Fast, easy and inexpensive ways to lease apartments, motivate residents, excite prospects and allow YOU to have fun at work.
International Creativity Month
Coffee houses are centers of creativity, so grab a weekend day this month and turn your cabana into creativity central. Invite residents to come in and share their gifts, whether they be writing, art, or performance poetry. Grab some comfy cushions and set out some yummy drink mixes and delicious creamers, or, if you have the budget to support it, hire a barista for the day.
National Clean Up Your Computer Month
What a great time to host a class on how to clean spyware and malware off of computers! Consider hiring a tech to come in for a few hours and teach people where to look for those hidden and unwanted programs on their hard drives, or reach out to a local college.
National Hot Tea Month
This month, add a little pep to your morning coffee cart by placing out a wide selection of different teas from around the world. If your residents show an interest, you could expand your celebration of the month by bringing in someone to do a tea tasting workshop for them later on in the month.
Financial Wellness Month
January is a great month to start your New Year’s resolutions – why not make one of them for your own Financial Wellness? Make your own financial wellness a resolution by checking out your current financial state, and then taking action towards what you want to accomplish.
Start off the New Year by looking out for your own financial wellness at www.socialsecurity.gov.
Some quick steps to get you started.
1) Assess your current situation.
2) Identify your goals.
SuzeOrman.com has super tips for financial freedom. Also ask a local bank rep or financial planner to give a talk to your residents (or write an article for your Facebook page or resident newsletter).
One thing that shocked us was our financial diaries. We kept an “expenses diary” for a month and write down everything you spend money on. If you are like us, you won’t believe where the money goes. The key to successful saving is to set attainable goals. Saving $20 a week turns into $1,000 a year. If you save $20 a week in 40 years (at 5 percent annual rate of return on your savings) you’ll have $131,900! That’s what you’ll have from saving just $20 a week.
Get Organized Month
GetOrganizedNow.com has a monthly checklist of things you can do on a daily basis to get organized. Inch by inch, everything is a cinch! Here is the direct link: www.getorganizednow.com/clmonth.html.
This site also offers tips and articles on becoming more organized. I did like this method for decluttering: “Bribe yourself. Promise yourself a nice lunch out, or a visit to a movie you’ve been meaning to see–WHEN you’re done attacking the clutter bug.”
This tip by Maria Gracia also made us laugh: “When the scheduled date arrives, play some motivational music, grab all your weapons (trash bags, donation boxes, cleaning sprays, etc.), eliminate distractions (ask someone to watch the kids for you, switch your phone so calls go directly into your answering machine, etc.) and charge right into attacking the clutterbug with all your might.”
3rd J.R. Tolkien Day
If you have a theatre or movie room on site, this is a great day to run a marathon of The Lord of the Rings or The Hobbit movies all day long.
10th Cut Your Energy Costs Day
A great New Year’s Resolution is to reduce your energy consumption, which will also help you save money. Cut Your Energy Costs Day is all about using less electricity. Your electric company will have tips you can share with residents on how to cut electricity costs. Just like one drop a second of water can waste up to 48 gallons a week, A CFL light bulb uses 1/4 the energy for the same amount of light. More than 75 million (yes, million) results came up on Google.com when we typed in: 100 tips to save energy. Go get some tips and post them on your Facebook page or in your resident newsletters.
We laughed at this one mom’s post about her high electric bill: “I had seriously thought about calling the electric company and telling them that when our total for the month had reached $75 to just shut it off… Figured that would get the kids attention.”
13th Rubber Duckie Day
What a great time to remind your residents that, just like Ernie’s Rubber Duckie, they’re the one! Find a video for your Facebook page of that clip from Sesame Street and share that message with your residents. You could order small rubber duckies for about 25 cents each from Oriental Trading Company (OrientalTrading.com) and hand them out with tours.
14th Dress Up Your Pet Day
…is an opportunity to wow the neighbors, and to unleash the inner diva of your favorite pooch or kitty!
Target and Walmart have an enormous selection of Halloween costumes for pets. This is doggone good chance for a photo opportunity, with little chance for catastrophes. So with the owner’s permission, post the pictures on your social media outlets. Remember from last R&R, “Caption This” gets 4x more participation on your Facebook page, and FILL IN THE BLANK gets 100% more participation. Post pictures with “Caption This” and “Fill In The Blank”.
27th Chocolate Cake Day
Time for a Chocolate Cake Crock Pot contest! Ask residents to bring in their crock pots and have everyone slow-cook a cake. The Leasing Office will smell like heaven, and your residents will have fun taste-testing the cakes. Rent a movie while the cakes are baking.
Healthy Weight Week 20-26
Losing weight or getting in shape is the #1 New Year’s resolution for most people. How can your neighbors group together and help each other keep their resolutions?
Can a local Weight Watchers group meet in your club room this winter?
Dr. Oz has 100 tips to lose weight on his website (www.doctoroz.com/videos/dr-ozs-100-weight-losstips). Get permission from the site to post a tip a day on your Facebook page.
Third Week of January
Hunt for Happiness Week – Scientists estimate that 40% of our happiness is directly in our control. Why not take this week to work with your team and focus on creating joy? Check out the Secret Society of Happy People (sohp.com) for ideas on how to help your team track their happiness, or you can try taking your team through the happiness habits that Shawn Achor presents in his book, The Happiness Advantage.
29th National Puzzle Day
Invite your residents down to celebrate National Puzzle Day by setting out several puzzles in your gathering space for your residents to work on as a community. Buy several different puzzles at different skill levels, so that if parents bring their kids down, there is something for everyone to work on!
American Heart Month
February is American Heart Month and this gives you a great chance to partner with local health care providers to put on a heart smart health fair for your residents and/or the community at large! Talk to local hospitals and see if they have a standard procedure for putting together heart health fairs (most do!) and see if they would allow you to be a location for one of their events during the month of February.
Sweet Potato Month
Sweet potato fries are a huge comfort-food trend. Take a day this month and break out a deep fryer and some yams – make some fresh fries as a treat for your residents and serve them with a marshmallow crème dipping sauce. The fries are simple to make, and the dipping sauce by most recipes online consists of simple heavy cream and marshmallows. Serve them in wrapped up newspapers or brown craft paper cones with the sauce in little cups in the middle for a treat your residents will be sure to LOVE!
Boost A Team Member’s Morale Month
…by asking all new hires to fill out a short questionnaire about their “favorites” (favorite candy, favorite flower or plant, favorite color, favorite lunch, favorite sports team, etc.). You’ll have a custom-made reward list ready when that person deserves a pick me up or atta boy.
Boosting morale will ultimately create a fulfilling and challenging work environment for you and your team. It’s worth the investment of your time. Here are 30 things you can say to boost morale.
Be proud of what you worked today.
Couldn’t have done it better myself.
Good for you.
I’m happy to see you working like that.
Keep working on it, you’re getting better.
Nothing can stop you now.
Now that’s what I call a fine job.
Now you have it.
Now you’re doing fine.
That was first class work.
That’s better than ever.
That’s coming along nicely.
That’s quite an improvement.
That’s the best you have ever done.
That’s the way.
You certainly did well today.
You did a lot work today.
You did that very well.
You outdid yourself today.
You’re doing a good job.
You’re doing it beautifully.
You’re in the right track now.
International Expect Success Month
When Pete Rose was about to break Ty Cobb’s all-time hits record, Mr. Rose was asked, “Pete, you only need 78 hits to break the record. How many at bats will you need to break it?”
Without hesitation, Pete replied, “78.”
The reporter said, “Ah, come on Pete, you don’t expect to get 78 hits in 78 at-bats do you?”
Mr. Rose calmly said, “Every time I step up to the plate, I expect to get a hit. If I don’t expect to get a hit, I have no right to step in the batter’s box in the first place!”
“If I go up hoping to get a hit,” he continued, “then I probably don’t have a prayer to get a hit. It is a positive expectation that has gotten me all of the hits in the first place.”
What positive expectation can you set for yourself today?
How many leases would you like to close?
What is the one thing that, as a manager, you would feel great if you accomplished it today?
Upon leaving work, what would be something that would make you feel great about work on your way home?
Expect success. And don’t let derailments get you off track. Just keep your eye on the end goal. You’ll get there!
February 1st G. I. Joe Day
Is knowing really half the battle? If so, take today and the slogan from Hasbro’s fantastic 80’s cartoon and ask your teammates to share the best advice and information that they have about their jobs. If you want to put together something really great as a resource for recruiting or onboarding new hires, get your whole company to share their information for the project.
National Secondhand Wardrobe Week: 24-3/2
This one is easy! Ask all residents and coworkers to clean out their closets. Donate everything to Goodwill or a local charity. The local charity may even be willing to set up a donation box somewhere on your community.
February 15-22 National Entrepreneurship Week
Do you have residents on the property who run their own businesses? Set up a coffee klatch with them during this week and invite them to come share what they do — with each other! Networking is crucial to the success of almost every entrepreneur out there, so they’ll be appreciative of you for introducing them to people who might work as clients or provide them some great referrals.
February 23rd Iwo Jima Day
In honor of veterans, think about partnering up with a service like www.operationgratitude.com, who has a Veterans’ care program. They send everything from letters to care packages to these prior era heroes because they want them to know that their service is forever appreciated and remembered.
National Kite Month (3/31 – 4/30)
(Heather says, “I realize this is just a single day of this month, but I love kites and cannot wait any longer!”) There is just something magical about kites, so grab that spirit and hold a “Forge and Fly” this month for your residents. Set up a station where residents can learn how to make their own kites (either from an instructor you bring in or from videos on YouTube) and then send them out to any open field in the area to see which kites soar the best. If you can contact anyone in your area that flies stunt kites, see if they would be willing to put on a
show for your residents, or perhaps even give a few lessons or pointers. If you have a local kite shop, get them involved in your outing – your local hobby store could also be a good point of contact. And if you have even the smallest of space, try to hold the flying portion of the event on your property because that many kites in the air is bound to attract a few eyes…and some drive by traffic generation!
March 2-8 National Severe Weather Preparedness Week
If you live somewhere severe weather strikes, please consider holding either a storm drill this week, or an emergency prep class for your residents. All too often people underestimate the power of these storms to their own peril. Check with the storm responders in your area for more ideas, and for additional resources, check out www.nws.noaa.gov/com/weatherreadynation.
American Chocolate Week
Always the third week in March Now is the perfect opportunity to offer anything chocolate to residents, prospects and team members as “thanks” and appreciation!
Poll folks on your Facebook page on what their favorite chocolate is. The #1 Chocolate in America remains to be Reeses Peanut Butter Cups. What’s your favorite? What would it take to get you to switch loyalties :-).
Chocolate coins and kisses are always a fabulous giveaway, especially to kids. It’s virtually impossible to go wrong by serving at least one dessert that’s chocolate.
How about giving away chocolate cupcakes today?
March 2nd Dr Seuss Day
Invite the residents of your community to listen to a local theater student or children’s librarian read Green Eggs and Ham, Oh the Places You’ll Go, and other Seussian classics in the afternoon. Local libraries usually have big plans for Dr. Seuss Day, so if you can’t get a children’s librarian, see if a resident who is a teacher would be willing to do the reading.
March 13th National Open An Umbrella Indoors Day
Take this as the perfect excuse to show how big your floor plans are in a very unique way! Find an umbrella that fits in the width of the closets in your model unit with room to turn and be opened while inside. It’s visual and memorable!
National Cleaning Week 24-30
Wohoo! The last week of March is Cleaning Week! This is a great opportunity to encourage residents to clean out closets, desks and apartments. You can offer a contest where the winner gets their carpets cleaned for free… arrange for Shred-It (shredit.com) to come to your community to shred documents.. Or host a White Elephant Sale – an indoor rummage sale – where residents can sell their goodies.
In addition to making everything look better, a Spring Clean is a super way for residents to get more space in their place — hopefully meaning they won’t think they need to move to a bigger apartment at renewal time!