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AMPressions

AMP Interviews with the biggest movers and shakers in the Apartment Management Industry

This AMPression is brought to you by:

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Michael Patton

Founder & CEO

Fetch

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If ever there was an advertisement that said: Wanted. An ambitious, risk-taker that is people-centric, willing to roll up their sleeves and solve one of the largest pain points in the multifamily industry with no guarantee that it will work, it would have Michael’s face right there in the ad! It will come as no surprise that some of his answers reflect his Nashville roots. With the success that Fetch is having in our industry, I have no doubt that we’ll be seeing this package delivery service in every apartment community across the country!

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?

I feel my perseverance and drive sets me apart. Starting a company is hard, but I would argue starting a company selling to the multifamily industry with no prior knowledge of the industry is really hard! It took a lot of learning and keeping my head down to get Fetch off the ground in the first place, then even more perseverance to ride out the lows to get to where we are today. Our entire team delivered packages every day as we were bootstrapped and proving out the model for over a year. It wasn’t easy! As I’ve come to know and appreciate the industry, I think I was meant for multifamily because, ultimately, I enjoy helping others and this industry is all about people taking care of people.

How and when did you get your start in the industry?

I started Fetch in 2016 with no prior experience in multifamily, so to say it was a trial by fire is an understatement! I moved into an Uptown Dallas apartment building and saw how much of a problem it was for the community to deal with packages, so I came up with the Fetch model to solve this problem, completely and permanently. I quit my corporate finance job, mostly cold turkey, and went to work on building Fetch!

What is one song that always puts you in a good mood?

I go through phases for music, but true to my Nashville roots, I have to say "Free and Easy" by Dierks Bentley. A great song to force yourself to take a deep breath and decompress.

 

What are 3 tips you would give someone considering a career in multifamily?

1) This industry is people-centric, arguably more so than most industries. Keep improving your people skills and build your network.
2) Put in the work! It will take time to move up within the industry and you have to prove your worth and take nothing for granted.
3) Enjoy the ride. Some advice that I frequently need to give myself, but it’s easy to get caught up in the ups and downs of various cycles or events (COVID) that are out of our control, but if we trust the process and enjoy the ride, appreciating the people we meet along the way, it will be that much more rewarding.

 

What is your proudest moment in multifamily?

We’ve had some great accomplishments along the way, but very early in 2017 we broke in with Greystar in Dallas to get our first shot with them. I will always appreciate the risks they took on us, and at that time it felt like we had made it! We still obviously had a long way to go, but it was substantial proof that we were on to something...  

 

Who is your mentor and why?

I’ll give a shout-out to Mike and John from Modern Message. They were nice enough to meet with me as I was starting Fetch in Dallas to share their experience. They’ve obviously had a ton of success and pointed me in the right direction to crack into this industry.

 

What book has left the biggest impression on your life?

The Hard Thing About Hard Things by Ben Horowitz. It dives into the struggles of building a startup and, in a lot of ways, has been a “Bible” of sorts for me as we encounter tough times in scaling Fetch. It’s not as much about tactical advice as it is about controlling your emotions and managing the roller coaster of early-stage businesses.

 

If you ever owned an apartment community, where would it be and what would you name it?

It would be called “The Boxwood” because that’s the street I grew up on and it would be in Nashville, my hometown.

 

What is your most memorable vacation?

I took a month off in between jobs after college and a group of us traveled around Southeast Asia. We backpacked around Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Indonesia, and a few other countries. I wouldn’t necessarily suggest some of our decisions were smart from a risk perspective, but it was an unforgettable trip.

 

If our country went to 4-day work weeks, how would you spend your 5th day?

If I’m being honest, my boring answer would be catching up on work that I can’t get done in a 32-hour work week :). But a more fun answer would be spending time outside, likely on the golf course.