The company I worked for in the past was FORE Properties. This was a chain or apartment communities that were all purchased and built by the owner and run by the property managers, assistant property managers, and the leasing team. The “chain of command” went as follows. This is my knowledge to the best of my ability. New positions may have been added or I was never aware of their presence.
There are many different reasons why I did not enjoy working for this company. None of them have anything to do with the organization structure. For one, I accepted the position as leasing consultant when I was 3 months pregnant. After working for the company for a few months, I was told that my appearance was unsatisfactory. I was wearing clothes from Motherhood Maternity and looked better than most employees. They were referring to my face because I had severe acne due to the stress of the pregnancy and the job. They were also referring to my hair because it had recently been cut short. My regional actually told me I looked sick. I had extreme fits of morning sickness throughout the whole pregnancy, so looking sick came with the territory. My job was actually threatened several times due to my “appearance.”
Another reason I did not enjoy working for this company is because on one occasion, I was in the shower, getting ready for my regularly scheduled weekend work day, which I hated because I could not spend time with my family, and I slipped in the shower. I was immediately rushed to the ER because being pregnant and falling is a serious issue. I contacted my manager as soon as I could to let her know that I could not physically make it in the office that day and she wrote me up because I contacted her AFTER the office should have been open. I explained that there is nothing I could have done differently and that my child’s life was in danger. I refused to sign the write up to admit that I was guilty of anything because I wasn’t. The main reason I did not like the job was because the product I was trying to sell was disgusting.
For starters, the apartments are income restricted. You have to make a certain amount of money to live there, so it is pointed toward a lower margin. The apartments themselves were never cleaned, stunk like cigarettes, and had multiple different kinds of linoleum and carpet throughout a single apartment. My manager could have paid to have each apartment looking amazing, but instead kept her budget low so she would receive a bonus for not going over budget. I mentioned this several times to my regional, and even had her come and view our apartments, but we were told to lease them anyways. I tried to explain that no one would want to live in an apartment like this. I myself come from the ghetto of South Austin Texas and have lived in some DISGUSTING apartments, but I would not chose to live in these apartments if you paid me. They still put a sense of urgency on us to get the apartments leased and began threatening our jobs.
The whole situation was horrible and I am glad I got out of it when I did. I was even told to constantly walk up to the third floor to clean cockroaches out of the breezeways when I was 9 months pregnant. One time I was even told that I would be standing on the corner in a clown suit with a sign that points to the apartments to get traffic in. Being 9 months pregnant, not fitting into the costume and it being 110 degrees outside, I put my foot down and contacted HR and explained what I was being told to do. I was protected from the dressing like a clown, but still expected to walk up and down three flights of stairs in high heels and about to deliver a baby. If I was the regional, the manager, or even the owner, I would invest more time and money into making the property look amazing, inside and out.
I would be sure that each and every employee is treated as fair as possible. I would never expect anyone to do anything that they could not physically do. I think the more you push someone to do something, the more stressed out they become and the less they provide you with good work. In conclusion, working for a company has its up’s and down’s. It is up to each level of the structure to make the best of each situation that they are dealt. If they see something that is not right, they need to take charge and handle the situation immediately. I wish that in several instances, my assistant manager had spoken up for me and handled the situation instead of keeping quite out of fear of losing her job as well.
Green, Sarah. Personal Experience, (2010). Working as a leasing consultant for FORE properties.
Bateman, T. S., & Snell, S. A. (2011). Management: Leading & collaborating in a competitive world (9th ed.). New York, NY: McGraw-Hill Irwin.