Is Facilities Management Strategic?

by jimware on September 21, 2016

office-buildingIs Facilities Management Strategic? What does it mean to be a strategic business resource?

Those questions are crucial to the future of the Facilities Management (FM) profession.

Please contribute to an important conversation and research project addressing the current state of the FM profession by helping to answer those questions. If you are an FM professional I invite you to participate in a brief global online survey about your FM organization and its current role and relationships, as well as your views about current challenges and opportunities for FM leaders.

The survey includes just 15 questions and will take less than 15 minutes of your time. Click here to complete the survey:


This survey represents an important opportunity for you to contribute to a global conversation about the emerging strategic impact of facilities management. If you complete the survey, we will be happy to send you a summary of our findings once the study is completed.

The survey is part of a study sponsored by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS). RICS has commissioned Occupiers Journal to update our 2012 report, “Raising the Bar: Enhancing the Strategic Role of FM,” to provide a 2016 view of the state of FM, and analyze trends and developments over the past four years.

The 2012 report can be downloaded for free at this link.

We are also interviewing selected senior FM executives and professionals as part of this project. If you are an FM practitioner who has tackled a strategic project for your organization, we would like to interview you; please contact me directly at my Occupiers Journal email address:  jim.ware@occupiersjournal.com, to volunteer your story.

One more thing: fellow Occupiers Journal director Paul Carder and I will discuss the project and offer preliminary findings at education session 7.03 at World Workplace in San Diego, California, on Friday morning, 7 October. Hope to see you there!


Here, finally are some further learnings and questions that arose for me out this year’s Corenet Summit in Orlando.

Monday, October 8.

The opening keynote presentation came from Bill Benjamin, founder of The Institute for Health and Human Potential. His focus: the importance of emotions in driving behavior, and the need to understand why and how people respond when they are under stress (and who isn’t these days?).

Bill’s message was obvious in hindsight, but it’s one we forget all too often: most leadership programs (and books) focus on technical skills and IQ as key to leadership success – yet when we recall outstanding leaders (including some of our own past bosses), we invariably identify people who touched us emotionally – people who have a high “EQ” or Emotional Quotient.”

He pointed out that people who fail as leaders typically are incapable of forming and managing relationships. They don’t manage change well.

But the most interesting part of the presentation was Benjamin’s focus on the amygdala – that basic part of the brain that drives feelings. We feel (the amygdala) before we think (the cortex). And when we are stressed, our ability to think rationally is reduced. Under stress we tend to tell people what we think they want to hear; we focus on compliance, which is a far cry from commitment. And as “followers” that’s what we do too – we fall into yes/no responses, and we comply with the first request we hear, rather than thinking through our options.

Benjamin then reminded us that Peter Drucker often talked about the importance of learning to manage yourself (you can never go wrong by quoting Peter Drucker!). And he wound up by offering a relatively simple formula for exercising control (over ourselves and others) in stressful situations: “SOS”

  • Stop (do something different, take some time out, disconnect)
  • Oxygenate (take a deep breath; carbonize your blood, minimize the impact of that amygdala)
  • Strengthen Appreciation (of the situation, of others – that releases dopamine, which is a source of positive emotion and well-being)

Remember, in stressful situations, when you and others are undergoing (or fighting) change, emotions are far more powerful, and important, than all the data and logic in the world.

So – that was the opening of the Summit. Heady stuff. With that new perspective on leadership and our own “uncontrollable” emotions, we all headed off to the breakouts, the expo, and the all-important hallway conversations that make up the most meaningful part of most conferences.

And I’ll pick up some more reflections in my next post. Look for it in another day or two as I squeeze time out my all-too-busy days for these important – and highly satisfying – moments of reflecting, absorbing, and learning from the Summit.


Corenet Summit: Off and Running

by jimware on October 8, 2012

Theme this year is “Reimagination: RE-orient, RE-ignite, RE-invent – all about the importance of innovation and creativity.

First order of business: presenting the Global Innovator’s Award – goes to Space Florida – the Boeing Commercial Crew program.

The keynoter this morning is Bill Benjamin, on “Leadership 2.0” – stressing the importance of understanding emotional intelligence. Shifting towards human-centered workplace management that produces employee engagement. Focusing the workplace on well-being.

Stay tuned for real-time reports as the speech unfolds.