Archive for the ‘Affordable Storage Solutions’ Category

How Many People can Honestly Say – I Really Do Love My Job!

Friday, February 4th, 2011

 When I took on this position, I didn’t know much about the self storage business. I had attended a few storage auctions but that was pretty much my knowledge of the industry. Then a friend of mine that had an interest in a storage facility asked me if I would be willing to try managing a facility he was a partner in and as I had been laid off from my previous position, it seemed like the perfect opportunity for me. I thank the powers that be each and every day for opening this door for me. I really do love my job!

Now I know not many people can say that they love their job. And in this economy, where so many do not have a job, I know how fortunate I am. But I really enjoy what I do and the people I work with and for. Don’t get me wrong, I do have rough days. Especially when the temperature doesn’t get above 1 degree (yesterday) and I am out spreading ice melt!  You see, I wear many hats. I am not just the office manager, I am in charge of maintenance, truck rentals, the janitor, the groundskeeper, sales & marketing and that just names a few! This is one of the many reasons why I love my job, I am never stuck doing the same thing day after day. In fact, I never know what I’ll be doing when I get to work each day.

So my wish for all of you today is that you find your dream job!

Michelle

Is Great Customer Service A Lost Art?

Tuesday, August 10th, 2010

I often tell people I feel as though great customer service is a lost art in our society. Why? I have a few theories. First of all are we teaching our children to treat others as they want to be treated? Yep, that is the Golden Rule and it was drilled into me from as early as I can remember.  Wickpedia lists the following definition:

The Golden Rule or ethic of reciprocity is an ethical code, or a morality[2], that states (in four forms, see table below):

  1. One should treat others according to how one would like others to treat them (positive, passive form)
  2. Treat others as you would like to be treated (positive, active form)
  3. One should not treat others in ways one would not like to be treated (prohibitive, passive form)
  4. Do not treat others in ways you would not like to be treated (prohibitive, active form. Also called the Silver Rule).

Is this too Biblical, does it cross the lines of Church vs. State? Maybe to some. If you continue to read the Wickpedia definition, you will see that in some form the Golden Rule has a basis in all major religions from Christianity to Islam and beyond. So if you are sensitive to Church vs. State issues perhaps you don’t choose to believe that you should treat others the way you wish to be treated.

I personally am not an overly religious person but I do believe in the “human condition”. Wickpedia deifinition as follows:

The human condition encompasses the experiences of being human in a social, cultural, and personal context. The “human condition” is especially studied through the set of disciplines and sub-fields that make up the humanities. The study of history, philosophy, literature, and the arts all help understand the nature of the human condition and the broader cultural and social arrangements that make up our lives.

So therefore I continue to follow what I consider to be the very essence of being human and treat others as I want to be treated.

My second theory of the lost art of customer service is the service industry itself. In a society where sports figures, movie stars and others in the lime light receive billions we value the all mighty dollar and what we can gain by it. Typically service related jobs are low paying. Therefore if we value the dollar, how can we value a job that doesn’t pay the big bucks? Well again a lesson from my childhood comes to mind. If you can’t do a job to the best of your ability don’t do it at all. I can’t tell you how many times my Grandpa would make me redo something because I hadn’t done it right. And I knew more times than not that I hadn’t done the best I could have. Gramps would always use the ” Are you proud of this? Do you want your name on this?” Gramps would never threaten, he just had that sound in his voice. I still hear that voice, “Do I want my name on this?” So to me it doesn’t matter if I’m digging a ditch (which I have done), serving a meal (done) or greeting a customer nor does it matter if I’m getting paid minimum wage. If my name is on it, it’s gonna be the best I can do. People don’t choose our jobs. Usually what happens is we apply for the job we have, we are accepted based on ourselves and our experience, we give an honest days work for an honest days pay. Period. If you don’t like it don’t do it. But if you do do it, do you want your name on it.  I try to be the best I can be in everything I do.

My last theory of the lost art of customer service, when was the last time you threw in a little extra? No, I don’t mean fries. I’m talking about you. When was the last time you went a little extra for someone else? Did you have an opportunity? Bet you did unless you live under a rock. We all need to think more about what we can do for others not just in the service industry but in the “being human industry”. I have a favorite set of books by Og Mandino called the Greatest Saleman in the World. If you haven’t read these you should. They are a series of little books and I continue to read them a couple of times each year.  Just for a brush up.  One of my favorite quotes to follow.

  “Live this day as if it will be your last. Remember that you will only find ”tomorrow” on the calendars of fools. Forget yesterday’s defeats and ignore the problems of tomorrow. This is it. Doomsday. All you have. Make it the best day of your year. The saddest words you can ever utter are, ”If I had my life to live over again. ”Take the baton, now. Run with it! This is your day! Beginning today, treat everyone you meet, friend or foe, loved one or stranger, as if they were going to be dead at midnight. Extend to each person, no matter how trivial the contact, all the care and kindness and understanding and love that you can muster, and do it with no thought of any reward. Your life will never be the same again.”
 Og Mandino

Make a difference, treat people the way you want to be treated, go that extra mile and put your name on everything you do. Let’s make customer service a true art!

Michelle

Ahhhhhh! Summer Has Arrived!

Thursday, August 5th, 2010
There are soooo many things to love about summer! My particular favorite being it’s not too cold to golf! But really I love the River Walk in Pueblo, B Street Bashes every Friday night, camping in San Isabel, Mesa Drive In, Colorado State Fair and did I mention golf? If you are having trouble finding something to do, visit the Greater Pueblo Chamber of Commerce’s Event Calendar and get outside!
 

Pueblo Colorado is known for it’s mild winters and warm summers! For most everything and everyone, warm is good but hot is not! A couple of questions you should ask yourself when choosing self storage are:
Are you planning to store anything of value?
Do you have any items that need to be stored in a contolled environment to stay in good condition.
If you answered yes, climate controlled units are your best choice.
Climate control benefits our customers by keeping their belongings in the same condition as when they were first stored.
 
Here is a list of items you should consider storing in a climate-contolled environment:
 
Paper products such as photographs, files or important documents Electronics such as computers, laptops or radios
Home furnishings, especially antiques

Mattresses
Musical instruments such as pianos that may be sensitive to changes in environmental conditions.  

Furs 

What Should You Expect From A Self Storage Facility?

Friday, June 25th, 2010

Reasons for utilizing self storage are as varied as actual self storage facilities.  Whether you are a company looking to store files, downsizing to a smaller home, remodeling a home or just need a little extra space,  these are your possessions and you have the right to certain expectations.  A friend of mine summed it up beautifully and simply in three words – Dry, Clean and Secure. I will break these concepts down for you but my best piece of advice to anyone looking for a storage facility? Take a tour! Look at the construction. Look at the maintenance. Look at the security. You wouldn’t buy a car without a test drive would you?

Dry? Well even in our arid Southern Colorado climate this comes into play.  Flash flooding can and does happen often here. Then you have melting snow and ice in the winter time. You should look for and expect a well constructed facility with proper drainage, built in a manner that has taken this matter into consideration.  Why is this important? Wet can mean mold and you don’t want that!

Clean? As the manager of a storage facility – I see the cleanliness of my facility as a direct reflection on myself. What do you want to look for? How is the curb appeal?  The office? The restroom? The units your shown?

Secure? I’ve mentioned this in a previous blog, but due to the importance, I’ll mention this again! Do the surveillance cameras work? Is the facility well lit? Are there door alarms on the units? Know the location and ask if there have been security problems.

I’ll just throw one more little tidbit for your contemplation. Meet the staff. Know who your dealing with. I have become friends with many of our tenants and take their trust in me very seriously.  Good luck in your choices! I do hope you have found this interesting and informative.

Michelle

A Managers Tales of Self Storage Horror Stories

Friday, June 4th, 2010

I guess that in every business genre there can and are horror stories. Yesterday for an example, a gentleman called me for advice. He had a storage unit at another unnamed facility. He had paid in advance for several years, ( and believe me this can be a large chunk of change) when his prepaid balance had expired he assumed he would receive a new invoice thus reminding him that he needed to pay. He admits his fault in this situation, (but frankly if I had not paid a bill in two years, I doubt I would remember either) but he never received a new invoice. Five months later, he returned to his storage unit only to be told he was in abandonment and besides the five month he owed, he was being charged $125.00 per month that he was late! The gentleman called asking my opinion as a storage facility manager. Number one at Affordable Storage Solutions, everyone receives an invoice each and every month either by e-mail or snail mail. Now if you’ve changed your address and not forwarded you new address in writing (State Law) we may have a problem but wait! Number two: Our rents are due on the 1st of each month and payable until the 10th, around the 8th, I am calling every customer who has not paid just as a courtesy reminder! Then I call again on the 11th and if they still haven’t paid I call each week until I have a date that they will pay or they just come in and pay. I can’t fathom allowing a customer to go FIVE months with no contact! Now if the customer had moved ( he has been at the same address for 20 years), changed their telephone number (his had stayed the same for those 20 years) or flat out had truly abandoned his unit, I guess I could see. BUT allowing a unit to go 5 MONTHS in arrears???? That I don’t understand!

My second horror story also happened yesterday. This very nice young man stopped by our office to see if we perhaps had seen anyone going into the storage yard he pays for up the road a piece from us. As it was Memorial weekend and we had been closed, I had to tell him I had not seen anything. Nice young man explains he had just purchased his son his first dirt bike for his birthday and left it at the storage yard to suprise him for his birthday the next day. Went back the next morning and the fence had been cut and aforementioned dirt bike stolen! Here is the horror – said storage facility has security cameras alright, DUMMY ONES!!!!! This customer thought his possessions were safe and secure, he was wrong!

 Moral of the stories – BUYER/PAYER BE WARE & EDUCATE YOURSELF!  Take a tour of the facility you choose! Ask about the payment and invoicing policies! Ask to see how the security and surveillance systems work! Ask about the entrances and exits! How often is the staff doing facility and lock checks? And last but not least let your gut help you to choose not just your pocketbook! These are your possessions and if they didn’t matter to you, why would you pay to store them?

I’ll talk to you soon!

Michelle Dye

Let Us Be Your One Stop Moving Shop!

Wednesday, May 19th, 2010

Moving is stressful enough! Wouldn’t you like to have a professional help you through all the steps? The staff here at Affordable Storage Solution’s can assist you in just about every aspect of your move from storage rentals, moving supplies,  truck rentals (if you want to drive a truck yourself) and now with our new service, MoveX,  we can even get a moving truck & driver to your front door!

MoveX is a great service for the mover that doesn’t feel comfortable driving a big truck on their own. Or perhaps you’d like to combine a move with a little vacation! Just call 719-564-2345 and get a quote! After we confirm your move for the date you choose, a truck with driver will show up on the date of your choice all you need is the manpower to load the truck as well as unload in the city of your choice on the date you choose! You just unload in your new residence!

So you say you don’t have a big truck load? Here is the beauty of MoveX, you only pay for the space you need! We can even arrange to have you vehicle moved if you’d rather fly!

Again moving is stressful enough! Why not have the help of professionals! Let Affordable Storage Solutions be you one stop moving shop!

Affordable Storage Solutions – 90 Greenhorn Drive – Pueblo, Colorado – 719-564-2345 – www. PuebloStorageSolutions.com

How to Choose a Self Storage Facility

Monday, May 17th, 2010

When a person is considering utilizing self storage for the first time, there are many important factors that should be reviewed prior to an actual decision. What will you be storing? How long will you be storing it? Is inside storage preferable over outside storage? What about amenities? Security? Access? Convienance?

Seem a little daunting? My job as a self storage facility manager is to help navigate you through all the decisions that go into choosing a storage facility. I will ask you if you have ever used storage before, what you will be storing and the sizes of any large items you may have. It is also my job to inform you of the amenities that you would enjoy as my customer. And finally before you choose to store at my facility or any facility, I will suggest you come for a facility tour. I am proud of my facility and love to show it off!

I would rather show you a unit or two so in your mind you will have an idea as to how large or how small the unit needs to be to fit your storage needs. I will explain to you how you will benifit from our security and surveillance measures, indoor climate controlled units,  monthly pest control, carts and lift to ease you in your move-in, easy payment options and our 365 day a year accessibility.

If you are currently looking for or considering self storage, give me a call @ 719-564-2345 or look us up @ www.StorageInPueblo.com. I can and will help!

Be well!

Michelle Dye

Affordable Storage Solutions, 90 Greenhorn Drive, Pueblo Colorado

Budget Truck Rentals

Thursday, May 6th, 2010

One of the benefits here at Affordable Storage Solutions in Pueblo, Colorado is that you can also rent a Budget Truck! We have trucks available in 10′, 16′ and 24′. We can also get auto carriers and tow dollies with a little advance notice!

We do a 10 point inspection on every truck that comes into our facility. We check all of the engine fluids, tire tread and inflation as well all the electrical components. We sweep out the boxes and cabs, wipe down all the interiors and make sure the windshield wipers work properly. We take our commitment to our truck customers very seriously after all it is your life you put into our hands!

Our storage customers find it extremely convenient to be able to rent trucks and storage at the same place. And both can be done online! But call us @ 719-564-2345 to get all the facts. Number one fact that most people do not know? 99.9% of the time your full coverage vehicle insurance is not going to cover you in a moving truck! Budget offers some excellent protection products at extrememly low rates! After all you are responsible for all damages to the truck whether you cause them or not!

Call us or stop by for a quote today!

www.PuebloStorageSolutions.com

I’m Back!

Wednesday, May 5th, 2010

Hello out there! had a little trouble logging in but our wonderful IT folks @ Ram Designs have me back on and ready to blog! If you are looking for a great group of people to do your webhosting look no further than Ram Designs out of beautiful Craig, CO. Send me an email and I can hook you up too!
It has been a very fun and eventful week here at Affordable Storage Solutions! My new assistant Jerry is getting a first hand looksee at the fun and often times crazy world of self storage. Believe it or not, there is a lot of information to digest! And as we are also an authorized Budget Truck Dealership, that makes two unique businesses to learn! Jerry is doing a great job! Even though I tend to be a slave driver .
Well it is nearly quitting time here in Pueblo Colorado, so now that I have the blog up and running again, I will get back with you tomorrow!
In the meantime remember, Life is not about the miles in a trip but the trip in the miles!
Take care!
Michelle Dye

What Are The Benefits Of Climate Controlled Self Storage?

Thursday, April 29th, 2010

Colorado’s weather is as ever changing as any other state in this fair nation. Just this past week for instance, we have seen hail, snow, 80 degrees and now winds gusting up to 70mph! Climate controlled self storage is just that – climate controlled. For example, my facility is indoors and the temperatures never go below 65 degrees and never raises above 75 degrees. To explore this a little further using my weather examples above. In the instance of hail – The climate controlled units are indoors, one will never suffer hail damage in this rock solid concrete facility. Another – from snow to 80 degrees in a 24 hour period! We maintain constant temperatures so one will never see their photos, electronics or antiques put to the “Temperature Stress Test” here! And the last, the famous or as I call them infamous Colorado Front Range winds! An outdoor storage facility will be soon covered in dust and that is not to say it is a bad facility. It is never my intent to slam another company, but it is a fact. Our climate controlled units are indoors, therefore eliminating the dust factor!
And finally my last tip in choosing a self storage facility, YOU MUST TAKE A FACILITY TOUR! Please don’t take the capitalization as rude or obnoxious, just stating the honest truth. You are trusting this facility to care for your prized possessions! Stop by unannounced and see for yourself how the facility is managed, is it clean, are the staff friendly? You may be dealing with this facility for a long time and you need to make sure it will be a good fit for you. Afterall, we all have enough to worry about, don’t add security for your items to that list!
Please do not hesitate to conatct me if you have any questions and or comments! And in the meantime, stop by Affordable Storage Solutions, 90 Greenhorn Drive, Pueblo, CO 81004 – www.StorageInPueblo.com