Stormy Hofmann has an impressive tenure — and an impressive promotion track — with Campus Advantage. As an employee for nearly 10 years, she started as aCommunity Assistant and has operated in a number of positions on her way up to now serving as Area Manager over The Beacon and West & Wright located in Auburn, Alabama. Stormy’s background with CA as a Leasing Manager, an Assistant Manager, a Property Manager, and a Traveling Operations Specialist has given her an introspective look into what it takes to manage two communities simultaneously.
Stormy is super passionate about ensuring both communities run as successful as possible, team members provide best-in-class service, and that CA and resident expectations are met. Learn more about why she sees herself with CA for another 10 years.
What advice would you give to new employees at Campus Advantage?
Keep asking questions because I feel like when I started out as a Community Assistant, I asked a lot of questions. I was very interested to know why we made the choices we made, what led to the decision for X, Y, and Z. I feel like that really helped me grow quickly and make better decisions.
What first attracted you to work for Campus Advantage?
The free rent! When I was a Community Assistant, you got free rent. We don’t do it that way anymore, but back then, it was either figure out how to make more money or move back home with my parents. So, I initially became a Community Assistant because it would pay my rent, and then I quickly fell in love with it. Back then, we used to call it get-in-the-student-housing bug. I just loved the day-to-day interaction, how everything was always changing, and every day is different. And then the interaction you get with the residents — how we really make such an impact on their lives in the short amount of time we have them at our communities. That’s what kept me going.
Do you see yourself here for another 10 years?
Oh, for sure! I couldn’t imagine going anywhere else. It’s just the culture that we have, and I’ve been grateful enough to be around for so long and interact with a lot of different people. Anywhere from other Community Assistants and managers that no longer work for us to Mike Peter, Dan Oltersdorf, and those who have been around for a while really make a lot of connections, which I feel like as a company, we value that and we make that very important. We want you to make connections with other people, and we want you to be involved. And it really does feel like a family — for us to be such a large company that has so many people all over the country. I feel like I could pick up the phone and call anyone, no matter their position, and they’re going to answer for whatever it is that I need them for.
Describe what you and your team do at The Beacon and West & Wright.
I’m based out of The Beacon, so that’s where the majority of my time is spent, but at either place, we provide housing to our residents here in the Auburn area. Whether they’re looking for more of the downtown feel a little further from campus, we provide a home for them and a community for them to really feel like they are accepted and welcomed, and feel more at home. We have a lot of international students that we get to house, which is really fun because they are learning so much about our culture and how things are different from how they were brought up. And they’re here all the time, so we get to celebrate holidays with them and things like that, even on break. It’s really fun!
What three words best describe you and why (inside or outside of work)?
I would say positive. I’m a pretty positive person, and it kind of takes a lot to get me down. And then I’m very loyal and I’m very caring.
What are three words you would use to describe our Campus Advantage culture and why?
Supportive. We’re just a very supportive family. Innovative. I feel like we’re always looking to ensure that whatever we’re doing is two steps ahead, so that way, we can perform for our residents and our clients in the best way possible and provide the best experience for them. And fun because one of our core values is mojo, and we all take that pretty seriously. We take ourselves seriously, but we have fun while we’re doing it because we know how important it is to enjoy what you do every day.
What is one of your favorite moments at Campus Advantage so far?
When one of my former communities with Campus Advantage hit budgeted occupancy for the first time. We worked toward that goal for years, and we did get to hit budgeted occupancy before it sold, which was really exciting. I will also say two years ago, when I won the Make a Difference Award at the CAmmys — that was pretty special, as well.
If you had to choose one company value that best represents you, what would it be and why?
Passion for sure! I just really love what we do. I love coming to work every day. I love interacting with residents and other team members. I love bringing on a Community Assistant when they’re fresh, and most of them have never worked anywhere else before, and seeing them grow as humans and graduate, and seeing our communities succeed. I love seeing all the hard work we put in day in and day out pay off.
What is your dream for Campus Advantage?
I would love to see us have communities in every major market in the country. I feel like that’s a pretty big goal, and it would be really cool and neat to be able to say that no matter what major university you go to, we’re able to represent not only our CA culture, but also serve our residents in a way that we do differently than I feel like any of our competitors do.
What motivates you to get up and come to work every day?
I feel like two different things. My family obviously motivates me, and I always want to do great for them. Currently in my position, my husband is in school and I’m the only one working, so I have to come to work to make money, but I don’t come to work just for that. I really love coming to work and interacting with the residents and the employees, and everybody on Teams. Thankfully, I have been around a while, so I do know quite a lot of people, and to see other communities and other employees hit their milestones and their successes is just as exciting for me.
Thinking of your most successful peers or teammates, what characteristics do they share?
I would say their integrity. As a company, we’re always striving to do what’s right — not necessarily what everyone thinks the right thing to do is, but what’s actually right and the right move to make.
What do you like to do for fun when not working?
I love reality TV! I am a die-hard Bachelor fan. I’ve been watching it since I was a kid, and I’ve seen just about every season. I also love to play video games, so I’m a big Fortnite gamer and play it almost every day.
If your life had a soundtrack, name one song that would be on it.
The Disney song, “A Dream Is a Wish Your Heart Makes.” I’m a huge Disney fan, and Walt Disney has famously said, “If you can dream it, you can do it.” I would definitely think that would be a part of my soundtrack.