• Gavin Cobb, President and CEO
• Mike Wallace, Chief Operating Officer
• Lee Alu, Vice President of Property Management
• Alison Copenhaver, Vice President of Business Services & Operations
• Fred Jones, Vice President of Finance and Accounting
• Wendy Brant, Director of Business Development
• Paul Gwyn, Vice President of Heritage Construction and Maintenance Company
Membership Committee: Tell us about the culture of Heritage Property Management?
Interviewees: Our goal is to be the employer of choice and to elevate our industry. Many people stumble upon this type of work almost by accident. As one of the most stable and fastest growing industries in this city, we aspire through education to raise the standard of professionalism. Our team members are on a career path. Opportunities for growth and promotions from within reinforce an understanding that we have a commitment to their success in much the same way we are committed to our customers. This is the heart of Heritage Property Management. A culture of support exists not only for our team members but also for our boards and homeowners through many of our internal services. For example, every manager is assigned a representative from our accounting department who has been specifically trained in the financial practices of this industry. Our dedicated closing department handles all property transfer issues, our leasing department is leading the industry in quality monitoring of rentals, our construction and maintenance team provides a number of services including project management, and our insurance department is led by a claim expert.
All these efforts have one goal -- to protect and enhance the property values and quality of life for the communities we manage while ensuring our associations’ financial success. When we succeed, our properties will thrive…. and as a result, so will we!
Membership Committee: What has been the “secret weapon” in business for Heritage?
• Passion. We are passionate about building a good team and leading the industry. We aspire to do it right every single day. It starts from the top down. Gavin takes pride in the company he has built and the reputation for superior customer service we enjoy.
• Conviction. It sounds cliché but “we want to do the right thing.” Sometimes doing the right thing is not what is popular, but we are consistent and steadfast in this belief. We have confidence that this business principle alone has helped set us apart in the market for the past 34 years.
• Education. We ensure that we educate not only our team members but also our clients, through our Board training programs. With a philosophy of “keeping it simple,” the information is presented in a clear and easy to read fashion. It is imperative that our boards understand what is going on in their communities as well as industry best practices.
Membership Committee: Why does CAI matter to your organization?
Interviewees: CAI creates public awareness of our industry, educates our staff, and elevates our profession. We are specifically impressed with CAI Georgia and the direction it is heading. We wanted to be a part of it. Although this organization is also a great resource for exceptional vendors, education and higher standards for our team members is the sustaining benefit of CAI.
Membership Committee: Why did you join the Leadership Circle and pay for all of your managers’ CAI dues?
Interviewees: Because it is perfectly aligned with our mission to elevate our team members and the industry as a whole. Membership in the Leadership Circle and the benefits it provides sends a statement internally to our company that we are investing in the future and more specifically their future. From our client’s point of view, it builds confidence that we are doing all that we can to provide the highest level of professionalism to all departments in our organization.
Membership Committee: Why are CAI designations important?
Interviewees: We encourage our team members to get CAI designations to become more invested in the industry. Knowledge is power. Our managers are trained in mentoring their Boards so that problems do not arise as a result of a lack of information. Designations are a source of recognition; however, the awareness gained through these designations is the real value from our customers’ perspective.
Membership Committee: We would like to spotlight one of your managers and tell how they got into the industry. Why property management as a career?
Gaye Cantrell, Division Manager: My background is in banking. When I switched to this industry, I had no knowledge of property management, but I had many of the skills that were needed in this field. I enjoy knowing that I am making a difference in the communities I manage. The boards show appreciation for my quality of work. As long as I am making a contribution and improving a community, it is a personally rewarding job for me. One of the more challenging aspects is earning the trust and respect of homeowners. Sometimes they will reference a negative experience that they have had in the past, and I am quick to assure them that my job is to work at the direction of the board in meeting their needs. I have a team of support in Heritage that assists me in meeting this goal.