Essentials for Better Facility Management

If you’re an office or facility manager, or if your position combines those roles, the Staples Workplace Employee Survey has good news for you. A clear majority of Canadian employees:

  • Have at least some understanding of what you do
  • Expect to interact with you for supplies, maintenance and other kinds of help and information
  • Believe that your role is crucial to growing a business and that appropriate resources should be invested in it

In other words, office and facility management enjoys a largely positive image, and much of the modern workplace knows at least something of the value quality personnel provide in this role. If you want to capitalize on that positivity to help deliver even better value for your company and colleagues, keep these few essentials top-of-mind.

1. Invest In Facilities Management Software

A core part of office and facilities management is maintaining an accurate inventory and keeping close track of a wide variety of scheduling and maintenance tasks. You can increase the efficiency of your data management and reduce the amount of time you spend on manual entry by investing in excellent facilities management software. This, in turn, can position you to take the best advantage of techniques like benchmarking, which the IFMA has identified as an untapped resource for facilities management.

2. Work Proactively with Management

Co-workers may understand the value of what you do, but that doesn’t always mean that management gets it. Increase visibility at the top level of your company by working closely with managers and taking a proactive stance. Stay up to date on solutions like automated building management systems and be able to offer an informed take on whether that kind of technology is a good fit for your workplace. Be ahead of the curve on building a sustainable and energy-efficient workplace. In budget season, be aware of and suggest areas where you can streamline.

3. Go Beyond the Short Term

Planning for the long term isn’t easy in our fast-paced, technological environment. We’ve even seen it argued in the pages of Forbes that the multi-year strategic plan is dead. Still, that doesn’t mean you have to resign yourself to only tackling the most immediate crisis. Part of helping your company maintain agility and adaptability is taking time in your schedule to manage the important items as well as the urgent ones.



Amazing Lessons in Business Leadership from Emmy-Nominated Shows

In a recent leadership report conducted by Robert Half Management Resources, three qualities came out as clear winners among workers as being most desirable in a business leader:

  • Integrity led the survey by a wide margin. As Tim Hird, executive director of Robert Half put it: “Leaders who act with integrity and treat people well help maximize the contributions of their employees and build goodwill for their organization.”
  • Fairness was nearly as important. The Balance notes that managers who don’t play favorites and who model consistent rules and treat their workers the way they themselves would like to be treated have a far easier time attracting and retaining the best talent.
  • Decisiveness came in a very close third. As Industry Week comments, nobody loses authority more quickly than a decision-maker who can’t decide.

One way to get a better understanding of how these qualities work is to examine lessons from the stories we tell. As the Emmy Awards celebrate the best in television they also provide us a lens for looking at key leadership strengths.

Integrity: Queen Elizabeth II from The Crown

This sprawling bio-drama about the life of Queen Elizabeth II holds powerful leadership lessons. One of them is the queen’s use of candor and integrity — on occasion to the point of being mistaken for blunt or rude — as a source of credibility. Her openness and willingness to directly address sensitive issues make key turning points that help cement her legacy.

Fairness: Daenerys Targaryen from Game of Thrones

Daenerys Targaryen is one of the most indelible characters from this famous epic fantasy show. Originally a pawn in a ruthless succession conflict, she becomes a major player by the simple application of fairness in her rule, a quality many competitors sorely lack. Her most justly famous quote is: “I will answer injustice with justice.”

Decisiveness: Nancy from Stranger Things

The supernatural retro-’80s thriller lives up to its name through other-worldly threats, government conspiracies and psychic powers, but it’s all kept down to earth by some very brave and human characters. One of the best is Nancy, a shy high school sophomore in the first season who becomes a brave, decisive leader by the second. She’s the character in the series who takes charge of her own life, faces head-on the things that frighten her most and carries out the kind of decisive action leadership demands.


Robert Half Management Resources:

The Balance:

Industry Week:


Solutions in Managing Multiple Projects at the Same Time

It pays off to be skilled at the art of juggling multiple tasks at the same time. It is not only about being able to make deadlines, but ensuring every task is being executed according to plan and without problems. You can tackle the stress and anxiety if you remain proactive and control situations rather than react to them. A proactive manager is one who knows the secrets of leading more than one team and following multiple schedules at the same time. Here are several solutions that can assist you.

Have Everything Planned Out

The plan is the backbone of the project and it should cover every stage from inception to completion. When you are preparing for the project, you have meetings with the executives and brainstorming sessions with your team to figure out which approach you are going to take. After the details of the project have been finalized and put on Xerox paper, you can put it to work.

Only a solid plan can help you maintain your composure with so many things happening around you at the same time. With everything organized and in place, it becomes easier to align the project outcomes with the goals of the business. A good plan not only helps the manager identify any risks associated with it, but also makes sure that all of the team members and resources are being utilized efficiently.

Delegate Tasks Effectively

A project manager can only do so much on their own, which is why having a great team is important. If project tasks are delegated to every member effectively, then the manager can better utilize their own time. By giving each employee their own responsibility, you not only save time but also make them feel like they are a valuable part of the business. In addition, if employees have the freedom to be creative and apply their talents to the project, they have a higher chance of remaining with your team. If the tasks have been divided equally among the team members, you can focus on dealing with developing the strategy for other ongoing projects in the business.

Assign Priorities

Successful management requires being able to prioritize tasks so that all projects remain on schedule. This means you should spend more time doing things that add value to the business, therapeutic activities like decorating the office with Command™, rather than simply replying to emails and reading articles. The tasks should be prioritized according to how urgent they are so that you and your team can address them one by one. You can also map out a timeline for all the tasks related to a project so that nothing goes unnoticed and you remain ahead of schedule.

It is not mandatory for a business to take on multiple projects at the same time, but when the occasion arises, it is best to be prepared for it. Multitasking is the essence of management and you can use many tools to help you keep up with the progress of each project. By utilizing your time efficiently and fully investing in the capabilities of your team members, you can better manage multiple projects to ensure their successful completion.

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Comment s’y prendre pour réussir à travailler chez soi

Comment s’y prendre pour réussir à travailler chez soi

L’étude intitulée « Staples Workplace Employee Survey » révèle qu’un employeur sur trois (35 pourcent) permet à ses employés de travailler à distance, et de ces entreprises, 48 pourcent d’entre elles le permettent plus d’une fois par semaine.

Le télétravail est un grand avantage, mais vous devez toutefois vous concentrer sur votre travail sans vous laisser distraire par vos enfants, vos proches ou votre collection de films. Voici trois conseils pour réussir à travailler chez soi.

Communiquez tout au long de la journée

Selon Forbes, les équipes qui établissent de meilleurs liens de confiance avec leur gestionnaire sont celles qui communiquent bien et fréquemment. C’est d’autant plus vrai lorsque le travail se fait à distance.

Plusieurs lieux de travail ont de multiples modes de communication : courrier électronique, téléphone, clavardage, téléconférence et vidéoconférence. Ils sont d’ailleurs tous pertinents et utiles. Il est important d’utiliser chacun de ces outils judicieusement pour s’assurer que votre message soit bien compris.

  • Courrier électronique : Utiliser le courrier électronique pour partager des informations tactiques telles que les mises à jour d’un projet et des données brutes dont vous pourriez avoir besoin afin de vous y référer à nouveau.
  • Téléphone : Le téléphone est un excellent outil pour des séances de remue-méninges ou résoudre des problèmes plus complexes.
  • Clavardage : Peu importe s’il s’agit de Skype, Slack ou autres outils similaires, si vous devez vous renseigner rapidement auprès d’un collègue ou d’un gestionnaire, un programme de clavardage est un excellent outil.
  • Vidéoconférence : Pour stimuler des interactions intéressantes et positives entre collègues lorsqu’une rencontre face à face n’est pas possible, la vidéoconférence s’avère une solution avantageuse.
  • Partage d’écran : Cet outil est très utile lorsque plusieurs personnes doivent consulter le même document ou la même feuille de calcul ou lorsque vous devez présenter une nouvelle fonction.

Restez proactif

Travailler à domicile signifie que vous n’avez pas la possibilité de croiser quelqu’un dans la salle de pause ou le corridor pour discuter de quelque chose. En cas de doute ou lorsque vous avez besoin de plus de détails à propos d’un projet sur lequel vous travaillez, n’hésitez pas à communiquer avec votre gestionnaire ou un autre collègue. La clé est de toujours vérifier.

Adoptez une routine et respectez-la.

Étant donné que vous n’êtes pas pressé de prendre le métro ou éviter la circulation, une routine quotidienne peut être la première chose que vous laissez tomber lorsque vous n’êtes pas au bureau. Votre travail peut rapidement s’accumuler en raison d’un manque de productivité et d’efficacité.

Randstad propose diverses façons de respecter une routine, y compris le fait de débuter et de terminer le travail à des heures régulières, prendre soin de soi-même et faire de l’exercice, et ne pas consulter ses courriels avant le début de la journée de travail. Établissez un horaire de travail avec des heures fixes et planifiez du temps pour les pauses et repas afin de vous aider à maintenir votre rythme de travail.

Références :

Agility Seating in Your Workplace

Organizing offices so that multiple workers can share workstations is known as agility seating. The idea is to have different areas set up for socializing, learning, focusing and collaborating. It works especially well when employees are assigned portable laptops.

Also known as activity-based working (ABW) or hot desking, this technique foregoes the notion of preassigned seating, and there are several potential benefits.

Only 29 percent of Canadian workplaces offer agility seating, but 70 percent of those that have it say that it deepens their connection with their employer, according to a recent STAPLES workplace survey.


Hot desking forces employees to keep orderly workspaces. Shared spaces aren’t conducive to adding photos and personal touches to desks, but the result is a cleaner, more professional environment.

Getting to Know Your Peers

A vital component of agility seating is the freedom to get to know peers in your department and other groups. When you aren’t tied to one desk, you can move around and meet people. This enhances collaboration, regardless of where a meeting takes place.

Owning Your Environment

Some people like a lively atmosphere and thrive in it. Others need a calm environment with no distractions and a quiet background. Agility seating lets associates find niches that work for them and lets them be more comfortable and productive.

Saving Costs

Agility seating minimizes wasted space, since some employees don’t have to be in the office every day and others don’t need a desk for the entire day. This helps the company save on equipment and lets them downsize operations without sacrificing a productive workforce.

Promoting a Standardized IT Environment

It helps any office’s efficiency to have computers, laptops, docking stations and monitors set up to interact with and complement each other. Agility seating makes this a necessity rather than a luxury that can be put off; adopting it might just become your workplace’s key to clearing this productivity hurdle.

Providing Flexibility

One of agility seating’s most important benefits is that it provides lots of flexibility for teams to form and restructure on the fly. This makes it especially suitable for a workplace where people are constantly on the move.

Photo Courtesy of:

Photo Courtesy of: Gunlocke

  • Table: Saranac
  • Credenza: Saranac
  • Chairs: Avoca Guest

Four Great Tips for Effective Time Management

Business success and productivity rates depend on time management, regardless of the type of industry. Effective leaders know it’s best to work smarter and not harder to tackle to-do lists and complete goals on time. There are several fundamental time management tips that can bolster efficiency in your workplace.

Create a To-Do List

Start each day or week with a list of what you want to get done. Consider using a goal-setting method, management and team leaders create specific goals that are both meaningful and readily attainable. Your to-do list should be relevant to immediate objectives and have a corresponding timeline.

Streamline Operations

Automation reduces time spent on tedious tasks that take up a good part of managers’ and team leaders’ attention. Figure out which items on your to-do list can go on autopilot. For example, use inventory management software to track sales data and order merchandise. Initiate online scheduling with Google calendars or vCita, which lets clients book appointments with you 24/7 and reduces administrative time.

Simplify Communications

Consider email marketing software such as Constant Contact or AWeber for customer service management (CRM). These programs provide customizable email templates to reduce time spent composing business correspondence from scratch. The software stores customer lists, so you can choose the recipients and send emails, reminders, sales letters and announcements quickly and easily.

Delegate Authority

Learn how to delegate tasks to others to free your time for more important items on the agenda. Relinquishing control also sends the message you trust employees and team leaders, which can increase morale and productivity. Delegating powers gives people a feeling of importance and decreases delays in the decision-making process and it gives employees the opportunity to let their skills and abilities shine.

Time management tips improve productivity, make it easier to get things done and provide added breathing-room for the most important tasks at hand. As Forbes notes, good time management also creates a less stressful environment that facilitates success for both companies and employees.



How to Make Working Remotely Work For You

How to Make Working Remotely Work For You

The Staples Workplace Employee Survey found that more than 1 in 3 employers (35 percent) let their employees work remotely, and of those companies, 48 percent allow it more than once a week.

Telecommuting is a great perk, but you have to make sure you’re staying on task and not getting distracted by kids, loved ones or your movie collection. Below are three tips for making working at home work for you.

Communicate Throughout the Day

According to Forbes, teams best develop trust with their managers if they’re communicating well and often. This applies doubly when working remotely.

Many workplaces have multiple modes of communication: email, phone, chat, web and video conferencing, and they all have their place and purpose. It’s important to use each one wisely to make sure the message you’re sending is fully understood.

  • Email: Use email for sharing tactical information such as project updates and raw data that you might need to refer to again.
  • Phone: The phone is excellent for brainstorming or solving more complex problems.
  • Chat: Whether through Skype, Slack or something similar, if you need to check with a colleague or manager quickly about something, a chat program is a great tool.
  • Video conferencing: For boosting positive interactions among colleagues when an in-person meeting isn’t an option, video conferencing is a beneficial solution.
  • Screen sharing: This is useful when multiple people need to look at the same document or spreadsheet or you’re demonstrating a new feature.

Strive to Be Proactive

Working at home means you can’t count on running into someone in the break room or the hallway to talk about something. When in doubt or when you need to ask for clarification about something you’re working on, don’t hesitate to reach out to your manager or another colleague.

Put Together a Regular Routine – and Stick to It

Since you’re not in a hurry to catch the subway or beat the traffic, a regular routine can be one of the first things to go out the window when you’re out of office, and this can quickly add up to a lack of productivity and inefficiency.

Randstad recommends a number of ways to combat this, including a consistent start time, exercise and self-care and staying off e-mail before the workday starts. Designate break, meal and start and stop times to help you maintain your workflow.