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This Is Facilities: New Sportscenter Ad Shows Silly Occupant Complaint


By Greg Zimmerman Facilities Management
sportscenter ad vending machine

As a facility manager, you’re expected to be a jack-of-all-trades. One day, you’re on the roof, inspecting a cooling unit. The next, you’re overseeing a renovation project in your cafeteria. And in between, you’re fielding calls and emails from occupants about what they want from their space. This variety is the spice of your professional life! 

But when it comes to occupant issues, not all are created equal. Of course, hot and cold calls are the norm. But facilities often serves as a repository for complaints that don’t have a natural home. FMs surely are always willing to help when they can, but are there some occupant issues that are...more irritating than others. 

A new ad in continuous run on ESPN for its “This is Sportscenter” series highlights one of these possible occupant complaints. The spot shows Sportscenter anchor Jay Harris struggling to get a candy bar out of a malfunctioning vending machine. Professional wrestler Becky Lynch strolls by and offers her assistance. We’re expecting her to use her muscles to smash the class to rescue Harris’s wayward candy bar. Instead, she grabs the nearby phone, and says “Facilities? Yeah, we’re going to need some assistance on the third floor vending machine.”

It’s funny to imagine the look on the face of the FM on the other end of the phone. When you get calls like this, is your natural reaction to answer, “Yeah, what do you want me to do about it?” Of course, you can’t. You have to be a little more diplomatic than that and point them in the right direction to get their issue resolved. 

A couple years ago, our senior editor Naomi Millán wrote a cover story on how best to handle occupant complaints. We even published a book chronicling some of our readers’ “favorite” complaints. You can get it here, available as either ebook or print. 

This post was submitted by Greg Zimmerman, executive editor, Building Operating Management and FacilitiesNet.com. Read his cover story about Chris Walinski and his mission to make open offices flexible and productive

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