Building Operating Management


By Ed Sullivan   BOM

this's thing.
The tumultuous events of 2001 reshaped the business landscape and gave facility executives a quick succession of new challenges to deal with. And so, when we planned this month’s cover story, I expected concerns about energy, the impact of the recession and especially security to dominate the facility management agenda for 2002.

That isn’t the case. The headline-making issues are represented, but they are far from the whole story.

The real story, as I see it, is two-fold. First, top facility executives in leading organizations have a very clear picture of long-term priorities that shape their agendas.

These priorities are focussed on matters critical to the overall organization. Perhaps as a result, the priorities have the support of top management. That shared vision is vital if a facility executive is to hold to long-term priorities in the face of important new concerns.

The second part of the story is understanding the need to respond effectively to those new concerns. Although security wasn’t the top priority for most of the facility executives we spoke with, it was a priority. One reason it wasn’t the top priority, I think, is that addressing new security concerns is ultimately a tactical issue, not a strategic one. Does that make it less important? Not at all. In fact, a facility executive who can’t respond to critical short-term needs won’t have much chance to implement a long-term agenda.

Long-term vs. short-term, strategic vs. tactical: Understanding how to balance these competing priorities is as vital as any skill a facility executive has.

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  posted on 1/1/2002   Article Use Policy

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