My Actual Job

Find out what people actually do!

Operations Manager for a Facilities Management Company

Q1: Where are you located?

A1: I am located in South East London but travel across the UK.

Q2: What is your role title?

A2: My role title is Operations Manager.

Q3: In your words, describe what you actually do?

A3: I oversee the operational performance and service delivery of my company's facilities management contracts. This involves managing a team of contract managers, ensuring best practices, collaborating with clients, and resolving any issues.

Q4: How long have you been doing this role for?

A4: I've been in this operations management role for 5 years now.

Q5: How did you get to this point in your career?

A5: I started my career in an administrative role and worked my way up to coordinator, then management positions over a period of 10 years with this company.

Q6: When it comes to remuneration, what are your three B’s? (Base, Bonus, Benefits?)

A6: For remuneration, my base salary is £75,000, I receive an annual bonus up to 15%, and benefits include healthcare, pension, and discounted childcare.

Q7: I’m not going to ask you who you work for, but, what industry is your company in?

A7: My company provides facilities management and maintenance services.

Q8: When it comes to work flexibility, is your work primarily office-based, fully remote, or a mix of both? Which do you prefer? Does your company allow you to be flexible?

A8: My work is a mix of office and site visits. I prefer the mix as I enjoy getting out to meet the teams and see our services in action. My company provides flexibility to work remotely when needed.

Q9: What does an average week or a typical day look like for you? Can you walk me through your day? What time do you arrive and start at work, what are your main tasks/responsibilities, who do you interact with, what meetings do you attend, etc.?

A9: A typical day starts around 8 am either in the office or visiting a site. I check in with my team, review KPIs, prepare for meetings, liaise with clients to address needs, work on contracts, handle escalations, and provide coaching and feedback to my team. I also attend senior leadership meetings.

Q10: What does a typical day look like when things are going well vs a more challenging/stressful day?

A10: On good days, things run smoothly and I can work proactively. Challenging days involve reactive firefighting of issues arising.

Q11: What skills or knowledge are most important for your day-to-day work?

A11: Key skills are communication, collaboration, problem-solving, leadership, and contractual/operational knowledge.

Q12: What are some examples of recent accomplishments or contributions you've made in this role?

A12: Recent accomplishments include improving client satisfaction scores, onboarding new contracts smoothly, and promoting talent within my team.

Q13: Do you have a supportive manager and do you feel valued?

A13: I have a very supportive manager and feel valued for my contributions.

Q14: How much time do you spend collaborating with colleagues vs working independently?

A14: It's a 50/50 split between independent work and collaboration.

Q15: Is there anything you wish you would have known before starting this role?

A15: I wish I had known the importance of cultivating relationships early in my career.

Q16: What do you hate most about your role?

A16: The administrative workload can be tedious at times.

Q17: What do you love most about your role?

A17: I love developing my team and seeing our services positively impact people.

Q18: What’s the next role for you and when do you hope to achieve this?

A18: My next role is Regional Manager, which I hope to achieve in the next 2 years.

Q19: Is your next role going to be with the same company or a different one?

A19: I plan to continue growing my career here rather than moving companies.

Q20: What’s one piece of advice you could give to someone who aspires to reach your position?

A20: My advice is to actively seek out challenges and opportunities to learn beyond your core role. Say yes to stretch assignments.

Q21: It’s Day 1 for someone in your role. What one piece of advice would you give them to succeed?

Here are my top pieces of advice for someone starting as an Operations Manager:

  •  Observe and listen more than you speak – Spend the first few weeks focused on
    understanding how things currently operate before making any changes. Get to
    know your team and their roles. Learn the strengths and weaknesses of the
    contracts you manage.
  •  Build relationships – Introduce yourself to key stakeholders like clients and
    vendors. Spend time understanding their needs and concerns. Set up regular
    touchpoints to foster collaboration.
  •  Don’t go it alone – Rely on the expertise of your team. Ask lots of questions and
    involve them in discussing challenges and ideas. Delegate tasks to empower
    your team.
  • Communicate proactively – Overcommunicate, especially early on. Share status
    updates, plans, and rationale to get buy-in. Be transparent about issues that arise.
  • Absorb as much as you can – Immerse yourself in learning the operational
    processes and systems. Take thorough notes. Ask for Standard Operating
    Procedures and training if needed.
  •  Look for quick wins – Identifying some quick improvements or wins can build
    trust and momentum early on. But don’t move too fast before fully assessing
  • Manage up strategically – Make sure your manager is kept informed and onboard
    with plans. Align on priorities and expectations for the role.
  • Believe in yourself – Have confidence in your abilities even as you learn. Don’t be
    afraid to try new approaches and take measured risks.

Enjoying the read? Get access to unlimited content!

Please enter your email address