MU Today News and views especially for the MU Community

Dave's Blog

View all posts

Custodial staff makes a difference, deserves our gratitude

by Melinda Lantz | Apr 20, 2018

Posted April 20 - I had an opportunity to spend two hours this past Monday morning helping Amy Hendrix, Tanya Hartsock and Wendy Isbell clean Schwalm Hall. They also clean the Academic Center for us. They rearranged their Monday cleaning schedule to start in Schwalm so that I could be with them at the start of the day – 6 to 8 a.m. (early for me, routine for them).

I’d heard horror stories about the condition of Schwalm on some Monday mornings and wanted to see them firsthand, but they told me that what we found that morning was pretty routine. They were both relieved not to find major messes and disappointed that I didn’t experience some of what they find when things are bad.

What I did experience that morning was a crew of colleagues who work seamlessly together, who thoroughly enjoy one another’s company, who know that what they do makes a difference in student lives and who enjoy – for the most part – the work they do every day.

Here is the core of what I learned: Like all of us, they deeply appreciate simple behaviors that make their work easier – trash put in a trash can and messes cleaned up by the person(s) who made them, for example. They also appreciate hearing “thank you” and knowing that their work is valued.

My two hours were mostly spent scrubbing sinks and taking out trash. They graciously allowed me to help them (if you can call what I did help) and didn’t complain when I slowed them down. I’m grateful for both and grateful for all that they and their custodial staff colleagues do for Manchester students, faculty and staff.