Blameless Problem Solving

July 16, 2019    Courtney Chastain, CCAM, Director of Community Management    Education, Manager Musings

CH PRINCIPLE #13: Blameless Problem Solving Takes Practice


It’s our instinct, when faced with a problem, to quickly wonder HOW it could happen? Even if you had all the best preventive measures in place or perhaps you even safeguarded a situation so that nothing would go wrong…things can still go wrong.

So when things go wrong or a problem arises, try your best to not point a finger or dwelling on the HOW of the problem. Yes, of course, we want to know HOW so that we don’t make the same mistake twice, or so that we can learn from our experience. But if you practice being blameless and practice seeking the solution first, you’ll see a positive shift in how you and your team can handle a problem smarter, better, and faster.

The property management industry is a job for problem solvers. Crummack Huseby has made a solid reputation out of being incredible problem solvers with budgets, HOA issues, and even spearheading change with laws to help get clarity for homeowners in conjunction with the CAI-OC. Crummack Huseby is consistently tasked with solving problems for our clients, homeowners, as well and internal office opportunities. It's easy to get caught up looking back and asking the question of "why something occurred" but this question should be secondary. The first one to ask is “how can this be solved?” Yet even that requires 7 easy steps to consider.

  1. Identify the issue at hand
  2. Understand everyone's interest
  3. List possible solutions
  4. Evaluate options
  5. Select an option or options
  6. Document the agreements (so important in the community management industry!)
  7. Agree on contingencies, monitoring, and evaluation

Steps 6 and 7 are the ones I find invaluable in my job at Crummack Huseby. Solving problems in a way that is insightful focuses on moving forward. It gives your problem-solving momentum and also helps you and your team to put your heads into more strategic thinking by documenting solutions and possibly putting more accountability on yourself and others.


Courtney Chastain has a passion for properties and became a licensed realtor after college. She quickly became a multi-talented asset for Century 21, initiating and managing their Property Management Division. Wanting to expand her community management influence after six years, she joined Crummack Huseby Property Management, Inc. in 2012. “I love solving complex problems and finding solutions that benefit the community.”

As Crummack Huseby’s Director of Community Management, Courtney has been a game-changer for numerous homeowner's association throughout Orange and Riverside counties. Her ability to identify health, safety and liability concerns, plus address the most efficient and effective ways to minimize association risk is invaluable to the communities she manages. She is a true partner for homeowners in her involvement with association boards and community relations, including the financial and physical aspects of running large community projects.


Orange County, California, based Crummack Huseby Property Management, Inc., manages many diverse HOA’s and master-planned communities in Southern California. They have added value to communities by working with HOAs, homebuilders, and land developers through their collaborative and customized approach. Crummack Huseby’s personalized philosophy to community management has allowed them to successfully discover and develop one-of-a-kind programs for new and existing communities.  They offer professional business planning, governance, community management, financial only management, planning, and forecasting services for community associations. They also have been recognized as one of the Best Places to Work by the Orange County Business Journal in 2015, 2016 and 2017. Founders Sandy Huseby and Margo Crummack each have more than 30 years of experience in Common Interest Development (CDI) managementCrummack Huseby Property Management obtained an AAMC® Accreditation status which highlights their focus and commitment to deliver total customer satisfaction.  If you would like to learn more about Crummack Huseby Property Management Inc., they look forward to learning about your community and understanding your needs and how they can best support your community. For more information - Start a Conversation, email, or call 949-367-9431.

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Building Industry Associaiton of Southern California
Member of Community Associations Institute
California Associations of Community Managers