ARMA unsung hero award for Community Engagement Manager

Unsung Hero

Excelling as Estate Manager at Stanmore Place, Marc Gomes was recently recognised by the Association of Residential Managing Agents (ARMA), with a well-deserved Highly Commended mention in the Unsung Hero award category, during the ARMA Annual Conference. Here, Marc explains what it means to him to be recognised and why he is a big believer in community and team work.

It was a privilege to even be nominated for the Unsung Hero Awards, but to be highly commended was totally unexpected. It was my first time at the ARMA conference and I was sat right in the middle of the conference centre, so it took ages to reach the stage!

Whilst the award was given to me, it’s very much a team effort at Stanmore Place. All of us in the team - myself, the four concierges and the operations and cleaning staff - will go that extra mile to personalise our service and make our residents really feel at home. We treat the residents how we would like to be treated, from supporting the development’s community spirit to taking in deliveries while they are at work; it really is about going the extra mile.

As more residents have moved into Stanmore Place, I noticed that an increasing number of them were young families. To enable these families to meet and get to know one another, I set up a Parents Club and we’ve organised and held a number of events. These have ranged from meetings, summer picnics and Christmas art sessions. In fact, our Parents Club summer picnic was almost spoiled by bad weather, but with some quick thinking and artful decorating work by the team, the picnic took place in the warm and dry management suite!

I’m keen to bring the community together for good purposes and several charity ideas have been really well received by residents. For example, moving house is always a good time for a clear out and I noticed that residents were throwing away many items that could be recycled or used again. This was putting pressure on the estate team, with lack of suitable short-term storage as well as creating a negative impact on the overall appearance.

I wanted to find a way to reuse or recycle the discarded furniture and clothes, so I set up a recycling scheme for Stanmore Place. By using our regular newsletter and R&R online, we were able to let the residents know about the scheme. Items are now either recycled through other residents on the development, or donated to a local charity.

Our portal, R&R online is a great tool to stir up some community spirit. It’s a space just for residents, so they can share any concerns and feedback and where we can let them know about deliveries and any upcoming work or events. We upload our regular newsletters to the portal and I know the residents read them, because they speak to me about it!

As with any new community, it’s initially trial and error to see what suits the development, but now I’m confident that Rendall & Rittner’s management team at Stanmore Place are giving the residents the service they want.


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