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January 3, 2014:The Residential Cleaning Connection
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News, Netoworking & Events

The Residential Cleaning Connection

News, Networking & Events for the Cleaning Professional

January 3, 2014 - Vol 5, Issue 1

ARCSI Industry Partners Resources

ARCSI Industry Partner-Moody's Insurance Visit us in Vegas!
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Tampa May 16 & 17
Washington DC June 13 & 14

St Louis June 20 & 21
New York City July 25 & 26
Portland, OR Aug 22 & 23
San Antonio Sept 25 & 26

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WCS-6-13 Workers Comp Insurance


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Cleaning for a reason

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From the Executive Director

Ernie's Etching

Happy New Year from frigid Columbus. Today's weather makes me even more anxious to be in sunny San Diego in 53 days for our Executive Leadership Conference.

So it's the new year. I am quite sure all of you have committed your Big Audacious Goals for 2014 to paper and have develop a sound plan of action to implement them. Your plan is neatly bound in a three ring binder, is on a special place on you desk top or new tablet, is on the white board in your office is you can see it every day and track your progress. Oh, you're not quite there yet, I'll check back with you next month to see how that is going. In the meantime here are five things that you can put in your plan to help you grow your business in 2014........

  1. Attend the ELC, it will have nothing to do with cleaning, but will absolutely make you a better business person.
  2. Listen to and participate in at least two Hot Topic Tuesdays a month. The one idea you get could make things run smoother, help you find that key employee you have been looking for, or save you money.
  3. Plan to attend a regional meeting (there will be six around the country starting in May). The connections you make with other ARCSI members will be priceless.
  4. Browse the "Members Only Resource Center" on the ARCSI website. The forms, tools, ideas, and materials you'll find, may be just what you were looking for, but couldn't seem to find, and it was already tested by someone else.
  5. Plan to attend the ARCSI Convention and Education Conference in Orlando, FL Nov 3-7, 2014. If you start planning for it now, you will have no excuse as to why you can't make it.

2014 is going to be exciting for ARCSI and for your business. Remember, "Your Membership is Enhanced by Your Involvement!"

Ernie Sig

Upcoming Events
2014 Summer Success Tour: Coming to a City Near You

Tired of employee drama? Wish you had some marketing ideas that actually worked? Look no further that the ARCSI 2014 Summer Success Tour.

For $149 registration, you will get answers from industry leaders from the Cleaning Business Builders on:

  • Guerrilla Marketing
  • Hiring the Right Cleaners
  • Dealing with Employee Drama
  • Firing Fast and Fair
  • Systems You Need to Build to be Successful
  • Employee Training Programs
  • Creating a Price and Price Increases

The 2014 Summer Success Tour is stopping in these cities:

  • Tampa, FL: May 16 & 17
  • Washington DC: June 13 & 14
  • St. Louis, MO: June 20 & 21
  • NYC (Morristown, NJ): July 25 & 26
  • Portland, OR: August 22 & 23
  • San Antonio, TX: September 26 & 27

Click here for more information and to register today!

Executive Leadership Conference:
From Manager to True Leader

For company owners who are tired of spending their days putting out fires, there is the 2014 ARCSI Leadership Conference.

On February 27, cleaning company owners from throughout the US and Canada will come together in San Diego to reignite their passion for their business. Nationally-recognized speakers will help each owner identify their leadership style and explain how to maximize the results of each style.

Thinking about the future of your business? Then you won't want to miss the session on succession planning. Cassie Hoag of MAP Consulting will explain how to assure the right people are working in and running your business.

If you think your employees just don't care or just don't hear what you're saying, Maxine Shapiro of Inside the Box will help you develop strategies for overcoming old truths and developing ways to move forward no matter the obstacle.

For more information on the 2014 Executive Leadership Conference, and to register today, visit

Industry and Business News
Successfully Working With Your Better Half
In the residential cleaning industry, working with your significant other is not uncommon. Sometimes they are co-owner of the company, other times they help with maintenance or the books. author Gwen Moran recently shared one couple's secrets to working together and staying happily married.

Know your strengths. Take stock of what each of you is good at then stay out of one another's way.

Present a united front. Regardless of whether you agree or not, to the outside world you must speak as one voice. When you present yourselves as a unified team, the business is stronger.

Treat each other with respect. In the heat of the moment, basic human decency can sometimes be thrown to the wind. Treat your spouse as you would a professional colleague (or better).

Leave work at work. It can be hard to do, but focus on your home and family when you get home every night. Rehashing or continuing a disagreement for the rest of the evening will only leave you more angry and exhausted.

Get away. Cultivating mutual interests outside of the office is good for your relationship. Find ways to enjoy one another's company that doesn't involve the business.

To read the entire article, click here.
You're the Boss, Not a Buddy
by John Manning, President of MAP Consulting

As the boss, it's totally normal for you to want your employees to like you. But leadership is not a popularity contest. Moreover, focusing too much on being liked, whether consciously or subconsciously, can have dire career consequences. When the boss tries to be everyone's friend, a culture develops in which there's a lack of fairness and accountability. It's then tough to remain objective and be effective when reviewing performance. In fact, discipline can become downright impossible. Since crossing the line breeds resentment and destructive disrespect, avoid this leadership style at all costs.

It's common for leaders to experience such a challenge, particularly when they are:

  • serving as a new manager or head of a team, division, department, etc.
  • overseeing former co-workers due to a recent in-house promotion
  • starting out in business ownership
  • working in a family business
  • creating a partnership

But when it comes to managing personal relationships at work and striving to build greater leadership respect, always try to use your head, not your heart. That doesn't mean being insensitive or disinterested toward others when appropriate situations for doing so arise, but it does mean resisting common relationship tendencies, e.g., associating more with those you like or understand because it's easy or feels really good or exciting.

In all such situations mentioned above, a leader will likely struggle with preferential treatment of employees, making too close of friends with certain staff members, becoming biased about people's actions and behaviors, and even feeling guilty about implementing appropriate, perhaps much needed accountability or corrective action. However, because people ultimately do want to be held accountable and treated fairly, if this leadership style isn't addressed and corrected, people will notice, talk and get angry. Eventually, they will distrust and lose respect for the leader, and their feelings will breed toxicity in the workplace, undermine the company's best intentions, and possibly derail this leader's career.

To prevent such scenarios from taking place with your own leadership, follow these six "don't cross the line" guidelines:

  1. Make holding people accountable a top priority by implementing a system of accountability that's recognized and upheld company-wide.
  2. Be fair and consistent about what you say and do with others.
  3. Demand transparent communication from yourself and require it from others, too. Consider your verbal (both spoken and written) as well as nonverbal communications, making sure they're in alignment.
  4. Be careful about activities and commitments "outside" the office - let common sense be your guide.
  5. Hire employees because they're qualified, not just likeable, or because you feel you should (i.e., in the case of hiring a family member/friend).
  6. Ask yourself why you feel compelled to befriend your personnel if you're finding that you're crossing the line. Get the outside help of a mentor or coach to get advice for how to address what's really going on with this issue so you can stop it dead in its tracks.

Quality Assurance Audits Done Right
Cleaning Business Today has an excellent article on quality assurance audits in their January 2014 issue. Performing these quality checks is critical to customer retention and provides opportunities to both praise and teach your cleaning techs. It also allows you to know where your weaknesses are and gives you a chance to correct them.

Surprisingly, many owners and supervisors say they don't have time to perform this important task, the article by Haren Hill-Whitson, PHH, I.C.E. reports. Hill-Whitson explains what you should be checking, when you should performing the audits, which staff should be assuring the quality and performance of the teams abd how the sudits should be preformed.

To read the article in its entirety, click here and go to page 30.

Becoming a Better Manager in 2014
The life of a cleaning company manager can sometimes seem not their own. Just trying to keep up with the day to day of operations can be exhausting.But if your new year's resolution is to become a better manager,'s Victor Lipman has some tips for making that goal a reality.

1. Be open to new ways of looking at things. Be a good listener and always be looking for opportunities to improve (yourself and your staff).

2. Expect excellence. Set high, but not unattainable, goals for your staff. Once your employees know you expect excellence from yourself, they are more likely to find it in themselves.

3. Make sure your employees know clearly where they need to focus. Clearly defined, well-conveived job objectives are a productive manager's best friend.

4. Protect your time. Managers are frequently pulled in many different directions. Prioritizing and delegating are key in leaving yourself enough time to perform productively.

5. Provide meaningful feedback in real time. The best managers are always good communicators. Providing ample feedback - both positive and negative - is a core management skill. Be there, be present, and be accessible.

6. Don't dodge conflict. Instead, deal with it directly and fairly. There are plenty of emotionally charged issues that can lead to conflict in the business. But the best managers deal with the conflict quickly and fairly. Letting the conflict fester is bad for employee morale and, ultimately, your business.

To read the entire article, click here.

ARCSI Changes Dues Structure in 2014
ARCSI staff finished out 2013 sending letters to all members about the Board-approved dues structure change that took place on January 1, 2014. After six years of ARCSI dues remaining the same, the ARCSI Board approved a dues increase for 2014. The Board also approved a dues structure change, eliminating the silver membership level. Former Silver members have the choice to downgrade to a Basic Membership or upgrade to the Executive Membership level. The Bronze membership is now the Basic Membership and the Gold level membership is now the Executive Membership.

The dues increase take the Basic membership to $375/year or $33 per month and adds increased value to the Executive level membership; like discounts to the Executive Leadership Conference and the ARCSI Summer Success Tour events.

For questions about the dues structure change or Basic level dues increase, please contact the ARCSI office at 614-547-0887 or thank all of our members for their continuing support as ARCSI continues to grow and expand our services to better meet the needs of members.

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