A Day In The Life: General Manager

(L to R) General Managers Amanda Ferguson, Jason Schlosser, Shelly Braden, Whitney Elenbaas

While our headquarters is located in Austin, Texas, we have team members all across the country. Having TurnKey team members located in all of our markets is a huge part of what enables us to provide such localized, community-focused service.

One of the first team members our new homeowners get to meet is the General Manager for their respective market. Our General Managers oversee the growth of our markets, build partnerships with homeowners, and so much more.

Get to know some of our General Managers and see what a day in the life is like:

 

Describe your role.

Jason Schlosser, General Manager, Maine: “It’s continuously reinforced at a high level that as a General Manager, I’m the market leader. I set the tone and pace for the organization. At a local level, we’re able to influence on a daily basis how the teams are working together. The way we influence communication and everyone working together, that has an impact on the chemistry of our local teams. If we’re continuously encouraging and speaking positively of other team members, that has a real benefit on the chemistry and how everyone works together. I also make business development decisions and help grow our business. Representing TurnKey well and being an ambassador to owners is critical to the company.”

Shelly Braden, General Manager, Truckee and North Lake Tahoe: “I would describe being a General Manager as managing the local market on a macro level. Working with my Service Manager, Account Manager, and Field Ops Team very closely to make sure our homes are perfect for our guests’ arrival and that we’re also taking great care of our homes for our homeowners.”

Whitney Elenbaas, General Manager, Vail Valley:My main goal is to talk to owners and get them signed up in our program, along with making sure those particular properties will do well in our program, are in great locations, and are the quality we’re looking for. I work heavily with the Field Operations team and Account Management team to make sure all of our owners in the program are maximizing revenue and happy – if not, problem-solving to the best of our abilities to get their place rented to top-quality people we’re looking for. I also work with our Revenue Management and Marketing teams. Lots of relationship-building.”

Amanda Ferguson, General Manager, Destin/30A: I spend a lot of time helping homeowners analyze the revenue potential their property can have and explaining to them what sets TurnKey apart from the other options they have available to them. Locally, some of the big differentiators are the technology that we use to monitor the homes and to streamline our processes.”

 

What’s your favorite thing about being a General Manager?

JS:My favorite part would be solving problems. I’ve always been a believer that big challenges equal big opportunities. I enjoy connecting with owners that have challenges and managing their property because I feel like we have a great solution in the service we offer at TurnKey.”

SB:My favorite part is meeting with homeowners at their home. We tour through the house first and talk about any recommendations I might have to stage their property as a vacation rental for the best guest experience. And then, we sit down, and I run through all of the elements of TurnKey’s program in detail.

AF:My favorite thing about being a General Manager is working with homeowners and helping them realize they may have the opportunity to make more money. To help homeowners increase the revenue they’re earning and help them resolve the service issues they’re having and improve their quality of life is nice because they’re making more money, and there’s less of a frustration level for them because they’re getting a better service. It’s rewarding.

 

What personality and character traits are a must for General Managers?

JS:I think General Managers have to be adaptable and nice to other people. I think that seems really simple, but we’re in the hospitality business. It needs to come naturally for you to be nice and play well with others. Seeing the good in others is definitely a good trait. An out-of-the-box thinker. Not getting hung up on the challenges, but being able to find a solution that will help solve the problem. We have to be creative in our role.”

 

SB:You have to be a good communicator because it’s our mission to clearly articulate what the program is and to set expectations accurately for the homeowner. Before that, you need to be a really good listener. You absolutely have to be a team-player. It’s really important to rally behind the team, get everyone working together, and constructively point out things we need to improve upon but also celebrate together.”

WE:I think being organized, social, able to talk to anyone, inquisitive, able to find the need behind the need, able to develop relationships, and making sure that everyone feels respected and that you’re constantly working to make sure those relationships are bettered.”

AF:You have to be self-motivated, able to multi-task, and really enjoy talking to people. Be a good listener. You really want to make sure you listen to what’s important to the homeowner because each homeowner is going to have different goals.”

 

Tell us your favorite homeowner story.

JS:I was meeting with an owner. She was skeptical about TurnKey. We connected over a two-month period with different calls and emails. Our last meeting was three-hours long, and she said, ‘Wow, I’m surprised. I really like what you had to say about TurnKey, and it just feels right but I’m still not ready yet, so maybe next year.’ Within a week, she called me and said, ‘I got some really bad news recently. I’ve got a tumor. I have to have brain surgery. Even though I want to manage my property, I can’t. I feel at peace with my decision to go with you guys because I know you’ll take care of everything.’

“My favorite part of working at TurnKey is really being able to serve our owners well especially when they have a critical need like that. Whether they need time to recover, be with their family, or they need the money to pay the mortgage. When we can meet those critical needs, those are memorable moments for me.”

WE:I had one homeowner who was really worried about renting her home because she never had a rental before. She was moving to a new house and was going to rent the one she moved out of. I went to her home, and she made me lunch. We had lunch and talked through her life story. Then, we went room by room, and I talked to her about what she should and shouldn’t put in her rental. I developed a really good relationship with her through that, and it’s been fun to work with her and get her property set up with TurnKey. I really eased her mind – it’s a neat, different part of the job. It was really fun.”

 


Want to join our team as a General Manager? Check out our current job openings here.

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