Are you wondering whether you could own your own cleaning business?
We have investigated what skills and abilities best suit a cleaning franchisee. Domestic cleaning is unusual in the sense that the sector is dominated by small businesses and franchises, so it could be right for you.
Alex Markov, franchisee for Nationwide Cleaners, champions a love for people - be it customers, your franchisor or your staff.
“It is important to love people, and be happy to help them,” he says, “You have to work with cleaners, and with clients and you must want to provide a good service, at a good price. That is what keeps clients happy.”
You can become a cleaner easily, it doesn’t necessitate a huge staff or your family - you just need the cleaning products and good physical health. But growing a cleaning franchise, managing other people and finding clients is as much a mental as a physical challenge.
Alex agrees, saying, “It’s very easy to start a [cleaning] business, but then if you get stuck or have a small problem or question it’s not easy to find people who can help you. It is much easier to start with a franchise. Anytime you need help there is somebody there to help you.”
You don’t require any specialist premises to become a cleaning franchisee, so it is possible to do this job from home. “Working from home is a big advantage, “comments Alex, “... as the costs are lower at the beginning when you don’t have a lot of money, but as your business grows you can invest more money and you don’t have to run it from home.”
We think the following skills are helpful for any domestic cleaning franchisee:
Be regular .Properties will need to be cleaned every week (if not every day), so this isn’t a business for a quick win – it takes time to build up a regular client base It’s better suited to those who are happy to put in the work for a few months before they attempt to reap the dividends.
Be presentable . Both the cleaning and the accounting behind the franchise must look respectable. Managing your staff is imperative to running this kind of franchise, so how you carry yourself and your business will motivate your employees. Cleaning franchisees won’t suffer from an abundance of perfectionism!
Be confident and polite. Client-facing skills such, as the ability to plod on with a grin when handing out leaflets to win new business, is very important. If you aren’t confident in your business and your staff then this may be reflected in your dealings with customers.
Cleaning is a service business and clients will not be afraid to complain if the service is not up to scratch, thus customer relations skills are needed – these are often taught by your franchisor, who will have a set way of managing feedback.
Be trustworthy. You will need to come across as trustworthy from the outset, as clients will be handing over the keys to their castle. This this requires a huge amount of trust on the part of the client and it will only come if you can assure them that their homes will be improved by your services, not disrupted.
Be your own administrator. Finally, a franchisor will also teach you excellent administrative skills. If you hate admin then you will not enjoy running a franchise of this nature, with its necessary invoicing, overheads management and timesheets. Cleaning franchise profits come from managing many small-paying customers. Be meticulous and the money will tot up.
Buying a branded cleaning model can help a lot with the development of these skills. You will already be able to work with the goodwill of an established brand following a proven formula for success. However people skills do seem paramount. As Alex says, “If you don’t want to work with other people it’s probably not the right business for you.”