Monday, May 4, 2015

DEBATE WINNER: Do ICASS scores really matter?


Grawburg speaks:
Although 50% - 60% of ICASS comments and scores are really worthless or vindictive - 40% of those comments are valuable and worth paying attention to.

Some other notes....
1) Sadly, people use the ICASS survey to get-back at me because of one-time events instead of scoring me on my shops's services throughout the year.  (You don't think I know who you are "Mr.-No-Hot-Water-One-Night?")

2) Look for fair comments.  In this years survey someone pointed out that some of my guys don't clean up after some of their work.  That's worth noting and correcting.

3) People with higher pay grades take these surveys seriously.  Enough said.

Friday, May 1, 2015

DEBATE: Do ICASS scores even matter?

Position #1:      ICASS Scores Don't Matter
ICASS scores are a snapshot of what people are feeling about ICASS services on the day they take the survey and not truly representative of people's view of your overall service for the year.  The results are mostly useless.

Argued by:     Randy Zipperer, S/GSO

Randy's Statement:
"Most people score ICASS services based on how they are feeling that day without thinking of how the services were performed throughout the year.  This is evident in the comments you get.  The guy who didn't get a shelf installed in his bathroom because he's too lazy to go to IKEA and thinks he's entitled to everything will score you a 1 even though you're constantly dealing with his silly maintenance requests to unclog his toilet.  The dingbat whose call you didn't answer one evening when he didn't have hot water will burn you on ICASS when you've provided good service all year to his family.  Most people taking the ICASS survey can't understand that GSO and FM are two completely separate sections even though you've told them 6 million times."  *BURP*

Position #2:      ICASS Scores DO Matter
ICASS scores allow me to officially express my dissatisfaction with management services.

Argued by:     Hugh Jorgan, POL/ECON

Hugh's Statement:
"I have a right to rate those Specialists and tell them how they are doing.  The feedback my colleagues and I give will help them get better, show how they can improve my tour and make my time at Post more comfortable.  ICASS scores and comments give Management a sense of overall satisfaction with Management services and give me an opportunity to....excuse me, did you wipe your shoes before you came into my office?"

Coming soon....Grawburg decides the winner.

I told the staff to shoot first and ask questions later... least during the paintball portion of this weeks FM Team Building Day.

Last Tuesday's FM Team Building Day was the brain-child of one of my maintenance supervisors.  He went to FSN Leadership Training (I recommend this for your senior FSN staff!) in Bangkok for a week and came back motivated and full of ideas.  The staff has been working hard (thanks to a lot of work orders I've been putting in) and tempers have been flaring so a day away together is what we needed.

After a couple hours of shooting each other with paintballs outside Tel Aviv, we headed down to beautiful Jaffa and had lunch at Old Man By the Sea.  When lunch was finished, I asked my supervisor to give an overview and do some Q&A about leadership and what he learned at the class....which he did....and it was well received.

Q&A on leadership!  Bravo!
So nice to have a supportive Management Counselor who sees the broader value in a day like this!

Paintball welts or decide.

Thursday, April 30, 2015

I'm back....and giving my guys guns.

I woke up newly motivated to start up my blog again.  So here is my notice that I'm back and ready to soon as I get home cause right now I'm at work and I have stuff to do.

I'll explain why I'm providing weapons to my Israeli and Palestinian staff members without starting a third intifada.

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Managing at a new Post

I'm officially 2 months into my FM Jerusalem assignment.

I landed here determined to put into practice all of the lessons I learned from being mismanaged in Gabon.
How do I ensure I don't manage people as poorly as I was?
How to I set a tone for my section that builds confidence and trust?
And how do I determine the goals for my staff....goals that go beyond just coming to work and fixing stuff....

What have been my guiding principles these first two months...???

1) Don't show up like you need to fix the place.  Some of the folks in the FM section have been here more than 20 years.  If the place was really that broken, it would have collapsed long ago.

2) Don't dump new ideas and tasks on the staff.  They have a job to do and overloading them with brilliant new ideas will do nothing but over burden them.  I have lots of ideas and I will introduce them slowly and at the right time.  I have a goal log so I don't forget them.

3) Remembering they are not as excited as I am.  This is a new city, a new staff, new buildings....for me, not them.  For them it's another day at work just as it has been for years.  I'm another in a long line of FM's.  Be enthusiastic, but not over the top.

4) They really don't want to hear how I did things at my last post.  Unless it's correcting a major problem or how I will make their jobs significantly easier, keep the "when I was back in Liberia" advice to yourself.

5) Come in as a servant boss....not a know-it-all.  My job is to help them to their jobs better and that means listening, helping, advising, guiding, and protecting.

6) Begin to look at long term goals.  I've already discovered we need to get caught up on inspections and maintenance, but I also want to look at something different and unique...what can we do different?  To be revealed in a future post...

More Posts coming...

...just been really busy.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

In the heart of the Old City.

We've been exploring the ancient souks of the Old City with the kids.  This is their first experience in a crowded, noisy, busy, and dark Middle Eastern market.  For Jacci and me - this is pure fascination.  For our kids, this new adventure was a bit overwhelming.  Smells of unusual spices, loud and animated Arabic speakers, lots of people, and chest thumping Arabic songs were too much for Max.  His hand was sweaty and I could see the fear in his face.

But this is good for them.  After a few visits - an Arab souk will be old hat to Max and he'll have another feather in his world traveler cap!  I love giving my family these great experiences.

Max hides his fear very well.