With around 100 arena events and 100 private events every year, FedExForum hosts millions of guests annually. Most people attending these events are completely oblivious to the “show” that’s going on behind the scenes – the hundreds of people an unbelievable number of hours put in to make the games and events possible.
As a facilities group manager for ServiceMaster by Stratos, a local commercial janitorial services company that oversees the cleaning of FedExForum, I have an insider’s view of that behind-the-scenes show, which includes a team of people all working to achieve one common goal – an amazing guest experience.
In addition to the Stratos janitorial crew, it also takes the hard work of contractors and a conversion team, among others, to set up and break down each show, which are often lined up back to back.
For example, Disney on Ice was in town in September and put on seven shows in a three-day period. Once that show completed, the ice had to be melted as quickly as possible and replaced by an 8-inch base of dirt, brought in by approximately 40 dump trucks, for the Professional Bull Riders Exhibition.
Just imagine the dust that can settle around the arena after that conversion! Of course, the dirt didn’t stay long, as the Grizzlies preseason started soon after the PBR Exhibition, and so it was removed immediately after the show to make room for the hardwood court.
Our team also stays busy during the events. FedExForum holds 18,119 people, resulting in many hours worked and a surprising amount of materials used during events. During an average event, the Stratos team goes through 300 trash liners, 120 rolls of industrial toilet paper and 72,000 feet of paper towels.
Before joining Stratos, I only understood the guest perspective, as many of you do, but now that I exist behind the scenes, I take great pride in making sure the venue is spotless before the first ticket is scanned and that it remains that way during each event.
For us, it really is about the guest experience – whether you notice us or not, we’re working hard to make sure you enjoy the show in a nice, clean and completely stocked venue!