Tuesday, November 01, 2005

The State Of The Housecleaning Industry

Stuck. Motionless. Boring.

That's where the housecleaning industry is today. There's not many forward thinkers, not many pioneers. Not many people are trying to improve anything. No reason to fix what ain't broke.

But it is broke. I hear it over and over again from other people's clients. They all complain about the same things.

The service starts out great, but gets worse and worse over time. The cleaners never arrive on time. The cleaners made mistakes and the owner didn't seem to care.

I'm not kidding. I hear these three complaints every time I enter a home that is currently being serviced by another company. I've memorized my response to each complaint because I hear them so frequently.

The housecleaning industry is broke. Too many people are doing the same things and they're doing them wrong. That's good for us, right?

Not really. We want to people to perceive the housecleaning industry as a professional trade. We want people to respect our services and our employees. That will never happen as long as the housecleaning industry remains in inertia. People will continue to view a housecleaner as a low-level commodity and low-price leaders will continue to attract new clients.

People respect medical personnel. People respect attorneys. People respect electricians. People respect them because they perceive them as professional. Nobody selects a doctor based on price. Nobody selects an electrician because he's cheap. People select these professions based on quality workmanship.

That's where the housecleaning industry needs to be. People need to select a service based on quality workmanship. Unfortunately, we're a long way away. The majority of people select a housecleaner because he/she is cheaper than the next person.

People cancel their cleaning service for one of two reasons: 1) They found a cheaper alternative, or 2) They found a better alternative.

It's easier to be the cheaper alternative and that's why nothing gets changed.

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