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Mobile home park managers make a huge impact on mobile home parks. They work as administrators, customer support, maintenance men, collectors, and sometimes even as contractors. Park owners rely heavily on them. Over the years, we worked with many park managers. We had chances to work with some good ones and some not-so-great ones. We also had the honor of working with GREAT managers. Difference between working with great managers and mediocre ones can be of night and day.

Intrinsic Motivation – If I had to pick one thing that made a great mobile home park manager, this would be it. Intrinsically motivated people enjoy the work itself, instead of looking for extrinsic rewards like money and recognition. Great park managers do a great job for the sake of doing good for the community. The sense of accomplishment itself is the reward for them. When working on a task, they focus on completing it by finding the best way to do it. This sounds overly simplistic, but it makes sense when you contrast to mediocre managers. Mediocre managers are often distracted with other things like the difficulty of the task, lack of support, lack of time, compensation etc.

Here are examples of great managers and mediocre managers dealing with a problem tenant:
Great Manager – “This guy is causing trouble for other resident. I will talk to him and give him a chance to correct himself. Otherwise, I will evict him.”
Bad Manager – “This guy is causing some trouble. Maybe I should talk to him, but I don’t feel comfortable confronting him. I live in this park too and I don’t want hard feelings. He’s really not bad. I will address it if it gets worse.”

Here is another way of putting it. Great managers have mental clarity that lets them see a problem and move directly to working on a solution. Mediocre managers, on the other hand, have a lot of thoughts going on their head. It can be worrying about messing up, fearing what others may say, thinking something is just too much work, etc. They need to drag this baggage while working on the problem. It’s much harder for them to get stuff done.

Working with someone who is intrinsic motivated is very enjoyable. They get things done. Sometimes they care more about the community than the owners. They truly improve mobile home parks and people’s lives. When you have someone like that, hold on to them!

What do you think makes a great manager? Please leave a comment on your thoughts.