Tuesday, September 29, 2009

The New Joint Venture: Your Customers

Question to Homebuilders and Developers:

What thoughts come to mind when you think of a Homeowner's Assocation meeting? Do you think of axiety, anger, tomatoes, frustration, friction and burning torches? Probably. I've had those thoughts, too.

Last Thursday, I entered such a meeting.

But this one had the makings of being worse. I was about to inform the homeowners that the construction of the clubhouse and pool would be delayed indefinitely. Not permanently, mind you, but for the foreseable future. Financing of the clubhouse and pool had recently by de-funded by my construction lender leaving me with no choice but to postpone the December 2009 opening.

Not surprising, tensions rose; emotions erupted. Profanity ensued.

After a period of civil discussion (missing from our culture in every day America) something amazing happened. I mean AMAZING. A handful of homeowners offered to loan the money to pay for the clubhouse. Unbelievable.

Details haven't been worked out and I'm sure there will be a few. One thing is for sure: My business has a new Joint Venture. I couldn't be happier.

In these (economic) times, can you think of anyone you'd rather partner with than your customers?


  1. Followed through from Mike Lyon: Nice! RT @brockfankhauser;

    Real people with a real problem, and a really good solution.

  2. That's a pretty amazing outcome to an otherwise horrible event. Customers can definitely make great partners.