This lesson was so profound to me as a new entrepreneur. I have never forgotten it. I want to play it again so you will never forget it either! What fruit are you holding onto so tight that you can't see danger about to club you to death?
There is so much to dig into for this month's update of my personal cleaning company. If you're new to this show, here's the quick version. I've been a solo house and office cleaner for most of my 16 years in business. I have a system that initializes, stabilizes, and optimizes solo cleaning companies to create over $50k profit per year on a few days per week. In fact, I've done it twice. My first solo cleaning business was in Upstate New York from 2005 - 2018. I optimized this company to create $55k profit per year on 2 cleaning days per week without employees. The company was 90% residential and 10% commercial. I sold this company in 2018 for $80k and moved back home to Montgomery County, PA. We have since built a second solo cleaning business to $70k profit per year on 2 cleaning days per week. This new company is 75% commercial and 25% residential. As amazing as this sounds and it has been, our family wanted more. Our coaches and mentors challenged us to follow our dream as a homeschooling family. We had a New Freedom Vision and booked a house on the Gulf Coast of Florida for a month next winter! We wanted to go from $70k profit on 2 days per week to 0 days! This requires a team and systems. As an engineer, I love systems. But I've resisted them as a solo as I viewed them as tedious. Thankfully, I've hired Coach Josh to walk me into our dream. Josh is a co-owner at Athens Cleaning in Athens, GA. He is a fast-growing commercial cleaning company serving small, professional offices with professional workers. This podcast feature is a monthly peak into my own company, Carfagno Commercial Cleaning, as we build our business with systems and team members in order to start living our dream.
I attended Podcast Movement in Nashville in August. As usual, this conference was phenomenal. Yes, I learned a few exciting tips to improve my podcast and listenership. But I gained so much more in relationships. In fact, I'd say that the biggest reason I went was to grow my network and boy... did I!
I was so thankful to have my friend Juan Chaparro of Gmaids and PipeHire HRM as our Smart Cleaning Tribe Expert for April 2021. I wanted to start a series for the members where I brought in million dollar cleaning owners to share the milestones and lessons they picked up along the way. Juan has an incredible story. He spent 5 years in Dallas growing his company, but he wanted more. He wanted freedom. Juan read the "E-Myth Revisited" and the "4-Hour Workweek" and applied what he learned. He was able to move to Miami to pursue freedom of time and location as he didn’t need a ton of money. It took Juan 13 years, but now he runs a 7-figure business remotely and enjoys a life of freedom.
My wife and I were enjoying breakfast at Postively 4th Street Cafe in Ocean City, NJ. We love this place and especially the lattes. Oh my, they are good! During our connecting time, we were searching for ways to improve our business and effectiveness as parents. I asked the question. "How can we become 10 Talent People in each area of our life?" This is a reference to a story that Jesus teaches in the Book of Matthew. I'll read it.
Earlier this summer, I was talking with my 16-year-old son Kenny about his podcast editing business. I asked him if he'd like to come with me to Nashville for the annual Podcast Movement Conference. He'd have to buy his own ticket obviously. At first he didn't understand why he would even consider it. This lead into a great discussion on networking and why we build relationships with others in our community, online, and nationally. I'll come back to that conversation soon. But first let me ask you, the Smart Cleaning School listener... Are you building relationships in your local community? Did you answer no? Why aren't you doing it as a strategic part of your work week? Is it because you don't believe it's worth your time because it's just more meetings? Allow me to demonstrate with a few stories...
In this episode, we pick up where we left off with Kelly Jones of The Cleaning Girl. You will enjoy her story as it goes from humble beginnings as 22-year-old mom to SBA Woman Entrepreneur of the Year in her state. Pay close attention to the story of how Kelly was nearly featured on Marcus Lemonis's new show, "Lemon-Aid". Marcus is the award-winning host of "The Profit". Kelly is a bridge-builder. She has built thousands of little bridges to get her to that pinnacle. Every bridge is a relationship.
This podcast will show you what is possible when you build relationship bridges and serve like Kelly has done so well. Make sure to follow Kelly as she launches her first product line for homeowners, Maid in a Bottle.
Kelly Jones of The Cleaning Girl (Wilmington, DE) was a 22-year-old mom working at a bank. She got into a car accident and was given the summer off to recover. During this time, she enjoyed the pool with her young children. Then the bank came calling for Kelly to come back to cubicle world. Her husband asked her as she whined about going back. "What are you going to do? What can you do?" Her answer is the title of this podcast.
Kelly quickly found a few clients and then connected with a mom selling her company. Kelly went all in and purchased the business. But the business took its toll on Kelly and she was burnt out after 10 years. That's when her husband stepped in again to ask her. "What are you going to do?" Her answer to this second question is what has built The Cleaning Girl to a BRAND recognized and respected throughout her entire state and earning her multiple business awards!
I recently coached a new friend and solo cleaner, Angelica Pedraza of U B Lazy Cleaning Services out of San Antonio, TX. She had just completed her onboarding as a new member of the Solo Cleaning School Elite and had a few questions. The conversation was beneficial both ways. I was very impressed with her progress. Angelica has been in business 3 years as a solo and she has listened to every one of my podcasts. And no, that's not why I was impressed. She is 21-years-old and has served in our military. Yes, this means she served our country and started her cleaning company before the age of 20. I'm impressed because we hear so much negative about the Milennial Generation and their tendency to look for the easy path. Not Angelica! She is driven and accomplished at a young age. Angelica, if you're listening to this... you have a BRIGHT future! Welcome to our Elite Membership!
This original episode was very popular because it spoke to a mindset of defeatism. In a recent episode, "Pick Up Your Problems", I shared a powerful quote from NBA Champion Chris Bosh. "The problem and the solution are both in the mirror." That really speaks to the heart of this 'Best Of' re-run. Make sure to listen again as it equips you to think like a problem solver over someone who takes the lumps and gives up.
The Smart Cleaning School Podcast helps cleaning business owners from start-up to the struggling solo to the striving seven-figure get SMARTER in their businesses, reshape their mindset, increase productivity, clear the overwhelm, and get clarity through SMART goal-setting & personal accountability. Ken Carfagno is a lifetime learner and teacher. His mission is to help visionaries make the impact they were meant to make.