By the title of this blog you may think this week’s topic is tips on improving communication or relating some new article I have read recently on communication tips. Oh no, this is more interesting than that!
This week’s topic is all about how communication happens at Stillwaters Estates. Believe it or not, when you have 300+ residents there is a need to set up communication systems for the everyday happenings and events, as well as urgent messages. I thought I would round up all the different types of communication methods used (besides this blog) and give you the summary:
EMAIL: Our email list for residents is around 175 strong and this is the most common method of communication with residents. Sherri Garland at our front office regularly sends emails about events, important things to know and things happening at The Gathering Place.
PHONE: Not only is the phone important for calling each other but it is key to our security company calling your residence in the event an alarm goes off. Whether it is for a medical alarm or a fire alarm the company (Custom Security) will always try to call you first before notifying the Fire Department.
TEXT: We use texting in the office to reach each other when we are out and about and to reach Ilya, our maintenance crew supervisor. Sometimes those maintenance requests are emergencies so we try our best to get help there fast.
MONTHLY NEWSLETTER: Each month each resident receives a copy of our newsletter about happenings in Stillwaters. This is a great way that we communicate on a variety of topics, share birthdays and anniversaries and generally let people know what is going on in the neighborhood. Each newsletter also contains the monthly calendar of events.
BULLETIN BOARD: This is located in The Gathering Place and is generally a place where events and items for sale are posted. Check this out the next time you are in The Gathering Place – always interesting items peruse.
FLAGS: Yes, we do have a flag system to notify residents when the mail has been delivered. There is a flag placed at each mail station that is raised by faithful volunteers each day of mail delivery. I for one appreciate this little extra touch to know the mail is here.
POSTED NOTICES: Office staff create and post notices each week (or even each day) about calendar events in The Gathering Place, special activities and notices of remembrance. These notices are posted on the doors of The Gathering Place and at each mail station.
WHITE RIBBONS: Every once in a while residents find they don’t want a particular tree or bush trimmed or shaped and it is sometimes challenging to find a good way to communicate this to the grounds crew. We now have white plastic ribbon in the office to tie to the tree or bush to designate “Please do not trim”. The needed ribbons are handed out to residents upon request.
EMERGENCY NOTIFICATIONS: Besides sending an email to everyone in the case of an emergency we have a neighborhood notification system in place through our “Map Your Neighborhood” program. The neighborhood is divided into 12 areas, with each area having a volunteer lead. In the case of an emergency these leads will be in communication with management and we have a process in place to notify residents within each area as necessary.
FACE TO FACE: Last but not least is the communication that happens in the office. Our office hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday. This is an important way for us to hear from residents, take in requests for services and to hear about issues or concerns. This is an important way to connect with everyone and look forward to your next visit!
Well, there you have it. My list of ways we communicate. Let me know if I have missed anything.
Key to keeping good connections is for us to have your current phone number (home or cell) and email. Thanks for keeping us in mind when you make those challenging technology changes!
QUOTE OF THE WEEK:
Brevity is the soul of wit. – William Shakespeare
Enjoy the week ahead. Good weather and sunshine are the gifts we will enjoy this next week!