Worker retention in response to the information: The do’s and don’ts of firm tradition.

Final modified on November twenty second, 2022

As a frontrunner of a property administration agency, you already know that you just’re answerable for not simply resident and proprietor satisfaction, however worker satisfaction as effectively.

The 2022 AppFolio Property Supervisor Hiring and Retention Report uncovered many drivers of worker satisfaction, similar to wage, advantages, alternatives for profession development, and adaptability. 

However there’s one key driver of satisfaction that appears to have an outsized affect. 

Firm tradition

On the floor, it won’t be apparent how the tradition of your organization impacts the efficiency of the properties you handle. Properties above a sure unit depend usually require on-site administration. An organization with a big portfolio of all these properties can usually discover the vast majority of their staff working solely on-site and never in a central workplace. In consequence, firm tradition can take a backseat by way of precedence.

The AppFolio hiring and retention report talked about above discovered that 25% of property administration staff are interested by leaving their jobs. A poisonous firm tradition can increase this quantity and additional drive worker turnover. However as we level out within the report, creating and nurturing a fascinating firm tradition can go a great distance in decreasing turnover. 

To provide you a greater sense of what to look out for in your personal agency, listed below are the contributors to poisonous tradition that information exhibits are driving staff to give up, and options to every problem you could take motion on.

The info on poisonous tradition

Researchers on the MIT Sloan Administration Evaluation analyzed over 1.3 million Glassdoor critiques and located that poisonous firm tradition is the strongest predictor of worker turnover.

This identical evaluation recognized 5 common attributes that they discovered to “poison company tradition within the eyes of staff.” These are:

Non Inclusivity

This has to do with how effectively firms signify various teams and whether or not they’re handled pretty, made to really feel welcome, and included in key choices. These various teams embrace 5 matters: gender, race, sexual identification and orientation, incapacity, and age. Different drivers of non-inclusivity that have been uncovered embrace cronyism (“selling their buddies or graduates from the identical faculty moderately than essentially the most certified candidates”) and a normal non inclusive tradition. Critiques pertaining to this class contained phrases like “cliques,” “clubby,” or “in crowd.” Right here, staff really feel excluded with out specifying why.


Critiques pointing to an organization’s lack of consideration, courtesy, and dignity for others have been grouped into the bigger class of disrespect, which was (understandably) discovered to have the most important destructive affect on an worker’s total ranking of their company tradition. 

Different traits of a poisonous tradition that have been reported embrace lack of ethics, cutthroat, and abusive.

Guarantee these traits are nowhere close to your organization

It goes with out saying that poisonous firm tradition have to be prevented at prices. Whereas most leaders would say that none of these items occur at their firm, the information means that at the least one in all these traits are more likely to be current. To get a extra correct view of whether or not your staff have skilled any of those troubling eventualities, take into account studying Glassdoor critiques left by each present and former staff. You can too enable your staff to anonymously present suggestions through a third-party survey instrument like Allvoices.

Tradition over compensation

A key studying from The MIT Sloan Administration Evaluation is that poisonous tradition is “by far the strongest predictor of industry-adjusted attrition and is 10 occasions extra necessary than compensation in predicting turnover.” 

2022 IREM President Barry Blanton corroborates this discovering within the AppFolio report. In his expertise, “Workers actually do care about tradition. They will’t overlook the truth that they must earn a residing, however additionally they have some phrases by which they need to dwell their lives. What are these issues that matter to them, after which how will we get artistic by way of providing these issues?” 

Information from our 2022 hiring and retention report exhibits that staff not glad with their jobs are considerably much less more likely to have constructive views of their firm tradition, and the largest hole between staff liable to leaving their present position and never these not in danger, is round firm tradition: Simply 43% of at-risk staff agree that they get pleasure from their firm tradition, in comparison with 76% of staff not in danger. 

By way of defining “firm tradition” and its significance, acclaimed expertise strategist and best-selling writer Steve Cadigan provides: “Why does somebody need to work in your group? What is exclusive and differentiates you from different environments somewhere else by way of how issues get completed, how individuals talk, the language that we use? In case you can reply that, you’re going to reach at your tradition.”

“I actually consider tradition is essentially the most useful aggressive benefit you have got in a world of large alternative for workers right this moment, in a world the place they’re telling us they’re interested by leaving, in a world the place we’re seeing extra resignations than at any time since we’ve been measuring it.”

Find out how to develop and nurture a constructive firm tradition

A Forbes article describes how organizations named as a “Greatest Place to Work” are likely to have sturdy, constructive company cultures that assist staff really feel and carry out their greatest. The article goes on to offer some steerage on the way to develop a constructive firm tradition:

Emphasize worker wellness each out and in of the office

Whereas this can be roughly attainable relying in your firm’s monetary assets, take into account providing perks like free or discounted membership to health facilities or different wellness assets — each bodily and psychological.

Present which means 

One of many quite a few takeaways of The Nice Resignation is that many staff don’t really feel a way of which means, or objective, of their jobs past a paycheck. Based on Stacy Holden, Business Principal and Director at AppFolio, “It’s so necessary to acknowledge that right this moment’s surroundings has modified. Workers are searching for greater than only a wage. They’re searching for objective. They’re searching for a way of firm tradition.” 

Equally, the authors of the Forbes article talk about the significance of which means and objective within the office. With out it, they are saying, “job satisfaction takes a serious hit.” They go on to offer methods to assist your groups see the large image which means of their day-to-day, together with creating “a mission assertion and core values and speaking these to staff. Give staff particular examples of how their roles positively affect the corporate and its purchasers.”

 Corroborating the Forbes perception, 27% of the property administration staff surveyed for our 2022 Hiring and Retention Report plan to modify industries to seek out extra fulfilling or rewarding work, reporting that 40% of their time is spent on what they consider is busywork. The report lists potential options as effectively, together with adopting expertise to eradicate or scale back the repetitive, time-consuming, unfulfilling elements of property administration. Examples embrace:

  • An AI-enabled leasing assistant that may deal with all prospect inquiries, responding effectively to informal inquiries and funneling critical prospects all the way down to your leasing employees.
  • AI information entry instruments to seek out accounting discrepancies and parse payments and leases to compile revenue statements
  • AI upkeep instruments that routinely reply to upkeep requests, use algorithms to evaluate stage of urgency, and dispatch pre-approved distributors. 

These instruments let your crew present sooner service to residents, concentrate on greater image, extra rewarding duties, and, in response to Stacy Holden, “create an surroundings the place staff can resolve for the solutions that they want, whether or not that’s the automation by a workflow or whether or not that’s the information that’s offered in such a means that they’ll have extra possession, and that then turns into empowerment.” 


Based on CultureIQ (acquired by Perceptyx), 86% of staff at firms with sturdy cultures really feel their senior management listens to staff. Concurrently, AppFolio analysis exhibits that 20% of property administration staff say their employers turning into “extra aware of worker suggestions” has improved total job satisfaction.

As soon as a constructive firm tradition is established, The Society for Human Useful resource Administration presents steerage on the way to nurture and perpetuate it:

It begins with hiring

Step one is to hunt personalities that match the group’s tradition. Workers will carry out higher when there’s a match, and a mismatch in character can result in speedy departure, which information exhibits can value 50 to 150% of the place’s annual wage. SHRM presents assets to mitigate this threat early. 

As soon as a call is made, nurture your new rent with:


Correct onboarding protocols train new staff the corporate’s worth system and the way they’ll contribute to it. 

Efficiency administration applications

Clearly define what is predicted from staff, and supply suggestions that informs them if they’re assembly expectations.

Reward and recognition applications

Inspire staff to behave in settlement with the corporate’s tradition and values. For instance, if teamwork is a core worth, bonuses and/ or recognition ought to worth teamwork.

The significance of making and nurturing a fascinating firm tradition can’t be overstated. The beforehand talked about MIT Sloan Administration research discovered that though tradition is incessantly listed amongst firms’ core values and used as a instrument to draw new hires, “when company tradition fails to ship on these basic commitments, staff understandably react with one thing stronger than annoyance or disappointment.”

Tradition issues in dispersed property administration groups, too

It’s honest to suppose tradition doesn’t matter or is just not potential to nurture in an {industry} like property administration, the place staff are sometimes dispersed. It’s misguided although.

Sunbelt Properties is a case research on this thought. Whereas the corporate manages actual property in 5 completely different states with staff dispersed accordingly, they nonetheless prioritize tradition. Lauren Niziol, HR Director at Sunbelt Properties, explains:

“We acknowledge that now we have properties throughout, in 5 completely different states, so the query early on was, ‘How will we convey all of those individuals collectively? How will we arrange collaborative, secure areas?’ It’s a quick paced job, however there’s nonetheless house to have enjoyable group chats, share what sort of music we like, ask questions — property administration associated or in any other case — share photos of our kids. We’re associates with folks that we’ve by no means met nose to nose.”

Take a look at the complete Sunbelt Properties buyer story for a deeper dive on how the corporate prioritizes tradition, and how one can too.

Related Articles


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Latest Articles