Cleaning Business Success – You Can Do It!
Cleaning business success – you can do it even though it isn’t something you can guarantee, you can do a lot to reduce the factors against making it.
We want you to be well prepared for the journey ahead as a small cleaning business owner operator, we’ll lay before you here 7 factors which had we not solved them our cleaning business success would’ve been in doubt.
Not only that we’ll help you with good information about how we managed to overcome those things.
And it’s been our business as small business owners to find answers to problems which could prevent our cleaning business success.
You see, when we started our business 30 years ago gaining good advice was not as easy as it is today, we didn’t have Intenet resources such as they are now.
You’re in a great position to make a cleaning business succeed.
Bullets To Dodge
- Be sure to price your work well and don’t forget to factor in enough to pay yourself.
- Price your work as though you’re not going to do the work yourself, work out what it would take to put an employee into the job and factor that into the price you charge.
- Someday your cleaning business will expand, you’ll need to place employees into existing work. If you’ve underpriced your work it’ll threaten your viability.
We found this out the hard way, and it took some months to correct it.
It’s a challenge for any small business, a cleaning business success is tied to expansion.
It’s always a thrill to get a new client…but not at the cost of your business.
Any new work has to be viable. Don’t get caught in a price war thinking the only way to get that work is on price!
- Add yourself to the payroll and pay yourself regularly. …
- Take out ‘reasonable compensation’ …
- Consider the legal structure of your business. …
- Be tax efficient: Five pointers. …
- Don’t forget deductions, expenses and benefits.
Next Bullet – Don’t spend $3000 on a Fax Machine
Yes that’s right…waaay back in the late 1980s we were told we needed a fax machine to send reports to our franchisor. It wasn’t needed. That was a lot of money to spend…we still purchased it. Duh!!
The point being…don’t spend $$$ on stuff that doesn’t help you produce an income. Especially in the early stages of your business.
- You don’t need a new Van
- You don’t need the latest piece of equipment etc
Build up your cash reserves that will serve you better than a $3000 Fax or a new whatever…
If you’re not convinced here’s 40 Ways Small Business Owners Waste Money.
We were curious to see where business owners waste the most money in the early days. So we reached out and asked what small business owners thought was the #1 biggest money waster for small business owners.
Next Bullet – Income Greater Than Outgoings
In a nutshell…don’t spend more than you earn plus whatever amount you’d like to salt away in a cash reserves account.
The trick to this is keeping your costs low.
Hiring people in the cleaning industry is the biggest cost of all. It’s not the only cost you’ll need to control. However, it’s one that can get away on you, and fast.
Up to 65% of revenue goes out in wages and associated costs such as:
- Holiday pay
- Long service leave
- Sick pay
- Carers leave
- Superannuation etc
Don’t hire for pleasure; hire to kill pain. Always ask your self: What if we don’t hire anyone? Is that extra work that’s burdening us really necessary? Can we solve the problem with a slice of software or a change of practice instead? What if we just don’t do it?
From page 204…Rework.
It’s a great little book I thoroughly recommend it…check out this PDF of excerpts from the book.
Next Bullet – Get Your Clients to Love Your Employees
In the early stages of your business you’ll do most of the work you’ll do a great job and clients love you for it.
Eventually you’ll need to replace yourself in some of that work. This is a nervous time for you because you’re now handing your baby over to a largely unknown quantity…your employee.
It’s very rare to find an employee who’ll work with the same care as you do. If you do…treasure them.
To prepare for this transition I suggest the following:
- Write down and systemize everything you do in the job you plan to place an employee into.
- Make this into a schedule of duties for your new employee
- Let your client know you intend to place an employee into the job
- Reassure them you’ll monitor the site and the employee for a seemless transition
- Introduce the employee in such a way that the cleaner is ‘real’ to your client. They’re not just a cleaner. “Tom is your new cleaner, he’s a dad with three kids etc.” Something to make your new cleaner more than ‘the cleaner’
- Stay in touch…don’t disconnect from the client or the site
- I’ll admit I’m not brilliant at this, sometime I let it go too long between visits
- Stay in touch
Next Bullet – Replace Yourself
It’ll make sense to do this as your business expands, sooner or later this bridge is to be crossed. In a physically demanding industry such as cleaning your health and wellbeing is something to consider and there’s a limit to how much cleaning you can do in one day.
A few years ago I hurts my back moving something ( a piano)!! My wife said I was stupid…and she was right. It meant I needed to find employees and fast. On the otherhand it was the best thing too. It forced us to restructure things.
To succeed in this you’ll need to systemize the things you are doing. This makes it possible to hand the hat over to someone else.
Once the new fellow or girl knows the system without having to think about it you’ll have a great employee.
A system makes it easy to identify what could be going wrong if you start to get complaints, when that happens, check if the employee is following our systems. The answer is generally ‘no’, I thought it was easier to do it this way…’
Next Bullet – Under Promise Over Deliver
Resist the urge to promise more than you’re capable of delivering. An easy trap to fall into especially when you do a walk through with a new prospect.
It can be as innocent as saying “we would never allow dust to settle on that surface”… you mean it when you say it and in an ideal world your word would hold true…right.
But that promise will stick in your clients mind to come back bite you the first or second time your cleaner misses it.
I find it much better to be upfront with prospects and say we expect our cleaners to clean to a high standard but we’re also real enough to know sometimes points get overlooked.
Seek a point of agreement on this.
And then I go on to assure them we’ll respond to issues in a timely manner and not let things persist, ask them if they’re okay with that?
Most people are, honestly if they’re not, you don’t want that client.
With that out of the way…make sure you deliver to a high standard, find opportunities to go above and beyond their expectations. It doesn’t have to be huge. And let them know about it.
Go the extra mile, it’s never crowded.
- We’ll clear some rubbish out of the way even though it’s not part of what was expected
- We’ll notice damage and report it
Clients appreciate that you care for their property and interests.
Next Bullet – Don’t Build A Job – Build A Business
Cleaning business success is a process of growing from one person doing it all to you finding a way to add people as it makes sense to do so. It’ll depend what you envision for yourself.
Wouldn’t it be nice to grow your business to a size where you work on it rather than in it all the time.
If that’s your goal, you’ll need to commit to it. Seek good information to help you overcome hurdles as they appear. Make use of online learning and educate yourself. Link up with like minded people for support and community.
MyHouseCleaningBiz is one place where you’ll find resources in volume to help you start your own cleaning business. Check it out…
I’m willing to help where I feel I can make a difference & if I am not able to assist you personally I’ll find an answer for you.
Fell free to post a comment below we love to hear from our readers, and I promise to respond.