In the cleaning business, much like being in retail, we are always *ON*. The days we are actually closed for business are few and far between, and we work right up to the last minute.
We inevitably over-schedule a day or two, and our teams end up working longer than usual. Traffic is getting heavier as school lets out and everyone (and their mothers) are out and about preparing for the festivities.
All of these things are going to lead to STRESS. You are stressed just thinking about the logistics of the day. Your teams are stressing about traffic jams and long hours, and your clients are freaking out that we’re running 10 minutes late and they their guests will literally be arriving AT.ANY.MOMENT…and the house needs to be ABSOLUTELY perfect!
Remember though….we aren’t saving lives! Although we HAVE been told we are life savers before! 😉
Take Care of Yourself
It’s like the airplane emergency procedure, first you’ve gotta get the oxygen mask on your own face, then you help the people around you. If you keep your own stress levels at a manageable level, you are going to be able to help out the clients around you.
If the phone is ringing off the hook, but you really just need to take a deep breath and get a grip on your own sanity, then do so. Letting one or two calls roll to voicemail is not going to make or break your business. When you regain your composure after a quick stretch, some fresh water, a quick snack to keep your blood pressure in check, and a moment of reflection, you will be all the more prepared to handle whatever comes at you next.
Take Care of Your Employees
The truth is that you should always be on top of this year-round, but the little extras this time of year can really keep employee morale up, keep their stress at bay, and help to ensure that things run as smoothly as possible. So we like to step up our game with just a few little things. Keep the coffee fresh and hot. But be sure to have hot chocolate and tea on hand as well for those they shy away from the coffee. Have snacks ready to go. Between the morning rush and missed lunch breaks, make sure that you have healthy snacks that can be eaten on-the-go. A box of $10 granola bars is worth its weight in gold.
Take Care of Your Clients
This is a great time of year to send out a little something extra. One year we gifted coffee mugs and added in our marketing materials to encourage referrals. Another year we left behind a nice little package with microfibers; thinking maybe for once they just might wipe their own counters! For clients that we really like, we go above and beyond and offer top-to-bottom deep cleaning at no additional cost, or perhaps a free oven or fridge cleaning. We also like to send out a holiday e-mail wishing them the best and reminding them of the days that we are closed. The sooner they know, the sooner they’ll remember to reschedule and still get the day they want.
Anyway….no two rodeos are the exact same, no matter how many processes you have in place. So as the holidays approach…just remember to breathe, we aren’t saving lives, it just feels like it!