STENA PROPERTY CELEBRATES
RELATIONSHIP MANAGEMENT MARKS 20-YEAR ANNIVERSARY
This year, Stena Fastigheter is celebrating having worked with relationship management for two decades. “We introduced a whole new way of thinking,” says Helen Welander Möller, Stena Fastigheter’s first relationship manager. “We went from just taking care of the physical buildings to taking on social responsibility by working with relationships with our tenants and others in our residential areas.”
The year was 2000 – a historical year – the world had entered an entirely new millennium., Helen Welander Möller was hired the same year to, somewhat simplified, talk to tenants, listen and take in their thoughts and ideas. A few years before, Stena Fastigheter had bought 600 flats in the residential neighbourhood of Lindängen in southern Malmö. Many of the flats had been vacant, and Stena Fastigheter carried out extensive repairs and the courtyards were refurbished. At the time, the neighbourhood had major problems with vandalism.
“I walked around and knocked on the doors of our tenants. I contacted clubs and talked to the municipality. We wanted to stop littering and vandalism, and we wanted people to be happy there and stay in our flats,” says Helen Welander Möller.
Helen describes how she was often met with raised eyebrows when she talked about her work. Why would a private property management company work with relationships? Wasn’t it enough to make sure the buildings were in good condition and let the flats? History gives us the answer. The initiatives, activities and collaborative programs that were initiated at that time contributed, among other things, to vandalism becoming rare in the neighbourhood.
RELATIONSFÖRVALTNING © – COPYRIGHT PROTECTED
Helen Welander Moller’s efforts were supported through the whole organisation. Extra money was allocated to strenghten relationships with tenants, and to further develop residential environments. At first, the work was considered a social project, but it was not long before the term relationship management was coined. In 2007, the company copyrighted the Swedish term for relationship management (relationsförvaltningen), and activities in relationship management were created and thrived.
“Relationship management for me is about having big ears, to listen and find out what’s happening in a neighbourhood and what needs to be done,” says Helen Welander Möller. “During our first years at Lindängen, many tenants were dissatisfied with the laundry facilities. When we gathered in a laundry room we asked if they wanted new washing machines, but it wasn’t about that. They wanted a nice place to do their laundry. We gave the walls a new colour, wallpapered and created a place where tenants could sit and enjoy a cup of coffee while washing.”
RELATIONSHIP MANAGEMENT CONTRIBUTES TO SOMETHING BIGGER
So it was in a residential neighbourhood in Malmö where the seeds for relationship management were sown. Helen became the company’s first employee to carry the title of relationship manager, and over the years she was joined by several colleagues with the same title in Gothenburg and Stockholm. Today, relationship management permeates the entire company and is in the minds of all employees. Relationship management is evident in everything from the planning of new residences to collaboration with tenants and the local community. Relationship management has become the company’s standard way of working, which contributes to housing areas where people feel safe and comfortable, and where they also have an opportunity for personal development and activation.
Helen, who is now retired, worked for 16 years at Stena Fastigheter in Malmö. Together with her colleagues throughout the company, she has contributed to hundreds of collaborative activities that have improved residential areas. Examples of these activities include a swimming school for children, homework help and that young people living in Stena Fastigheter flats being hired for summer jobs in the neighbourhood.
“It really feels good to have made this journey. When people ask me what I did before retiring, I say: Just having fun at work. It’s with pride that I can say that I’ve been a relationship manager at Stena Fastigheter.”
Every year, Stena Fastigheter hires 300 young people
during the summer.
“We went from taking care of the physical living environment to taking social responsibility.”
Helen Welander Möller, former relationship manager for Stena Fastigheter, back at Lindängen in Malmö where it all begun.
Relationship management and urban development. Stena Fastigheter takes over and develops school in Stockholm.
Stena Fastigheter contributes to homework help.
THIS IS RELATIONSHIP MANAGEMENT
- Relationship management is Stena Fastigheter’s approach that creates neighbourhoods where people feel comfortable and secure. In practice, relationship management means that the company promotes things that are good for the neighbourhood, the area and the people who live or work there. The foundation of relationship management is dialogue. Listening and incorporating ideas from others, and thus contributing to a socially sustainable environment.
- In 2007, the Swedish term for relationship management was copyrighted.
- More than 100 million Swedish crowns have been invested in various collaborative programs and projects for schools, work, leisure and security. This is in addition to the activities targeting security and well-being that are a part of everyday work at Stena Property.
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