Cleaning & Maintenance Management Online

Good managers use sound judgment to strike balance

September 19, 2010
Although your job title might not reflect that of a human resources manager, each day you are called upon to deal with employees.

As supervisor, owner or manager, your role is to oversee productivity.

Many variables can determine whether or not an employee is productive.

Importance of proper workloading
As Jim Peduto writes in this month’s cover story, managers must provide adequate answers and do their research to implement the best workloading plan for their particular facility and its particular employees.

These questions include: How long does it take to complete a task or clean an area? How does changing task frequencies affect cost and cleaning results? What would a change in wages do to the overall budget? What is the best cleaning plan?

Although Team Cleaning and Zone Cleaning are the most popular cleaning strategies for building service contractors and in-house service providers, some find success by using a hybrid or variation of each system.

“Your cleaning business or department is only as good as your work force, and cleaning managers are only as good as their task management skills,” notes Peduto.

Therefore, do not make changes for the sake of making changes.

Taking control and giving back
As an experienced manager, you are fully aware that some things are simply beyond your control.

Investments in training, equipment, incentives and other initiatives are negated by unmotivated employees.

Successful managers lead by example and motivate employees through pride and ownership.

Give employees a reason to take pride in their job and protect their tools of the trade.

For example, an effective program was recently discussed over dinner one night with a JanSan distributor.

He shared with me a program that an in-house cleaning manager implemented in order to enhance equipment productivity and employee morale that also resulted in cost savings.

The in-house service provider came up with this program after several years of haphazard employee use, lower performance levels, and costly repair and replacement expenses.

Each year, the in-house manager buys several vacuum cleaners and writes the names of the employees on the equipment.

At the end of the year, employees are allowed to keep the vacuums for personal use.

The benefit here is three-fold: Increased productivity, accountability, and happier employees.

Since the employee now has a vested interest in owning the vacuum, less wear and tear from haphazard use occurs.

And, each year the employee gets to take home a free vacuum.

Simple incentives, such as this program, can solve several of your most critical issues.


Send comments or thoughts on this topic or any other article that appears in CM/Cleaning & Maintenance Management® magazine, to rdipaolo@ntpmedia.com.