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Midweek Motivation Exercise Permission to Prune

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Permission to Prune

IDEA: Tree pruning means selectively removing injured, dead, or infected parts of the tree in order to improve the tree’s structure, and promoting new, healthy growth. Vacation rental businesses can prune too by selectively removing parts of the business that are weighing us down and impeding our goals.

ACTION: Prune parts of your business that may be restricting your growth. Some examples:

  • Sub-par properties in your fleet that generate sub-par reviews (retire them from the fleet)
  • Complicated owners in your pool who unnecessarily take up precious time and resources (release them from the relationship)
  • Listing sites that generate less-than-optimal results in guest quality or channels of communication (delete your account)
  • Employees that are just not the best fit for your team (fire them)
  • Software that is holding you back (choose a new one)
At first, removing these aspects of your business may hurt -- it might seem like you are taking a step backwards. But give it a few months and you'll be surprised at how you rebound. You'll be surprised at how profitably and enjoyably the newly-pruned business responds. P.S. If you are nervous, you can tell the person that Matt gave you "permission to prune" and send them my email. Just kidding don't send them my email.

Sincerely,
 

JamesO

Counselor
Inner Circle
Columnist
Matt, great thread, but instead of simply pruning underperforming units, monetize the relationship. There are always VR companies interested in buying contracts, even if they are with difficult owners or underachieving units. It is not unusual for medium and large companies to "cull" units in the offseason, and this is a great opportunity for a VR company needing inventory to take advantage. There are obviously moving parts that need to be addressed, but as the saying goes, "one person's junk is another person's treasure".
 

DeborahL

Counselor
Inner Circle
Ha ha, this is great. However, I had to do something like this recently and I called it a break up. I broke up with an owner. I had to write to an owner (I was overseas at the time) to let them know I could no longer look after their property for a number of reasons. Their property was only available when they agreed to the dates (they lived in the home when it wasn't rented) and I was spending far too much time explaining things to them, being told the dates weren't free, etc and just not getting bookings locked in. It really felt like I was breaking up with them. They are so nice, but, it just couldn't work. I felt a bit bad, but life goes on.
 

Catherine

Envoy
Inner Circle
Regarding "Employees that are just not the best fit for your team (fire them)", I just broke the reigns with my Host yesterday, so the "Greendream team" of two (2) is now down to one- me! I just could not continue to work with someone who continually made me frustrated and depressed and added NO VALUE to our little team. After only 3 months it was clear to me that my Host was putting forth minimal effort, and thought that being an average performer was good enough. It's not- especially when it comes down to cleaning.
So now it's just me and I am 400 miles away from my property! Time to start peddling fast...lol!:LOL:
 

ErikM

One Head, Many Hats
Inner Circle
Pruning is a great way to guide your growth and health! I have let several owners go, and have decided over the years to focus on 5+ bedroom homes only which led to being selective, growing slowly and "breaking up" with several owners along the way. Referring them to another PM to make sure they are well-taken care of, while often getting a referral fee. Wisely prune!
 
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StacyW

Counselor
Inner Circle
We are removing our property service homes as we no longer have the band width to take care of them for the peanuts we are making. We are dropping 12 homes where we do security checks and clean for owner use from time to time. It was a drain on staff and I am excited to be giving staff that much more time to focus on our main homes.
 
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