AMP Interviews with the biggest movers and shakers in the Apartment Management Industry
If you look up the definition of over-achiever and go-getter, you will find a picture of Jennifer Staciokas! She has an impressive list of accomplishments – one of which is building Western Wealth Communities, a new property management company, from scratch in less than 30 days. I hope that when I get to meet this great multifamily icon in person, it’s at a David Gray concert with a glass of red wine in hand.
I love dissecting words and looking for greater meaning like the word Apartment. What sets you “Apart” and why are you “Meant” for the multifamily industry?
My passion for what I do certainly sets me apart…I live and breathe this business and am always looking for new, different, and better ways to improve personally and professionally. “Good enough” is just not good enough for me. I feel I was meant for this industry because I am a total people person. I absolutely love working with fellow employees, owners/clients/investors, supplier partners, and residents to get the best out of each other and the situations we are facing. I see relationships as opportunities to grow, challenge myself and those in my sphere of influence.
How and when did you get your start in the industry?
I started in this amazing industry in 1999 as a Leasing Professional outside of Washington, DC. I was just starting graduate school and saw a flyer in my apartment community elevator looking for an enthusiastic individual to join the leasing team with the added bonus of receiving a rent discount. I stopped in the office and was hired on the spot. I finished my graduate degree in International Business, but property management was already in my blood and I haven’t looked back since.
What is one song that always puts you in a good mood?
Babylon by David Gray reminds me of when my husband and I first starting dating and always brings a smile to my face.
What are 3 tips you would give someone considering a career in multifamily?
1. Be flexible – you never know what a day in multifamily will bring
2. Be kind – to employees, residents, supplier partners, and owners/investors… it truly makes your day that much better if you lead with kindness
3. Be open to anything – this industry provides so many career paths and employees should be open to pursuing all avenues of interest (operations, marketing, training, maintenance, HR, etc.)
What is your proudest moment in multifamily?
The proudest moment in my career has been building a new property management company, Western Wealth Communities, from scratch in less than 30 days. We are getting ready to celebrate our 1-year anniversary next month and I couldn’t be prouder of the team we have assembled, the culture we are influencing and the lives we are changing. I never take for granted the sacrifice our teams have made to ensure we set-up the fundamentals of our business and continue to innovate to differentiate ourselves from the competition. I love telling our existing team that they are the OG’s and the reason for our success!
Who is your mentor and why?
My parents are absolutely my mentors. My work ethic comes from watching their tireless dedication to all that they do – personally and professionally. They instilled kindness in me from an early age, and that is my guiding leadership principle. Leading with kindness is my game changer. I get so much more out of people this way. They also lead by example and always continue to give back to their community and to those in need. Giving back is a fundamental part of my core values and I am grateful to have worked for 3 great organizations that supported giving back to the communities where we work and live. And finally, they taught us how to laugh and enjoy the moment. Some of my favorite moments are when my Mom and I snort because we are laughing so hard or when we (Dad included) can’t stop laughing because we are laughing at each other’s laughter.
What book has left the biggest impression on your life?
The Daily Stoic – I read it every day, every year. It keeps me grounded and is a constant reminder of what is truly important in life.
If you ever owned an apartment community, where would it be and what would you name it?
It would be called “Ma Petite Lune” and it would be in Paris. I was a French major in undergrad and lived in France during my junior year. I absolutely adore everything French and “my little moon” was my beloved dog, Lily, who lived a nearly 17-year amazing life by my side.
What is your most memorable vacation?
I have wanderlust and have so many amazing travel memories, but the one that stands out the most was a 10-day trip I took all over France with my parents while I was living in Montpellier. It was great to show them the country and language I absolutely love and see the wonder in their eyes experiencing and seeing it for the first time. We had so many laughs, enjoyed the ridiculously exquisite food, and made memories I will never forget.
If our country went to 4-day work weeks, how would you spend your 5th day?
By being fully present to my life outside of work – doing yoga, hiking, cooking, and enjoying a delicious bottle of wine with my husband!
Exec. Managing Director,
WESTERN WEALTH COMMUNITIES