Next Gen | Rising Stars Series

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Stephanie Burns

Property Manager, NTS Development

Years in the Industry

18

Volunteer Positions Currently & Previously Held

Active Past Chairman of GNAA; Tennessee Apartment Association Board Member; Communications Committee Chair; NextGen Committee Chair; NAA Apartmentalize Committee Member

What brought you to the apartment industry?

When I was an undergrad at the University of Memphis I got offered a great part-time gig as a leasing associate – free apartment and utilities! Been in the industry ever since!

Was this career path something that was always on your radar?

No. My undergraduate degree is in journalism/ public relations. When I graduated I wanted to be like Samantha from “Sex & the City” and plan amazing events and write press releases. But once I got my start in multifamily, I didn’t look back! It’s been a very rewarding experience for me.

Did you have any unrelated jobs growing up that unexpectedly prepared you for the apartment industry?

For sure. Being a server in a brewery helped me cultivate some customer service and problem-solving skills. And patience. You need lots of patience in this industry.

Why is property management an attractive career path?

Where else can you wear so many hats? Writer, accountant, inspector, sales leader, event planner, teacher, people manager, marketer, social media strategist...the list goes on!

Best professional advice you’ve ever been given?

This is a tough one. I’ve been given a lot of amazing advice over the years. Here is the one that first comes to mind: Surround yourself with good people; they can make the difference between success and failure. Be humble and realize your own limitations and know you can’t do everything by yourself because you don’t have all the answers or the expertise. Hire people who are smarter than you.

What is your favorite thing to do on the weekends?

Spending time with my family. If I am not busy keeping up with my kids, I love antique shopping.

Do you have any pets?

A two-year-old Irish-Doodle named Duke.

Coolest place you’ve ever traveled?

Amsterdam, Netherlands or Rome, Italy. Hard to pick.

Give us a fun fact about you!

I have a fear of elevators (long story)!

What upcoming GNAA event are you excited to attend and why?

The Awards Gala because I love planning it and seeing it come to life. And it’s fun to get dressed up and go out on the town.

Do you have a motto you live by?

If you work really hard and you’re kind, amazing things will happen!

If you could get a “do-over” for something in your career, what would it be and why?

No regrets here!

Any advice you could give to the rising stars of GNAA?

I can’t emphasize enough that the GNAA is your tool to get you where you want to be and make a statement about your commitment to the multifamily industry. Join a committee and get involved. All it takes is one event, one handshake, to change the trajectory of your career.