Archive for category Miscellaneous

FM Insider

I’m delighted to have been featured in the September issue of the Facilities Management Journal, having contributed the the regular FM Insider column in my usual inimitable style! Why not make a coffee, sit down for a minute or two and read it here?

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Musings on a Saturday morning…

I just had my first Saturday morning cup of coffee (okay, I may have had a Marlborough Light with it too). On this particular Saturday I had the bonus not only of a quiet household as both kids and fiancé were still quietly tucked up in bed, but also of reading the FMX interview with David Emanuel. In fact, it was the magazine landing on the mat that woke me from my own slumber.

I’ve always liked David, partly because I think he’s a good guy with an engaging personality, but also because he’s not afraid to rock the boat, or to challenge the conventional wisdom. I’ve been called both a maverick and an iconoclast myself in the past, so I guess it’s not surprising that I respect those who have the courage to question those things that disturb them and to seek the truth where others might just fear to tread.

In fact, I thought that the interview was fairly low-key (damn you, David). It did raise one or two issues about which I found myself nodding in agreement, however, and it prompted me to seek out my quill and ink in order to summarise those thoughts here. (I should really do this more often, of course, but life just seems to get in the way!)

On Chartership – personally, I just about side with the “it’s a discipline, not a profession” camp but to be honest I haven’t lost too much sleep dwelling on whether or not Chartership is the right thing for Facilities Management. What I do think is that BIFM now needs to make known it’s intentions once and for all, and either progress the issue of Chartership to a conclusion or put the matter to bed.

On qualifications – for far too long, I’ve listened to the argument that qualifications are a waste of time, and that in FM its experience that counts; almost always, those arguments are put forward by those without qualifications and who are unwilling, unable or just unmotivated to achieve them. For me, it’s a no-brainer; the higher the percentage of FM practitioners that are qualified, the more seriously we’ll all be taken. And by that, I mean taken seriously by those who are genuinely responsible for strategic decision-making; yes, the Board, where FM’s don’t sit and likely never will. (Don’t get me started on that one.)

On communication – BIFM, RICS and FMA need to understand the notion that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. All three organisations have a part to play in the future (and the future growth) of FM, and whilst it may be something of a pipedream to imagine them all working in harmony, and with common objectives, it’s a laudable pipedream. We need strong leadership from all three, but we also need forthright, honest and regular communication; many of us would say that this form of communication has been lacking in the past, and that’s simply not good enough.

On FM and property convergence – dear god, how long will we be talking about this before something positive happens as a consequence? I’ve been fortunate to work in an advisory capacity with some of the world’s largest corporates right down to SME’s, but one consistent theme is that there’s rarely enough concrete and accurate data on the property portfolio. Indeed, in every major outsource that I’ve managed getting consistent and reliable property portfolio data is always one of the hardest tasks. Yet without that, how are we in FM to identify opportunities; to provide the added value expected of us; or to properly define the services that will best serve the business? We need to be working hand in hand with our property cousins, and we need to be doing it now!

There… I’m now going to make myself another coffee (I’ve let the one I was drinking go cold) and carry on reading.

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A quick update to the Twitter debate…

Yes, I’ve done it – I’ve taken the plunge and joined the flock. You can find me here!

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Social Media – Yay or Nay?

Well, I’m back to the blog after something of a hiatus, and my intention is to post as regularly as possible from this point on. Yes, I know – everyone says that. But we all have demands on our time, be it work related or personal/family commitments, and this brings me nicely on to the point of my post.

There’s no question that social media has impacted almost every aspect of our lives; indeed, it’s hard to recall the time before Facebook when – if you had some news you wanted to share – you picked up the phone. Well, as an old hand at blogging but not exactly an early adopter so far as other forms of social media are concerned, I’m now seriously considering Twitter as a means of communication. More specifically, as a means of business communication.

The truth is that I can’t quite make up my mind… I haven’t yet determined where it’s benefits lie and to what extent tangible reward will follow the commitment of time and resource that I believe Twitter requires. What I do know is that many of my friends and colleagues in FM have embraced this particular platform wholeheartedly, so if you’re one of them I’d really like to hear your views. Of course, you need to bear in mind that if you tweet your response, I won’t know about it just yet…

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Welcome

welcomeWelcome to the Edifice blog – a place to discuss, comment and even argue about the issues that impact our profession of facilities management.

I’ll be endeavouring to post on a weekly basis, other demands on my time permitting. Please feel free to comment, as it’s the only way to make these pages dynamic and interesting. You can also contact me direct at the blog mailbox or, alternatively, through the comments if there are any particular issues or subjects that you’d like to see covered (or for which you’d like to write a “guest post” – no need to be shy!).

Thanks in advance for your interest and your support, and feel free to subscribe to this blog by adding it to your usual reader.

Tony Angel – MD, Edifice Limited

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