• Feb 14, 2013

    Top Ten Ways to Make This a Green Valentines Day

    In spirit of the holiday, Steve Ashkin, father of green cleaning, put together 10 of the best ways to celebrate, while minimally impacting the environment. According to Ashkin, “It’s actually quite easy. [In fact,] there are so many ways to make Valentine’s Day, and every day for that matter, greener and more sustainable, I actually had trouble listing just ten.” Click here to check out...
    • Feb 7, 2013

    Recognizing The Importance Of Facility Management

    Earlier this week, CleanLink reported on the one facility management issue that couldn't have gone unnoticed, the blackout at the Super Bowl. I applaud IFMA for coming out with the following statement. I couldn't have said it better myself. Here is a preview: International Facility Management Association President and CEO Tony Keane, CAE released the following statement after a facility failure at the Superdome...
    • Jan 10, 2013

    There are great people in this industry

    Although the national media will more often than not report bad news pertaining to the jan/san industry, there are times when I come across a story that exemplifies the warmth and kindness that I see every day in our readers. Today, I read an article about one custodial worker at the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport that I felt compelled to share. As seen on msnNOW.com: "Few would pass up the chance...
    • Dec 19, 2012

    What your toilet paper says about you

    I thought this was pretty funny and wanted to share it with everyone. Enjoy!
    • Nov 9, 2012

    Prevent Flu in the Workplace With Five Simple Steps

    The U.S. Department of Health estimates that five to 20 percent of Americans will contract the flu each year, with more than 200,000 hospitalized for flu-related complications. That said, there are ways to minimize the affects of the flu in the workplace. By identifying the main areas where viruses and bacteria thrive and implementing disinfection strategies that target the germ hotspots, cleaning professionals can...
    • Aug 23, 2012

    Victim of Bed Bugs

    Due to the nature of my work on Housekeeping Solutions magazine and CleanLink.com, I have become somewhat skeptical/judgmental/critical when it comes to the cleanliness of any particular facility. And in my defense, if you received announcements and read reports of bacterial outbreaks, infection control issues and bed bugs on a daily basis, you too might enter facilities with caution — especially in a hotel or hospital...
    • Jun 19, 2012

    Germ Chasers Target Hotels

    Is it me, or have we have we seen this story before? Mainstream media does an "inside investigation" in hotel rooms and compiles a list of the most germ-ridden surfaces. They then put together a report, which is often successful in scaring the general public from setting foot in any hotel, and putting housekeeping departments under the microscope. This latest report comes from a group of university researchers...
    • Feb 1, 2012

    Green Cleaning Legislation - Friend or Foe?

    As of yesterday, Kentucky is the latest state to pass a green cleaning bill (view details here ), legislation that comes on the heals of a similar bill passed in Vermont (details here ) — two of the 23 states with green cleaning recommendations in place. And just prior to those, ISSA reported on a House bill that would require ingredient disclosure of cleaning products across the country (additional information...
    • Jan 19, 2012

    What does Gingrich have against janitors?

    Whether you are following the debates or not, you're likely familiar with the splattering of comments from Newt Gingrich pertaining to custodial work in schools. Back in November, we reported on some of Gingrich's first comments in a speech he made at Harvard School of Government. In that speech, he stressed his frustrations with child labor laws, saying the laws entrap impoverished children further into destitution...
    • Jul 11, 2011

    Cleaning in the Hands of Amateurs

    I have a couple friends who are teachers, and even more who are parents. Both, I am told, have received requests from their local schools to bring cleaning supplies at the start of the school year. Teachers have been told by their administration that funding just isn't there for smaller budget items, including microfiber cloths and muti-surface cleaning/disinfecting sprays that are used in classrooms. Meanwhile...
    • Dec 3, 2010

    Saving Money By Forgoing Housekeeping

    The recession has forced custodial managers in the hospitality industry to get creative with budgets. Most departments have already been cut to the extreme and function using only a skeleton crew, so it makes sense when frequency is scrutinized. For example, in many hotels, it was decided that guests would be offered the option to forgo housekeeping services during their multi-night stay as a way to trim already thin...
    • Jun 30, 2010

    Frustrations With Recycling

    I once wrote a blog titled, “ Recycling: Am I The Only One Doing It? ” In that blog, I expressed concern with the blatant omission of recycling programs while visiting various areas in Georgia and South Carolina. Well, my frustrations continue. I was in Florida not to long ago and was forced to hold my tongue when I realized the lack of recycling efforts. It started while a guest in a home. I had used...
    • Jun 7, 2010

    Make New Friends, But Keep The Old

    When I was a little girl in Girl Scouts, we learned a song that still rings true today. “Make new friends, but keep the old. One is silver and the other’s gold.” Young or old, this song reminds us to expand our horizons and reach out and welcome new contacts, coworkers and friends into our lives. Last month, I had the pleasure of participating in the industry’s very first virtual trade...
    • May 4, 2010

    Day Cleaning As Green Cleaning

    Historically, cleaning has been conducted during the evening hours, when building occupants are vacant from the premises. The reason for cleaning at night was simple; work can be done without disrupting building occupant productivity. Harsh chemicals, loud and cumbersome equipment and areas closed for cleaning would prove disruptive to building occupants. But innovations over the years have created both the opportunity...
    • Apr 23, 2010

    Two Minds Are Better Than One: Partnering On Green

    Whether implementing a new green program or continuing your road to success, sharing ideas, gaining insight and celebrating achievements is a lot easier when you have a partner on your side. For the custodial manager, that partner should be the jan/san distributor. On May 11th at the CleaningGreen Virtual Conference & Expo, attendees who take advantage of this free event can sit in while Phillip Consolino...
    • Jan 5, 2010

    I Did “Enjoy The Go,” Thanks

    A few weeks back, my husband and I took an impromptu trip to New York. It was our first time in the Big Apple and we had many attractions on our must-see list, as well as a few attractions we stumbled upon while we were there. What I didn’t expect to make the list was a restroom, but in my line of work, I guess it shouldn’t have been a surprise, either. For those of you who have never been to Manhattan...
    • Sep 4, 2009

    Now That It’s Built Green, How Is It Maintained?

    The green movement continues to grow stronger and stronger every year. There’s no question about that. With more accessible information, better training and a greater overall understanding of what it means to be green, facility managers across the country are embracing green as mainstream. Along with the push towards green, the quest for certification has exploded as the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC...
    • Aug 10, 2009

    If You're Gonna Clean, At Least Do It Right

    I recently learned that an acquaintance of mine works as a facility manager in a smaller company where he oversees and manages the cleanliness of the building. There is no in-house cleaner on hand so he outsources the custodial services. But I learned that he doesn’t actually outsource the service to a jan/san company, but to another friend of ours as a way to save money. She alone cleans the entire facility...
    • Jul 24, 2009

    Buyer Beware: Understanding Green Claims

    Green is everywhere. The general public walks up and down consumer store aisles full of products touting green, sustainability or environmentally friendly. Consumer news stations cover water conservation and energy issues on a regular basis. Governmental bodies are moving forward with the production of legislation requiring minimized energy usage and certified cleaning products and practices. Even our own trade publications...
    • Jul 2, 2009

    Cleaners Should Also Be Educators

    As an editor, I am either writing or researching something about the cleaning industry every day. Whether its for an article, catching up with a reader or moderating a Webcast, the information I have access to can be very valuable in everyday life. In fact, this constant attention to cleaning has unveiled a lot of information the common person (outside the industry) might not be aware of. For instance, as we were renovating...
    • Jun 17, 2009

    Janitors Fight For Their Jobs Among Overwhelming Odds

    Over the last year, the number of Michigan-based in-house janitors to receive their walking papers has drastically increased. The reason is a growing trend towards outsourcing of jan/san departments within public schools. In light of deep budget cuts, school board members are tasked with making the difficult decision of eliminating the in-house staff in favor of a lower cost outsourced crew. The shift in services reportedly...
    • May 8, 2009

    When Times Get Tough, Negotiate

    Facility managers across the country are cutting back on everything from purchasing to employees, but even a department’s fixed costs might not be as fixed as you think. In our current economic situation, businesses and contractors are much more willing to negotiate costs and services to maintain a strong and committed working relationship. When faced with budget cuts, these service negotiations can provide a little...
    • Apr 17, 2009

    The Ultimate Push For Green

    Not too long ago, the New York Times reported on the environmental steps the new First Family has taken since moving into the White House. Michelle Obama built an organic vegetable garden, solar panels are being considered and the new play set for the Obama girls is made out of all recycled and non-toxic materials. Even drinking fountains throughout the grounds are being upgraded to promote the use of refillable bottles...
    • Apr 8, 2009

    Giving Credit Where Credit Is Due

    In the February issue of Housekeeping Solutions magazine, we featured an article on successful methods for treating gym floors . One of the facilities highlighted was University of Wisconsin’s Kohl Center in Madison, Wis. I recently had the opportunity to tour the Kohl Center while attending the high school state championships and I have to say, I was pleased with what I saw — specifically in regards to the...
    • Mar 3, 2009

    Stimulating Green: Is Cleaning Left Out?

    As President Barack Obama gets settled into the White House, his push for an economic stimulus package has taken form. In an effort to reshape the economy into one that is greener, cleaner and more sustainable, the new economic stimulus package includes $71 billion for energy and environmental initiatives and another $20 billion for green tax incentives. But does it include cleaning? Green provisions to Obama’s...