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August 25, 2017 Residential Cleaning Connection Newsletter
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 Volume 8  |  Issue 8 

A Commitment to Excellence


By RJ Patel, Chair, ISSA Residential Cleaning Council


My parents taught me well…if you’re going to do anything, then do it right the first time and give it my best effort. If my name is attached to it, I want to be proud of the final product. Asha and I have grown our cleaning business and are enormously proud of our team and the services we provide. It goes without saying that I am proud of our family. They are the very foundation of who we are and everything we do.

I also want all of you to know that I am significantly proud of what we have been able to do with ARCSI, which is now ARCSI, A Division of ISSA. Almost 10 years ago, our association was, well, putting it mildly, a disaster. Our membership was down and our financial resources were dwindling. But a core group of members of ARCSI who are committed to the association and to the residential cleaning industry, saw the benefit of having this association. They banned together and put together a strategy for how to help ARCSI to succeed.


Long story short – we are here today, three weeks out from 14th INTERCLEAN and I can tell you that without a shadow of a doubt that I am proud of what we have become. We are now the residential cleaning arm of the largest worldwide cleaning association. Our visibility will only continue to increase. Our membership is already growing.


Good things are happening for all of us at ARCSI and I encourage you to join us in Las Vegas to take part in the celebration of the cleaning industry worldwide and your part in it as residential cleaners.


The 2017 Show Committee also has a commitment to excellence. Our speakers they have secured for the Residential Cleaning Connection package at the Show, the quality of education is better than it’s ever been.  We all come to the convention with different expectations and take the same feeling of accomplishment.


Here are a few links to videos from some of our speakers:


Nancy Friedman

Resiliency: A Key Service Mentality


Don Phin
Managing the Emotions of Change


Scott Deming
Powered by Purpose


If you are as committed to excellence in your business as I am, then you need to be at the Show in Las Vegas. It’s crunch time – if you haven’t registered, do it now!

We are looking forward to seeing you in Las Vegas!





Friendships, Family Are at the Heart of ISSA/INTERCLEAN for Residential Cleaning Companies


"This is what ARCSI is about. A first-time attendee has come, made connections and is now growing his business," Amy Wiggs King said at the 2016 Show. "It's an amazing organization!"


Every year, new and veteran attendees flock to ISSA/INTERCLEAN to take advantage of the opportunity to learn, connect and share about their industry from their counterparts. And this year will be no different! There is never a shortage of networking opportunities for residential cleaning companies at the Show!


Make sure to mark your calendar for these events at the Show:


First-Time Attendee Orientation
Sunday, September 10 | Bally's Skyview 1 | 6 - 6:45 pm


Welcome Reception
Sunday, September 10 | Bally's Skyview 5 & 6 | 7:30 - 10:30 pm


Evening Roundtables
Monday, September 11 | Bally's Skyview 5 & 6 | 7:30 - 10:30 pm


Cleaning for a Reason Reception
Tuesday, September 12 | Bally's Skyview 5 & 6 | 6 - 9 pm


ARCSI Professional Image Awards Presentation
Wednesday, September 13 | Las Vegas Convention Center | Booth 129 | 4 - 5:30 pm


Chairman's Gala and Salute to the Award Winners
Wednesday, September 13 | Bally's Skyview 5 & 6 | 7:30 - 10:30 pm 



Residential Cleaning Connection Package  

 Book Hotel  |  Register Now



The State of the Residential Cleaning Industry

What is the state of the residential cleaning industry? Find out at ISSA/INTERCLEAN during our panel discussion some of the movers and shakers in our industry.


On Thursday, Sept. 14 at INTERCLEAN, there will be a series of panel discussions that dive into the various segments of the cleaning industry and focus on their current and future states.


The residential panel features:

  • Mark Kushinsky, CEO, MaidPro
  • Tom Stewart, Castle Keepers of Charleston
  • Martha Woodward, Dusting Divas
  • RJ Patel, Moderator

Discussion points for the panel include:

  • Overview of the Current State of the Industry
  • Labor Concerns
  • Supply and Demand in the Industry
  • Effects of Minimum Wage and Overtime Regulation
  • Competition Forces in the Industry

Get complete details on the State of the Residential Industry Panel.





The Value of Training and Certification Programs

Instead of fancy branding, invest in training

By Cloud Conrad, Maid Brigade


One of the many benefits of membership in ARCSI is that it seeks to elevate our industry’s image and, in turn, its members in their marketplace. Members enjoy a halo effect, but without continuing to deliver value to consumers that glow may fade. Continuous value delivery, through professionalism and expertise, validates the services we provide as a critical component of quality of life for families everywhere.


How might we offer continuous value delivery to improve quality of life? In my role at Maid Brigade I have researched customer preferences using various means over several years. And there’s one point on which all survey data is consistent: the Number One criteria people seek when they choose a cleaning service (and the Number One criteria they evaluate their cleaning help on) is consistent quality.


It’s not really a surprise, is it? Maybe your own research supports this finding. If not empirically, you probably know it anecdotally. More than one prospective customer has probably told you that the reason they are interviewing cleaning services is that the one they just fired started out great, but the quality deteriorated over time. Maybe, sadly, you’ve heard this from a regular customer asking to have her key returned.


Why does this happen? Cleaning services consistently train new hires when they come on board. Most use the same training with every one of them. The cleaners, new or old, are given the same supplies every morning at send-off. They are instructed to perform the same regular tasks from visit to visit. They are evaluated using the same form every time. They approach customer homes the same way on every visit. Pricing may even be based on the assumption that homes are in the same condition every time, but history shows that most homes are not in the same condition or have the same sorts of soils, in the same spots, from visit to visit. And what two customers have the exact same combination of surfaces in their homes anyway?


Several years ago, one of our employees did not notice, or realize the importance of the fact, that the tile shower she was cleaning had a marble seat and threshold. She used the normal acid based tile cleaner. It etched the marble on the seat and threshold. We hired someone to polish out the damage and satisfied the client, but it cost $700 to do so. A better understanding of surfaces would have saved us considerable money and hassle.


So, how does a cleaning business owner equip their staff to deliver consistent quality when there are so many varied cleaning challenges to overcome in the course of a day? How can you know with certainty that your staff can make the right game-time decisions to uphold your reputation, one cleaning visit at a time?


Motivation, mentoring, and measurement are all contributing factors to reliably delivering consistent quality. But, as in many other scenarios, knowledge is power. Mastery is the truly elevating factor because it is internal to the employee to draw from at the moment of truth – all others are constructs you create back at the office.


Certified Results


For house cleaners to achieve professional results regardless of what cleaning challenges they encounter in any given home, they must achieve mastery.


Recognizing different surfaces and soils and understanding how to leverage chemistry and equipment to work efficiently and effectively based on these combinations is essential to consistent quality in a very inconsistent environment.


Many cleaning business owners don’t possess this knowledge and even if they do, they don’t have the time to share it in a way that translates to predictable results and consistent customer ratings. Plus, the rate at which new home flooring, counter top, wall and appliance materials enter the market is accelerating, meaning that training content is dynamic – regular review and revision is necessary to keep pace with trends in materials.


The value of giving the house cleaning technician the knowledge and power that advanced skills training provides is significant and worth the time, energy and lost revenue that thorough training requires:

  • PRODUCTIVITY – no wasted motion, supplies or time
  • REDUCED LOSS TO CORRECT MISTAKES – the better skilled the cleaners, the fewer the re-cleans, repairs and replacements
  • MORALE – money talks, but studies show that employees get personal reward from a sense of mastery
  • MOTIVATION – employees are attracted to the elevated status that advanced training creates
  • REDUCED EMPLOYEE TURNOVER – your investment in employees (the good ones at least) breeds loyalty and those who have the opportunity to enjoy mastery tend to also be the sort to gladly share their knowledge with others on the team.
  • EMPLOYEE REFERRAL – happy employees invite their friends, neighbors and relatives to apply when you have job openings and best of all, they vet these applicants for you
  • CUSTOMER REFERRAL – consistent staff boosts consistent quality, which makes customers happy, happy customers talk, and referred customers are usually your most valuable

A Story Worth Telling


People seeking work in our industry have many options these days. All other things being equal, job seekers will gravitate to places that offer skills and advancement (at least the ones we’d all love to hire). Therefore the well-planned, well-executed training program deserves its place in marketing communications.


Our research also indicates that most customers today want to support businesses that treat their workers well. Training programs expand a cleaning company’s ability to resonate with these socially conscious consumers.


The media cares about what consumers care about. Supporting hard-working people by offering them the opportunity for free advanced skills training is a happy news story and might draw some positive attention if packaged correctly.


Member Resources


Numerous options are available for ARCSI members when it comes to professional training and certification for the house cleaning technician. Invest in pre-packaged training modules after comparing different offerings. Be sure to look at the scope of each program to make sure it is as thorough and inclusive as possible. It’s a big undertaking but combining existing programs or creating one from scratch is possible if you find that no existing solution(s) are adequate for your needs.


By committing to a training program that includes certification, continuous value delivery really is possible while contributing to the improvement of quality of life for the consumers of residential house cleaning service.

Cloud Conrad is VP of Brand Strategies at Maid Brigade, a franchised house cleaning service with locations in the US and Canada. She is an ARCSI member and is Vice-Chair of the IICRC Technical Advisory Committee for the House Cleaning Technician certification exam. Prior to joining Maid Brigade in 2003, she spent two decades in account strategy and media planning for marketing and advertising agencies. She lives outside Atlanta GA.








Two More Options to Get Your HCT in 2017!
Set Your Business Apart from the Competition

The HCT Certification differentiates you from other residential cleaning companies in your market as professional and knowledgeable. ARCSI has two more classes scheduled right now for you to take the HCT!

The House Cleaning Technician (HCT) certification program teaches cleaning technicians how to go about doing just that. Becoming certified gives you the knowledge to be the best cleaner possible. Certified House Cleaning Techs understand all the surfaces they will find in clients' homes, how to clean them and (almost more importantly) how NOT to clean them.


Offered by the IICRC accredited school, the Institute for Service Excellence, the course is taught by Bruce Vance, ISE.




August 29 Hot Topic Tuesday: Ask the Expert - What You Need to Know About Employment Practices Liability Insurance

1 pm Eastern/12 pm Central/10 am Pacific

Moderator: Laura Bianchini, Moody Insurance


This is your chance Ask the Expert about Employment Practices Liability Insurance (EPLI). EPLI encompasses a broad range of issues such as gender, race and age discrimination, harassment, wrongful termination and retaliation.



  • EPL Insurance protects businesses against liability for claims brought by employees who allege employment-related wrongful acts.
  • Even businesses with strong Human Resources policies and procedures can face claims of wrongful employment activities. These claims must be defended.
  • Legal fees are costly, with the average employment suit costing over $120,000.
  • More claims are made during a weak economy.
  • No EPLI coverage is provided by a standard General Liability, Workers Compensation or Umbrella policy.

Our expert is Laura Bianchini of Moody Insurance. She will explain the importance of this coverage. Bring your questions: Hot Topic Tuesday is an interactive call!

Register now!



Bring your questions: Hot Topic Tuesday is an interactive call!







Boost for Cleaning Industry as Millennials Clamour for Cleaners

From European Cleaning Journal


Nearly half of all millennials are hiring cleaners because they are "too busy" to clean their own flats.


And this has contributed to a 25% rise in demand for domestic cleaners over the past five years, according to insurer Esure. The company claims that most of this demand is coming from young professionals living in one or two-bedroom properties.


Cleaning site backs up these figures claiming that 4 in 10 (40%) of25-34 year olds either currently uses a cleaner or is looking for one - up from 33% two years ago.


"We are seeing more young adults looking for a cleaner, mainly because they value their time and would rather spend money than lose time they could be spending with friends or family," said Helpling director Sam James. "The sharing economy has also played a big part in the trend."


Marketing manager of Housekeep Liam Dickerson believes the surge in demand is partly because many young people today work long hours. "They're also living in smaller dwellings with more people and less storage space which means they are likely to spend more time tidying up," he said. "They therefore feel that they're better off getting someone else to do their cleaning."


Helpling and Housekeep are among a new wave of digital housekeeping firms that cater for the rise in demand for cleaners among young professionals. Companies such as these enable millennials to order cleaners using their smartphones as easily as they would book an Uber cab.


The term "millennials" is generally used by demographers to describe young people born in the 1980s and 1990s who have a high level of familiarity with communications, media and digital technologies.



ProTeam, CBT & ARCSI Team Up for Vacuum Giveaway

Drop by the ARCSI lounge at the ISSA/INTERCLEAN show in Las Vegas to register
On September 11-12 (Monday and Tuesday) at the ISSA/INTERCLEANtrade show in Las Vegas, the new ProVac FS6 with Power Nozzle will be on display in the ARCSI lounge. Make sure you drop an entry slip in the slotted box. At 5 PM on Tuesday, Cleaning Business Today and ProTeam will hold a live drawing to give away the vacuum. Not going to the convention? You can still view then entire line of backpack vacuums from ProTeam at







ISSA Accepting 2018 Speaker Proposals

ISSA is accepting speaker proposals for the 2018 ISSA/INTERCLEAN® North America and ISSA Convention 2018, which takes place October 29 - November 1, 2018, in Dallas, Texas.


The deadline for proposed speaker presentations is October 20, 2017, and notifications of accepted proposals will be announced by January 1, 2018. Speaker proposals must be submitted through the ISSA website to be considered.


To submit a speaker proposal, visit





Cleanify Profiles ARCSI Members

Empowering Women and Cleaning Homes Are Mountain Maids of Montana’s Goals
Molly Bloomquist, Mountain Maids


The words “Love, Compassion, Integrity” greet you when you walk into the Bozeman headquarters of Mountain Maids of Montana, and you can feel true warmth and caring coming from co-founder Molly Bloomquist. She and business partner Kathy Patterson purchased the cleaning business ten years ago and immediately changed the way it was doing business. The previous owner was doing everything—cleaning, handling bookings, scheduling, accounting—and the new owners used their prior corporate experience to exponentially grow the business to six times its revenue.


Happiest Man Alive, Gary Downing, Shares His Secrets for Success

Gary Downing, Happy Cleaning


Up for a challenge? I dare anyone to try to have a conversation with Gary Downing, founder of Philadelphia’s Happy Cleaning, without smiling. Gary’s enthusiasm is relentless, and no matter what type of day you’re having, you’re going to end up beaming and feeling lighter just from speaking with him. Even his voicemail makes you happy, with a reminder that “laughter is the best medicine” just before the beep.





Welcome to

Residential Members


  • Janice & Marcelo Araujo, Four Season Pro Clean, Bothell, Washington
  • Carolyn Childress, C & R Enterprises World Wide (The Cleaning Authority Fresno), Fresno, California
  • Carol Camp Davis, DNL Cleaning Services, Panama City, Florida
  • Dennis Dwyer, Maid Brigade LA, Torrance, California
  • Todd Elmore, True Clean, Hobbs, New Mexico
  • Claudia Feitoza, Brazilian Cleaning Services, Homestead, Florida
  • Jan Hall, Hall-mark Premier Cleaning, Loveland, Ohio
  • Crystal Hamm, Go2Girls, Raleigh, North Carolina
  • Karin Kautz, Klean Sweep, Marshfield, Missouri
  • Laurie Koon, L & L Cleaning, Mechanicsville, Virginia
  • Kristen Lewis Noon, Limelight Cleaners, Towson, Maryland
  • David Liu, Dynamic Housecleaning, Aptos, California
  • Talia Merienne, Go Clean, Coronado, California
  • Sarah Newman, Concierge Cleaning, Weeki Wachee, Florida
  • Greg Nickles, Maid Brigade of Portland, Gresham, Oregon
  • Delano Perry, Elbow Grease Cleaning Services, Cary, North Carolina
  • Caleb & Tara Pierce, Pink Power Cleaning, Troy, Ohio
  • Jonathan Riding, Evergreen Cleaning Co, Huntington Beach, California
  • Tammy Schotzko, We Love Messes, Bemidji, Minnesota
  • Derrick Shich, MYClean, New York, New York
  • Josephine Wallace, Welcome Home Cleaning Services, Georgetown, Texas
  • Kimberly Weatherington, Genuine Care Home Services, Trussville, Alabama
  • Rachel Wolski, Magic Hands Cleaning Service, Portland, Oregon




A Commitment to Excellence

Friendships, Family Are at the Heart of ISSA/INTERCLEAN for Residential Cleaning Companies


The State of the Residential Cleaning Industry


The Value of Training and Certification Programs


Two More Options to Get Your HCT in 2017!


August 29 Hot Topic Tuesday: Ask the Expert - What You Need to Know About Employment Practices Liability Insurance


Boost for Cleaning Industry as Millennials Clamour for Cleaners


ProTeam, CBT & ARCSI Team Up for Vacuum Giveaway



ISSA Accepting 2018 Speaker Proposals


Cleanify Profiles ARCSI Members: Molly Bloomquist & Gary Downing


Welcome to New Members





















more Calendar

Hot Topic Tuesday: Enjoy Labor Day!

Hot Topic Tuesday: CONVENTION WEEK!


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