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Inspire and be inspired

Words I take to heart as I embark on my presidential journey

By Cheryl Gray, CPM
Inspire and be inspired

Cheryl Gray, CPM IREM President

I’ve adopted the above phrase as my IREM theme for 2020, and they’re words I take to heart as I embark on my presidential journey with, and for, IREM. In my role as president, I hope to inspire our membership with leadership and guidance from a perspective many may not have considered: that of someone whose experience with property management has largely come from outside of the United States. And I’ll continue to be inspired by the professionals who make up our association, and by their passion for our industry.

Dr. Deborah Phillips, CPM, recognizes, as I do, that inspiration plays a very meaningful role in business, which is why she includes it in her “Vision 20/20” leadership strategy outlined in the feature on P14. She notes that inspiring leaders bring out the best in their employees, creating environments of possibility, appreciating their unique contributions and encouraging them to stretch beyond what they might think is achievable. It’s not a “one and done” proposition; inspirational leadership is an ongoing endeavor, but one that will pay off in engaged and motivated employees, which in turn makes it a valuable business tool.

I’ll continue to be inspired by the professionals who make up our association, and by their passion for our industry.
And we have the opportunity to inspire each other with experiences that take place elsewhere but nonetheless spark new ideas we can apply to our own environments. Patricia De Lille, South Africa’s Minister of the Department of Public Works and Infrastructure, reveals in the Global Practices article on P12 that she drew inspiration from a presentation about Dubai’s Burj Khalifa that took place at the IREM Global Summit last September. As she sets out to address the challenges of supporting urban revitalization, she envisions the development of entirely new cities that provide nearby social and civic needs to their residents. De Lille also realizes that as development continues and existing buildings get reconsidered for other purposes, the need for well-trained property managers is increasing—and that could inspire those in the industry to expand their knowledge and learn some additional skills to fill the gaps.

But the employees in your charge aren’t the only ones who can benefit from your encouragement to develop more skills; there are benefits to be had from taking time to reflect inward and seeing where you personally can grow and become even more effective as an industry leader. This issue’s Talent Management column (P28) offers a place to start this process, with a Personal Leadership Action Plan. The column points out that property managers are experts at putting together and executing plans. So why not put that planning expertise to use on yourself? The plan gets its focus from an individual vision statement you compose and builds upon that to establish goals and strategies for personal growth.

Because, you see, inspiration can be found everywhere— even within yourself. 

Cheryl Gray, CPM IREM President
Cheryl Gray, CPM
IREM President

the Journal of Property Management staff

Cheryl Gray, CPM, is 2020 IREM president and executive vice president at QuadReal in Toronto, Ontario.

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