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July 13, 2012: The Residential Cleaning Connection
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News, Netoworking & Events

The Residential Cleaning Connection

News, Networking & Events for the Cleaning Professional

July 13, 2012 - Vol 3, Issue 14

ARCSI Resources

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Looking to GROW Your Business? Click HERE

Join us in Virginia Beach July 14.

ARCSI Industry Partner-Moody's Insurance Visit us in Vegas!

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From the Executive Director

This and That....

Awards Applications

There is nothing we like better than having members call the office. It makes our day. When they do call usually the first thing I do is pop up their website, so I can see what's happening in their business. There is no doubt ARCSI has great members, doing great things in their communities, for their customers, and for their employees. There are a plethora of great websites, great logos, great cleaners (based on testimonials from customers), great looking vehicles, and very cool and informative newsletters.

enidSo why aren't our great members submitting their web sites, logos, vehicles, newsletters, marketing ideas, and employees (both cleaners and office staff) for the ARCSI Awards??? Come on, toot your own horn. It's OK. Here are the links to both our Image Awards application, and Professional Cleaner of the Year and Presidents Award application. The deadline is August 1.

Ten Years Already?

ARCSI will be kicking off our 10 Year Anniversary Celebration at this year's Convention. Ten years and still growing. We need your help. If you have pictures from past ARCSI events, send them to us. If you have a special memory of how ARCSI help your business or you made a connection with another ARCSI member tell us about it.

We are currently planning a number of special events and activities for the next year to commemorate our 10th anniversary. I'll bet you did not know that according to ARCSI records our first two members were Dawn Raffler of Clarkston Cleaning, and Theresa Peterson of Quality Cleaning, Maid to Order.

Convention Volunteers

SocksEnhance your Convention experience, volunteer! Our Convention Chair Jeff Lange and Co-Chair Angela Wilson will be reaching out to ARCSI members over the next month to ask for your help. At last count we need a cadre of 50 volunteers to help us make Chicago a convention to remember. So consider spending an hour manning the ARCSI booth on the show floor (great way to meet new people), be a "Members Lounge Captain" to help members needing information on where to go and what to do, join the "Trade Show Scavenger Team" to help us collect those great products we give away in our raffle, or be part of our raffle ticket sales team. There will be plenty to do, so don't be shy. The more the merrier! If you're interested in getting involved, email Chris Zimmer today!

Don't Miss the Worm.....

The early bird gets the worm and our Convention early bird pricing ends on July 27th, why haven't you registered yet.

Hope you all enjoyed the picture of my granddaughter on the 4th!

See you in Chicago!


ARCSI LogoYou've joined ARCSI, but are not quite sure what the organization is doing for you? Have you been a member, but not taking advantage of the many services ARCSI offers?

Join us Tuesday, July 24 at Noon Eastern/9 am Pacific for the ARCSI New Member Webinar. During this live event, hosts Dee Strickland and David Kiser will walk you through how to make the most of your ARCSI membership. We'll talk about education and networking, but also the vast Member Resource Library and how ARCSI can help you grow your residential cleaning business.

Click here to register for this FREE webinar!

House Cleaning Tech Training Coming to DC in Just One Week!
How do you set your residential cleaning company apart in a highly competitive market? What differentiates your company from others in your area? What is your unique selling proposition?

The Institute for Service Excellence (ISE) is committed to helping you elevate your brand through House Cleaning Technician (HCT) Certification. In this two-day certification class cleaning technicians are taught the value and criteria for developing a proper cleaning methodology, including the microbiology and chemistry behind soil, as well as how to identify and care for many of thematerials and surfaces commonly found in homes.

The technicians Certification gives you a competitive edge over all other cleaning services in Washington DC. You can find out more and register for the class, being held July 20-21, by clicking here.

President Alonzo Adams and Stacie McMillian of Clean & SimpleEach year, ARCSI members recognize the best of the best among their ranks by presenting the ARCSI Image Awards, Professional Cleaner of the Year and President's Awards. Submitting your application for one of these awards is easier than you think. The Awards Committee wants ALL ARCSI members to submit for at least one award.

Image Awards are presented in the categories of Best logo, print newsletter, e-newsletter, vehicle graphics, marketing plan, marketing tool, uniforms and website (sponsored this year by MaidEasy Software). You can download the submission form here.

New Convention Sponsor - Mr Clean Professional The Professional Cleaner of the Year, sponsored by Mr. Clean Professional, honors the cleaning tech that you can't do without. Their dependability, enthusiasm and attitude make them the example for other employees. You can nominate your Professional Cleaner of the Year by downloading the submission form here.

ARCSI Industry Partner-Moody's Insurance The ARCSI President's, sponsored by Moody Insurance Worldwide, Award recognizes the office person that is your right hand. They are the person you leave in charge when you are away, the leader other employees look to for guidance and the office staffer that you can't live without. You can nominate your President's Award candidate by downloading the form here.

Has your business stalled or slowed dramatically? The bad economy may not be to blame. You may be stuck at one of the natural plateaus that plague almost all small businesses. How you manage your business right now can make the difference between whether you:

1. Propel your business forward to establish it at the next level of growth and profit with a great self-sufficient team, less stress and more free time, or

2. Stay stuck with a frustrating, slow growing, inefficient business that eats up your life.

The choice is yours. It really is! Because conquering your plateau is a skill you can learn and repeat to catapult your business continuously upward.

If you want to get unstuck and growing again, please join ARCSI and business coach Bill Silverman Wednesday, July 18 at 7:30 EDT/4:30 PDT for:

Breaking Through to the Next Level of Growth and Profit (While Working Less)

Discover the real reasons why businesses stop growing.

Click here to register now.

RS and PCDo you have pictures from past ARCSI events you'd be willing to share?

How about an inspiring or amusing story? How has ARCSI helped your business and why did you get involved?

Staff is seeking photos and stories from past regional meetings, Executive Leadership Conferences and Annual Cleaning Conventions. We hope you'll share!

Send all info to Chris Zimmer at

Your Chance for Productive, Important Networking:
Free ARCSI Synergy Groups

ARCSI's free Synergy Group program is growing fast! Due to the program's popularity, Synergy Networking Groups are now open to all ARCSI members. Join us Wednesday, July 18 at 11 am EDT for an informational call!

Once a month, Synergy members converge in groups of six to eight to discuss and unload the pressures of their personal and professional lives. The two-and-a-half hours of moderated discussion provide an outlet for the stress and pressures that come with trying to balance their businesses and careers with their personal lives.

"My Synergy Group has helped me so much, not just with my fast growing business, but with important personal and family issues. I credit my Synergy experience with helping to give me the balance that I have in my hectic life today. The meetings are a safe way to share my business and personal issues and know that they remain confidential." - Angela Wilson Solano Maids & ARCSI Synergy Group Moderator

There are only 10 spots currently open, so be sure to attend the informational webinar to get your application!

A new article from the Small Business Administration (SBA) touts the importance of face-to-face networking. Are you one of those people who think networking is a waste of time? It's not. Essentially, all else Convention 2009being equal, people do business with and want to help people they know, like and trust. Networking enables you to meet people you otherwise would not come in contact with, and establish a foundation for a lasting relationship.

If just thinking about walking into a room full of strangers makes you break out in a cold sweat, here are some tips to make networking easier, more effective and maybe even fun. These tips will come in handy as you attend the ARCSI 2012 Cleaning Convention in Chicago, October 16 - 21.

Establish goals.Like any business effort, you need to set measurable goals so you can determine the best networking strategy for you. Do you want to make X number of new contacts? Do you want to find a new supplier or vendor for a particular item? Having goals is also key to determining how you'll assess the success of your networking efforts.

Create a strategy. Are there key industry trade groups whose conferences you should be attending (Why YES, yes there are!)? There are also groups organized around specific topics, such as sales lead generating groups or finding financing.

Make the time.Figure out how much time you need to devote to networking to achieve your goals, and how much time you can realistically spend. Depending on your goals, you may want to focus on one organization or spread your efforts among several groups.

Do your homework.When you attend networking events, be prepared with plenty of business cards and your best elevator pitch, a brief one- or two-sentence description of your business thatELC clearly conveys what you do and is intriguing enough that people want to know more.

Mingle.Of course it's easier to attend an event with a friend or colleague, but if you do, make sure you split up. Spending all your time with people you already know defeats the purpose of networking. Networking is kind of like cold calling: The more you do it, the less scary it becomes. If you're nervous about being rejected, try finding other newcomers; they'll be eternally grateful.

Be a good listener.Listening is the secret to making sales, and it's also the secret to successful networking. When you meet someone new, ask questions and really listen to the answers.

Be a leader.If you decide to join an organization, don't just sit there. Join a committee or take a leadership role. By doing so, you'll learn more, meet more people, and make yourself memorable. (ARCSI is always looking for committee members and volunteers!)

Follow up.You can go to 20 networking events a month, but if you don't follow up on the contacts you make, it's all for nothing. Within 48 hours after each event, follow up on your new contacts in some way, even if it's just a quick e-mail saying how nice it was to meet them.

Integrate online and offline.Incorporate your real-world networking contacts into your social networking efforts. When you meet someone at an event, follow up with an invitation to connect on LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter.


Be persistent.The key to successful networking is persistence. It's kind of like that principle of compound interest that our math teachers explained to us all when we were kids. As you get to know more people and maintain and grow those relationships, your circle expands exponentially. As you do business with your new contacts, your business will grow exponentially, too.

Cleaning Convention Early Bird Price: Just 2 Weeks Left
EB SpecialThere are just over two (2) weeks left to register for the ARCSI 2012 Cleaning Convention at the "early bird" discount. On August 1, all prices go up $50.

Why pay more? Save time and money: Register today!
Gold Member: FREE
Silver Member: $209
Bronze Member: $259
Non-ARCSI Members: $379

Discount is given for additional registrations from the same company:
Gold additional: $159
Silver Additional: $169
Bronze Additional: $199
Non-ARCSI Member Additional: $359

If you haven't yet made your hotel reservation at the ARCSI Headquarters Hotel - The Hard Rock - time is running out! Rooms are selling fast and the deadline for the ARCSI rate of $195/night is September 24. Need a roommate? Complete the form by clicking here.

The Hard Rock Hotel is the ARCSI Headquarters Hotel for the 2012 Cleaning Convention. Located on Michigan Avenue just 20 minutes from McCormick Place, all of the networking and Saturday events will happen here.
The Hard Rock Hotel features free coffee in the lobby from 5 am - 8 am. With your registration as an ARCSI member, you also receive free bussing from The Hard Rock to McCormick Place and free Wi-Fi in your room.
The Building Services and Contractors Association International (BSCAI) is hosting two webinars on Healthcare Reform, open to ARCSI members.

On July 26 at 2pm ET, tackle the impact of the Supreme Court's ruling on your benefits plans and help identify your options.

On September 13 at 2 pm ET, learn about the decisions you need to be thinking about for the January 1, 2014 implementation date and learn how to prepare for the new insurance exchanges.

BSCAI is offering each webinar to ARCSI members at their member rate of $75/webinar when you use the promo code ARCSI at the time of registration. To download the registration form, click here.
Employee Background Checks: What Are Your Options?
You've probably heard about the controversy surrounding employers asking job applicants for their Facebook user names and passwords as part of the background check process. It sounds shocking, but it happens - particularly among law enforcement entities - but even among private sector employers who feel they have a reason to go that extra step to weed out potentially undesirable employees.

At the federal level there is no law prohibiting employers from soliciting social media login information. However, the Department of Justice considers it a crime to violate social media terms of service. Check out Facebook's Terms of Service and you'll find it stated explicitly that users consent not to share their login information, solicit login information, or access the account of another Facebook user. So employers and applicants clearly need to tread carefully.

Background checks are so important in the residential cleaning industry. Clients trust you with the keys to their home and your cleaners to be there even when the clients aren't.

You can use several different types of background checks to build a profile of an employee, but the law varies on what information you can ask for, what you can do with it and when consent is required. If you run a criminal background check on an employee, for example, different states have different rules on how you can use that information. In most instances, the following checks are worth considering:

  • Credit checks (currently used by 60 percent of employers, but remember that you must get the applicants consent according to theFair Credit Reporting Act)
  • Drug tests
  • Past employment
  • Criminal background (check with your lawyer so you are compliant with state laws)
  • Driving records (if the job demands this skill)

For many small businesses, this scope of testing is downright time-consuming. If you feel you need to go beyond what's on an applicant's resume or contained in their letters of reference, consider hiring a private screening firm. Not only will they do the legwork for you, they'll also ensure any checks are done within the law.

ARCSI has several Industry Partners specializing in background checks, including Intellicorp, Mesh Background Screening Services, and HR Screening Services.ARCSI Industry PartnerThe Steering Group,has the Orion test, an employee assessment and pre-screening tool.

What Drives a Successful Business:
Find Out at the ARCSI Dallas Regional Meeting Aug. 11
Join host Dianelle Rivers-Mitchell and ARCSI Board members Diana Henley and Nancy Holekamp at the August 11 Dallas Regional Meeting at Springhill Suites, Grapevine.

During this education and networking event, attendees will hear from Bryan Flanagan, founder of Flanagan Training Group and a Zig Ziglar Keynote Speaker. Flanagan will discuss "What Drives a Successful Business." Learn from Flanagan and other attendees what successful businesses do in order to keep growing.

A panel of successful ARCSI members will then present "How I Grew My Business." You'll hear strategies for marketing, employee issues, customer relations and operations that can help you get to the next level.

After lunch (included), Flanagan takes the stage again to discuss "Selling versus Value" and, a topic on everyone's mind: "Hiring and Creating Loyal Employees."

The cost for a full day of education, networking and lunch is just $29. Can you afford to miss the ARCSI Dallas Regional Meeting?

Click here to register now.
Industry Partner Products and Services for ARCSI Members
ARCSI Industry Partners are non-cleaning companies that support our organization through their memberships and sponsorships of our various events and programs. They offer everything from chemicals and equipment, to background checks, to industry specific consulting, software, insurance, answering services, web site development and more..... We encourage our members to utilize our partners if you have a product of service you need. As a new feature of the Residential Cleaning Connection, we will feature several of our Industry Partners each week. For the complete list of partners, go to our web site and click the "Discounts" tab.

Chemical Free Products and Equipment
Modern Cleaning
Modern Cleaning, Tom Stewart, N. Charleston, SC 1-877-214-4942

Equipment - Spray Bottles

Spray All Corp, John Gillispie, Rockville, MD 301-651-0397

Human Resource Solutions, Employee Handbooks
Ethos HR Online an ELC Sponsor
ethos HR Oline, Ben Haile, Irving, TX 214-273-1265

more Calendar

Hot Topic Tuesday: Enjoy Labor Day!

Hot Topic Tuesday: CONVENTION WEEK!


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