The success of an organization is usually not determined by the strength of a (accommodation) strategy, but by the extent to which the strategy is implemented. The learn/work environment has a major impact on the people who use it. And with that also on the results of the process that those same people are working on.
In addition to the attention to how people function and perform, there should also be a focus on the environment in which they must do so.
This enables steering the accommodation process from the integral organizational strategy and as a result of this to take control. The real estate/facility manage must know the factors that determine whether the accommodation will work for the organization or not and thus help the organization to decipher the code that leads to the desired experience and appearance. This is unknown territory for many real estate/facility managers.
The role of the real estate/facility manager is a supportive one in many organizations. A role in which often existing assumptions are fulfilled and not in which these assumptions are established. In an accommodation project, however, this supporting role is not sufficient. The real estate/facility manager must profile himself and be able to discuss organizational goals from operational to strategic level and translate these into learn/work environment consequences.
Uncertain times require organizations to make fast changes and continuous adjustments. A flexible organization, with agile teams, has the power to steer itself onto the right course.
The pandemic may have forced us into new situations for working – but overall, every organization has the ingredients required to become the breeding ground for effective and high-performing teams. Treat the pandemic as an opportunity to take a critical look at how you’ve been organized so far and how you can do things differently.
We are in economically exceptional times. Stable environments can change in the blink of an eye. Creating organizations that move accordingly is vital to remain relevant. That said, uncertain times and situations like these require far-reaching decisions. Don’t maximize parts of systems or sub-systems while ignoring the whole, whether this is easily measured or not and, especially in the short time, changes for the good of the whole may sometimes seem to be counter to the interests of a part of the system. It helps to remember that the parts of a system cannot survive without the whole.
The Covid-19 pandemic has taught us that the facility and the real estate management (FREM) discipline no longer has the pre-eminence when it comes to employee workplace support. Mass working from home has made it explicit that ICT, Human Resources and Communication must work together as supporting disciplines in order to allow business processes to continue effectively.
Real Estate (RE) and Facility Management (FM) are critical secondary business processes. They require integration and consistency with other business processes such as ICT, Human resources, Finance and the associated systems. A shift of focus towards the accommodation ecosystem of Bricks, Bytes and Behaviour. One force can be used to influence the behavior of another.
As with any pending organizational advancement, skepticism abounds. Achieving this shift in priorities will require significant cultural change; requiring new skills and competencies, new measures and indices. Plus new ways of thinking how the learn/work environment can actively support safety, health and wellbeing of people. This will no longer be a trend or a nice-to-have, but a basic expectation.
If you put the teams in the lead, the teams and their managers begin jointly bearing the responsibility. With a common and clear goal, everyone does their best to help each other move forward. They not only push each other to be better, but they also dare to talk openly about things that can be done better. Together, as a (interdisciplinary) team and as individuals, they become the best versions of themselves.
To make interdisciplinary teams work, means that people from the various disciples are more committed to solving the problem than to being academically correct. They will have to go into learning mode, to admit ignorance and be willing to be taught, by each other and by the system.
The personal development of employees also deserves attention – when there is no room for personal growth, the team cannot grow beyond a point. Improve at the employee, team and organizational levels.
“Education is not filling a bucket but lighting a fire.” (W.B. Yeats)
As an organization, dare to think big, but start small. Without experimentation, innovation is impossible. Experiment and gradually find out which form and speed of implementation best suits the organization.
ATELIER V supports the design and training of the Real Estate (RE) / Facility Management (FM) organization to Accommodation Manager 3.0, which focuses on people as users of the learn/work environment. Transform your people into a world class team.
Facility Real Estate Management
- #01 Business-like thinking is essential to understand the (internal) client.
- #02 Breaking down silos and working together in coordination instead of competing each other.
- #03 Understand the primary business process and the impact of (poor) learn/work environment performance on it.
- #04 Talk about the learn/work environment in the language of the business.
- #05 Identify opportunities and risk and understand the effects of the learn/work environment data on the business.
- #06 Communicate main contribution of the learn/work environment to the strategic intent and objectives.
- #07 FREM’s natural partner to align the learn/work environment to the strategic objectives, besides ICT department, is the Human Resources department.
The ultimate test of the effectiveness of a learn/work environment is the experience of those who use it. In addition to the (subjective) opinion of the users, there is also a need for an objective assessment of the actual performance of the learn/work environment. For example, it can be assessed whether the intended effectiveness of the accommodation is being realized in an efficient manner on time, within acceptable risks and budget.
An Accommodation Management 3.0 approach puts people as a user of the learn/work environment central and helps prevent that the ‘wrong’ things are done very efficiently that do not or hardly contribute to the effectiveness for the own organization and the experience of the users.
A 3.0 approach pays in addition to technical and cost management, also attention to indirectly reducing costs and creating value (increasing benefits) in the primary process with the learn/work environment.