Christine Burnett was a business software trainer at Pinnacle, an American Management Services company, when she was asked to be part of a 20-person team tasked with creating a comprehensive, corporate-wide training program. The group spent two months talking, planning, debating, and developing the program implemented this fall. Burnett's reward? A promotion to national training director for Pinnacle, where she trains employees on housing diversity, business software, customer service, company policies, and nearly everything in between. Burnett has an associate degree from Highline Community College in Seattle. Q: What appealed to you about this job?
A: I had the opportunity to create a training department from scratch. We have 4,000 employees and [had] no training dept—do you think we needed one?
Q: What do you see as a significant challenge for the multifamily industry in the coming year?
A: Keeping up with technology. Our customers are doing more and more online, and we have to keep up with them training-wise and technology-wise.
Q: What are the big opportunities for multifamily firms?
A: Leveraging the technology that's available now. It's good and bad, you know?
Q: What was your first job in the multifamily industry?
A: I was a leasing consultant. Obviously, I loved it. I really did. I had a wonderful boss who really mentored and trained me and showed me different avenues within the company, so I had a very positive experience.
Q: What do you enjoy about working in the multifamily industry? What would you change if you could?
A: Every day is different. I wouldn't change a thing I think that's what makes it fun and exciting.
Q: What's the best advice anyone ever gave you about your career?
A: "The one thing that I can promise you is that everything will change." That was the best advice, and they were right.
Q: How would you describe the multifamily industry in terms of career opportunities?
A: I think it's limitless. Depending on what you want to do, you can find your niche and make it [in this industry]. People stay in this industry forever.