It was not quite 10 a.m. on a Saturday, and Chase Hensley was at the office preparing for an appointment with a family of four.
But just before the family arrived, two other parties showed up and asked for an unscheduled tour. Realizing he was the only employee in the building, Chase smiled and suggested that the 10 of them tour the community together. Agreeing, they all squeezed into the elevator and shuffled through each apartment home, laughing at their unconventional tour. By the end of the day, all three parties had signed a lease.
Chase knew how to react to unexpected developments. He was enrolled in the RPM Career Launcher program, which combines paid training and onsite experience for newcomers to the residential property management industry.
And the program paid off: Now, he’s six months into his role as a primary leasing consultant for two communities with HRI Properties.
A Baylor University alumnus with a degree in English, Chase was teaching high school when RPM piqued his interest.
“I quickly realized I needed to gain a better understanding of the industry I wanted to enter,” Chase says. “I decided to apply for the RPM Career Launcher program, knowing it would provide me with critical training.”
The 10-week program includes Fair Housing and Leasing 101 training sessions, onsite experiences and biweekly reviews, so prospective employers can track the professional growth of each participant.
“I found the trainings to be very user-friendly,” Chase says. “I learned fair housing laws, leasing strategies and what people look for in a home. By the end, I felt prepared to work full time in the industry.”
HRI Properties is one of the companies that has partnered with the RPM Career Launcher program to recruit talented prospects such as Chase who may not have RPM industry experience and might otherwise be overlooked when applying for positions.
Candidates who apply on the RPM Careers website are screened, interviewed, trained and assigned as temporary workers to a nearby partner company that aligns with their interests. Once the program and online training are complete, the employees are often ready for full-time roles at the company.
Whether candidates have a background in RPM or a related field, the RPM Career Launcher program equips them with the knowledge and experience they need to start a new career in the industry.
“The training helps you figure out how your personality fits into this industry,” Chase says. “Your best work results from being your best self at work.”
While the RPM Career Launcher is currently a small pilot program, its initial success has demonstrated the RPM industry’s willingness to take a hands-on approach to cultivating new talent.
If the pilot is successful, NAAEI will reach out to interested NAA members to encourage them to participate in the program.