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John just told me that looking out from his office window in Kent, he can see snow gently falling. I love the snow, so excitedly looked up from my desk in Surrey to see everything bathed in bright sunshine. There were strong winds in these parts last week so the trees are virtually bare, but sadly there won’t be a brisk walk in either snow or piles of crunchy leaves for me at lunchtime, since we’ve had heavy rain recently and everything’s been left decidedly soggy.
However beautiful it might be, the Winter makes life particularly difficult for everyone involved in keeping our buildings and external environment clean and safe – from the cleaners themselves who are tasked with doing the job well in sometimes difficult conditions, to the facilities managers, building owners and local councils who have to make the decisions on how to spend limited budgets, what products and equipment are needed and who is going to carry out exactly what work and when.
Of course these days, there’s so much at stake if these people get it wrong. Either as part of the workforce or as a member of public, we naturally expect our environment – whether indoors or out – to be clean, safe, hygienic and free from such things as litter, spillages and graffiti. If it’s not, we feel disgruntled; any feelings of wellbeing we might have had prior to encountering the dirty environment are lost – and for anyone working, it’s been proven to lower productivity. And it’s well known that dirty environments encourage others to lower their own hygiene standards, so any problems are exacerbated…
Sometimes the cleaners receive abuse directly and often complaints are made to the management. Business is lost and reputations tarnished. Then of course we have the added menace of potential litigation, where someone using the facility or outside space has been injured or become unwell (or pretends to be!) because of poor hygiene and cleaning – thanks perhaps to food poisoning or an injury caused during a trip or slip…
Cleaning’s a heck of a responsibility, isn’t it? Get it right and people tend not to notice, but get it wrong and all hell can break loose!
Finally, I'm told that while nearly 400 Loo of the Year Awards Presentation 30th Anniversary tickets have been sold, a few have become available. If you’d like to attend this fun event next Friday 8th December in Solihull, email [email protected]
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30th November 2017