Stephanie Tharpe, district sales manager for A+ Storage in Mount Juliet, Tenn., and a moderator on Self-Storage Talk (SST), the industry’s largest online community, was honored this week by the Tennessee Self Storage Association (TNSSA) as its 2012 Manager of the Year. Tharpe received her award during TNSSA’s quarterly luncheon in Chattanooga.
Tharpe has been in the self-storage industry for about 12 years, joining A+ Storage in 2010 as a site manager. She was promoted last month to full-time district manager.
“My goal for 2013 is to grow all 12 of our site managers into super managers. I am blessed with a wonderful staff and it has been such a journey to go from a newbie to where I am now,” she wrote in a thread celebrating her award on SST.
Tharpe credits SST members with providing industry insight and practical knowledge that have helped her become an effective self-storage manager. “I truly love this industry, and SST has been my biggest support group over the years,” she said. “I encourage all of our managers to get on here and read and participate.”
This is not the first time Tharpe has been recognized for excellence in the self-storage field. In 2009, she and her husband, Joe, were awarded third place in the Inside Self-Storage “Best in Self-Storage Marketing” contest. They were awarded $200 for a creative eight-piece print-ad campaign they designed to promote the facility they were managing at the time.
Tharpe said she was thrilled to receive the TNSSA award and appear in a photo with “her idol,” M. Anne Ballard, president of training, marketing and developmental services for Universal Storage Group (USG), who attended the event.
Ballard founded Universal Management Co. and is well-known in the industry for her customer-service and management training. She will present an education session on “Effective Time and Information Management for Self-Storage Managers,” at the Inside Self-Storage World Expo, April 2-5, in Las Vegas. She will also conduct a Marketing Workshop with colleagues Stacie Maxwell, vice president of marketing for USG, and Christopher Baird, CEO of Automatit Inc. Show details can be found at www.insideselfstorageworldexpo.com.
A+ Storage operates 12 self-storage facilities in the Nashville area.