Founded in 1990 by Youness Baftechi, the Delaware Chapter of IFMA provides facility managers the opportunity to further their professional and personal development through education and networking in a welcoming environment.
The chapter has approximately 100 members, including four elected executive board positions and several appointed chairpersons. Chapter meetings are held the first Tuesday of each month, September through June, and offer a variety of programs and meeting formats. We also hold two “Lunch & Learn” meetings planned to address topics of particular interest.
The workshop was set up in a great venue at the Wilmington DoubleTree Hilton. There was plenty of great food for the attendees to eat in preparation of the education. The atmosphere was warm and welcoming to all the attendees. They all seemed to be discussing current issues and problems that their individual organizations were facing. It was a great environment to collaborate, and network with experienced professionals in the industry. We were privileged to have a high number of first attendees at the workshop that have recently decided to join the Delaware chapter. Most importantly, the workshop was filled with highly intelligent professionals that were interested in continual improvement. Everyone was ready to learn something new that they could apply into their organizations.
The focus of the education was to help facility managers and contractors understand their role in the future industry. Since the industry is changing so quickly with technology and information, organizations are looking to reduce costs, improve quality, increase efficiency, and gain higher profits. The secret of how to move to this futuristic organization came from Dr. Kashiwagi’s family. He relayed some business concepts that he learned from 40 years of marriage and eight children. Not only did everyone understand the concepts in marriage and family life but Dr. Kashiwagi was able to show how they applied in business. Some of the revolutionary concepts were thinking less, making fewer decisions, and creating simplicity with metrics. Everyone left understanding a little more about how to improve their organization.
The chapter enjoyed a session that helped them to think outside the traditional way of doing business. It was refreshing for the group to hear about solutions to continual problems faced in their industries. Sue Thompson, the Past President of the IFMA Delaware, summed it up perfectly by saying:
“Dr. Kashiwagi presented an entertaining and thought-provoking message to a lunch-and-learn meeting for our IFMA chapter. Attendees found his style delightful and the meeting became quite interactive, particularly during the question-and-answer period. People stayed afterward to speak with him further and several wanted to know how they could learn more of Dr. Dean’s unique approach to management and procurement. We felt honored to have him as a guest at our small chapter and found it to be an exciting kick-off to our program year! Thanks, Dr. Dean!”
At the end of the workshop, some attendees were lucky to leave with a little prize!