Young Upstarts

All about entrepreneurship, intrapreneurship, ideas, innovation, and small business.

[INTERVIEW] Dave Nevins, COO Of InterRent REIT, Former Vice President Of CLV Group

Dave Nevins, Chief Operating Officer of InterRent Real Estate Investment Trust, knows property management. He has served in almost every position in the real estate business in his decades-long career. While still enrolled at the University of Ottawa, Dave worked as a rental agent, working his way up through the ranks to where he is today. Dave Nevins also previously served as the Vice President of Operations for Canada’s CLV Group.

From your experience, what do you think makes a successful business leader? What qualities would you highlight?

Dave Nevins: I think as a leader, you have to set the tone. If you seem overwhelmed by a situation, that stress will trickle down. Keeping a level head when tackling problems helps boost morale and ensures everyone stays in the right state of mind for finding solutions.

Being able to learn from your mistakes is another significant part of being a successful leader. No one is perfect, but recognizing when you’ve made an error and changing your behavior so it doesn’t happen again sets an example for the rest of your team.

What does a typical day look like in your role?

Dave Nevins: As COO, I have the responsibility of managing a number of teams. I love being able to help others succeed in this industry because I was once in their shoes. Landscaping, energy management, and construction are just some of the everyday operations I’m in charge of. There are so many different aspects to keeping our properties running smoothly and I ensure everything is going well day to day.

If you had one point of guidance for those starting out in real estate, what would it be?

Dave Nevins: Never stop learning. Seek out opportunities, read everything you can about the field, ask lots of questions. Learning is a lifelong process because there are always new trends to follow and technologies to adapt to. A curious and present attitude will help you go far in real estate or any industry.

I would also say don’t cut corners. InterRent strives to bring the very best service to our residents because we truly care about them as people. We are always looking for new ways to improve our properties including 24/7 emergency services, frequent upgrades, and more. Real estate is a two-way street like any other business, so customers will reward you with their loyalty if you do your best for them.

Why do you feel it is important to connect with your community?

Dave Nevins: In real estate, the community can make or break you. That’s why it is so important to build relationships and trust with community members. Residents, suppliers, contractors, they’re all essential to us so we try to get to know them whenever we move into a new community.

One way we try to do that is by giving back. I personally work with organizations like Boys and Girls Club of Ottawa and JDRF, which supports research for the cure of Type 1 Diabetes. I see volunteering for causes I care deeply about as both a responsibility and a passion.

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Young Upstarts is a business and technology blog that champions new ideas, innovation and entrepreneurship. It focuses on highlighting young people and small businesses, celebrating their vision and role in changing the world with their ideas, products and services.

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