understand the way I think at least somewhat.

That way, they know when they're agreeing with me to try and reinforce something where maybe I don't have enough confidence to do it. But more importantly, they need to know, one, they have the freedom to disagree with me. And two, when somebody does disagree with me, when I solicit feedback and they disagree with me, I have to trust that in their mind, either they're not seeing what I'm seeing, which is why they're disagreeing with me, or they are seeing what I'm seeing and I'm missing something.

That kind of goes to that trust equation. Praise a job well done by implementing an internal recognition program. Okay.

I do think that we as a maintenance organization, we don't do enough recognition. I really don't. I mean, I can remember being on site and the only recognition the maintenance teams got was for cleanest shop.

So, I mean, okay, yeah, they're organized and a clean shop is organized. But honestly, if we're only cleaning the shop just for the inspection to win an award, that has no bearing on the day-to-day work. I've worked out of some dirty shops and some shops that just were not, and we got more done than the other property that was all clean because we were out doing work.

And that first property, they had more work orders behind. And a part of the attribution, granted, this is probably very cynical on my part, but a part of the attribution for why we had less open work orders and they had more was, well, they spend more time in their shop, making it all pretty. We're working out of ours.

I know, cynical old guy, gray hair. Yes. I get it.

Offer a sabbatical. Years ago, I worked for a management company that at, it was 10 years. At 10 years, you got to take, uh, it was nine weeks.

No, it was longer than that. You got a 12 week paid vacation to where you were gone paid. You could go do anything you wanted for 12 weeks.

And it was paid. That was the recognition for working at that management company for 10 years. And if you worked there for 15 years, you got another six week sabbatical.

So like a half sabbatical in an every five years thereafter, when you stayed with that company, that was it. That's an interesting, I'm not aware. I don't even think that management company does that, but I think that's an interesting idea.

Stay true to your purpose. Ooh, yeah. If you, if your company has spent the time and the money to develop a purpose statement or a motto or a saying of what we have, then not only can it be a saying, it has to filter down to all the decisions that get made surrounding or even close to that.

That one, unfortunately, I've been a part of organizations that, that they have a mission and in public, it's all rah, rah, rah, but in the back room. And so often maintenance spends a lot of time in that back room. And, and if the, if the Emperor is wearing no clothes and maintenance doesn't feel the freedom to say the Emperor's wearing no clothes, then yeah, the turnover rate is going to increase.

Strengthen your wellness programs. Okay. That's very similar to providing the mental health.

Communicate with your employees. That one, that one strikes me that communication needs to be both ways. In other words, our corporate team needs to be sure that they're communicating what we need.

And we at the same time have to have a good channel to feed back what the effect is. In other words, have a good feedback loop and a continual feedback loop. That's a really good.

Cause I, you know, my dad used to say that, that son, you were given two ears and one mouth. That's the ratio at which we should, you should be using them. Of course, he and I did before he passed away, we had a great laugh about the fact of dad, my job requires me to talk a lot, but he, we laughed and then he said, yeah, but it's still true.

In other words, if you end up talking a lot, that means you need to listen even more. And yes, that was a more of an oh me moment than an amen moment. But that was my dad.

It was, that was what he did. It was really cool. Create connections among employees.

You know, that I think is something that we struggle at. We mean maintenance side at the site level to create meaningful connections. Partially because of that.

I think because of that on-call piece, you know, we go to work, we get finished and when we get off, if I'm not on call, the last thing I want to do is be reminded of on-call, you know, there's something about the tradition overseas. It's my understanding that your neighborhood pub is a group of friends that you get to know and they get to know you. And I wonder if in our modern world that is so digital focused and disconnected from each other, I wonder if we've lost that sense of interconnected communication.

My question is what role does the employer play in fostering, in creating those connections? And how far should an employer go in that role? Or is it maybe that the employer gets out of the way?

That one I think, I'm going to, I'm going to highlight that one, but do some more thinking on it because that's a, that's a curious one. An interesting one. All right, let's see here where it is.

My tablet, you know, my little tablet here that I've got the article on it. It froze for a second. Offer unlimited PTO.

I'm sorry, my gut reaction to that one is I dare you. See what happens. It, I honestly, granted, I think it's wonderful.

It's great. I just don't see how that could work. I really, I really don't.

Not, not for right now, how absolutely essential it is that we have a certain number of maintenance teams on site at all times, or we are falling behind and the building is falling in disrepair. And yeah, I don't, I don't know. That would be awesome, but I don't know.

Last, be empathetic. So we're number 30. Last is be empathetic.

And so this article, huh, that's interesting. The article, there was no author attributed to it on my little download of it here. The last one was be empathetic.

You know, from a maintenance organization, I do think that is a good instruction, but I think one piece that as an industry we are and continue to fail at is, okay, that's a great sentiment, but the question is how, what does empathy look like both from a maintenance organization and how does a worker show empathy? And of course in training, that means, or if we're going to train people to do that, that means we need to have people in those roles and it's a development process. So that means we need to focus on it.

We've got to have a program that goes and does it to make that happen. It has to be a big enough priority for it to take time. That was an interesting article.

There, there are a couple of things there that I really want to revisit and think through again, especially on how they apply to maintenance. Well, I hope you enjoyed our time together today. Let me know what you think about the React thing.

And, and if there are other articles you'd like for me to see about, send a message at a multifamily media network website. And yeah, that would, that would be interesting. I'm not sure I could do the music videos though.

I kind of have weird eclectic music tastes, but I'm sure that's an episode for another day because this one has run a little bit long. I do want to thank you for joining me today on the Maintenance Mindset. My name's Paul Rhodes and today's episode was hosted by Appwork.

They have a really cool product. I got, I got to actually play around with it and some of the data that they come up with, it's really cool what they're tracking. One of the, one of the most unique things that, that we got to see was the ability that you could restrict or direct work orders by trade.

Meaning if you had a maintenance technician that was really strong in air conditioning, you can direct, it's my understanding, you can direct all the air conditioning or the majority of air conditioning work orders, those service requests going to that technician. You could also restrict it to where if you have a technician that you absolutely don't want working alone on air conditioning, then they never see those work orders. It's really kind of a neat and insightful platform.

I was, I was, I was very impressed by the, by the demo that we had. So check out Appwork at www and thanks again for joining me and I'll see you somewhere.