Extra Space Storage receiving recognition among Forbes’ Best Midsize Employers and Glassdoor’s Best Places to Work didn’t just come about because of the innovative work we do in the self storage industry. It’s because of the incredible people we have working within our organization. As our CEO Joe Margolis has said many times before, our people are our lifeblood. It’s this belief that our company leadership strives to embrace day in and day out when managing their teams.
Being a manager doesn’t always come naturally. It’s often a skill learned over time, as management styles have to be continuously adjusted to fit the workplace and employee needs. Here to share some of the important management lessons and skills they’ve learned and honed over the years are Extra Space Storage’s own Noah Springer, Samrat Sondhi, and Bron McCall.
Find the Right People & Help Them Succeed
Noah Springer, Executive Vice President of Assets and Third-Party Management, believes it’s the job of leaders to become good supporters. That doesn’t mean letting teams run on autopilot, but rather making small course corrections while allowing others within the team to lead efforts.
“The best lesson I’ve learned as a leader is to find the right people, get them the tools they need to best perform their job, do whatever you can to remove roadblocks for them, and then get out of their way,” he explained.
Springer also says it’s crucial for managers to create a work environment where everyone has a voice and feels free to share ideas and opinions. Even if an idea isn’t implemented, simply being heard is important for employees, as it shows them that they’re respected and valued as a member of the team.
“I have seen the best leaders in our company ask for many opinions, stimulate discussion, and encourage the sharing of ideas,” he added. “They truly believe that none of us are as smart as all of us.”
Lead with Radical Candor & Create Paths for Employees
Samrat Sondhi, COO and Executive Vice President, likes to foster an environment for his team that’s rooted in openness. He believes this enables and encourages the ability of his people to speak up. He also encourages risk-taking and, when things don’t go as planned, he uses it as a learning opportunity.
“Talk and walk with radical candor,” Sondhi said. “I found that if my people agree with everything I say, there’s something wrong somewhere.”
Sondhi is a firm believer that you should have a good understanding of where your people want to go in their careers, and that it’s your responsibility to help them get there. To do this, he says you must first understand their goals and aspirations. That’s why his management style is to coach his team and create paths that help them achieve their goals.
“Be curious about what drives your employees, what motivates them, and what holds them back,” he added, saying that he’s constantly asking questions of his team and listening to their input.
Give Honest Feedback & Develop Trusting Relationships
Bron McCall, Senior Vice President of Information Technology, believes that people want honest and genuine feedback. Though it can be difficult to deliver feedback to an employee, he says that it can be a rewarding experience for everyone involved if you’ve developed a trusting relationship and give feedback with the intent of helping the recipient.
McCall’s strategy for approaching feedback and relationship building with his employees involves adapting direction based on the team member’s needs and strengths.
“Everyone is different and requires different management styles,” he explained. “Don’t assume what has worked well for one person will necessarily work well for others.”
Another lesson McCall incorporates into his management style is to always be open with his team. “Be as open and as transparent as you can with your team, even if sometimes that means saying you do not know.” He says that he’s always appreciated honesty and transparency from the leaders that he’s had in his life and believes it’s the key to building trust.
Interested in a career with Extra Space Storage? Learn more about our employment opportunities.