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Hi- wanting to start, could use advice

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Category: Carpet Cleaners Discussion
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Topic: Hi- wanting to start, could use advice
Posted By: TomR
Subject: Hi- wanting to start, could use advice
Date Posted: 25/April/2004 at 5:32am

Hello...

  I have been in the janitorial business for ten years, and have run my own operation for the past several months.  I have heard alot about carpet cleaning but for some reason never persued it other than as some small-time spot cleaning and extraction with a portable in my commercial accounts. 

  From what I understand, 3 residential jobs a day can get you $225 dollars with a minimum $75 per job, and $25 per room.  Assuming it takes about a half hour to do a room, with setup and driving time tacked on, those three jobs would take about 10.5 hours.  Roughly $20 an hour.  Not more than I get for one of my janitorial accounts, but cash in hand the same day and a booming demand with little competition for residential carpet cleaning in my area makes me want to do this really bad. 

  How would you guys suggest I start?  I was thinking of working for one of the bigger national companies for a few months to get training and put the salary all into a downpayment on a tm, a drimaster, and other supplies I would need. 

  My mind is a sponge for carpet-care information right now.  Any links or references to information on the subject would be great.  I have been studying this forum, but if anyone knows of a step-bystep "how to clean carpets professionaly" type guide on the net, that would be great.  If not, please tolerate the many stupid questions I will be asking. 

  I'm a quick learner.  The last company I was with (which was tiny), we had one vct maintenance account and a few janitorial(all commercial).  I took care of the vct account, learned enough about it to train others on all the propane machines, how to strip and wax etc etc and a year later we had 64 vct accounts and four janitorial and our customers were very happy.  I got all of the vct machinery and equipment as a "buyout" from my partner and am working on expanding my present company in that direction.  I would love to have a nice hardfloors and carpet cleaning operation running by the end of the year.  My most immediate goal though is getting the carpet cleaning up and running for the cash in hand. 

  Thanks in advance for any advice or suggestions you may have as to how to get rolling with the carpet cleaning. 




Replies:
Posted By: Adwa
Date Posted: 25/April/2004 at 8:55am

Hi Tom and welcome to this forum. You sure can write a letter. If information you want then you came to the right place. I will let the good old boys answer all your questions and just give my opinion on a few things.

I think it would be a good idea to work with a company to start out if you can just to get the on hands experience. This of course is the problem bigger companies are having when hiring gentlemen like you who they hire, train and then leave them. If at all possible and I am being fare to both parties if you could be up front about what your plans are and then maybe you both could work something out temporarily.

Most carpet cleaners start out with a portable and I would suggest High Pressure and then move on to a TM. It is good to have both there will be situations that you would require both pieces of equipment to be used. TM's are the best and very expensive. I believe you should have a good customer base account's to be able to support the cost.

OK just a few of my suggestions, like I said Welcome and have fun.

 



Posted By: doug
Date Posted: 25/April/2004 at 9:22am
Tom:  Welcome.  Now that has been taken care of lets look at realty.  Carpet cleaning is not for everyone.  One good thing for you is you have a steady cash flow from your janitorial.  Are you sure you want to use hot water extraction for your cleaning? Have to cover Pad Man's bases.  There are other methods.  One big factor is you have to be patient when getting into this field.  Your equipment should grow with your needs.  Buying the biggest and most expensice is not going to guarantee you immediate success.  Once you have decised on the process of cleaning you can get alittle experience on your own and friends carpets.  Find a good distributor who will not only familurze you with your equipment, but also guide you with the cleaning products you need for both commerical and residential cleaning.  You can clean some of your janitorial contracts to get familiar wGuitarith your machine.  I think I have rambled enough.  Just my opinion


Posted By: MR. STEAMER
Date Posted: 25/April/2004 at 12:43pm

Welcome Tom....Doug has a how to guide...you should ask him about it.....feel free to post in the ask doug section....we all do

 

He knows almost everything...I know the rest



Posted By: doug
Date Posted: 25/April/2004 at 1:08pm
Mr. Steamer: Your too kind. I have to wait for someone to ask the right question and hope I don't mislead anyone.  But ha waht can I cay than hasn't already been said and done.  Just my opinion.Guitar


Posted By: MR. STEAMER
Date Posted: 25/April/2004 at 3:06pm

Doug you know you know everything there is to know

I know you know

Everyones knows that you know

show this guy so he'll know that you know......yanno



Posted By: Adwa
Date Posted: 25/April/2004 at 3:19pm

You guys are on today.

Really Steamer give Tom some of good advise and not about soap and water.   He will learn our humor soon enough. 



Posted By: MR. STEAMER
Date Posted: 25/April/2004 at 3:26pm

ok Adwa ......Tom are you mechanically inclined???How much carpet cleaning do you do???or how much do you want to do???how much are you looking to invest???have you taken the IICRC courses yet...that might be a place to start



Posted By: doug
Date Posted: 25/April/2004 at 3:42pm
I thought Tom was asking the questions?  Great answer.  Answer a questiion with a question.  Good salesman. You forgot to ask if he is married? How many kids? Own your house? Own your car? Just my opinion.Guitar


Posted By: MR. STEAMER
Date Posted: 25/April/2004 at 3:48pm
Originally posted by doug doug wrote:

I thought Tom was asking the questions?  Great answer.  Answer a questiion with a question.  Good salesman. You forgot to ask if he is married? How many kids? Own your house? Own your car? Just my opinion.Guitar
well he didn't give enough info...and these are things I would like to know before I make a recommendation


Posted By: TomR
Date Posted: 25/April/2004 at 4:16pm

Thanks everyone for the information and guidance. 

adwa-  I do want to get a portable as well as a TM, was thinking along the lines of the rotovac startup package, comes with the rotovac, a regular wand, a ninja portable and a few accesories.

doug- I am still learning what I want to use   A TM seems the best bet because what I've read so far makes it seem like if you show up with anything less you are less than what the customer expects.  As an alternative to the TM I am thinking cimex and ecapsulation, but does that alone really do the trick?  The last thing I want is to come to a job that requires something I don't have.  Doing the commercial stuff I've done, I've sweated enough times with spot-remover and a scrub-brush over some stubborn stain that just laughed off my portable extractor.  I already have some decent sized regular commercial work lined up, have had it for years, but always had to pass on it because I don't know enough to honestly sell myself as a carpet cleaner.  I know how a "little" job can turn into a nightmare fiasco is you don't know exactly what you are doing. 

MR Steamer-  I am semi-mechnicaly inclined.  If I understand how a machine works I can problem-solve and do basic repairs on it.  I can't take apart the engine and put it back together in a way that it will still run, but I can do the basic stuff.  I've been doing it for years with propane vct burnishers, walk-behind scrubbers, swing-machines etc etc.  I imagine the basic principles are the same with carpet cleaning equipment.  I do a very small amount of carpet cleaning.  My janitorial contracts state that I spot-clean their carpets as nescessary, then about twice a year they have COIT come in and do the whole thing.  It is work that is offered to me, but I have to pass up for now.  I would like to do alot of carpet cleaning.  The contracts I already service, more commercial contracts and as much residential as I can handle.   I am willing to invest as much as I need to cut a good profit.  I haven't taken any IICRC courses yet. 

  I do have about $12,000 in hard-floor equipment that I am not using and is pretty much sitting there in the garage not making anyone any money.  Instead of expanding hardcore into the hard-floors, I want to get a handle on carpet cleaning so I can offer all of my cusotmers a very well-rounded line of services.  I am thinking I can sell that unused 10k worth of equipment, keep what I am currently using, and put the 10k twords carpet equipment and supplies. 



Posted By: MR. STEAMER
Date Posted: 25/April/2004 at 4:56pm

Wll I think you have answered a lot of your own questions....It sounds to me your going truck mount.....10k US sounds like a used machine...thats the way I would go....I would recommend getting a slide-in unit...just because if you find that Carpet cleaning is not for you...you could always just slide it out and have the Van for other uses.

Hopefully you can get a unit with low hours...I think you should start looking...and you should take the IICRC course to get a basic understanding of carpet cleaning...



Posted By: LilNiteRidrhood
Date Posted: 25/April/2004 at 4:57pm

Tom you had an excellent idea when you said you should work for a company for a month or so first.

On the job training is top notch, you'll learn what to do, what not to do and whether or not you will even like the business.

Seems like you have your head on straight.

I should point out that the money is far better than you are projecting.

Good luck



Posted By: TomR
Date Posted: 26/April/2004 at 12:37am

  Thanks again,

  Mr Steamer-  good idea about the slide-in.  I am almost positive that carpet cleaning is for me.  If on the off chance I do end up really hating it, I have enough discipline to learn something pretty well and do a good job even if I hate it.  I HATE janitorial work, but it was what I am doing now until business is built up enough to hire people.  I will start looking for that used slide-in.  I think I will take the IICRC course, seems like good credentials to have. 

Lilniteriderhood- Thanks!  If I go with a big company I might not say what I am planning, but if its a little company I definitely will.  I'm not out to stab anyone in the back.  Its good to hear the money is better than what I am projecting.  I was going by the most conservative estimates based on what I've read and the estimates I've gotten from calling places myself.  If this is anything at all like hardflloors, the big companies are set up to make smaller profit per service from a mass amount of services while the smaller companies make larger profit on less services- but generaly do a better job. 

Thanks for the encouragement, I'll be posting more questions and progress very soon. 

edit: I;ve been pouring over this forum and  am just about sold on padmans system.  If it does what it seems to do and any customer complains because I am not dragging out miles of duct and cables from some monster caged inside my van, I'll be happy to suggest to them that they should wait until the job is finished before judging its quality. 



Posted By: Rotti123
Date Posted: 26/April/2004 at 2:21pm

 Padman's system seems to work well but you might have to sell the idea to lot of people.  Many people feel that Pad or Bonnet cleaning is a surface cleaning and not a deep cleaning.  Personally I would go truckmount and add a system like Padman's later if customers seemed interested in it.  Padman's system is very resonably priced so it would not be hard to add that service at some point in the future.  If you really feel strongly that Padman's system is the way to go then you will probably have no problem convincing your customers.  

 

 



Posted By: TomR
Date Posted: 26/April/2004 at 3:20pm

Thanks rotti,  If I got the OP system, I would use it as an advertisizing tool- put it right into the ads so they know whats coming from the get-go.  If the OP is as good as a TM than the only thing a TM really brings in is glitz "look at my big bad truck-mounted machine".  There are less expensive ways to ad glitz.  I am pretty good at talking so I don't see much of a problem with it.   Just from past experience in other areas, I know it helps to talk about the customers property (that you are servicing) in organic terms, making it seem like a living thing.  This would dove-tail with the OP system, "...effectively massaging the dirt out from the depths of the carpet with the help of deep-cleansing earth-friendly nutrients and conditioners.  This in contrast to abusing the carpet with hardcore heavy machinery that blasts extremely hot, high-pressure jets of chemical abrasives into the sensitive fibers- then applying an industrial vacuum to pull hard on the carpet fibres in hopes of removing as much of the chemical and soil as possible.  Like a living thing, your carpet has a life-expectancy and its lifespan will only equal the quality and care that is applied to it."  The idea being that OP removes what is bad in a carpet in a way that is good for the carpet.  While TM attempts to remove what is bad for the carpet in a way that is bad for carpet.  Of course I don't know what I am talking about, but people eat that stuff up.  I love selling services.  *My method = good energy into your floor (and of course your home and everyone that walks or crawls or is being raised on those floors)*  *Their method = bad energy into your floor (and your home, and your babies crawling on that carpet and everything that walks across it)*

blah



Posted By: doug
Date Posted: 26/April/2004 at 3:38pm
TomR I think you can really expand with op cleaning to water extractiion  grout cleaning and probablly powerwashing.  TomR I think you have been brainwashed.  Maybe you should listen to smoeone a little more open minded and do a good cpomparsion in systems before you accuss all of cleaners who are presently cleaning carpets  with hot water extractiion of being a**holes who are destroying everybobys carpets.  Just my opinionGuitar


Posted By: TomR
Date Posted: 26/April/2004 at 4:26pm
doug...lol, I am just researching and looking through my options.  I was saying what I would say if I had only an OP in a market where everyone pushes truckmounts.  Its marketing.  Not telling a lie but rather emphasizing the postives of ones own system while downplaying the negatives, and emphasizing the negatives of the system used by competitors while downplaying the positives.   I wasn't giving my opinion, just what I would say if I was cornered by a customer who seemed to demand a truckmount.  I am sure a skilled carpet cleaner can make a customer just as happy with either a TM or an OP. 


Posted By: Adwa
Date Posted: 26/April/2004 at 7:31pm

According to Shaw Industries the biggest manufacture of carpet in the world.

Says that hot water extraction is the best method of removing soils in the carpet.

Tom you sound like quite the salesman. If you decide not to get into the cleaning of carpets you certainly can make money selling the cleaning of carpets.  



Posted By: TomR
Date Posted: 27/April/2004 at 1:57am

hehe, to me its the same job.  Selling the service you do.  Just to test the waters heres a question-  Do you really think that the larger the institution, the more valid its assertions?  Berkshire Hathaway which owns Shaw Industries owns so many different companies and is involved in so many different companies that it is no suprise they happen to support the most common and most expensive system for professionaly cleaning carpets.  Companies get big because they are masters at turning a profit, not because they are masters of the service(s) or products they are marketing.  Shareholders care far more about quarterly profits than they do about how much a company knows about the service or product it is actually selling.  I'll take the word of some salty old small-time master tradesman over what any large company says, any day of the week.  The business of the former is his given trade, the business of the latter is turning a profit.   Craftsmen do not run large companies nor do they issue the official statements or recomendations of those companies.  Rather it is marketing and financial experts that run those companies, and design and authorize those statements to the standard of maximum corporate profit. 

  I know nothing about carpet cleaning, but reason dictates that when it comes to what padman says vs what Shaw Industries says, I go with padman.

  Like I said, just testing the waters, not trying to get flamed. 



Posted By: Adwa
Date Posted: 27/April/2004 at 9:43pm

Tom your killing me.

Everything you write is in long hand. I have to get comfortable in my chair to read all that you have to say in one breath.   Just joking with you.

Does my flower look stupid to you??   I was just recently at a seminar Cari Mitchell was the speaker and I was quoting what he said.

Yes I get the bigger picture and yes I realize were they are coming from.

You keep saying you do not know much about carpet cleaning yet you have already picked a method of equipment without trying out your other options.

If you want to get into this end of the industry go with eyes wide open. Try everything make your decision or try nothing at all.

Either way I still say your a salesman. 

 



Posted By: TomR
Date Posted: 28/April/2004 at 1:06am

  Your flower looks cool, it contrasts enough with the other avatars in this setting to make it original. 

  I do tend to go on and on and on.  and on

  I might seem like I have picked a method, but I really haven't.  I am sure the best method is being good at every method; just being a good carpet cleaner all around.  But considering start-up costs, the OP (if it does what it seems to do) seems like the way to go to start.  I still have to actually use the different types of equipment to actually know.  I'm big on theory, but I am bottom-line practical when it comes down to it. 

  A couple of my interests are philosophy and psychology and to be honest with you, any time you sell anything all you are really selling is an idea.  Craft a pretty enough idea and it well definitely sell.

  I am a salesman.  I sell my service.  Right now it is janitorial and hardfloors, and I soon hope to include carpets.  If I am actually a good salesman I should be able to pick up alot of residential work.  My experience so far has been all commercial, and so my streamlined angle on the customer is all about cutting their overhead while increasing quality (it is true).  I'll have to develop something that works for residential customers.  For some reason I have a problem selling for other people though.

oh well...I tried to keep it short this time



Posted By: Adwa
Date Posted: 28/April/2004 at 10:34pm

Tom you talk a good walk. You could sell to me anytime. 

I always thought that commercial business is less stressful then residential and less head aches.

Why not start carpet cleaning on the commercial side first. Gain your experience before you enter into the residential.

I really have no idea if I am right I do not clean. Just asking the questions

 



Posted By: TomR
Date Posted: 29/April/2004 at 1:39am

Adwa,   Thanks again.  I will start cleaning carpets on the commercial side first.  I have my own cleaning accounts I can do and also have friends who do not do carpets who would be happy to refer me to their customers because they know I won't use the carpet cleaning as a way to get my foot in the door for other services.  I also am still going with the idea of working for one of the national companies.  COIT is hiring in my area, I am going to talk to them tomarrow.  Any idea what they pay? 



Posted By: Adwa
Date Posted: 29/April/2004 at 11:30pm

Tom

I know of only one Coit company that started in Toronto last summer. They I think are having a hard time Franchise in the Canadian market.

I do not know what they pay in the States or Canada for that matter but I do know that they are very strict with what they believe is the best method and chemicals that you should be using.  Good Luck!!

You should step out of this topic of introduce yourself and go on to the other topics on the forum. I think you have a lot to offer.



Posted By: TomR
Date Posted: 30/April/2004 at 2:35am

  Thanks, I've been posting around here and there.  COIT in the US is about the same.  Very specific about everything.  They use "customized" TM's, pay a percentage, and once your trained pretty much unleash you on your own (with their vehicle, TM, uniform and equipment) to do their work.  I called them and also talked to a few independents I know around here.  Seems coit is the place to work for if your not going to bust out on your own right away.  I am going in for an interveiw tomarrow.  I really want this job now.  Wish me luck!   

Hey, if this don't work out maybe your company is looking for some tele-commuting sales people?  eh?  eh? 



Posted By: Adwa
Date Posted: 30/April/2004 at 11:14pm

I do wish you luck Tom !!!

Let us know how it went and Tom just to ad to the stress of the day How were you dressed  lol lol

Stay Cool 

Did you know Coit Tower in San Fransisco was designed, "I was told" by a Madame who had in mind to make it look like a fire hose nozzle, because many fire fighters frequent her establishment.

I wonder if that is true. If you get the job inquire for me

 



Posted By: Nighthawk
Date Posted: 01/May/2004 at 1:37am

 Hi! Tom:  Welcome to this fourm.  Great piece you wrote on April 26. I was over come with your creative writting " effectively massagingearth friendly nutrients.     WOW keep it up. your the Poet here. John (Padman) will be proud.  I to have been in the Janitorial service for the last 19 yrs and still loving it. Most of the time bonnet cleaning once a mth. in my churchs ( contracts ) and the use of a portable machine 2 times a yr. Do some grout & tile, like it and customer's love it. I to am interested in OP becuase of the three machines in one. Good for me. No space. First place I would try it on would be my own accounts thought. Hope John will be aloud to sell here in Canada. So keep it up.   P.S   doug & steamer & oh I just about forgot Nightrider " Sorry " dude?   Keep those fingers floatin.     Night -hawk         & nbsp; 



Posted By: TomR
Date Posted: 01/May/2004 at 8:03am

Hiya nighthawk, good to hear from another cosmetic and sanitary janitorial specialist     Thanks for the compliments.  Funny how you can work feng shui into cleaning.  I am thinking it may be the way to go in marketing residential jobs, especially in upscale neigborhoods.  Its common knowledge that it is good business to join and network in church groups and local commerce organizations, but I am wondering if local environmental organizations aren't great places to network in as well.  "The degree to which political lobbying can help the environment is near its maximum, the degree to which the environment can be helped through the power of the freemarket is perhaps endless, and it is time to start focusing there"  Then of course you run the bit about extremely expensive truckmounts which rely on outdated and environmently harmfull fossil-fuels and arguable don't even do as good of a job as the OP system which doesn't run on fossil fuels, and is alot cheaper. 

  I've done a good bit of bonnet cleaning as well, prespray, bonnet, extract, always wickbacks on the bad stains.  I can't call myself a for-real carpet cleaner until I can prevent that. 

  I agree about trying the OP on my own accounts as well, I do some high-end day-spas that would eat the feng shui bit right up.  Then I figure I'll do my own carpets, and some relatives until I get the system down pat. 

 



Posted By: Adwa
Date Posted: 01/May/2004 at 7:24pm

Ok Tom, 

Seeing you skipped pass my questions and went straight to nighthawk.

May I assume that you did not get the job.

Inquiring minds want to know. 



Posted By: TomR
Date Posted: 02/May/2004 at 6:38am

Sorry Adwa, busy, sleep-deprived last couple days.  I got caught behind a pileup on the parkway on the way out and when I called to let him know I'd be late because of it, he rescheduled for monday.  I'll let you know how it turns out.  If it doesn't pan-out, I'll probably just take on another hardfloors contract so I can buy the OP and get started asap.   The job I was at yesterday (and have to return to today) is about 50k sf but only about 10k are hardfloors.  It kills me to see all that floor that I could be doing if I had the training and equipment.  I was wondering btw, how do carpet cleaners get stripper and floor finish out of a carpet?  I imagine accidents happen alot where tile meets carpet. 

    I didn't know the coit tower was shaped like a fire-hose nozzle, but if I hear anything about it, I'll let you know. 

 



Posted By: MR. STEAMER
Date Posted: 02/May/2004 at 11:11pm

make eye contact.... smile... good luck



Posted By: TomR
Date Posted: 03/May/2004 at 2:53am
thanks Mr Steamer, I haven't had to go to a job interveiw in about 10 years.   I have to keep reminding myself that I am not bidding on anything.  BTW, theres another carpet cleaning company hiring in my area, I think I'll apply for that one to and take the one that offers the best percentage. 


Posted By: TomR
Date Posted: 03/May/2004 at 6:33pm
  The interveiw went well, but he didn't say "Your hired!" right off the bat.  But he did ask me when I could start and the general impression I got was that he is going to start me and soon. 

-------------
http://www.cleanernetwork.com/thenetwork/ - The Cleaner Network


Posted By: Adwa
Date Posted: 05/May/2004 at 6:55am

Tom when you had a job interview you knew if you got the job and now every one insists on giving two to three interviews before you are hired now. It can be a strain on your confidence.

The web site cleaner network, who are they? I went on the site is it new and who sponsors it?



Posted By: TomR
Date Posted: 05/May/2004 at 5:57pm

  Ya, I hate going to multiple interveiws.  Its one reason why I always liked working for smaller local operations.

  I think the cleaner network is sponsered by hyrdroforce.  Given the collapse of the icm forum, I think its good to have something like this springing up.  Seems to be more generalized. 

wow am I  today. 



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http://www.cleanernetwork.com/thenetwork/ - The Cleaner Network


Posted By: Adwa
Date Posted: 05/May/2004 at 11:05pm

You probably feel like that because of the hours you keep. I guess that goes hand and foot with the Janitorial business.

What was the icm forum, I never heard of it? and why did it collapse?



Posted By: TomR
Date Posted: 06/May/2004 at 1:10am

sorry, it was the ics forum...i'm not all here today.  It is back up now btw.  It went down because people started trashing each others companies and the admin had to delete the offending posts.  Heres the url:

http://www.i-boards.com/ics/ - http://www.i-boards.com/ics/



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http://www.cleanernetwork.com/thenetwork/ - The Cleaner Network


Posted By: Adwa
Date Posted: 06/May/2004 at 6:51pm
Ok, I realize Evan was having problems but I didn't realize it had gotten to that point. I wish them well. 


Posted By: TomR
Date Posted: 07/May/2004 at 12:55pm

down again lol

btw its hydrotech not hydroforce...my bad



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http://www.cleanernetwork.com/thenetwork/ - The Cleaner Network


Posted By: Adwa
Date Posted: 07/May/2004 at 3:58pm

Tom you are a busy guy. You will burn yourself out going on all the BB.

That's ok as long as you drop in and see us from time to time. I realize by reading some of the post in the Network that you have a lot in common with the guys that do Janitorial.



Posted By: Adwa
Date Posted: 07/May/2004 at 4:14pm

Sorry Tom in speaking of costs of pads verses hot water extraction the point I was actually making was the initial start up cost of a good extraction unit and a pad man machine are basically the same.

However with Pad Man's machine you would have an additional cost of let's say 50 pads at $20.00 each $1,000.00 or more and who and when will you be washing these pads. Pad Man has done a convincing sales job on me as well but I still would want extraction on my first choice and along with Pad Man's cleaning as my alternative.

I know of a cleaner that  says the very best method for him is to steam clean and then run a pad over it as a finishing polish look. His customers love it.



Posted By: TomR
Date Posted: 07/May/2004 at 7:27pm

about all the bb's- hehe...I am a manic-depressive type without the depressive part, so the point where most people burn out is the point where I have to stay to just keep my engine warm...as long as I get 4 hours of sleep 5 days and 10 hours 2 days I am in good shape.  Also, I look at the bb-bouncing as study and research.  I have alot in common with janitorial/hardfloors guys because that swhat I've been doing for the past 15 years, 8 of those as operations manager and two of them as an independent commercial contractor. 

Padmans pads cost 6 bucks a peice.  I don't see any portable extractor doing the same job as the OP system, unless you have a really experienced carpet guy doing it.  One reason OP is so attractive to me is because of the curve involved; you need less experience to be good at it than you need to be good at extraction.  Also, the concept of pad + oscilation is extremely familiar to me considering all the years I've done vct.



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http://www.cleanernetwork.com/thenetwork/ - The Cleaner Network


Posted By: Adwa
Date Posted: 07/May/2004 at 11:36pm

That's cool Tom  what ever method you think will make you happy then thats the way to go.

Any word on Coit yet, I don't think there is nothing wrong with going on BB because if I did I wouldn't be here would I. I have learned a lot just from what everyone has to say. Being in the industry helps to keep the interest to. When I went on the other BB board though I felt lost to what they were talking about in most of their posts, I did learn a few things. Good luck to them.



Posted By: TomR
Date Posted: 08/May/2004 at 12:24am
From COIT and a few other places I have gotten a card in the mail thanking me for submiting a resume etc. and that I should know within 30 days whether or not I am hired.   I guess thats how people are hired anymore.  If I don't get a call in a couple days, I'll deliver pizzas, I can't wait any longer and am starting to get irritated.  30 days????  There is such a thing as a job-market, working is an exchange of labor for money, like any other sale.  I don't make the car salesman drive across town to my house with the car I like, submit an in-depth resume, interveiw him, and then send him a card a week later thanking him for coming but that I won't know for 30 days if I want to buy the car or not.   I guess they try to weed out the people who don't want to be there for the long term.  Like I said, I'll deliver pizzas (good money in the tips) for a few months until I have enough to buy the system I want, then I'll just teach myself/take the IIRC course and be certified and done with it.   I got screwed pretty bad about a year ago and the result is I can't expand the janitorial/hardfloors end instead of getting a job, and can't sell the equipment I have- which I would much prefer to do.   rough night

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Posted By: Adwa
Date Posted: 08/May/2004 at 12:34am

Tom what bullsh*t is that, I can't believe a cleaning company would be so stupid as to wait that long to hire. Either they don't need employee's or they have a high flying attitude about who they are.

Company's here are dying looking for workers like you but I do recall in the first post I wrote you that they do want to hire someone that will be with them for some time.

Come live in Toronto and we here will fix you up. You sound much to intelligent to be wasting your talent on delivering pizza's. Not knocking people that do that job. Everybody is entitled to make a living.

It's Friday night and I remember a time when that meant something party on!!! Now I wait for my teenagers to get home because Friday night is a happening night for them.  I'm telling you this to lighten your mood, is it working.



Posted By: TomR
Date Posted: 08/May/2004 at 12:42am
ya, it is bull Sastrikastrikit.  My fiance just cleaned so theres no way I can find it, but I wish I had the card in front of me to show exactly how they put it.  I got one from a hospital looking for an environmental services manager, one from COIT and one from servicemaster who is looking for an area manager.  I know I can handle anything that has to do with cleaning managment on the operations side, but I just want something quick, thought COIT or a local indie would be the way to go.  Yep, friday nights ain't what they used to be.  I got home from a job a little while ago, and got another one lined up for 10:00 am, so that with my 11 month old son means no parties for me for quite awhile.  Thanks for tryin to lighten my mood, ya it helped a bit.  I don't mind being angry about stuff usually, they say living well is the best revenge and I am hell-bent on getting mine. 

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Posted By: TomR
Date Posted: 08/May/2004 at 12:49am

btw, check this out:  http://www.tipthepizzaguy.com/ - http://www.tipthepizzaguy.com/   hehe

  No legal job is beneath me if it earns me the money to make my opportunities grow.   Thanks for the nice comments though



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Posted By: Adwa
Date Posted: 08/May/2004 at 12:51am
Great saying I never heard that one before. I better get some shut eye, I have a baseball game in the morning and 12 young thirteen year old boys expecting me to get them in shape for the game. 


Posted By: TomR
Date Posted: 08/May/2004 at 1:03am
hehe have fun!

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Posted By: doug
Date Posted: 08/May/2004 at 9:31am
TomR:  A little advice. You are applying for a carpet cleaning position right?  Are you with me so far?  You must remember that they want someone that they can  mold into their operation OK. Now this is where the trouble starts.  Reading your posts you appear very intellegent and a man of many words.  Question to you.  Do you think you may be intimidating the person that is interviewing you?  Sit back and relax if you can.  Just answer their questions and only the questions.  You cannot to be more intellegent than the person on the other side of the table unless they are looking for a manager or other supervisor's position.Guitar

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Posted By: TomR
Date Posted: 09/May/2004 at 12:27am

  Thats great advice Doug, I haven't looked at it like that.  People have warned me to not "dazzle them with BS", maybe thats what they meant.  I am always afraid of not coming across as smart enough.  I am not from the better part of town and I am always thinking that it is really obvious as soon as I open my mouth to talk.  I have gone to one interveiw for area manager of cleaning company (local university campus) but I almost don't want that one.  I'm not tryin to run anyones operation but my own.  I just wanna clean some friggen carpets already.   

 



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Posted By: MR. STEAMER
Date Posted: 09/May/2004 at 6:51pm
TomR there is nothing wrong with showing them that you're not some JOE BOY that they can just kick you around.  Owners want a person that they don't have to micro-manage.. Nothing wrong with acting like you could be the boss


Posted By: doug
Date Posted: 09/May/2004 at 9:06pm
Mr. Steamer: Your right but tooooo many cooks spoil the broth.  I am not looking for someone to mold me I am looking to mold someone into my company.  Maybe thats why you in previous posts have such a hard time finding people.   Maybe they don't want to be the one with the brains making nothing.Guitar

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Posted By: MR. STEAMER
Date Posted: 09/May/2004 at 10:15pm
Originally posted by doug doug wrote:

Mr. Steamer: Your right but tooooo many cooks spoil the broth.  I am not looking for someone to mold me I am looking to mold someone into my company.  Maybe thats why you in previous posts have such a hard time finding people.   Maybe they don't want to be the one with the brains making nothing.Guitar
No because I hate to have to teach an idiot without a clue....I only want to tell a person once....If I have to tell them twice then I'd rather do it myself...I want someone who knows what they are doing...or someone who is a quick study


Posted By: doug
Date Posted: 09/May/2004 at 10:24pm
Mr. Steamer:  I think one of us is missing the point.  TomR wants an entry level job to learn about carpet cleaning.  Am I right so far?  Now if he goes on like he was born with a golden wand in his mouth that is not going to assist him in the job hunt is it?  I f someone came to you sounding like  they wrote the book on carpet cleaning and new jack sh*t than what? I may be wrong.Guitar

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Posted By: MR. STEAMER
Date Posted: 09/May/2004 at 11:13pm
YOU"RE HIRED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Posted By: TomR
Date Posted: 10/May/2004 at 4:26am
  I guess any way you slice it, in an interveiw you gotta balance all the different parts (self-sufficiency/smarts/team-player etc etc) and play up the parts the interveiwer is leading that he wants to see.   Like trying to get the interest of a new woman you wanna date.   The big bad difference is that one is social and fun and the other is official and serious. 

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Posted By: Adwa
Date Posted: 10/May/2004 at 4:28pm

Tom answer Hockie in the topic Cold Calling. I think this is your forté. I would tell you under what he is asking but this guy is very serious and does not like any answers unless helpful.

In other words he doesn't like to chatter like me. 



Posted By: MR. STEAMER
Date Posted: 10/May/2004 at 10:31pm

I love to show the boss...who's the boss...when a guy knows his work...he does a great job...people love him....his paper work is always just perfect....he make sure you get all your cash...he goes to work 6 days a week  ON TIME...and he's there to correct and solve everyone else problems...

everyone comes to him....he becomes the boss...even the boss comes to him...

too many people do incomplete work......I make sure the job gets done.

I don't do it to be a smart arse...I do it because thats just me



Posted By: TomR
Date Posted: 10/May/2004 at 11:49pm
Mr Steamer, that is a great attitude.  Every outfit needs a solid go-to guy, and you can never really tell at the start who it is going to be.  I just hate having a boss period, and I'm not really cut out to be under anyone.  I am great at giving direction, but I suck at following it.

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Posted By: MR. STEAMER
Date Posted: 11/May/2004 at 7:34am
You got to kiss it....so when you're ready you can kick it....they can't even think about firing you...they just have to suck it up and do better in the future


Posted By: Adwa
Date Posted: 12/May/2004 at 9:50pm

Tom

I was looking at the help you gave Hockie, thanks but it is scary when you have a second thought.     Only Kidding!!!

Steamer

It sounds like you are describing me. You've seen me in action have you.



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Posted By: TomR
Date Posted: 13/May/2004 at 2:50am

hehe...  heres another long one for ya adwa....I had another interveiw with a different carpet cleaning operation yesterday.  Its a small operation, two trucks, three guys (looking for a fourth).   They use rx-20s almost exclusively.  He seemed impressed overall, but it was tough to get a straight answer out of him about a couple of things.  The guy wants me to work for him, but I don't think I want to.  I'm not into this "low pay and low hours for the first month" thing.

  I'm doing the walk-through on a new account tomarrow, if it really works out, I might just take the course, get certified, get the OP system , use it on some small commercial accounts and free jobs (friends carpets etc) until I get a good hang of it and then go from there. Without really trying,   I already have about 15k of commercial carpet work lined up in some of my janitorial accounts.  I know I can keep the machine busy forawhile without getting any new customers.  I hate waiting.  I want to start this. 



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Posted By: MR. STEAMER
Date Posted: 13/May/2004 at 6:47am

hurry hurry hurry...don't waste time buy an OP and start cleaning today!

You got a Visa?? M/C?? or an AMEX?? Then you got a OP machine....

You'll clear the cost of the OP only after ONE job!  Now where do you get that type of return????

Pick your phone and call today!!!!!

1-800-d-pad-man



Posted By: doug
Date Posted: 13/May/2004 at 6:57am
TOMR: You have problem with wanting to start at the top wth all the perks.  Keep one thing in mind if all these low life, low paying lack of education hard working people are in your area you might just have to depend on one of these companies some day.  Taking a course and getting certified does not make a CARPET CLEANER!  Maybe there is a certification certificate that comes with the op machine maybe it is on the pad.Guitar

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Posted By: MR. STEAMER
Date Posted: 13/May/2004 at 7:02am

Originally posted by doug doug wrote:

  Taking a course and getting certified does not make a CARPET CLEANER!  Guitar
OHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOHHHHHHHHHHH

OHHHHHH MMMYYYYYYYY GGGGGGGAAAAAAAAWWWDDDDDD!!!!!!!

I've just been saying this forever.....doug I think I'm rubbing off on you



Posted By: TomR
Date Posted: 13/May/2004 at 10:21am
 Doug, are you telling me that 9 dollars an hour, and a ton of hours, is starting at the top with all the perks?  If so, I better think about something other than cleaning carpets.  I'd be happy working at 9 dollars an hour, 12 hours a day, 7 days a week to start.  Is that the top (with all the perks?)  I never said these people were low-life, lack of education.  Where did you get that from?   I don't care if I got my "official carpet cleaner" card out of a box of cracker-jax, if I could make carpets clean and turn a profit doing it, I'd be happy. 

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Posted By: doug
Date Posted: 13/May/2004 at 12:29pm

TomR:  I will let you in on a little secerate.  I know a couple of men in the US who wanted to learn how to clean carpets.  Could not get a job without experience.  They went ot work for free for a man who could not afford to pay them.  Guess What?  They own one of the largest carpet cleaning companies in the US.  The moral of the story is you may have to sacrfice some of your EGO to get that much needed experience!

Guitar



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Posted By: MR. STEAMER
Date Posted: 13/May/2004 at 3:59pm
blah blah blah....   Get experience make money...no one works for free...these people that doug talks about...wanted to suceed...TomR you sound like a guy with a lot of ambition...you are going to make it no matter where you start.


Posted By: doug
Date Posted: 13/May/2004 at 4:07pm
You know what?  Mr. Tom you have been playing this wanting to get in to business crap for quite awaile.  Why don't you either sh*t or get off the pot?  You seem towant to be wet nursed threw everything.  I think you are just playing everyone for an idiot and playing the part of the hard done by cleaner.Guitar

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Posted By: MR. STEAMER
Date Posted: 13/May/2004 at 4:13pm
Originally posted by doug doug wrote:

You know what?  Mr. Tom you have been playing this wanting to get in to business crap for quite awaile.  Why don't you either sh*t or get off the pot?  You seem towant to be wet nursed threw everything.  I think you are just playing everyone for an idiot and playing the part of the hard done by cleaner.Guitar
wow doug...thats harsh.... did you have your shot gun beside you when you typed that


Posted By: doug
Date Posted: 13/May/2004 at 4:59pm
Mr. Steamer:  Unfortunately one day you have to wakeup and face the real world.  The dream cannot come true if you can't follow through with it.  The bad thing about the real world is your dream amy turn into a nightmare.Guitar

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Just My opinion


Posted By: MR. STEAMER
Date Posted: 13/May/2004 at 10:26pm
don't crap on TomR's dreams...


Posted By: Adwa
Date Posted: 13/May/2004 at 11:02pm

Tom I see Doug's point, he is getting impatient with you and wants you to get going already.

In some ways you are better off then most people who first start out in the carpet cleaning business. You have already a customer base with your janitorial side of this business.

Start small if you have to, are you looking at the bigger picture and do you feel that if you don't have the best equipment out there then what's the use of jumping into the carpet side?

Nothing wrong with dreaming big but to get there you have to take one step at a time. Take that step Tom some how and some way. Don't ever feel that you can not ask questions here. If some of the people here are tired of answering you then they don't have to post or read what you have to say.   

 



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Posted By: TomR
Date Posted: 14/May/2004 at 2:09am

  Wow Doug, your a genius!  These whole three weeks that I have been submitting resumes, going to interveiws, and I never realized the answer was right under my nose the whole time.  I'll just "sh*t or get off the pot" and everything will be fine.  The only one being played for a fool here is you, Doug, because that is the way you seem to take things.   Please establish the cause and effect between working for free or for very little and getting rich.  You must be the oldest little punk in the world. 

  I know all about reality and the real world, I've been busting my ass for the past ten years to make it happen.  Ok, I put my trust in the wrong person, but that has only taught me to trust only myself.  It is why I won't work for cheap- I have heard miserable old men repeat their cheesy cliches about how you have to work for nothing to make something, but they always fail to provide any logic to back it up.  If I needed nursing I'd work for almost nothing until I was nursed to the point where I knew what I was doing.  But I have taught myself far more complex subjects than carpet cleaning- all I need are the tools. 

  Doug, if you don't like what I have to say or if your getting sick of reading my posts, than why are you reading and responding to them?  Just ignore them.  I am curious btw, how many crews are you running?  How big is your business?  How many years did it take you to get there?  I am only asking to gauge the value of your advice. 



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Posted By: TomR
Date Posted: 14/May/2004 at 2:30am

Mr. Steamer, thanks for the comments.  I know I will make it.  In one year, I taught myself everything there is to know about vct refinishing and maintenance, took control of the hardfloor operations and expanded the company I was working for from 2 hardfloor accounts to over 70- all in one year, all commercial accounts.  I know carpet is different, but in the next 12 months, I predict the same rate of growth for the commercial cc accounts in my own business.  I also know all about dreams turning into nightmares- the company grew exponentialy but the owner didn't know how to handle it and failed to hire adequate help or develop a business plan (which I was willing to 'nurse' him through).  I ended up working an average of 100 hours a week for about 1200 dollars a month all with the promise of big money and equal partnership in "a few months".   The owner kept taking work on without enough help and pretty soon accounts were quitting because they weren't being serviced.  The whole thing started to collapse and in my struggle to keep it going I agreed to not take a paycheck until everything was stablized.  So I worked the whole first half of 2003 for FREE, until I realized the whole ship was sinking, and I was never going to get paid.  I quit and with several months of back rent due, a son that had just been born a few months before, and no way to recoup my loss in wage, started my own company.   I know what reality is all about and how old miserable men gagging up cheesy cliches about working for low-wages are really just full of sh*t.  I am so ambitious because if I don't see this through to its end 100% I'll feel like all the sacrifices I've made were for nothing.   Now I am at the point where my bills are paid by my business, I know the direction I want it to go in, but I need an infusion of cash to make it happen.  Cleaning carpets for next to nothing ain't gonna cut it. 

wow, that was a really long post lol....



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Posted By: TomR
Date Posted: 14/May/2004 at 2:36am
Adwa, I totaly agree with the starting small bit.  No one could be more impatient than me.  I need cash to get the ball rolling, and can't settle for a job thats not going to give me the rate or hours I need.  I really have only made up my mind to do this three weeks ago.  I want to do this on my own within a couple motnhs.  Low paying jobs aren't going to get me there regardless of how much I learn about cc while I am working.  Don't worry, I'll always ask any question that comes into my mind, as you say, people are free to not read them. 

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Posted By: Adwa
Date Posted: 18/May/2004 at 9:19pm

Hey Tom

I haven't been on much, so busy with baseball. How are things going? You busy or has something exciting happen like winning a lottery ticket.



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Posted By: beamer
Date Posted: 26/September/2004 at 7:50pm

I think hands on is much more important than iicrc certification at the onset . Preferably training with an experinced carpet  cleaner. I have seen a number of ppl fail the course simply because they don't have enough hands on .

 The courses are definitly a must though . But janitorial experience does not easily tranfer to carpet cleaning . Thats why it is an expertise in itself .




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