3 Ways to Engage Your Cleaning Staff During Training

Ideas for how to involve your custodians and cleaning staff during important learning sessions


Your custodians and cleaning staff need to stay awake during training. How do you keep them conscious? In two words: Involve them.

Involve them: Through giveaways

We give away at least two cleaning tools to each attendee at an event, often including a litmus or pH test kit, a microfiber or a UV inspection light.

Involve them: Ask questions

Asking good questions stimulates thought and discussion:

Q: “Are you aware there are at least eight safe methods to disinfect surfaces (i.e., eradicate bacteria) without using traditional chemical disinfectants?” The answer paves the way for explaining greener, healthier methods.

Q: “Why do we clean?” Identifying the ‘why’ of cleaning in group interaction helps eliminate processes and products that do not meet criteria, saving time and money, while protecting health.

Q: “How would you determine the pH of a product?” The answer has workers demonstrating steps to ensure a product is safe for people and surfaces by reading the safety data sheet (SDS) and using a litmus test kit.

Q: “What should always be the last step in the cleaning process?” This helps custodians understand when the job is ‘done’—and why.  

Involve them: As customers

We emphasize the first five letters of ‘custodian’ and ‘customer’ are the same. By treating workers as our customers, they come away becoming—and importantly, feeling like—true professionals.

Perry Shimanoff

CMI Master Trainer

Perry S. Shimanoff is a Certified Master Custodial Trainer with the Cleaning Management Institute (CMI) and has been involved in training both managers and front-line cleaning staff for more than 40 years.

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3 Ways to Engage Your Cleaning Staff During Training
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