Arlington Celebrates its 50th Anniversary
Fifty years is a long time.
To last that long in business, there must be something special about a company. Something that sets it apart from other companies, something more than just the sum of its parts.
Some might say that to last fifty years in business, the company leaders must have a vision. But to thrive in those fifty years, to become a leader in your industry, that vision has to go beyond the leaders of the company. That vision has to be embraced by everyone at the company. That vision must be in everything the company does and in everyone who works there. It is the company culture.
This year, Arlington celebrates its 50th Anniversary. What began in 1969 as Municipal Development Company, a developer of moderate-to-low income housing communities in secondary markets in central and north Alabama, has grown to become the premier developer of suburban apartment communities across the southeast and into the midwest. And that vision has evolved into a corporate culture that fuels Arlington’s success and growth.
That success only comes from having people that believe in doing the right thing – every time. Tammy Wyble, President of Arlington Property Management, puts it this way:
“Most of the people who love this business, they have a servant’s heart.”
One can see this servant’s heart in Arlington’s people through their work, and also through their charity. For the past 20 years, Arlington has been an active participant in United Way’s annual campaign. During that time, because of its generosity and commitment to helping our community, Arlington has become a Pacesetter company within the United Way annual campaign. Pacesetter companies are those companies that step up and take a leadership role in raising awareness and money for the United Way campaign. However, Arlington’s commitment to community goes beyond the United Way. Arlington’s employees are encouraged to take paid time off to participate in local community service activities.
Arlington infuses this culture of a servant’s heart, of doing the right thing, of integrity, in every aspect of their business. Early on, Arlington realized that having the development, construction, and the property management in-house helped control the ultimate quality of the end product. As the company grew, these areas were added to the business. To create the best possible product, Arlington people are involved in every stage of the business, ensuring that the company’s culture is at the heart of everything they do.
Over the past fifty years, Arlington has developed and constructed well over 30,000 apartment homes. What began as a small company to develop apartment communities in central and north Alabama, has grown to a multi-faceted corporation for the development, construction, and management of properties in nine southeastern states. Over these past fifty years, through the struggles and through the successes, Arlington’s core values remained constant.
When one talks to the corporate leaders past or present – and asks them what accounts for the company’s success, their answers always come back to Arlington’s people. Arlington’s employees embody the company’s core values of integrity and the drive to always do the right thing.
And what does the next fifty years hold for Arlington? Jim Dixon, Arlington Properties President and CEO, has this to say:
“My goal for Arlington is not to be the biggest of anything. I think the better goal is to be the best at what we do.”
With a fifty-year history of success built on a corporate culture that embodies “Integrity Uncompromised,” how could Arlington not become the best at what we do?