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October 4, 2013:The Residential Cleaning Connection
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News, Netoworking & Events

The Residential Cleaning Connection

News, Networking & Events for the Cleaning Professional

October 4, 2013 - Vol 4, Issue 20

ARCSI Industry Partners Resources

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

2013 Convention Sponsor
Visit us in Booth 2587

2013 Convention Sponsor

Visit us in Booth 2156


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2013 Convention Sponsor

WCS-6-13 Workers Comp Insurance


2013 Convention Sponsor

Clean Max Logo

Buy 3 Get 1 Free!

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2013 Convention Sponsor
Visit us in Booth 3285

Cleaning for a reason

2013 Convention Sponsor

There are a few serious misnomers in our business that we have to understand clearly and then work hard to change. The other day I was in a room of socio-economically upper class and upper-middle class women who were in their middle years and I heard the following conversation:

"I pay my maid $65.00 and she stays all day!"

"Well, I pay mine $55 and boy does she work!"

One of the other ladies in the room, who uses my service, came to me afterwards and said: "You know it's a bragging point in the West End don't you? How cheap can you get your cleaners!"

Although every city and state is different, attitude is not all that different and this is appalling! Bragging rights about how cheaply you can get your needs met! It's 2013 and some of our citizens haven't thought about the need to respect the labor that gives them a lifestyle above most of the world. Changing this thinking IS WHAT ARCSI IS ALL ABOUT.

This wholesale disregard is a casually accepted definition left from the past and there never has there been a successful effort to redefine it. The book The Help addresses it in one segment of the world, but that was only one book. The issue is larger than that and as with that book and movie everyone said "OH, WOW" but this fast world kept on spinning and most people didn't hear.

ARCSI is not like that, we are here to stay. We, and YOU, are the ones who can change this accepted attitude. WE are constant. Our lives feel the effects of this undermining thought pattern every day. WE, ARCSI members, are not uneducated or lacking socio-economic backing and we are making inroads in this cultural shift. Good for us!! Sadly, change is a hard job and we have a way to go, but I plan to make it, and I am sure you do too, because it is so vitally important in every way. Labor is here to stay, Service is what this world's future will be all about. We can be the path makers of today.

We understand what a HIGH-END business this REALLY is. Our office and housecleaning workforce must each be a combination of individualized Ritz-Carlton like service, UPS like drivers, and Zappos like customer care. That's how we get and keep good business. We employ people whose skill level includes attention to every detail at the highest level and we cannot demean them by allowing them to be thought of as "just cleaners", and we cannot allow the stereotype of the happy but underpaid and under respected housecleaner image to exist.

The customer/consumer needs to be aware that meeting the needs of a multitude of different people with differing wishes, coming into their intimate environments into which they only allow a few they call friends and family...and us, is actually harder than any of the three types of service mentioned above and instead of taking us for granted and giving us a holiday present we must be thought about differently, paid fairly,AND given a holiday gift.

That is why ARCSI wants an ongoing public media campaign, a legislative action standing committee, and why we bring you outstanding speakers to not only inform you but to support you.

This is what ARCSI is all about. Changing a cultural norm so that we may offer our services to an informed public who understands WHAT they are buying.

In our short 10 years of existence ARCSI has made huge strides, but we are here for the long haul and plan to make an even greater difference in what the American...the Canadian...the British...and all peoples think about our industry. Stick with us. People like us are hard to you well know!! We are doing great things and we have great plans, you will see!

And again, Thanks for all you do every day.

Upcoming Events
Oct. 8 Hot Topic: Tips and Tricks
Have a favorite cleaning tip or trick? Come share it with us on Hot Topic Tuesday! Board member Nancy Holekamp and ARCSI member Renee Rawcliffe will share their experiences and moderate this call.

Hot Topic Tuesday is always free to ARCSI members. Nonmembers are welcome to participate for a $5 registration fee. Click here to register now.

5 Keys to Phenomenal Business Performance
by Duane Cashin

There's a great deal of talk about how competitive it is today. Business owners and sales representatives wake up in the middle of the night worried about how they're going to grow revenues.

Potential buyers quickly review the websites of several cleaning companies and because they're crazy busy and possess a ridiculously short attention span, their perception becomes all cleaning companies are the same and as a result they default to price.

Cleaning companies that are able to sustain a competitive advantage in the new economy realize that it's not as competitive as most people believe. It is "crowded", but there's a significant difference between the two.

A cleaning company that is demonstrating "competitive" behavior is taking what I call a CRISP approach to business growth. CRISP is an acronym that stands for:

· Credible

· Relevant

· Insightful

· Selfless in service

· Persistent

In today's crowded, crazy busy, Internet driven and information overloaded world you will need to embrace all 5 of the interlocking CRISP principles to establish a sustainable competitive advantage.

Allowing a stranger to gain access to your house requires trust. Credibility is the first step. You will be found credible when you answer incoming calls professionally, return messages promptly, leverage 3rdparty references, and keep your equipment and vehicles in tip-top shape.

Customers today have little tolerance for a sales representative who does not keep all information

relevant to their unique needs. You must always remain relevant to maintain credibility.

Today's demanding buyers want you to be insightful. They want you to understand all the different chemicals in use and how they react with the different surfaces in their house. They want you to have insight into bacteria and their unique health needs.

In the new economy when so many people are focused on "number one" it's refreshing to do business with a person who focuses on selfless service. Today's buyers warm up to a company that makes the experience all about them.

And lastly, it all comes together with persistence. To consistently leverage the CRISP advantage takes focus, commitment and persistence.

I hope you will join me on Wednesday, November20 at the ARCSI Cleaning Convention where we will dive deeper into the CRISP Business Growth Strategy! A full Convention schedule is available by clicking here.

Industry and Business News
Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh Nov. 20 Cleaning Convention Keynote

October Healthcare Webinars, Sponsored by the SBA
Throughout October, SBA and Small Business Majority will hold a weeklyAffordable Care Act 101 webinar.During each presentation, small business owners can learn about the law and what it means for their company and employees.

For more information and for more answers to frequently asked questions on the Affordable Care Act, go to

When Employees Steal Your Clients
Just this past Tuesday, Renee O'Brien of presented a Hot Topic call on what happens when employees make off with your clients. Focusing on what to do when it happens and moving to prevention, O'Brien deftly described how you, as a cleaning service owner, can pick up the pieces and move on after this employee betrayal. O'Brien's Hot Topic call can be accessed here.

Also on Tuesday, the October issue of Cleaning Business Today hit our in boxes and they, too, are focusing on this hot button issue. In the case study entitled "Backstabbers: The Risk of Training Your Competition", CBT follows ARCSI member Katie Lambert as she loses 25% of her business to people she trained, trusted and employed. Lambert lost not only those clients, but her spotless reputation in her small community suffered when former clients didn't realize that the people cleaning their homes were no longer Lambert's employees; and quality went downhill quickly.

In Lambert's case, there were lawsuits and counter suits. It is hard to win non-solicitation cases in court because, usually, you have only suspicions and little to no hard evidence.

So what can you do to guard against this alarmingly common trend? CBT quotes Elizabeth J.C. Speidel, an attorney with Haynsworth Sinklyer Boyd PA, as she offers four ways to protect yourself.

To read the entire Cleaning Business Today case study on page 17, click here.
An I-9 Audit: A Very Good Idea

Immigration enforcement is up, with investigations, fines and arrests on the rise. Beth Milito of the NFIB Small Business Legal Center says small business owners must take steps to protect themselves.

Employers need to pay particular attention to Form I-9, a legal document that establishes an employee's residence.

"Failure to ensure proper completion and retention of Form I-9 may subject the business owner to civil penalties of up to $1100 per I-9 and, possibly, criminal penalties," Milito said.

Milito said small business owners can avoid trouble by following these simple tips:

  • Make sure you are using the right form by downloading it from
  • Make sure the form is completed correctly by having the employee complete Section 1 on the first day of work
  • Conduct an in-house audit of I-9 forms and correct any mistakes you find
  • Contact a lawyer immediately if you receive a notice from ICE. You only have 72 hours to respond, so act quickly

More information is available at

Need a Pep Talk?
megaphoneOwning your own cleaning business can be an emotional roller coaster. Between bickering staff and unhappy clients, it is easy to lose that sense of optimism and confidence you had when you first named your company. offers these tips for sucking it up and moving on.

1. Don't wallow. When things don't go your way - you lose a long-time client, for example - allow yourself a brief period of time to process and deal with it (30 - 60 minutes, maybe). After that, the pity party is over. Refocus and put your energy into your business by concentrating on the clients you DO have and those you have yet to close.

2. Seek feedback. Whether it is through ARCSI networks, BNI, your local Chamber group, or even your clients, getting regular feedback is the only way to continuously improve.

3. Learn how to cut your losses. The greatest strengths of an entrepreneur are determination and persistence, yet, these qualities can also be her biggest weaknesses. Sometimes you just have to learn how to let go.

There will be times when you have to make the decision to part ways with a client or a vendor. If you two don't have a synchronized vision or every small detail is an uphill battle, it might be in your interest to say goodbye.

4. Build a support system. Here is where ARCSI can really help. You can find mentors, friends and those that really want to help you succeed through your professional association. Negative thoughts can be very time consuming and detrimental to your vision, so it's essential to surround yourself with positive people to snap you back to reality. Having a support system to lean on will make you realize there is a world out there beyond your business, which is essential for your mental health.

To read the entire article at, click here.

Teresa's Family Cleaning Has New "Teresa Girl"
Teresa's Family Cleaning held auditions throughout Long Island this summer to find their new "Teresa Girl." On Sept. 26, after live auditions at the Viana Hotel, Teresa Ward is proud to announce that Danielle Frazier has won the coveted title. Congratulations to Teresa's Family Cleaning on the beautiful new spokeswoman and congratulations to Danielle on a title well-earned!

Teresa's Family Cleaning will also welcome their "Mopettes", Teresa Furey and Amy Conner. The Teresa GIrl and her Mopettes will be see throughout Long Island at various networking and charity events.

October 15 Bally's Hotel Deadline - Don't Be Left Out in the Desert
Ballys The 2013 ARCSI Cleaning Convention is only 44 days away. Have you made your room reservation at Bally's yet? All evening networking events will be held at Bally's Hotel & Casino, so staying on-site is not only inexpensive, it is convenient.

October 15 is the deadline to book your room at the ARCSI discounted rate. After October 15, you will pay full price for any rooms available. Don't be left without a place to stay. Click here to book now.

A note: If you made your Bally's reservation in the last week and are staying over Saturday, Nov. 16, and were charged a higher rate by Bally's, your rate has been adjusted to the $120 Saturday stay ARCSI rate.

Sponge Outlet Button Sponge Outlet has just announced a special offer for ARCSI Members. Save 5% on your order when you check out. Use theCoupon Code: ARCSI when you check out.

Also ARCSI members who place an order of$87.95 or more will receive a FREE 5 pack of 12 x 12 microfiber towels.

Sponge Outlet is an ARCSI Industry Partner.

more Calendar

Hot Topic Tuesday: Enjoy Labor Day!

Hot Topic Tuesday: CONVENTION WEEK!


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