A couple of weeks ago, at one of the offices we clean, I noticed the air conditioning vents badly needed attention. Until I started to clean them, I didn’t realize just how dirty and dusty they were. I ended up with sheets of dust all over me and all over everything around me.
I then spent a considerable amount of time trying to clean it all up, moving everything I dared to move so that I could get into all the nooks and crannies. I even returned to that particular area before I left and went over everything again, hoping to get any dust that might have settled.
In spite of my best efforts I guess there was still a considerable amount of dust floating around in the air and it must have settled overnight – all over the desks and computers etc. We came in to do our next clean to find the Communications Book out on the reception desk and the office supervisor had written a scathing note.
He acknowledged that the air conditioning vent had been cleaned. However he was of the opinion that we had simply brushed the dust and dirt from the vent and left in sit on the desktops for the office staff to clean up themselves. He then went on to say that he felt our cleaning efforts were less than satisfactory and we needed to review our contract and the requirements there of.
I have to admit I was stunned by his reaction. I could definitely understand his annoyance at finding dust over his desk. But considering this was obviously something that didn’t normally happen and in fact something for which even he had a logical explanation, I thought his response was a little ‘over-the-top’.
My supervisor contacted the office supervisor and sorted it all out. The office supervisor rang me later to discuss another matter and he was perfectly nice and friendly. Still, the incident left a bad taste in my mouth, and, on each visit I was expecting to see that dreaded Communications Book left out with another scolding note.
Then, last night, it happened. There on the reception desk was the offending book and I immediately felt sick – trying to think what on earth I could have done this time to earn his disapproval?
But then I noticed something else. Sitting on the edge of the book was a collection of two foil- wrapped chocolate Easter Bunnies and two tiny Easter eggs. There was nothing written in the book, so I guess it had been left there just so that we would know the Easter eggs were meant for us – the cleaners.
I suppose the point I’m making here is that we often waste a lot of emotional energy expecting the worst. None of us can get through life without copping a ‘tongue-lashing’ from time to time. The fact is I know we are very competent cleaners. Perhaps the office supervisor was just having a bad day? Or perhaps he is one of those people who just don’t know how to address an issue without launching a personal attack?
I left a thank-you note and drew a smiley face. A Communications Book shouldn’t be all about negative things, now should it?
© Lyn Murphy 2011