In my window cleaning business we all basically dress like a bunch of kids, things are very casual. The only one who ever dresses really nice is our store front salesman, because hes not hidden away in the office like the rest of us. He wears a nice collared shirt, pressed pants and shiny shoes each day. Store front sales have been a bit slow lately, lots of new competition hitting the area.
I saw the sales man coming in the other day and he was carrying a pair of skate shoes, jeans, and a hoodie. I asked him what was up and he said he had a new theory about store front owners immediately getting turned off when they see a salesperson come in. So he met up with one of the window cleaners that had a light day and sold neighboring stores while the other guy was cleaning.
His pitch was as simple as “Hey we are cleaning the windows next door, can I intrest you in signing up and getting your windows cleaned today?”
I was shocked to see him come back with a big handfull of newly signed accounts that day. So we are going to be continuing with this technique for a bit, I will keep you posted on how it goes. Try something new today, you might be surprised with the results!
Last year around this time we broke down and fully outfitted every single one of our window cleaning trucks with water fed poles and IPC pure water units. This was originally a move to increase safety and to get our insurance bill lowered.
We pay our window cleaners on percentage scale so there pay can fluctuate quite a bit. Recently I decided to get a weekly report from our operations manager on the amount of gallons run through each machine over the course of a week. I started comparing the gallons used to the supervisors salary that week. I found a 100% direct correlation between staff pay and gallons used. There was a $13 per hour variance in pay between the guy who used the most gallons and the guy who used the least gallons. I could also easily pick out who got paid the most and who got paid the least just by looking at the gallons used report. Interesting stuff.
I talked a lot over the past winter on the WCR forum about some major changes we made at All County Window Cleaning for the 2013 season.
We changed the following:
Staff pay plan
Crew orginazation, we only work in teams of 2 now
The addition of a full time operations manager
Permanent work schedule and only one Saturday a month
Stricter enforcement of WFP use
So far things have been going great. We have been able to give our staff a better sense of consistency in hours worked and schedule. Our frontline staff is getting paid more, employee satisfaction is up. Customer complaints are down 82% and referrals are higher than ever. These were some pretty drastic changes for us, it was a scary move. But it turned out to be great for our company.
Oh and the most important part.. This whole thing was spurred by a ex employee that had been fired and came in 3 months later to tell me everything that sucked about my company.