At last count, there were 10 billion cleaning companies throughout the country. They all have one thing in common. They're paid to clean your home. A consumer obviously has many choices when it comes to housecleaning, so why choose us?
That's the question I asked myself not too long ago. We looked the same, we acted the same, and we cleaned the same. The million dollar question: How can something as simple as housecleaning be different?
My first reaction was to create services that no one else offered. Services like the TwoMaids Rewards Program and the TwoMaids Riddle Game. The Rewards Program was a big hit. You get a point for every dollar spent on our services. At different point levels, you receive all sorts of free gifts and services. We've had customers receive free rounds of golf, free meals at restaurants, and free gift certificates to department stores. Of course, the most popular reward is a free housecleaning. The Riddle Game is a little kooky. We leave a riddle in your home after every cleaning. Originally, the first three people that answered the riddle correctly received an additional 25 Rewards points. Today, each correct answer rewards the customer with 25 TwoMaids Charity points. We support a local charity by paying 10% of the total number of charity points. In other words, we pay $2,000 if 20,000 points are accumulated.
The different service offerings helped. However, they weren't enough. People were still calling other companies and we still had a lot of market share that needed to be stolen. How could our service provide something different?
It was a eureka moment. My idea was to align the interests of our employees with the interests of our customers. What mistakes were we consistently making? What upset our customers the most? What upset us the most? We addressed our top four problem areas using a pay-for-performance compensation plan. Absenteeism/tardiness, lost equipment/supplies, late arrival to customer homes, and poor quality/customer service were specifically addressed. Our employees were now being paid to produce. If they produced, they were paid well. If they didn't produce, they weren't paid very well at all.
Good things started to happen. Employees began arriving on time for work and their jobs, customer satisfaction skyrocketed, qualified applicants came pouring in, and the entire company morale changed almost overnight. I had found the magic formula.
We still had a lot of work to do. We were far from perfect. We had changed our business 100%, but no one really knew except our current customers. What could we do to inform everyone of our new dedication to customer service? As usual, check back later and find out....