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Strata Manager of the Month

Tuesday, 24th July 2012

David Ferguson was destined for the 'strata-sphere'. His family were early pioneers of the fledgling industry, and David was fascinated about the profession from an early age.

Today David is Managing Director of Strata Plus - a Sydney-based management company he established 12 years ago which now has a team of around 30. David is also the NSW President of Strata Community Australia, and a Director of the national body.

David is at the forefront of introducing an accreditation program for strata managers, similar in gravitas to that governing the accounting profession. It's all designed to lift standards in strata management and help lot owners sort out the true professionals from the less qualified.

Strata Plus' success is based on a personal approach and a philosophy called CARE, which stands for:
Commitment and proactive involvement with clients
Attention to detail
Rapid response to clients, and
Expert and experienced team

"If we can identify potential problems before they develop then we have a good chance of being able to nip them in the bud," said David, who has a background in finance, accounting and workplace training. "That's why we try to be pro-active rather than re-active, and relationship-based managers rather than issue-based."

Strata Plus tailors solutions for strata schemes, building management committees and community schemes across all property sectors. Its portfolio includes residential developments of all sizes, office towers, retail complexes, industrial estates, retirement communities, strata hotels and golf estates.

Few people realise the scale of the strata industry, the pace it is growing and the importance it is assuming in daily life. In NSW alone, 1,200,00 people live in a strata scheme. By 2032, those living in strata will outnumber those who don't.

"With more people living closer, the potential for conflict will naturally increase," said David. "You have people from different cultures, backgrounds and beliefs being forced to interact and compromise for the collective good of all. Normally their worlds don't collide, but when you are a member of an Owners Corporation it is a melting pot of opinions and personalities."

Having professional managers to help people live in harmony is essential.

"This is why strata managers need a range of talents," said David. "We need to have mediation skills, be across all technologies, understand budgets, maintenance issues, environmental legislation, and be good communicators. Underpinning all this is continually seeking ways to run strata schemes more efficiently and reduce operating costs for Owners Corporations."

David's passion for strata was kindled early in life by discussions around the dinner table with his mother. "I was only about nine," David recalls. "Imagine, when other kids were thinking about games and hobbies I was more fascinated by the stories of issues faced by Executive Committees."

Not surprisingly it didn't take David long to plunge into the 'strata-sphere', initially working for large company where he looked after around 100 strata schemes. "Having this large number of clients certainly honed my time-management skills," David said, "but it wasn't ideal."

The industry average is 68 schemes per manager, but David is committed to much greater personal service, so Strata Plus ensures each manager looks after no more than 30 buildings.

"Our clients and their needs are out focus, and we tailor-make our services to best fit each Body Corporate."

David's wife Olivera is equally passionate about strata. A licensed strata manager and CPA, Olivera is the Executive Director of Strata Plus and is instrumental in developing its strong team culture, operational procedures, HR management and training.

The Fergusons are one couple who shouldn't have any trouble settling matters amicably around the dining table!


To contact Olivera or David:
Strata Plus Pty Ltd
Level 2, 80 Cooper Street
Surry Hills, NSW 2010
Ph: (02) 9319 1899. Fax: (02) 9319 1866
[email protected]

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Comment from Glassman on Thursday, 16th March 2017

I am glad to know about Mr. David, a managing director and achieve great success in young age. I read his biography in popular aussie essay website. I wish to know his secret of success. Can you be a mentor for the upcoming youth.

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