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Moving through experience

Q&A with Brooksby sales expert

Created date

May 21st, 2013

Jane Kiegel recently celebrated 13 years with Erickson Living as sales counselor at the company s Peabody, Mass., community. She explains what she has learned through the years and how, as a newlywed preparing for her own move, she has newfound appreciation for the moving process. Q: What is your role at Brooksby, and how long have you been in that role? A: I am the sales counselor at Brooksby. I transitioned back to Brooksby from Tallgrass Creek, Erickson Living s sister campus located in Overland Park, Kans., in June of 2009. Q: Can you describe your role within the sales office at Brooksby? At what point do you meet people considering a move to the community? A: My role has two key areas. First, I assist in research and evaluation as customers determine if Brooksby might be the right fit. I typically meet folks as they begin their investigation, right up to their desired move date. Second, I manage the inventory of apartment homes available on our campus, along with our priority list. Q: What is the priority list and what are the benefits of joining? A: The priority list is both a waiting list for those who feel they are ready to move, and also a planning tool for those who want to move in the future. The priority list requires a $1,000 refundable deposit, along with a $150 non-refundable processing fee. Members are given a date when they join, which acts as their place in line. When a member of the priority list is within 6 to 12 months of their desired move date, I will begin to update them on availability. The earlier their date, the better the options. I offer apartment homes in order, and there are no penalties for turning down an available apartment. We also have targeted gatherings and seminars for priority list members focused on downsizing, meeting resident ambassadors, and even experiencing an overnight stay. Perhaps best of all, members get full access to Laurie Phillips, our personal moving consultant, whose services are complimentary to people moving to Brooksby. Laurie can visit prospective residents in their homes to help create a personalized plan that will achieve their moving goals. She offers help with downsizing, staging, selecting a real estate agent, and floor plan measurements, all free of charge! Q: Can you think of an example when joining the priority list helped someone reach their goal of moving to Brooksby? A: I can think of thousands! An example that comes to mind is of a woman who I originally met back in late 2009. With much encouragement from her family, she reluctantly joined the priority list following an appointment at Brooksby. She was very uncertain about leaving her house in southern New Hampshire. A little over two years later, after many visits to explore the campus, she had a very different take on the community, her own life, and her future plans. She became excited to make a change and anxious to get a home with outdoor access for her small dog which could mean a long waiting time for the right apartment. Given her status on the priority list, thanks to her early joining date, we were able to find a wonderful corner apartment home with outdoor space almost immediately. Having that jump on the list gave her access to Laurie s services to help prepare her property for sale. I was able to hold her reservation while she listed her property for sale and provide early access to her new home all thanks to her priority list planning. Q: You ve been in the Erickson family for more than a decade. What have you learned? A: I was hired in May of 2000, and celebrated 13 years of service last month. I have experienced three of our communities over the years and have quite literally grown up with Erickson Living. As my experiences and level of responsibility have increased, I have come to appreciate the fact that I will never stop learning. With diverse customers, the ever-changing economic climate, and an often unpredictable housing market, our company and lifestyle offerings need to continually adapt and grow. I truly think we continue to get better through this evolution. On a more personal note, in sharing time with some of the most amazing residents, I have learned that life should include laughter and positive energy. I was raised in a household with a lot of humor, so this part is natural for me. Staying positive, on the other hand, can be a challenge at times. I admire those who stay incredibly upbeat, whatever life brings their way. The happiest residents I have come to know focus on the positive and do so while laughing even if it happens to be at themselves. Q: You recently got married. Has marriage changed your perspective on your job? A: My husband and I are in the process of buying a house and timing this purchase with the sale of our current residence. We are working on preparing property for sale, staging, and real estate agent selection while managing the stress related to timing our next purchase. I have a new appreciation for how challenging change can be. How lucky the priority list members are with their own complimentary personal moving consultant!