When you're a woman who's managing facilities, how do you manage? While there are more men than women in facilities management positions, women are often very successful facilities managers. Here's why.
Why Are There Fewer Female Facilities Managers?
In part, the fact that there are few women in higher-level facilities management positions is a reflection of the fact that women are under-represented in management in general. As you move up the corporate ladder to the CEO's office, you'll find that only 3 to 4 percent of women are CEOs. Heavy workloads that are less than flexible are one of the reasons, as women struggle to balance home and work responsibilities. There are also few female mentors in the facilities management field, so when women are climbing the ladder it's hard to get advice from other women who have forged ahead on that path. When women do reach the top, they may experience judgment from colleagues who aren't used to having a female boss.
How Women Work
Women are ideally suited for management positions in many ways. Whether it's culture or nurture, women in management use their communication skills to develop their teams. Management is not necessarily about organizing and telling people what to do. It's also about communicating needs and working together with others to come up with creative solutions to problems. Whether you're working in facilities management or another management position, a manager with good communication and problem-solving skills will allow the company to rise above the rest through united staff effort.
Women Can Be Successful Facilities Managers
In addition to their soft skills such as problem-solving and communication, women who are facilities managers often have an inside knowledge of facilities from the bottom up. Women are more likely than men to have taken a longer route to the top, moving from administration to other positions before moving into management. A female manager who's had experience doing room bookings or repairs has an insider's view on what's required to make your facilities run well.
Women who have been with the company for a long time and who want to nurture its long term development are more apt to make investments that will help secure the company's future. It's not all about the obvious investments that customers see, it's also about investments in processes, in facilities management software, and in capital expenses such as air conditioning. These invisible investments make life easier for staff and customers alike, and they're an essential part of maintaining a successful facility.
Everyone can learn from a manager who is a great communicator and who invests in staff teams, software and process development, and long term infrastructure. As the work culture changes and younger people move into the workforce, it's possible that their new attitudes towards gender equality will make it easier for more women to become facilities managers.
When you're looking for a way to help your employees succeed in business, contact iOffice. Our facilities management software makes your business life simpler, so that you can support your staff and implement an integrated facilities management system.