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More Than Meets the Eye

May 27, 2011

by Brom Hoban, TSSA director of communications

In the July/August issue of the Self-Storage News, you’ll see a number of articles concerning self-storage managers, from best practices concerning delinquencies, to how to handle conflict with tenants.  One of the articles is all about how there is “more to managing a self-storage facility than meets the eye."

I spent time with Michael Watson, co-manager (along with his wife Donna) of the Storage Center in Round Rock, and I learned that there is more to managers themselves than meets the eye as well.

Mike, who is a photographer and a painter, has served as CEO of several agencies, and has run his own printing and graphics company, naturally embodies the best attributes of a successful manager.

Here are a few things I noticed about Mike:

  • He is very calm and steady. He doesn’t let his feathers get easily ruffled.
  • He’s also very organized, without being a fanatic. When I arrived to visit, he had an entire list of his day’s duties printed out, so that I’d be able to understand the routine.
  • He knows his product and services. Though this may seem basic, it’s incredibly important, both in the actual running of the facility and the sales aspect of managing.
  • He is accommodating, outgoing and friendly, in an authentic way. Whenever he deals with tenants, he treats them with respect and genuine interest.
  • He’s efficient. Managing a large facility requires a host of duties, small and large, calling for time management as well as people skills.
  • He has integrity. Mike works to ensure the success in the operation, not just because it’s his job, but because he wants it to succeed.

In short, he’s everything a self-storage facility owner could want in a manager. We could all take a few lessons from him!

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