News from the Chicago Chapter

Report from IREM Spring 2016 Legislative and Leadership Summit: Legislation in Holding Pattern, Need for Diversity & Succession Planning

Posted by StarChapter on 04/13/2016 12:00 am  

By June E. McCrory, CPM®
Vice President, Property Management, The Missner Group, LLC
IREM Chicago 2015 President and Executive Council Member

Our meetings on the Hill, all had the same tone. . . “nothing is going to get done until after the elections.” The tax issues of 1031 Like Kind Exchange and Carried Interest are both on our congressional representative’s radar, but both officials stated the same thing during our meetings: New legislation, especially with tax reform, will be on hold until after the elections. The agenda for the day included the two tax reform measures and also, the Marketplace Fairness Act, (otherwise known as internet sales tax fairness) and the Housing Opportunity Modernization Act or HB3700. All of these measures are important to the real estate industry for these three reasons: 1) To keep buying and selling properties possible for many investors. 2) To keep brick and mortar retailers in business and states getting their fair share of tax dollars. 3) And to keep the administrative burden on landlords at a minimum for federal housing.  Next year, the Legislative outreach will be done at a more local level, with an IREM Statehouse day.  Chapter leaders will make trips to their local capitals instead of visiting the Hill in Washington, D.C. Hopefully this way, more local members can become involved with these legislative issues and others.

The National Diversity Council met during this conference and discussed the ongoing topic of how to change the message of diversity to make it more positive and inclusive. The competition for good talent is creating a new category of diversity, which is generational. Many corporations and IREM are focusing their resources on reaching out to the younger generation. Do they know what the property management industry can offer to them for a career? Based on the IREM member profiles, 87% of the CPMs that responded are white, while 50% of the total CPMs are women. The average age of a CPM today is 47. This reflects a very non-diverse group and our focus going forward needs to expand both racially and generational. The Diversity Council is going to encourage all our members to update their profiles on the website, so we can get immediate information. Also, the local chapters are being encouraged to reach out to their local colleges and universities and of course, IREM has the mentoring program going on with discounts and promotions throughout the year.

 A recent survey showed that 80% of companies today do not have a leadership succession plan in place. Only 14% say they have a pipeline of employees in ready to go for succession. A succession plan and leadership development cannot be a secret that only the top level personnel know about; all employees should “buy-in” on the plan. Goals need to be set and an organizational chart put in place. Promote the common goal of the company to all staff in order to get employees on board. The keys to moving your employees into the succession plan are threefold: 1) Challenge them to do more 2) Correct them so they learn 3) Facilitate them so they get better.  A leader development system can help you get the buy-in, manage performance, provide career development, support strategic initiatives, adapt to change, and build your bench. There are white papers on Leader Development available on the IREM website.