“What is it about this industry? It was 1988 and all I wanted was some beer money…
I finished 6th form and whilst waiting for my results I asked my Dad, who had just started a part-time carpet cleaning business with Chem-Dry, if he would teach me to how to clean carpets. I said I could clean them when he was busy in his day job and couldn’t fit people in, and I could earn some beer money. The rest is history. I LOVED the work and the reactions of clients when I showed them the clean furnishings. Within 3 months I’d decided that not only did I love the work but I realised that I could make more money and build a business cleaning upholstery with my Dad than continuing education.
With my limited savings and a business plan in hand, I managed to get a bank new start business loan, which is a funny story that I’ll share over a beer with you someday. I bought the upholstery cleaning franchise for Chem-Dry. We ran them as two businesses for about 12 months then the accountant said “You’re mad, make it one business and a 50/50 partnership.” and here we are today. We now run a five-van operation with five technicians and one full-time office manager. These days we’re very much hands off and the carpet cleaning business pretty much runs itself with a great team looking after it.
Me and my Dad now pursue other interests but are still involved in the carpet cleaning industry. I still do all the marketing for the business and that is my passion. I always knew that delighted clients was just one small part of the business. I’d read a book called “Word of Mouth Marketing” and that taught me how to ask for referrals and testimonials and how to ask for other work, i.e. offer our other services. Again, the rest is history and with hundreds of books, courses and loads of practical experience under my belt I still belong to many Marketing Groups, both inside and outside the industry. I love applying the ideas I find to our carpet cleaning business and sharing those ideas with others too. For me, it’s always about working smarter, not harder, and ethically maximising what you already have.
What is it about this industry? I love it!”