Setting Expectations With Your Maintenance Staff

Setting expectations may be one of the most difficult skills to learn as a manager. When spreading your time across teams and departments, it can be difficult to dedicate enough time to each area of operations. However, a lack of expectations from management is one of the leading causes of lagging productivity and employee dissatisfaction in American business. 

In order to achieve the results you want in any discipline, you need to set clear expectations. This includes expectations with your maintenance team. Your maintenance technicians are there to serve you, but they can’t if they don’t understand your needs and goals. You must work to communicate with them efficiently and effectively. 

Expectations should be set with the following criteria in mind:

#1: Mutual understanding. In order to ensure that you and your maintenance team understand the issue in the same way, practice this exercise: Explain the issue that you’re facing or the goal you want to achieve at your facility, and then have the technician explain it back to you. If they explain correctly using their own words, then you know that you are on the same page. If not, you need to work together to determine where disconnects in communication are occuring, and reframe your objectives so that everyone is focused on the same results.

Results. When communication is clear between the management and maintenance teams, you can then focus on results. You as the management need to communicate what results you desire, whether that be a quick repair of a piece of equipment or a reduction in maintenance costs over the course of the year. Your maintenance team must them communicate a plan to achieve those results. Working together, you can realistically achieve most goals. 

Time. While results matter, they do not matter as much when they are not achieved in a timely matter. If you want to reduce reactive maintenance costs within one year, and your maintenance team develops a five-year plan, you are at a disconnect. Work with your maintenance team to determine timeframes that will allow them to perform quality work and not derail your other facility management goals. 

Emergency protocol. Every facility needs emergency maintenance service. Whether it’s an unexpected leak or response to a natural disaster, you need someone on-call to provide service. A reputable facility maintenance company will provide emergency services for their clients, and be able to lay out expectations for emergency response protocol. 

MaintenX believes in working with our clients to determine best practices for preventive and emergency maintenance service. We serve 13 states across the U.S., helping small businesses maintain their integrity from the inside out. Contact us today to learn more about our services. 

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