Secrets: they’re mystical, magical, and are powerful marketing tools. Many successful companies and their products have secrets; whether it is a secret ingredient, a secret weapon, or is the answer to all of your problems. Maintenance departments have secrets as well. I have gathered insight from leading maintenance professionals and have uncovered five common ‘secrets’ to running an effective maintenance department.
- Don’t Hate, Collaborate: It has been said over and over again, communication is key in any organization. Many times the most efficient maintenance departments are those that not only communicate well, but those that are sharing ideas and gathering insight from ALL employees. Foster an atmosphere built on trust, respect and assisting one another. Good vibes and knowledgeable staff will help the department run smoothly.
- Attitude, Attitude, Attitude: We have all seen what negative comments can do to a team’s morale; like the domino effect, it spreads down the line. Ensuring that the staff displays a positive, optimistic, and uplifting attitude will help drive the department to achieve greater success.
- Proper Management: The maintenance manager holds a lot of responsibility when it comes to how their floor is run. He/she should find balance in leading their staff and working together as a complete unit. The manager is the “captain” of the team, they are responsible for: scheduling continuing education; relaying information to the staff, including clearing the air of rumor or gossip; knowing each team member’s skills and weaknesses; and most importantly knowing what is happening on the floor at all times.
- Play it Safe: Even with effective communication and strong management, there is always risk and danger within a maintenance department. Having to work on certain pieces of equipment and/or buildings can be quite hazardous. SAFETY is a huge topic to remember and to promote within your maintenance department.
- Congratulations: Everyone likes to feel appreciated, so why would that be any different at work? Let others know that they have done a good job and that you appreciate them! Knowing that your work is valued can develop confidence and can lead to continued desire to perform well. This type of encouragement and praise will not only have the maintenance staff happy with themselves and their jobs, but will also develop a very successful and effective department.
It is up to you how you will utilize these secrets to distinguish your department from being run of the mill and barely staying afloat to a successful, thriving business. Use these secrets consistently and make sure they aren’t kept hidden!