As I was running into Macy’s to do a return, I was stunned to see the overflowing trash bin just outside the main door. I felt like I was going into an alley rather than a department store. And with so much garbage there already, I either had to carry the cup I was going to dispose, spend time smashing it into the receptacle or set it next to the can on the ground. None were appealing options.

I suspect that responsibility for trash pick up falls with the owners of the mall rather than with Macy’s itself, but it makes no difference. In my mind, it was MACY’S that failed to provide the service and it is the entrance to their store that was off-putting.

Think of any parallels in your organization. Do you serve terrible food at your function and blame the caterer? If your payments arrive late, do you blame the processor? Is your sidewalk a hazard but you claim it is the responsibility of the landlord?

At the end of the day, your organization is YOUR responsibility, not the building manager’s or the contractor’s. It doesn’t matter who should be doing it; it matters that you ensure it is done. YOUR name is on the door.


About the Author leadership dots by dr. beth triplett

Dr. beth triplett is the owner of leadership dots, offering coaching, training and consulting for new supervisors. She also shares daily lessons on her leadershipdots blog. Her work is based on the leadership dots philosophy that change happens through the intentional connecting of small steps in the short term to the big picture in the long term.

One comment

  1. I completely agree, as someone who has responsibility over a facility on campus which is the primary pass through to most of the campus but also hosts numerous events from small meetings to large banquets. I want the facility to look its best at all times for all “guests”. While I don’t have direct oversight of all the trades responsible for its upkeep I do try to provide a vision of what the facility should look like on an everyday basis. We always want our spaces to be “show ready”.


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