July 21, 2003

FM brings Vision 2008 to servant leadership lunch

Eric Rangus

When presenting Facilities Management’s (FM) Vision 2003 management plan over the past few years, Bob Hascall, FM’s senior associate vice president, always flew solo.

But since one of the main themes of the plan was employees taking control of their careers, Hascall decided to shift gears for the presentation of FM’s Vision 2008.

It became a team effort.

Three FM employees joined Hascall at the podium for his third annual servant leadership brown bag lunch, held in the Goizueta Business School Friday, July 11.

“It had become ‘Bob’s Vision,’ said Hascall of the Vision 2003 roadmap, a colorful, wall-sized drawing that was part rebus and part game board from Life. “We wanted this vision to be an FM vision, so a number of FM employees would learn how to present it.”

Those employees were financial services manager Tim Lawson, technical writer Elaine Gossett, and training and communications coordinator Barbara Stark. While Hascall handled the opening comments and conclusion, the trio of front-line FM employees did most of the heavy lifting in explaining Vision 2008, which picks up where the successful Vision 2003 left off.

Vision 2008 outlines FM’s goals in customer service, access, communication and creating a positive working environment. Creation of the vision was a team effort involving all FM employees from upper management on down through the ranks. The result is colorful, icon-studded road map large enough to cover the classroom’s display board.

Lawson discussed how the transition from Vision 2003 took place and how some of that plan’s strengths (such as how FM should focus on honesty, integrity, a supportive atmosphere for employees, and the like) would be adopted by Vision 2008.

Gossett spoke of Vision 2008’s symbolic road being paved with openness, integrity, caring and respect, all words that were written in broad marker on the center of the display’s pathway. She also explained several of Vision 2008’s pictograms, like a starshaped little weightlifter, which represented FM’s strengths (such as community involvement).

Stark focused on the end of the path, FM’s goals, which were represented by a stadium ringed with flags adorned by words and phrases like “family friendly,” “teamwork” and “innovation.”

Work on the Vision 2008 concept began in spring 2002, when FM distributed questionnaires to both its employees and customers seeking feedback about how well the division was doing its job.

Not only did those questionnaires provide some statistics—81 percent of respondents listed Emory’s grounds as “excellent” or “above average,” and 77 percent of customers gave FM’s customer service the two highest ratings as well—but they also gave FM management some insights into the mindset of its own people.

Much of what Hascall found made him smile. For instance, 77 percent of the more than 300 FM employees who responded to the survey said they were “happy to come to work.”

“I think that’s remarkable,” Hascall said. “Obviously we’d like 100 percent, but that’s something we will work on.”

He also saw room for improvement, citing the statistic that 40 percent of customers either saw no change or a lack of progression in FM.

In addition to the questionnaires, Hascall and his people have met with many small groups in FM for comments. Those collected in 2002 were incorporated into the Vision 2008 concept, and since the new map was rolled out in January, newer suggestions have been used to help refine it.

For instance, one employee had asked why the vision’s road wasn’t paved with “fairness.” Hascall agreed that it should be, and that word will be on the road before the final map is drawn later this year.

The brown bag was sponsored by the Employee Council in partnership with the Ethics and Servant Leadership Program of the Center for Ethics. For more information about the council’s servant leadership efforts, visit www.emory.edu/EmployeeCouncil/SERVLEAD.