Respecting customers, employees is key to good customer service at commercial cleaning franchise
Office Pride is proud to announce that Doug and Chelana Snell of Springfield, Ill, is the recipient of our 2013 Customer Satisfaction Award. Doug and Chelana joined Office Pride in 2012 partly because of the company’s mission to operate based on Biblical principles. That set of values demands that everyone – from franchisees and vendors to employees and customers – be treated with the same respect.
For Doug, customer service at his commercial cleaning franchise business starts before he actually wins the customer. He and his wife, Chelana, decided from the beginning not to expose any potential customers to uncomfortable sales pitches.
“When we go out to bid a job, we don’t use any high-pressure sales techniques – or any sales techniques, really,” Doug says. “We offer a service, and there are going to be some people who need that service and others who don’t. We establish a fair price for our services.”
Also, Doug doesn’t believe in negotiating on the pricing bid, and that’s ultimately a practice that leads to happier customers.
“If you take the job at a lower price than is fair to begin with, it might lead you or your employees down the line to cut corners to save time,” he says. “By issuing the price we feel is fair and sticking by our services when they do become a customer, we make sure we do exactly what we say we’re going to do.”
Doug’s winning strategies include incentivizing his employees to perform at ever-higher standards. Employees who work for Doug’s commercial cleaning franchise business can earn monthly bonuses just for showing up on time every day. They’re also eligible for bonuses if they can clean a customer account in the amount of time allotted.
“They can earn 50 cents an hour for every hour they work that month,” Doug says. “My wife, Chelana, and I clean the accounts for 4-6 weeks before we turn them over to the employees, so we know exactly what it will take work-wise and time-wise. We tell our employees if it takes three hours they shouldn’t be doing it in two because they’re cheating not only the customer but themselves.”
A happy customer is a repeat customer – and word-of-mouth spreads quickly. That was all part of the plan for Doug and Chelana.
“One of the things we decided before we started was that customer satisfaction was our most important priority,” Doug says. “We want them to be happy in order to accomplish our goals, and we make sure our employee incentives are focused on making sure the customer is happy.”
Happy customers mean happy franchisees, and Doug and Chelana are in a good place. After a career in manufacturing industry, Doug loves being his own boss – and he loves being able to incorporate his faith into everything he does.
“One of the criteria when my wife and I talked about owning our own franchise was that they base their principles on Biblical principles,” he says. “That narrowed the field down quite a bit. We just kind of figured if that’s the way we wanted to live our life, that should include all aspects of our life, from what we did for work to how we raise our kids.”
The couple are raising three sons – Christian, 14, Reese, 13, and 11-year-old Braden. Chelana has been a stay-at-home mom for the last 12 years but is now helping out with the family business. Neither of them had professional cleaning experience before joining Office Pride, but that’s not really a prerequisite. Office Pride trains all our franchisees on our cleaning systems, and the franchisees, in turn, train their employees.
“We train the employees on following the process. We tell them, you’re not cleaning for yourself, you’re not cleaning for $9 an hour. You’re cleaning for someone else. You’re cleaning for the customer to be happy, and you’re cleaning out of pride.” The Snells’ contracts include customers from day-care centers and accounting firms to IT companies and property management groups.
For Doug and Chelana, the key to keeping all those customers happy is to remember who they’re really cleaning for. They remind themselves of Colossians 3:23: Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters.
“We’re doing it for God,” he says. “Yes, we want the customer to be happy, but we’re cleaning for God. You’re supposed to do your best at everything you do. The way we clean, we want Him to be satisfied.”
Learn more about Office Pride
Office Pride’s 20-plus years of commercial cleaning franchise experience and ongoing commitment to Biblical principles have helped make them a leader in the industry. Learn more at www.officepridefranchise.com.