General Etiquette > All In A Day's Work

What is the best way to communicate with these 2 managers?

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snugglegirl05:
Information pertaining to this post:

I work as a porter for a parking company. Recently I and some of my co-workers *we are all porters* have been shuffled around and given different parking garage(s) to clean. There are 3 managers over the parking garages. Each manager is given specific parking garages that he/she is over. These managers report to the client that owns the parking garages. My employer manages the parking garages. There are also 2 male managers over the porters. Each of these managers has specific garages he is over. These managers drive around in golf carts to see what needs to be done on a daily basis. This is a good idea except that lately there have been problems regarding my job responsibilities at the parking garages I am responsible for cleaning. I also have to clean the parking lot that is adjacent to one of the parking garages. Each parking garage I clean has 3 levels.

Here is what I have to do according to the manager over the parking garages as well as the parking lot I am responsible for cleaning:

    clean the parking lot on a daily basis
    complete 5 space counts within my 8 hour shift. I have to count the empty parking spots in the parking lot as well as the empty parking spots in both garages. There is a set time when this needs to be done.
    sweep inside the parking garages on a daily basis
    clean the pipes on every garage level almost on a daily basis
    clean the cobwebs in the garages on a daily basis
    sweep the entrance to each garage on a daily basis
    clean any other debris at each garage entrance on a daily basis
    dump trash when needed
    clean the trashcans when needed
    mop when needed
    dust when needed

Each porter has to carry a work cell phone with them while at work. Lately I have received phone calls from the porter manager over the parking garages I work at letting me know what he wants done. When that happens, I go do what he asks me to do. However, I also have other duties to do. There have been times that I have to stop what I am doing for this manager to complete another task I am responsbile for, such as the space count. I will get a phone call from the same manager asking me why I have not completed that duty or another duty at the time that I am completing one of my space counts. There have been times that I have not been able to complete everything I am responsible for due to the projects the porter manager asks me to do.

I do not know if this porter manager is aware of everything I have to do. He has tasks that I am asked to do, and the garage manager has tasks that he wants me to do. The garage manager goes by what the client wants.

What is the best way for me to deal with this situation and to communicate with both managers?

misha412:
Wow. The fun of working for more than one manager. TPS reports anyone?  >:(

From what it sounds like, the managers who drive around in the golf carts are not aware of what you are required to do on a daily basis. They seem to have the idea that you are supposed to drop everything else and jump immediately on what they assigned.

In the short term, I would communicate with the manager in the golf cart that you had to complete the space count at X time. You will return to the activity that he assigned you when you are done with this employer-mandated time-sensitive item. A calm polite answer should be enough.

Long-term, I would communicate with all three levels of management (golf cart manager, garage manager, and employer) that you need someone to prioritize the tasks the porters are required to complete in a given shift. Does the employer/garage owner list take precedence over the golf cart manager mandated one-off items, etc? Which items are you allow to put off when something higher in priority comes along?

Take it from the stance of trying to offer the best service possible to the garage owners and not as a complaint about having too many bosses.

Now where is my red Swingline stapler?

TootsNYC:

--- Quote --- Lately I have received phone calls from the porter manager over the parking garages I work at letting me know what he wants done. When that happens, I go do what he asks me to do. However, I also have other duties to do.

--- End quote ---


You need to tell him what is on your plate. As a manager, I would be really upset with you if you didn't say, "I'll need to do the space count at 3:30pm--please keep that in mind."
Or, I'd expect you to say: "You asked me to come get that debris--my schedule would have me over there in 1 hour anyway--do you want me to stop doing X and go take care of that before then?"

If you think these guys are unrealistic, then I think you should start saying, "How long do you think that will take? I'm figuring it'll be at least 5 minutes just to get to that other floor. And I've got the space count at 3:30."

I also think you could say to the manager(s), "Could we look at the full list, and at all the stuff you call in? I'm afraid it's more than is even possible. I'm wondering if we should redefine the frequency that's needed." To that end, you could carry a small notebook and keep a list of when you get calls from the managers and what they're asking. If they're asking you to do something that would normally get done a little later anyway, then that would be interesting to know.

(seriously--daily the cobwebs?)

Hmmmmm:
So you are cleaning cobwebs and pipes on the 3rd floor and the porter manager calls and asks you to clean up trash on 4th floor. You say "I'm currently finishing cobwebs and pipes on the 3rd floor as instructed by garage manager. I'll do the trash after I finish my 3:00pm count if that is ok with you." If he says no he wants it done now you call garage manager and say porter manager has assigned you to do trash clean up and you won't be able to finsih cobwebs and pipes till after the 3pm count is complete.

SlitherHiss:

--- Quote from: Hmmmmm on October 16, 2013, 01:51:07 PM ---So you are cleaning cobwebs and pipes on the 3rd floor and the porter manager calls and asks you to clean up trash on 4th floor. You say "I'm currently finishing cobwebs and pipes on the 3rd floor as instructed by garage manager. I'll do the trash after I finish my 3:00pm count if that is ok with you." If he says no he wants it done now you call garage manager and say porter manager has assigned you to do trash clean up and you won't be able to finsih cobwebs and pipes till after the 3pm count is complete.

--- End quote ---

This. Just lay out what is already on your schedule and make sure you keep all parties in the loop.

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