Meet the Deli Detail: The Cleaning Crew

We’re introducing you to our passionate team of experts. Today’s featured Deli crew member is actually an entire team… our Cleaning Crew!

About the Team

The Cleaning Crew only works when the Deli is closed to guests, so you likely haven’t had the pleasure of meeting any of them. And, it’s possible that one might only think about their roles if something was amiss (which, frankly, has yet to happen), which only adds to their under-the-radar status. Their work is an essential element to the Deli’s success, which is why we’re giving them a moment in the spotlight (…while still helping them maintain their preferred anonymity, that is!).

This team of seven is responsible for maintaining the cleanliness of the Deli’s buildings, grounds, and equipment. If you can name it, you can be pretty sure this crew cleans it. Everything inside you see (and don’t see!) from the retail spaces to the dining rooms to the kitchen areas. But not only are they responsible for over 14,000 square feet of interior space, they also take care of the exterior spaces as well: the patio, outdoor seating, gardens, and kids’ area. Those areas are swept and scrubbed in warm weather and shoveled and salted in cold weather.

On any given evening, four to six people will start work at 10 pm and keep going till they’re done. Some folks will finish at 2 am; others, between 5 and 6 am. All in the name of handing over a fresh working and dining environment to their fellow staff members and Deli guests every morning. 

Sweeping Away the Competition 

There’s a sense that everyone knows how to clean—after all, most of us are doing it in our own homes. In actuality, it’s a complex job that requires a high level of skill, partly because the crew is always aiming for a spotless job and partly because the terrain changes every fifty feet or so. Generally, it takes a few shifts in each area with an experienced trainer to get a new staff person used to the lay of the land and the crew’s level of cleaning.

Some things have changed how this group works over the years, like the additional spaces to clean that came with the Deli’s expansion in 2012 and a commitment to using greener cleaning supplies. Some things haven’t changed though. Our Cleaning Crew has remained a professional group who all take great care in the work that they do. As our Cleaning Manager says, “I am especially proud of their ability to remain adaptable when the Deli is moving through a holiday, a graduation, a renovation, or whatever else there is that affects our day-to-day schedule.”

Another One Fights the Dust

Unfortunately, our Cleaning Crew can’t magically have your home sparkling clean come morning, but they did share a few of their top tips for cleaning at home:

    • Stick with a schedule. It’s easier to clean on a regular basis than it is to wait until a situation is out of hand and you absolutely have to do it.
    • Don’t forget to look up. We’re so used to focusing on what is in front of us that we sometimes forget to focus on what’s above us. Remember to clean more than just what’s at or below eye level and let your gaze drift up to catch those dusty fan blades and cobwebbed corners.
    • Break it up into manageable chunks. South African theologian Desmond Tutu once said, “There is only one way to eat an elephant: a bite at a time.” Turns out, his advice applies to cleaning projects, too! Set yourself up for success by tackling smaller tasks rather than trying to do everything at once.