There are two ways you can look at an office with its own kitchen. It can be a blessing to be able to make lunch at work and whip up all the coffee you need to survive a particularly busy day. Or it can be a curse to see all those dirty mugs piling up on the kitchen sink, especially if you’re one clean freak.
Whichever way you look at it, it’s important to keep the company kitchen clean. An icky kitchen can be the birthplace of food-borne illnesses, accidents such as slipping on spills, and animosity between co-workers pointing fingers at who should load the dishes into the washer.
It’s a problem many managers have unsuccessfully dealt with, but you don’t have to be one of them if you do the following.
Create a clear kitchen policy and make it public.
Draw up clear kitchen rules and make sure everybody knows about them. Treat them as you would other company rules. Include them in the company manual, discuss them during orientation for new hires, and go over them every once in a while to keep everyone reminded.
Give everyone kitchen duty.
If you have a roster where everyone takes turns cleaning up the office kitchen, make sure everyone is included in the roster, including the manager. A good leader serves as a good example, and employees seeing their boss wiping up the sticky kitchen counter ought to guilt them into cleaning their own messes.
Give them all they need.
Make sure employees have everything they need to keep the kitchen clean. These include dishwashing liquid, cleaning cloths, extra-large garbage bins, and the like. Don’t forget to include hand soap. Many people refuse to do their kitchen chores only because they won’t be able to clean their hands afterward.
If all else fails, consider hiring a professional. In Dallas, many janitorial services specialize in cleaning company offices, including the dreaded company kitchens.
Even if your workers are pretty happy cleaning up after themselves, professional cleaners can provide extra services you just won’t be able to get your workers to do, such as mopping floors, taking out the garbage, and sanitizing countertops.
Leaving the cleaning to the pros could give your employees an extra boost so they can focus more on their jobs instead of thinking of ways to avoid their turn to do kitchen duty.