Facility management is hard to define.
Many aspects of managing focus on the facility and on making sure that the facility is safe and is well designed, constructed, and maintained. Among other issues that face a facility are legal, finance, market- ing, and human resource concerns. A manager needs to act in an ethical manner and treat all stakeholders with respect. The manager is the face of the facility, and how he acts affects how people perceive the facility.
Last, facility management entails working with various people and groups to ensure that all the elements fit together. A facility in optimal condition will not be a good facility if employees do not take pride in working there and making sure the facility is running correctly. In contrast, a facility in poor condition can still attract people if management makes a strong enough effort.
Through working with both internal and external stakeholders, facility managers can develop a platform from which they can run a facility. This is the plan—whether short term or long term—that forms the basis for managing the people and the facility. Stakeholders help management determine the appropriate goals, objec- tives, and mission so that the facility can plan for the future.
The plan becomes a blueprint for organizing and implementing successful strategies that lead to positive results. A manager takes the plan and uses the management process to organize the staff, implement policies and procedures, and then implement controls to make sure the work was done correctly.
Discussion Questions and Activities
1. What is planning, and how would you go about planning for a new or existing facility?
2. If you were hired as the new manager of a public fitness facility in a small com- munity, what are some of the goals and objectives you would develop? What would the goals and objectives be if you were the facility manager of a large stadium used by a professional baseball team?
3. Analyze the voting results from several stadium elections to see what issues affected the vote. Identify how those issues can affect planning.
4. Read a management book or article and critique its application to the facility management area. What can you take from the book or article to apply in the facility management context?
5. Develop a list of all the possible stakeholders for a YMCA, a small college athletic program, a large college recreation facility, or a minor league baseball team.
6. If you were to create goals for building a new fitness center, high school facility, college stadium, or a professional sport arena, what goals would you include and why?
7. If you were asked to develop a way to more effectively manage and motivate low-paid custodians, what would you recommend and why?
8. Develop an ethical 10 commandments for how you would act when you are in a managerial position. Give the reason for each item you include in the list.