Details – Who Pays Attention?


The other day I noticed that the flags flying in front of a luxury residential building were torn and tattered while blowing in the wind.  Apparently these flags have been in this condition for quite some time.  This lead me to wonder how many people notice the world around them…how many people take an interest in bringing such things to those who can correct them…how many people care? 

During my many years as in the hospitality industry, I learned to be proactive to ensure a great experience for my guests.  It was standard procedure for a hotel to keep an inventory of each flag so that we could immediately replace it when required.  Once the new flag went up, a back up was ordered.  If a new flag was unavailable, for whatever reason, we took down the “flying rag” until a new one arrived.  In that environment it was unacceptable to allow a torn and tattered flag to fly from the flagpole.  After all, the flagpole is usually located at the front of the hotel.  What impression would a torn and tattered flag give to an arriving guest – and in this case a homeowner or prospective buyer?

A successful operator of hotels or residential buildings is usually inspecting and using viewing lens to see a property in much more intense way than most individuals who work or live there. Most people will see a bookshelf full of books and possibly, if time permits, survey the titles.  The successful operator will see the bookshelf, the books and the layer of dust on top of the books and immediately correct the situation; have the dust removed so that a guest, owner or visitor does not observe the deficiency. They see things differently and are focused on maintaining and enhancing the property and ensuring a safe and enjoyable guest / owner experience. I am always evaluating my surroundings and correcting deficiencies over which I have direct control. My difficulty is in leaving my viewing lens at home or at work, as the case may be.

The cliché, “ the devil is in the details,” cannot be overstated in this environment. Again, I wonder how many people really pay attention to the details or even notice the environment around them at work or at home? Are most people are too busy going about their life that they rarely notice the environment in which they work or live?

In my opinion, paying attention to details of the world around us provides an opportunity to make things better and improve our environment directly or by bringing things to the attention of those who can correct them.  If nothing more, one would at least be able to maintain the status quo.  Hopefully a torn and tattered flag is not the status quo. 

However, I must remind myself that others do not view the world as I do and the majority of folks do not care about such details.  Obviously if they did, those tattered flags I noticed would have been replaced long ago.


About midtowntim

I'm a licensed community manager, community volunteer and I live in a multi-family high-rise condo.
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1 Response to Details – Who Pays Attention?

  1. Greg says:

    Your hospitality industry background serves you well and is evident in the communities where you work. It has been my experience when you see “dust on the books”, you can also see dirt and grime pile up in the entry/drive, stains here and there on the carpet in the hallway and
    scuffed up baseboards.

    A successful operator pays attention to these details, so the building’s beauty and charm are noticed. And, works to create a community environment that is free of the “dust” …. figuratively speaking.

    Thanks for your insightful writing.

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