As we approach the end of any year we all tend to look back, and take stock of where we are, and perhaps what we have achieved. It has been the first experience of a ‘really tough year’ for a lot of people in the north-west hemisphere, and sadly 2012 is not looking much rosier. I say north-west because to many millions of other people in parts of South America, Africa, rural India and China, our worst recession for 100 years is nothing of course. In fact, so much so that I thought of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs (below). How many of us have recently dropped back from the top two levels, to focus more on basic needs? Whether you are reading this as a business person, an advisor, a facilities manager, or some other role, there is something in this model for all to ponder.
At this time of year, I sincerely wish you all the very best, and hope that whatever part of the world you are living in, you are at least at the top of Maslow’s ‘social needs’ level as above. The higher the better, of course!
But, do keep your eyes and ears open, and extend your festive spirit to others who may have dropped back a level or two this year…..
If you are a Facilities Director/Manager, take a moment to think about the many people working from the buildings that you manage. You and your teams may be in a better position to see? Whilst the finance department is working to try to keep you in the black, and the front-line business units are schmoozing their clients to oil the wheels of commerce, how many other people are worried right now. Or worse. Ask your teams – people out there on the floors – to keep their eyes & ears open.
Looking more positively, on a lighter note, we are responsible for the accommodation and facilities services for many thousands of people across our organisations. Whilst food, drink, heating (or cooling!) and safety may be taken as a given (but can always be improved upon), can we improve on people’s social and esteem needs through the environments that we deliver? The answer is yes – but we must always remember the human element of working environments! Bland, corporate, clear-desk ‘hot-desk’ areas have a place – but hopefully a small place – in the modern, colourful, vibrant workplace. You want people to feel good about working in your buildings. Don’t let health & safety stop you putting up your festive decorations 🙂
We wish you a happy and peaceful Christmas (or whatever you do at this time of year), and best wishes for the New Year. We have some exciting plans for our FM “GRID” programme, and will be back in early January to tell you more!
kind regards, Paul
Founder/Managing Director, Occupiers Journal Limited
firstname.lastname@example.org / Skype: paul.carder.uk
Hong Kong – London – San Francisco