Duke Dodson on How to Reorganize as You Scale
Duke is busy in the real estate market, beyond property management. He’s doing active development in everything from apartments to ice cream shops to co-working spaces. He’s a gifted hustler and one of the sharpest self-made guys in the industry whose appetite for winning was refined during his previous career as a professional poker player.
In our chat, we’re cover the specific strategies Duke has used to scale his company to where it is today. From lessons on the art of the pitch to how he structures compensation for his BDMs, this is an interview packed with actionable advice to help you scale your business.
If you’re looking for strategies to help you break through a growth plateau, then this is the episode for you.
- (01:28) – Background Leading up to Today
- (01:33) – Duke speaks on his first forays into the business world.
- (02:47) – Lessons learned from his time at Wells Fargo.
- (03:30) – The early days at Dodson Property Management.
- (03:49) – Duke discusses his early mindset regarding sales.
- (04:16) – The importance of understanding your client’s journey.
- (04:49) – Early brand positioning.
- (06:33) – Whether Duke thinks the market is more or less competitive than it was in 2007.
- (07:08) – The first 100 doors.
- (07:30) – Initial marketing efforts.
- (08:32) – What Duke would do differently with the aid of hindsight.
- (09:07) – Start putting time, money and energy into building an SEO presence.
- (09:28) – Various marketing efforts depending on budget.
- (09:28) – Social media.
- (09:38) – With little money, focusing on building and nurturing relationships.
- Duke discusses how to build relationships on a practical level.
- (03:49) – Duke discusses his early mindset regarding sales.
- (14:00) – Duke discusses when he made his first sales hire.
- (14:10) – The training and on-boarding process.
- (16:18) – Thoughts on whether or not one person should be responsible for both inbound and outbound marketing.
- (16:35) – Pros and cons and the kind of temperaments suitable for either role.
- (18:04) – Whether Duke hires separate people for these roles.
- (19:34) – Duke speaks on his first efforts at delegating.
- (21:34) – The long-term vision that drove Duke to push for greater growth.
- (22:08) – Income goals.
- (22:23) – Need for constant change and challenge.
- (22:34) – Retirement plans.
- (01:33) – Duke speaks on his first forays into the business world.
- (25:16) – Commercial Break
- The Art of the Pitch
- (27:25) – What Duke thinks most property managers don’t understand or get wrong about the one-to-one sales dynamic.
- (27:37) – Not understanding the psychology of selling.
- (28:39) – Why you need to have an organized sales pitch.
- (27:25) – What Duke thinks most property managers don’t understand or get wrong about the one-to-one sales dynamic.
- (30:53) – Structuring BDM Compensation
- (31:13) – Duke walks us through the progression of the comp models that he’s experimented with.
- (31:13) – Lessons learned from their first comp model.
- (35:15) – The relationship between creating value and earnings.
- (36:52) – The importance of culture fit.
- (35:15) – The relationship between creating value and earnings.
- (37:23) – Lessons learned from their second comp model.
- (37:30) – Ensuring a proper culture fit.
- (37:30) – The impact of having an established SEO presence.
- (38:13) – Expectations of the role.
- (31:13) – Lessons learned from their first comp model.
- (39:31) – Whether Duke has a customer acquisition cost target in mind including sales labour.
- (40:04) – The variability between paying for a door versus paying for a lead gained through sales and marketing.
- (42:08) – Discussing risk aversion.
- (40:04) – The variability between paying for a door versus paying for a lead gained through sales and marketing.
- (43:08) – Discussing the pros and cons of discounting.
- (46:33) – The importance of standardizing.
- (31:13) – Duke walks us through the progression of the comp models that he’s experimented with.
- (48:32) – How much is too much to pay for a new property management contract?
- (49:26) – Who do you learn from?
- (50:23) – What books would you recommend?
- (51:01) – What is the number one thing that you see property management entrepreneurs doing wrong?
- (51:30) – Are entrepreneurs born or bred?
- Shawn Boyer; Snagajob (49:43) – Has had an influence over Duke’s learning in the property management sphere.
- Mark Cuban (49:43) – Influential and inspirational person in Duke’s career.
- Sam Zell; Equity Office; Am I Being Too Subtle? (50:04) – Recommended learning resource for property management entrepreneurs.
- PM Grow Summit (25:16) – Property management conference recommended by Duke and hosted by Jordan.
Where to learn more:
If you want to learn more about Duke or find out what his company is up to, head over to DodsonPropertyManagement.com.
Jordan: 0:00:00.5 Welcome closers, today we have another episode of the profitable property management podcast coming at you, this is season 2 on sales. I’m your host Jordan Muela, and every week, I interview world-class property management entrepreneurs and industry experts who share actionable insights to help you grow your property management empires.
So whether you manage 100 or 1000 units, this broadcast is designed to help you see the big picture and give you the tools and tactics that you need to get to the next level.
Today, I am talking with none other than Duke Dodson, owner of Dodson Property Management, which now manages over 4000 units in the Richmond and Fredericksburg markets. In addition, Duke is a busy boy in the real estate market. He’s doing a very active development in everything from apartments to ice cream shops to co-working spaces. Where will it stop? I don’t know, we’ll find out.
He’s a gifted hustler, who’s appetite for winning was refined during his previous career as a professional poker player. I think he’s one of the sharpest self-made guys in the industry and today we’re going to talk to Duke about how he got started and built his company into what it is today.
0:01:12.7 Welcome to the show Duke.
Duke: 0:01:14.4 Thank you man, that was the best intro I’ve ever had probably. Well done.
Jordan: 0:01:18.6 Well hey man, I’m genuinely excited to have you on. I’ve known you for awhile, we’ve done some business together and I have a lot of respect for what you do man.
So, I want to start here. 0:01:28.6 I want to rewind the tape. I always like to start here. 0:01:33.8 How did you get into business period? Were you one of these guys growing up early on in middle school, high school that knew that you wanted to be an entrepreneur? Did you kind of get pushed into it? How did you get into business period?
Duke: 0:01:46.0 Yeah, as a kid I was pretty sure I wanted to start a business of some kind. I had the proverbial lemonade stand that didn’t go too well. I started a car detailing business when I was – between my junior and senior of high school, with my best friend in high school. That went a little better. I got into sales between high school and college. 0:02:08.6 I sold Cutco Knives. A lot of folks…
Jordan: 0:02:10.5 Oh, I love it.
Duke: 0:02:12.8 So a combination of – I always knew I wanted to do it, didn’t know what I wanted to do and the stars aligned in 2007 when I started the management company.
Jordan: 0:02:20.4 Vector baby. Vector has turned out a lot of hustlers. There’s a certain profile that you have to have to actually succeed. Did you get anywhere? Were you able to make a couple bones with Vector? Or did you get churned out?
Duke: 0:02:31.6 I did decent. Once I got through friends and family, I was kind of done with it and ready to move on to college. So priorities weren’t quite there. But yeah, it was a really good experience. 0:02:43.4 Learning to sell at a young age I think is a good experience for anybody.
Jordan: 0:02:47.4 Alright. Go through college, study some things related to business, eventually start working for Wells Fargo. Still focused on early on. Did you get anything out of the experience at Wells Fargo that you took with you when you actually started your own business?
Duke: 0:03:04.7 I did yes. So for my first job was a mortgage loan officer through Wells Fargo right out of college. And learned about – a little bit of the basics of real estate finance and more importantly, I saw people buying and selling real estate.
And I saw people making money doing so, so it intrigued me. And that led to me studying all parts of real estate investment in much more detail.
So yeah, it definitely jump started me, because it jump started my curiosity into the business.
Jordan: 0:03:30.2 Alright. So you smelled the money. Eventually you stake your own claim. You start Dodson Property Management. I want to talk about what that was like early on.
0:03:39.4 Because right now, things look great and there may be – I guess it’s easy to gloss over that initial painful, early grind.
0:03:49.8 So one of the questions I have for you is, how did you go about figuring out how to sell and refine that process?
0:03:57.9 Were you strategic about sales from day one and feeling like it the sales process and the presentation was really key?
Was it an afterthought like it is for so many people who are obsessed on the operations and the service and feel like the sales process is more just like opening a brochure?
0:04:15.7 What was your sales mindset early on?
Duke: 0:04:16.8 Yeah, I think early on my sales process wasn’t great, but I was thinking about it a lot. So early on, I put myself in the client’s shoes, early and often, and put a lot of thought into how they perceived my company and how they perceived my service and what I can do to make their lives a little bit better and easier.
0:04:36.4 Easier on the sales and marketing sign up process, easy throughout the management process. And so yeah, early on we built every process with the client’s experience in mind, including how we market our company and how we pitch our company to a prospective customer. Sure.
Jordan: 0:04:49.9 So how did you guys position? Was there any specific angle that you were hoping people would feel like that Dodson was different in regards to – what was the positioning of the brand?
Duke: 0:04:59.4 Early on, I didn’t have any true property management experience, so I couldn’t tout that as being the most experienced guy in town. You know, I didn’t really want to be the cheapest, but early on I was probably towards the cheaper end.
But what I guess touted was someone who loved real estate, loved being around it, loved talking about it, loved talking with investors, loved looking at deals.
0:05:18.7 And so playing around in those networking groups with likeminded folks, a lot of my early customers came through those relationships. Through I guess a passion for real estate is how it started.
But then once it progressed and became a real company, and not just a, you know, a guy in a – you know, more or less a property management hobby – looked at the whole property management service that we give to clients and realized that it’s not that complicated.
0:05:43.4 There’s only about five or six real main processes, so I looked at each one of those and said what can we do better? You know, how can we lease a property better? How can we manage a property better? How can we get a maintenance issue fixed cheaper, quicker, better?
0:05:58.0 And all the way through reporting and what clients see and the experience they have when they get their statement and if there’s a problem, how they’re notified and when they’re notified.
0:06:06.4 And so, I think just building the whole company with the client experience is something that we did early on that most back in the day, most mom and pop shops like us weren’t doing. They more or less were real estate guys that happened to do property management.
0:06:22.2 If business came their way they took it, but they didn’t have a real plan to go get it. And I think the public perceived them as haphazard and very mom and pop, not institutionalized, not refined at all.
Jordan: 0:06:33.0 Do you feel like the market is a lot more competitive now than it was in 2007?
Duke: 0:06:36.7 Yeah, definitely. I think the combination of real estate, property management technology has helped a lot.
I think when the market crash occurred and the market got flooded with rentals, that brought more property management companies to the market. Because of that, with just more people, more competition, everyone gets a little bit better.
0:06:54.1 And so, people started viewing it as a real business, and put more time and energy into it and attracted more people, smarter people, better people to the industry, and so because of that the level of competition has definitely increased.
Jordan: 0:07:08.8 So early on, again just getting to 100 units, that first 100 doors, that was – what was that? Was that 100% outbound prospecting? Did you do any marketing?
Or how – I know you actively do marketing now, how large was the organization before you actually did any paid marketing or lead gen as opposed to just grinding it out through prospecting?
Duke: 0:07:30.3 I don’t know the exact date, but I know we really didn’t spend any money on marketing for the first three years at least. You know we spent some money on networking groups maybe, that I was a part of, but we did nothing that you would call marketing.
0:07:43.6 Nothing in print, nothing online, social media was barely a thing back then. 0:07:48.6 And so, yeah it was mostly networking, building relationships, building relationships with realtors back then.
Jordan: 0:07:54.6 And how many doors do you think you were at at the three year mark?
Duke: 0:07:55.9 About 300. And I’m not sure we did a lot of marketing then either? It was still probably a couple of years later that we actually got into any kind of social media campaigns.
We dabbled with some pay-per-clicks, but our SEO results ended up becoming mostly organic in nature.
0:08:12.6 And so we really didn’t – to this day, I bet we spend less in true marketing costs than a lot of people do per door.
Jordan: 0:08:20.3 Got it. So the bottom line is, like most companies, you ground it out through sheer force of will, prospecting, beating the street, belly-to-belly contacts. That is what the vast majority of our clients do.
0:08:32.2 One of the questions I have for you is, how would things be different in hindsight? The company operates very differently now than it did back then?
If through some circumstance, all of your inventory got wiped out and you were starting back from scratch, how long do you think it would take to get to that initial 300 doors? I’m guessing it wouldn’t be three years.
And what would you do differently, if anything, to acquire those 300 doors? Would you revert back to just hardcore prospecting? Or would you lean on paid advertising marketing? Like what would you do if you were going to do it again knowing what you know now?
Duke: 0:09:07.5 If I’m starting from scratch again and – but to also plan to be in the business for awhile, I would put as much energy and time and money as it took into SEO to get me to the top there.
Which would not help you in year one probably, or year two, but by year three, four, and five, hopefully all the time and energy that you put into it would be worth it.
0:09:28.6 In addition to that, if you had a big marketing budget, I think there’s a lot of things you can do through social media that are very beneficial.
0:09:38.3 However, if you don’t have a big marketing budget, I think if you’re starting from scratch like I did, with one person and a dream, I think what you do have is time and relationships.
0:09:48.5 So nurturing existing relationships, but getting out there and networking in the right places to build those relationships. 0:09:53.4 I think – I’ve always said that if you get a client through any form of traditional marketing, that client is going to be 0:10:02.3 – 0:10:07.0.
0:10:08.1 I think that will always be true, because if you can win a client in ten seconds through an ad or a pay-per-click, and you can lose that client in ten seconds, but if you get a lead from referral, “Hey call Dodson Property Management, they’re the best,” it’s hard to lose that client. You know?
And you probably won’t unless you really screw it up. 0:10:25.8 So I think doing a good job and building relationships is still the best way. It’s not the fastest way, but it’s probably the best way.
Jordan: 0:10:34.2 So you give that piece of advice to different people and you have two radically different outcomes. The execution focus, getting into the weeds of actually building relationships, etc. is going to be the real differentiator.
So if somebody was actually wanting to execute on that – because we hear things like, “Build relationships with realtors,” or “do networking events, etc.” I feel like that is common wisdom, but again, for one person that produces great results, and for somebody else, they choke and they never get to 300 doors.
0:11:04.0 How would you lean in to either networking or the realtor relationships on a – to really get the maximal results?
Duke: 0:11:13.4 I guess that’s a good point that you just made. Is I usually give advice based on what has worked for me and so looking at it through my lens, through what works for me because of my personality and my skill set.
0:11:28.3 I guess if you were naturally good at building relationships. If you’re likeable, if you’re responsive and you’re organized and professional, and you show up on time and things like that, then the networking/relationship building will come a little bit easier for you.
If you’re not all of those things, which you can still succeed in business, but you probably need to market a different way.
So that person should probably spend more time on what you would call the ‘traditional marketing methods’ but you know, these days – which means social media, pay-per-click, systematic methods where you’re going to get x amount of leads, you’re going to close a certain percentage of those based on volume.
0:12:03.0 So, yeah you bring up a good point, is that that advice may not work for everybody depending on what you’re good at and what you’re not good at.
Jordan: 0:12:10.4 You know, I’m not really even trying to make that point. For me, it’s more about just recognizing that what you just talked about, about leaning into the prospecting, you have to find that disposition somewhere within your organization – where you see people struggle.
Is if you fundamentally have a bias against sales and you are not on some level willing to reconcile that, you’re going to choke. You’re going to suffer and life is going to be hard.
You could say, “I’m an introvert, it’s not going to be me, but it’s important, I recognize it’s a problem so I’m going to put somebody in that seat, I’m going to train them and equip them.”
But what I oftentimes see, is for the person that doesn’t have that kind of alpha, Type-A, gregarious disposition, a lot of times, they just lean back from it altogether and they want to throw another body into that void and have them go figure it out.
0:12:59.8 And that never ends up painting out well. So what I’m thinking about is, as I look at your organization now, the BDM structure, etc., it feels to me like your personality and disposition of prioritizing sales has kind of led into how you’ve structured things.
0:13:14.7 Because you’ve had BDMs for longer than than BDMs have been a big thing that folks have been talking about and they’re actually succeeding versus now that that term is coming up and I’m seeing a lot of clients that are really struggling in kind of churning through that. So on some level, I think it comes down to it being a culture issue. Agree?
Duke: 0:13:33.4 Absolutely yeah. I think you’re naturally going to attract people that fit your culture. And on day one when you’re a one-man band or a one-woman band, your culture is you. Right? How you act and how you treat people and what the atmosphere of your office is like.
And so you’re naturally going to attract people that like that kind of atmosphere. So yeah, if you are not a salesy person and you hate it, you’ll have a little difficulty attracting that person. I don’t think it’s impossible, but it’s certainly much easier if you buy into that mindset right away.
Jordan: 0:14:00.5 So how many doors were you at before you actually did try and make a sales hire?
Duke: 0:14:06.5 Sales hire? We were about 300. About three years in, about 300 units is when we hired our first Director of Business Development.
Jordan: 0:14:10.7 So you have plenty of bumps, bruises and scars. You already walked the walk when you hired that person. You weren’t asking them to come in and do something you hadn’t.
That said, did you bridge the gap in terms of training? Because that’s where we see some folks fall short. They’re great on a guttural level, but they don’t necessarily train well. How did you handle the training and on-boarding process for your first BDM?
Duke: 0:14:33.2 So back then, you know, we did a lot of things by the seat of our pants, and we didn’t have a traditional on-boarding process like we do now with new hires. But, I did put thought into it.
I wanted the guy to do as I would do at a presentation. The best thing – there was some classroom in the office and me working with them. The next step is for them to shadow me on my next ten presentations, and then the next step was we both go to the next ten presentations, he’d do it, me look over his shoulder.
0:14:59.7 And once I was comfortable not going, then I would let him go and then I would follow up afterwards with the client, get some feedback, and then eventually I was able to take the training wheels off and let him just do his thing.
0:15:09.8 And it certainly wasn’t perfect. He had sales experience, but he did not have property management experience, so he would get hung up on some real estate related phrases and clauses and things that you know, the client would want him to be comfortable with and so, you know, I would say his closing ratio – we didn’t measure it well back then, but his closing ratio was initially was lower than mine, but it got up there pretty quickly to where he caught up to doing what I was doing.
Jordan: 0:15:32.0 So when you brought him on, did you already have sufficient lead-flow that you could keep him busy and you told him he was really just acting as – acting in an inbound capacity or did you set the expectation that there was going to need to be a lot of prospecting going on as well?
Duke: 0:15:51.0 Yeah, that’s probably about a 50/50. We probably gave him – on day one he was getting about 50% of the leads he would need to stay busy and hit his goals, but the other 50% he would need to dig up himself.
0:16:00.2 We did not have a strong SEO presence then. We were trending there, but we weren’t there yet.
So yeah, a lot of his job on day one was to – me introducing him to the networking groups that I was doing – him to joining some more – him going out – back then he would have a goal to take new realtors to coffee a week, things like that. 0:16:17.5 So it was a lot of outbound.
Jordan: 0: .4 How do you feel about having a sales person do – be responsible for both inbound and outbound? Do you think it’s a good idea? Right now do you segment and have somebody just on inbound? Outbound? What’s your overall philosophy on mixing the two within one person’s role?
Duke: 0:16:35.6 Yeah, I think as a small business sometimes, you’ve got to make a person where both hats. And it’s doable. It’s not ideal.
You know, the downsides are as the inbound leads are coming in, the person is out in the field doing a presentation or two or networking, and so it might be three, four, six hours before they get back to the person – or even the next day. And sometimes that’s too long.
So that’s the downside. You know, when you’re small you really can’t have two people and so you have to find a way to make it work. In a perfect world, yeah, I think if you were going to hire an outbound person versus an inbound person, you would hire two different people. I wouldn’t be the same person necessarily.
0:17:10.5 You can hire an inbound person and train them to become outbound. 0:17:12.8 What I see in the inbound person, is a person who is at his or her desk most of the time, they’re dealing with a lot of leads, they’re setting up lots of presentations using digital tools like LeadSimple for example and calendar tools and things like that to make it really easy.
0:17:28.4 So that person is more about being likeable and being organized and efficient and that kind of thing. Right?
0:17:34.9 The outbound person needs to be a little more of a hunter-gatherer type where he or she needs to go to networking events, walk up and shake hands with somebody, ask somebody to go to coffee, ask somebody to go to lunch.
0:17:45.6 And you know, that’s a different skill set, that’s more 0:17:47.4 [Inaudible] than it is a lemonade stand.
Jordan: 0:17:53.0 So temperament-wise than, if somebody is in that situation, you’re right, this is a super practical – we’ve talked about the luxury of just hiring two guys, one inbound, one outbound, but for most people, that’s not realistic.
0:18:04.4 So if you are hiring somebody that’s doing split roles like that, temperament-wise, what do you look for? A little bit of both? Or do you look for somebody leans towards one or the other?
Duke: 0:18:14.2 Yeah so, even at the size we are now, because we’re multiple divisions – our single-family division manages about 1450 units of our 4000, and that single-family division still has one person and he is more of an inbound person.
0:18:27.9 And the reason why, it’s a little laziness on our part, but he gets enough leads, he doesn’t need to go out and network much. He does go to some things after hours, but you know, my old person was going to probably six events a week and this guy is going to maybe two events a month.
So it’s a much different scale, as far as outbound networking. 0:18:43.5 So, he is full and he is busy and growth is not our constraint. And so we haven’t changed it.
0:18:50.7 But if you were going to hire one person to do both, they’ve got to be a pretty blend of organization and likeable and gregariousness I guess.
0:19:04.0 If they’re going to do both roles in and out, then they need to be able to do that. If they’re going 0:19:09.2 [Inaudible]. Our last person was more of the outbound type. Really struggled with technology, really struggled with organization.
And because of that, you start pissing some people off. You miss appointments, you’re late, and that sets a bad tone. 0:19:20.0 So I forgot what your question was, but I think that if they’re going to do both roles, they need to be pretty good at both. In a perfect world, you would have one of each that’s really good at what they do.
Jordan: 0:19:34.4 Talk to me about the process of letting go. You just mentioned some screw-ups that happen through lack of organization, etc. Did you have some cringe moments?
Were you ever reticent to let go? Or did you hire? Did you wait to hire at such a time where you were just being forced to do it? You were just forced to get over wanting to babysit the presentation process?
Duke: 0:19:58.8 So I think everyone has some fear of delegating. Especially delegating a client on initial contact. And the client relationship, which is the hardest thing to let go. But, what do you want to do? Do you want to be a small business or do you want to be a big business?
And if you want to be a big business, you’ve got to scale, you’ve got to delegate. You have to just get over that fear. And you get over the fear by being prepared and taking logical steps. 0:20:18.4 And, being willing to deal with the consequences.
0:20:20.2 So, you hire the right person, hopefully, you train the right person. Train them in the right way hopefully. You get them out there in the market place and hopefully the represent you well.
If they don’t, you try to correct it, but you’re going to have to live with some imperfection to make that handoff. 0:20:33.7 What was the rest of your question?
Jordan: I guess part of the question was – the timing of when you hired somebody. You were already at 300 doors – it sounds like you were pretty busy as is.
Duke: 0:20:46.7 Yeah, so at 300 doors, you know, I was starting to get super busy with all the tasks I was doing. And I had to decide – I could’ve stayed boutique and stayed smaller and increased my fees and cut my worst third of my portfolio and just taken – you know, put one good client in and one bad client out and just stayed at the 300 units and become more profitable.
0:21:06.6 But I didn’t want to do that, so it was – yeah, by necessity I had to delegate things and the sales – the biz dev piece was the part I delegated last. 0:21:16.0 But I do not regret it at all. The way I viewed it, I was pretty good at biz dev, and I was doing it about 20-25% of my week.
So if I got somebody as good or better, or even if they’re 80% as good as me, but they’re doing it 40 hours a week, they’re going to have better results. It’s simple math.
Jordan: 0:21:34.6 I want to circle back to what you just said, that for you, your goal wasn’t to be a boutique shop, you could have gone through that process of swapping out your bottom tier clients for higher tier clients, all the things that we’re familiar with. Kind of optimize on the inventory that you have.
What for you caused you to not want to do that? 0:21:52.8 Was Dodson the vehicle? Was it the long-term vehicle? Was it a means to an end? What compelled you to have real clarity around the fact that just having a highly profitable boutique shop was not where you wanted to be in five years.
Duke: 0:22:08.8 It’s a lot of things. It was never much in question for me. I always wanted to grow a big company. Part of it was I have, you know, I have that income goal. I want to make more income than the average person and there’s things I want to do, and so I needed to grow a big business, in my mind, to do that.
0:22:23.9 Part of it is I don’t like staying the same. I like growth, and I like new things and so I didn’t want to stay the same three or four or five person company my whole life.
0:22:34.3 The final part of it was, I love real estate and I’m passionate about it. However, some of the tasks, I get really tired of. Like the first time I went to a biz dev appointment, I was so excited and a little nervous. By the 100th time, I was ok with it. By the 300th presentation I was sick of it.
0:22:48.7 Same thing with showing an apartment, or processing a rent cheque. Or all the tasks you do. I didn’t want to be doing all those tasks when I was 50 and 60 years old.
So, you know, growth was the way to get there. And the final piece is, I want to be around people that want to grow and I didn’t want to work, no offence, with the same three, or four, five people for the next 30 years.
0:23:07.8 Because I don’t want to work with people that want to stay the same. I want to be around people that are interested in growth and new opportunities and growing their skill set and taking chances. And so, all those things led me to want to grow a big company.
Jordan: 0:23:18.4 I love it. So this is a key trade that I see with entrepreneurs. Is the need to keep that edge sharp.
You work hard, you set this vision, and you struggle and you grind and you finally achieve it. And what do you do?
You flog yourself again with a new project, more ambition. 0:23:37.1 It’s like this compulsive behaviour of constantly needing to stay sharp.
And I’ve seen that in what you’re doing, because it’s obvious with what you’re doing with real estate development acquisitions, etc. You’re not even just growing this thing linearly. You’re creating new units, ancillary business opportunities that presumably would be less viable had you not taken the path you had and just kept the shop small.
Duke: 0:24:01.7 right. Absolutely. And one point to make is that, you know, serial entrepreneur and what you just described. That can be a cool thing, can be an exciting thing, it can also be a bad thing. If you have six businesses and they all suck, that’s worse than having one good business.
0:24:18.3 So, as entrepreneurs if you start one business and you like the process, you’re going to want to do it again and again. And I call it the chase the shiny ball complex.
0:24:24.9 And so, I have to constantly check myself to make sure the thing I’m getting into is a good idea. Is it going to distract me from the other stuff. And so my little decision making mechanism is a, “Hey, what will it take me away from and is that ok?”
Because if I move away from single-family management, is that in good hands. And in our shop it is. We have a great guy that runs single fams. 0:24:42.1 I can get out of that. I can get out of the weeds of that and that unit won’t suffer.
But for me, it also has to be somewhat connected. Like anything I do has to be somewhat connected to the whole puzzle.
0:24:53.1 So the co-working space concept I’m a partner on. Real estate development. The commercial division, the multi-family division.
It’s all different things, but they all do work together and they all help each other.
There’s some synergy in that one plus one equals three. 0:25:06.8 If that’s not the case, I think it can be just a distraction. Like I don’t think – when I hear the term ‘serial entrepreneur’ I don’t necessarily think it’s a good term. I think a lot of times it’s a bad thing.
Jordan: 0:25:16.5 I like that. So you’re drafting off of yourself. You’re not starting hotdog stands or restaurants. I’m with you on that. Before we go on, I do want to mention our show sponsor, the PM Growth Summit, which is happening at the end of January in 2018.
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0:25:58.5 Duke, you spoke there last year, you were at the event, in your mind, why is it worth the while to outlay the time and the money to be present for events like this?
Duke: 0:26:07.9 Yeah, I’ll give a very easy, shameless plug for that conference. And I’m not just saying that because you’re on the phone, but that’s the best property management conference I’ve ever been to, and I think simply the quality of the speaker, quality of the content and the quality of the fellow attendees.
0:26:21.2 So it’s a smaller, more concentrated group. Super like-minded people, but they’re all – they’re bringing fresh ideas. So they’re not like robots marching along. You’re bringing folks from across the country that are the best of the best.
I mean, you know maybe I’m good at one part of the business, but I’m not as great at another, and there’s folks there that will compliment that. And the networking there, pretty powerful. 0:26:39.4
You know, I’ve met four or five folks there that I never met at another property management conference and we still stay in touch to this day. 0:26:45.0 Exchanging ideas. And so, anybody out there thinking about it, I promise you it’s worth the time and money to go to that.
Jordan: 0:26:54.1 I love it. Out of the mouth from somebody you can trust. So Duke, back to the art of the pitch.
0:27:01.5 When you think about being belly to belly, something that you’re not doing – you’ve worked your way up the food chain out of that job, but when you think back to the art of the pitch, what your BDMs are doing now, what you did a lot before you got to where you’re at now, what do you think that most property managers don’t understand or get wrong about the one-to-one sales dynamic?
Duke: 0:27:25.5 Yeah so, going off script a little, but 0:27:29.2 [Inaudible] like you learn the basic sales process, which I take for granted because I learned it when I was 18, but not everybody – simply hasn’t learned it yet.
0:27:37.3 But for the novice, I would say go and get some basic sales training, because you need to understand the psychology of selling, and just the basic steps of it.
0:27:44.0 You know, establishing credibility, overcoming objections, asking for the sale. You know those things that you learn selling Cutco Knives, they’re true in whatever you’re selling.
0:27:54.2 But the thing that I, you know – when you prepared me for this with the questions for this interview, what I said in note, and the feedback there was, most folks don’t understand when the pitch starts.
They don’t understand the customer experience of when – the pitch starts before they ever sit down in front of you, and I think that – I’ve seen some studies now that they say 70-80% of the time, they’ve already decided before you even get there.
0:28:16.7 So that means the pitch starts when they ask their friend about your company and you as an individual — how well you do at your job? When they look at your website they’re judging you. Look at your logo and your business card.
When they come to your office and if your office is a complete mess or if it looks nice and neat and orderly.
0:28:32.6 I mean all of those things affect their perception of you and your service. So they’re judging. They’re judging way before they get there.
0:28:39.9 But then the other part is just having an organized sales pitch. I think, again, our industry used to be dominated by mom and pop shops, now there’s quite a few large, institutional folks that are bringing experienced people into the business from other industries, and so they’re raising the bar.
0:28:54.4 But, I’ll give you an example. Seven years ago, my first biz dev guy came 0:28:58.0 – 0:29:01.5
0:29:02.8 To flip-book, as far as walking people through the process and answering questions and overcoming objections and showing visuals of things like statements and all that kind of good stuff. But, now we use a digital presentation, it’s much slicker.
But back then, this flip-book was new to us and he went to a presentation, did his pitch, went great, 30 minutes presentation, went perfect. He comes out and he sees the next guy coming in to pitch another – one of our competitors and the guy simply has a contract and an ink pen behind his ear and nothing else. No marketing materials, no flip-book, nothing.
The guy wasn’t organized. He was treating it like a mom and pop shop. He wasn’t treating it like a big business, and now that person is out of business. You’re not competing with jokers now, you’re competing with folks that are in it to win it. 0:29:48.5 You’ve got to constantly step your game up.
Jordan: 0:29:52.4 Yeah, absolutely. Well said. The professionalization of sales I think tends to happen later. Right? So with any good or service – with any service, people tend to perfect the operational areas and after there’s some maturity in that regard, they then turn their gaze over to sales and it’s a slow process before eventually – eventually, there’s actually a functional sales department. The professionalization of the process.
0:30:20.3 But the reality is, anybody can do that early on. Anybody can build out sales collateral. Anybody can practice their pitch. It’s an assessment of what is the value of this function of my business with my overall goals of what I’m trying to do.
Is sales, is marketing, does that function of my business deserve equal care, concern and attention and treatment as my leasing process, etc.
0:30:46.9 And, you know, if you’re focused on growth the answer is yes. If you’re not, the answer is no. So to some degree, you’re just going to come down to vision and values.
0:30:53.6 I want to circle back to BDM compensation. You mentioned early on around 300 doors, you then transitioned to hiring your first BDM. Can you walk me through the progression of the comp models that you have experimented with? What’s worked, what hasn’t?
Duke: 0:31:13.3 Sure. The first guy back in that – if you can remember back then, we didn’t have an SEO process, so we didn’t have a ton of inbound leads, but we had some. But I knew it would still be a long lead time initially.
0:31:26.4 So that guy, we did put on a draw. A six month’s draw. It was a nominal draw that he would have to pay back once his growth started kicking in. But his basic comp was straight, other than the draw, it was straight commission and it was based on percentage of revenue for business he brought in.
0:31:44.0 So, if he sourced a property he would get 25% of revenue and for us that was basically three fees: Leasing, management and renewal fees. He would get 25% of that revenue for the first year we had that property. 0:31:56.0 If we retained it for year two and year three, that would drop down from 25% to 15% for year two. 5% for year 3 and it would drop off after year 4.
0:32:05.5 The pros of that were that he was incentivized not just to get business, but to keep it. So he did have some incentives to – if a client reaches out six or eight months in and isn’t happy, he has an incentive to go talk to the property manager, work it out, 0:32:18.7 [Inaudible with the client]. That kind of thing.
And it wasn’t just a get it in the door and burn and churn type situation. So that was the pro. The pro too was that I was trying to attract what I call a hunter-gatherer type. Somebody who came from medical sales or medical equipment sales, or something like that who was a seasoned sales person. Used to eat what you kill environment. He can go out and get business.
And so in my mind that person needed a big upside. And so the 25%, 15%, 5% model was the right one for him at the time, because it gave him like, “Hey by the time year three get here, I’ll have my trails from year one, year two, plus what I’ve done this year.”
And you know, he can see himself making a buck, a buck-fifty. And that’s what this guy wanted, and needed and so I think it was the right model at the time.
0:33:04.1 About three years into it, he was making a buck-fifty, which I didn’t realize was a little too much for that position in our market compared to what other folks are paying in other markets. And based on the value he was bringing.
0:33:15.5 A lot of folks back then were doing just the 25% year one and then it dropped off, and that probably would’ve brought this guy back into the $80-90 thousand dollar range, which wasn’t enough for him.
So that was a – talk about painful situation where this guy who’s been here three years plus, done a good job for the most part, wasn’t perfect, but you know, trying to re-work his compensation plan just wasn’t going to work.
0:33:36.6 And he realized it. He realized it and I realized it. This caused – the discussion of this started making me realize that he maybe wasn’t the best culture fit at this time and so it brought it to a head, more or less, and we decided to mutually go our separate ways. 0:33:52.6 So that was the first biz dev person we had. The second person…
Jordan: 0:33:58.5 But before we move on, let’s camp out on that first guy. So first off, I think back something early on that I learned from a mentor – I had a mentor that talked to me about the story of Michael Malkin or Michael Milken, whatever his name was. The guy that came up with the concept of junk bonds. Do you remember what I’m talking about?
0:34:14.8 So as my mentor told me, the story was essentially not that a junk bond scheme was actually some criminal scheming enterprise, but rather that he had structured a financial instrument, which, you know, like any financial instrument, as long as sufficient warrants of the quality are given, it is what it is.
0:34:34.6 People can buy with eyes wide open. But where he got hung up, was that the terms that he had made with his employer gave him a very generous commission on the sales of that product and he freaking blew it out when he started selling that product. He got really unhappy with how much money they were paying him.
Because there’s – you have two philosophies. 0:35:00.0 One philosophy says, “Hey, I’ll pay you an unlimited sum of money based on an unlimited production of value.”
The other philosophy says, “You know, honestly, the point that you’re getting paid twice as much as I am, I’ll probably get pissed off and pretty crabby, maybe have some regret about the entire sort of thing.”
0:35:15.6 So in your situation, how do you think about the value that would’ve been necessary for that guy to create to make a buck-fifty worth it? Talk me through that?
Duke: 0:35:25.4 Yeah, so that’s a good question. So, lots of vectors at play here. The first vector being that when we started – he started, we had no SEO presence, and he was bringing more business to the table himself. Organically. That’s business we would not have gotten if he hadn’t found it.
But by the end of his three-year run, we had now been in the business six years and we are now dominating SEO in our market, and we’re getting tons of inbound leads.
So at that point, he wasn’t working that hard to get the business, it was just flying in the door. 0:35:54.4 So in order to, in my opinion, warrant that 150 grand annual income, he needs to do something above and beyond what an inbound person could do. He would need to go out and build long-term relationships with what I call, ‘savvy investors’.
Folks that have 20, 30, 40 plus single-family homes. Folks – we were getting into multi-family then. Folks that were buying multi-family that were more financially savvy and wanted to go over proforma and budgets and things like that and that wasn’t his bag.
0:36:21.9 And so, if I was going to pay him 150, you know, the way I see it, he needed to bring instead of 300 units a year as his goal, he needed to be bringing 1000 units a year. It’s kind of how I viewed it. Because I can get 300 units a year from an 80 grand guy. 0:36:37.2 Sounds a little harsh, but that’s the truth of the matter.
Jordan: 0:36:38.8 So part of what I hear you saying, is that he wasn’t willing to lean in on really becoming a subject matter expert, learning the language and developing the discipline necessary to land those higher tier clients.
Duke: 0:36:52.8 That’s right. Yep. And he – again, back to the culture fit, he wasn’t willing to embrace technology, and that’s the way we were moving. He wasn’t willing to change and adapt and grow and he started – even though I thought the comp model would incentivize him to only source stuff that we would keep one and two and three years down the road, he was starting to kind of just sign anything and jam it – you know, throw it in the door with little to no regard to what happened after that. 0:37:19.8 And so that wasn’t working for us either. So it was a combination of all of those things.
Jordan: 0:37:23.7 Alright, so now let’s talk about the second guy. So how did the first experience impact your second BDM hire?
Duke: 0:37:30.6 It impacted because I wanted to make sure I had a better culture fit. Somebody who is going to care about the customer post closing, I guess if you will. And not just get in the door.
I wanted to understand, I guess the sensitivity analysis more or less – if the person did x, 2x, or 3x in number of units, what they would make and what was realistic based on the incoming volume.
0:37:56.4 And because we had more of an SEO presence, this person needed to be less of an outbound guy, more of an inbound person. So somebody who is more organized and could respond to all these leads quickly and efficiently and set appointments and keep them and that kind of thing. 0:38:10.5 So all of that factored in to who we hired next.
Jordan: 0:38:13.5 Got it. Makes sense. Alright. So as you went through that process, were you expecting this new person to do the same sorts of activities that the old person was doing, but just have a comp model that was more aligned with those activities? Or was – were you wanting to see the mix of inbound versus outbound change?
Duke: 0:38:32.2 To be perfectly honest, I pictured him being inbound 80%, outbound 20%. Because A there was less of a need for the outbound because of our SEO presence, but also because we had now splintered off and had a full-blown multi-family division and so those leads that were going to my old person were now going to a different person who was more skilled in multi-fam and proforma and budgeting.
0:38:58.8 So now this position didn’t need this financial savvy anymore. They just needed to really close the incoming leads more or less. 0:39:05.2 And so by diverting the more savvy leads to the multi-fam side, it left this position that was more inbound in nature.
Jordan: 0:39:13.2 So when you think about the acquisition cost, factoring in the sales, labour, do you have a target acquisition cost that factors in your sales labour, commissions, etc.
Duke: 0:39:28.6 Say that one more time sorry.
Jordan: 0:39:31.9 Do you have a customer acquisition cost target in mind for what you’re trying to hit that factors in your sales labour?
Duke: 0:39:40.7 To be perfectly honest, I am bad at knowing that number. I know that we have studied it when we studied this comp model, but that was three years ago and so I don’t remember what that is.
0:39:51.1 I know what we can pay per door for acquiring a business, but I don’t know what we pay marketing costs, including his labour now, per door. So sorry.
Jordan: 0:40:04.3 Hey no worries. Honest admission man, I appreciate the honesty. You know, I think that’s where most folks are at. But let’s just riff on what you just said.
What is the difference between what you would pay for a door versus what you would pay through organic acquisition factoring in sales labour, etc. 0:40:20.8 Why do you think that there is such a wild variability in what people are willing to pay for a door versus what they pay for a lead gained through sales and marketing?
Duke: 0:40:29.4 So, I am a firm believer that if you are going to pay for one unit or pay for 20 units in your own market, it’s not much difference what you should pay per door. But if you’re going to buy in a new market, something like 100 to 200 units or more, you’re getting more with that purchase. Possibly.
0:40:50.0 For example, we bought two companies in Fredericksburg, which is another market for us. I may be willing to pay more there because without starting there with that critical mass, I would never get to 1000 units there, because I wouldn’t get to even one – I wouldn’t enter a new market from scratch anymore.
0:41:07.1 So that creates new opportunities. That creates a new market that wasn’t there before. So that’s one reason. 0:41:11.4 Second, maybe you’re getting something with it. You’re getting an existing brand name, or you’re getting a website with some SEO, or you’re getting some staff or some talent, or some expertise in-house.
So that to me – you have to understand what you’re buying. You have to be able to put a value on what you’re buying. And so, that’s why I’m willing to pay more for – if you’re going to sell me 250 units in a new market, I might be willing to pay more per door there than if you said, “Hey I’ll give you 250 units in Richmond,” because I would have a crack at those 250 units with or without this purchase. 0:41:41.4 But with the out of town purchase, I would not have a crack at those units. So, does that make sense to you?
Jordan: 0:41:46.1 Yeah, I think that does make sense. I think on the flip side it relates to risk aversion. So there’s a set price, a set market price and increasingly, more clarity on the market rate being set for buying doors through an acquisition, whereas in the sales and marketing side, A it’s ambiguous – there are no real standards for what people should spend, and B, people just tend to hedge.
0:42:08.1 And I see that hedge come out really clearly when we walk through the verbal exercise of what a contract is worth. Right?
0:42:15.2 If I ask somebody on a customer service level how long do you keep a property management contract for? The number that they give is, “Oh, five plus years. I’ve had clients for 20 years.”
But when you ask them to develop a customer acquisition cost target that is predicated upon an average customer lifetime value, they’re like, “Well, you know, let’s just assume that these customers are only going to stay for a year.”
They’re much more risk averse when trying to factor it in on that level. 0:42:41.7 And I think in large part that just comes from growth being more of an aspiration than a priority. If your ultimate mandate is growth, then you’re going to figure it out and you’re going to make – you’re going to do the math and you’re going to bet on the math.
That’s what bigger companies like the Renters Warehouses of the world – increasingly companies like Royal Property Management, etc. are leaning towards. Is doing the math and actually making a bet on it.
0:43:08.1 But, what I wanted to – the other thing I wanted to ask you about was discounting. This came up, and I’m going to read a question to you that got sent in to me from a customer recently. I replied, gave my feedback but I wanted to hear how you would handle this same question. 0:43:26.4
The question is this: “If I’m paying my BDM to get new business and I’m paying him a normal salary plus commission, I need some suggestions on ways to align the commission such that they feel equal pain to me when they discount.
For instance, let’s say I’m paying a $250 dollar commission for a new door, but that pre-supposes I’m getting a full month’s leasing commission and a half-month’s renewal fee and a standard management fee of x percent. Whatever it is.
I want my staff to have some flexibility in negotiating fee structures based on different property types and values, but I also have to factor in any kind of a discount. So if they start heavily discounting, it’s really going to negatively impact me and I have to find a way to make sure that they have the skin in the game. Do you have any ideas on how to make this happen?”
Duke: 0:44:22.4 Yeah, yeah. So a couple of ways to approach this. Number one is – option A is: don’t offer discounts. So, like you 0:44:31.0 [Inaudible] price like you do like CarMax 0:44:33.4 So that’s pretty much what we do now.
Now my new biz dev guy gets a flat fee per door regardless if it rents for $800 bucks or $3000 bucks a month. But he can’t bend on his pricing. He just can’t.
0:44:44.0 So – now there are some exceptions, if somebody has 20 units or more, that can be negotiated a bit and he has to just get approval from his supervisor and that supervisor has – his budget, that he’s responsible for, so that person has to sign off and he would suffer if we were to cut it too low, for example, and hurt his profitability. So that’s one option
0:45:03.4 Another option is – like my first comp model for my guy, you know, he would have a percentage of the revenue and so he was incentivized to make that percent, that revenue as high as possible.
0:45:16.6 I’m not sure I love discounting often. If you bend once, why not bend every time. And so I’m like – I like finding – A: being a service that people are willing to pay for. B: setting a fair price and making it very simple, “This is our price, take it or leave it.”
And keeping that process 0:45:33.6 [Inaudible] . If you start negotiating then that’s going to slow down and encourage haggling, it’s going to slow down the sales process. Your guy’s going to have six calls to close a deal versus one or two. And so that would be my advice.
Jordan: 0:45:49.6 Ok, so yeah, I think there’s definitely some good council in that. My take on it is that discounting on the management fee is always the last thing you want to do. Discount on any of the one-time fees versus the recurring.
But also standardize the process. And so just so I understand, you’re saying, for one guy that walks in the door with one property, and it’s a nice property, you’re saying that your BDM has no flex room on price in that situation? No matter how hard this guy tries to haggle?
Duke: 0:46:20.0 Correct. Yeah. We have a tiered system so the pricing is not the same for a house that rents for $800 versus a house that rents for $3000. But whatever box that fits in in our matrix, that’s the price and it’s a fair price and I wouldn’t go any lower than that.
Jordan: 0:46:33.9 Yeah, I think that’s great. I think it’s a great starting point. So my basic answer here was, first off don’t discount on the management fee period. And if you’re going to discount on anything else, just set a ratio of what comes out of that guy’s pocket.
0:46:47.4 So that ratio could be dollar per dollar. He discounts one buck, his commission is reduced by a dollar. Or it could be a dollar to 50 cents. Whatever it is. But on the whole, I think you’re right. 0:46:57.8 Just not discounting period is a great way to go. Only discounting based on, “Does this person have a large portfolio, etc.”
And even in those scenarios, you could standardize it. Right? You can imagine an excel spreadsheet that allows you to enter how many doors this guy has. Average rent of the properties, etc. 0:47:18.5
And kind of factor in the max discount that could be ascertained based on that. And honestly, if you did that, that could be a calculator on your website.
The point is, that by standardizing the process, you’re not incentivizing people to get adversarial, which is, for better or for worse, what that negotiation process feels like. And it also – it does enable your BDM to say, “The answer is no and that’s that.” Don’t feel bad, I’m not guilted. I like it.
Duke: 0:47:43.2 Your advice about standardizing is absolutely crucial. I think people get wrong is they treat their business like a small business. They’re usually getting one to five new clients a month, which you can have time to haggle and discuss and talk about and argue with your staff.
But if you’re trying to get 25 new ones a month, you can’t have that. It needs to be seamless, they need to know exactly what the pricing is. They need to push the button and go without you being involved. 0:48:04.0 And so, yeah. You need to build your systems for sale.
Jordan: 0:48:07.7 And I think that does kind of relate to the boutique sort of thing. In a boutique situation, this is money you’re going to eat, and the truth is, yeah you can stand firm but you could not. You could have a little more money in your pocket. That temptation and that moral resolve is more frequently tested.
0:48:24.2 I want to move on to the rapid-fire section of the interview. We’re quickly going to go through a set of questions that I ask every attendee, and the first question is this:
0:48:32.1 How much is too much to pay for a new property management contract? So let’s say we were factoring in sales labor, marketing labour, etc., give me your guttural response on the number of where you think you would tap out and you would say this is a line we can’t cross.
Duke: 0:48:50.4 $650 bucks.
Jordan: 0:48:53.7 $650! Alright. Break that down. What’s your thought behind that number?
Duke: 0:48:56.9 Just some quick dirty math on what the lifetime value of a contract. Even though we don’t study it well at our firm, I’ve seen you and Alex do it quite a bit and I know that it’s at least that.
Jordan: 0:49:08.7 Ok, so how does that pair up against the price of what you would pay for a door?
Duke: 0:49:14.2 About $1000.
Jordan: 0:49:16.1 About $1000? Ok. So $350 Delta there. That’s interesting.
Duke: 0:49:20.7 Yup. And that’s quick and dirty. That’s not a lot of science in that. It’s quick and dirty instinct.
Jordan: 0:49:26.4 Alright. So next question is, who do you learn from? Clearly you do have the entrepreneurial mindset, I know you network with people within the industry, when you think about the folks that have kind of influenced, that you listen to, etc.? Who are some names that come to mind?
Duke: 0:49:43.6 Locally, a guy named Shawn Boyer who started a company called Snagajob here. He’s kind of like my local business hero. You know, outside – like celebrity folks – Big Mark Cuban fan. I’m becoming a big Sam Zell fan. He’s my new kind of man crush.
Jordan: 0:50:01.9 Edit out I gotta Google this.
Duke: 0:50:04.1 Edit out Sam Zell, Equity Office guy, he’s a real estate guy, but he’s been involved in a lot of things. He just wrote a book called, Am I Being Too Subtle? Anybody in real estate should read that, it’s a fascinating tale of his journey.
Jordan: 0:50:15.0 Got it. Alright, so this guy looks like he’s got some tycoon-type qualities here.
Duke: 0:50:19.0 He does.
Jordan: 0:50:20.7 Alright, I’ll definitely be checking that out afterwards.
0:50:23.1 Next question is, books? Are you a reader? If so, are there any books on your shortlist of ones that have had an impact on you?
Duke: 0:50:32.0 Yeah, I love business biographies. The one I just mentioned, Sam Zell, is the most recent. But anyone I am kind of fascinated with business-wise, I’ll read their autobiography. Be it Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Ted Turner, the Coke Brothers. You know, all the inner – Bezos, and Zuckerberg, and the list goes on.
Jordan: 0:50:52.3 Don’t forget Elon man.
Duke: 0:50:53.4 Yeah, Elon, Peter Tiel, all the PayPal mafia, all those folks. Yeah.
Jordan: 0:50:59.3 Nice, PayPal mafia. Nice reference.
0:51:01.3 Alright so next question is, what is the number one thing – if you could distil it down to one thing that you see property management entrepreneurs doing wrong. I.e., a way that they are getting in their own way, what comes to mind for you?
Duke: 0:51:17.3 Thinking small and not building for scale. Any process you do, your company needs to be able to do it effortlessly a thousand times a year. And so it should be built to such. So yeah, just thinking small and not building for scale.
Jordan: 0:51:30.8 Last question. I ask everybody this. Always get a slightly different flavour of answer. But really, there are only one of – there are only two answers. And that question is this, Duke Dodson, in your opinion, are entrepreneurs born or bred?
Duke: 0:51:49.4 I would say 70% born, 30% bred.
Jordan: 0:51:53.2 Oh man! Another fence rider.
Duke: 0:51:55.2 But if I had to pick one, I would say born. But I think nurture and environment can play a part in it. But yeah, I think you kind of, in that regard, you’re more – you is what you is, is what I like to say.
Jordan: 0:52:09.1 Yeah, there you go. Well alright my man. Well hey, it’s been great. I appreciate you coming through. If folks want to learn more, if they want to see what you’re up to, where can they go online?
Duke: 0:52:18.5 DodsonPropertyManagement.com. And then we’re on Facebook and our new website is coming out in a month, so check that out when it hits. But doing more consulting now for property managers around the country so they can find us on the website and we’re happy to help on the single-family or multi-family consulting side.
Jordan: Love it. Awesome. Definitely check it out. DodsonPropertyManagement.com, these guys are hustling, doing some content marketing. I’m looking at the website right now. I see some of these videos. You guys have definitely upped the production quality there. I like it. Well hey, I appreciate you taking the time, it was great talking with you. I think folks are going to get a lot out of this, I’ll see you on the flip side brother.
Duke: 0:52:55.1 Ok buddy, see you next week. Later.