There may come a time in your cleaning service business when the phone won’t stop ringing. You want this! You want the calls for more house and office cleaning work to come in. Isn’t that why you’re in the professional cleaning business? But, consider these 5 things first before taking a new cleaning job.
Ever heard the saying “Everything that looks good, isn’t good for you”. Or, “Everything that glitters ain’t gold”. Or to give it a little more legitimacy, 1Cor 10:23 says, “Everything is permissible, but not everything is beneficial.”
Taking this into account, consider a few things before accepting a new cleaning job offer because what we may see as a positive may just work against us.
Let’s consider this for a moment…
- What good is it to get so many jobs that you overbook them by mistake?
- How can you prevent buying the wrong cleaning supplies, hiring the wrong cleaning crew, and making bad investments if you don’t give yourself time to think things through?
- Is it ever a good idea to work yourself into debt?
Sometimes, it’s hard to tell when everything ‘sounds’ good and a decision has to be made fast.
My point here is not to try to paint a glib picture. But, we shouldn’t forget the obvious and ask ourselves, ’should we really take this cleaning job?’
I started my cleaning journey when I was 20. My husband joined me 7 years after. At this point, we have been professionally cleaning for 27 years. With all life’s ups and downs, set backs and come backs. It has been good, but it has been a ride!
Some of the cleaning jobs we got were hard sought after, some fell in our laps, but some really tested our courage, our skill, and our faith. Honestly.
Truthfully, it doesn’t matter how small or large of a company we have, we should always have a list of questions to keep handy when those calls come through. Not just to jot down the cleaning job description but to do a checklist of things we need to consider before we say yes to the cleaning job.
Consider these 5 things before taking a new cleaning job.
1. Check your availability to clean more jobs.
Never, ever overbook your schedule. Before you say yes to a job, check your work schedule to make certain that you have the appropriate time and/or staff available. Seems like an obvious thing to do, but overbooking cleaning customers or scheduling meetings happens more than you think.
2. Do you have knowledge of the cleaning task being requested?
Case in point, don’t promise to strip and wax floors if you are not skilled at using a floor buffer. First, practice at your home, or your office, or at a friend’s home. But don’t book work for services that you or your staff is not skilled at performing just yet.
3. Will saying yes to this cleaning job offer interfere with your personal life.
As professional cleaning service providers, we all would like to think that we can come and go as we please. I mean we’re making money, right? However, it is important to remember that most of us have families that depend on our financial contribution, but they also need our physical presence. Family time and friend time is vital. And, it should be a factor when considering taking a new job.
4. Some jobs will require additional costs we may not think about up front. So, can we afford the cost to clean?
Let’s say a solopreneur residential cleaner was given the job opportunity to provide post construction cleaning. The job would not only be challenging in terms of the detailed work, but there are also certain permits, licensing, certifications, and additional insurance costs needed. Give it some thought and make sure you are prepared for all the requirements.
This next one is the hardest lesson for any professional cleaner to learn!
5. Ask yourself if the cleaning job will be profitable.
Sometimes, as janitorial contractors and residential cleaning service providers, we try sooo hard to compete to get the job that we under price it. Then once we get the job, we quickly realize that the cost for labor, material, transportation, overhead and mark-up costs, and any other little thing really adds up. And our bottom line tells us that we’ve PAID THE CUSTOMER for the honor of cleaning for them!
The key here is to factor in the right price before agreeing to take the job. Know your true costs – factoring everything from parking fees, tollway charges, gasoline, all specialty cleaning supplies and products needed, additional labor costs for skilled workers, you name it, everything.
So, we gotta ask ourselves serious questions before starting a new job. You, of course, may have more or slightly different questions than these. But, these 5 things to think about before saying yes to your next job is real.
Homework: Create a list of 3-7 questions, (keep them simple but relevant to your situation) of what to examine before you agree to take the next cleaning job. For you, it may be securing a babysitter or dog walker. It could be rescheduling a vacation or rearranging another job that’s on your books. But, make your list please.
Consider your availability, your skill set, your true cost, and your family time before taking the next cleaning job. Most importantly, as a smart professional cleaning service provider, make sure that the job will be profitable. If the listed questions above are not catered to your specific situation, create a list of 5 things to consider before taking a new cleaning job.
“The truth of the matter is that you always know the right thing to do. The hard part is doing it.” Norman Schwarzkopf
Creator of A Janitor’s Story®. I started my office cleaning side hustle at 20 years old. Years later, with the partnership of my husband and our amazing staff, my business grew to mid-six figures and fulfilled my wildest dreams! Now, 27 years STRONG, I’ve retired, and I help aspiring entrepreneurs to START and GROW their house and office cleaning service businesses to achieve their biggest dreams. I’d like to help you do the same.
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