Behind the Scenes
Perhaps I am showing my age but as a child, and to this day, I Love Lucy remains a favorite sitcom that I will never tire of. One of my favorite episodes is when Lucy, while traveling through Italy, decides to soak up some local culture in order to be cast in a small part of a movie to be called Bitter Grapes. In this epic episode Lucy joins a group of women who stomp grapes in a huge wine vat. All the women speak Italian except Lucy. Calamity ensues when she fails to comprehend the orders of the lead grape stomper. Lucy has no idea the grueling exercise involved in grape stomping and soon poops out and needs to rest after a short period of stomping the grapes. The classic fight between Lucy and the Italian boss is made more memorable because the actress playing the role of the Italian boss did not speak English and misunderstood her directions. Lucille Ball nearly drowned in the vat of grapes during the filming of that scene!
Although I have never attended a taping of a television show, I am quite aware of the many things that must occur off-screen. The behind the scenes actions are never seen by the audience but without the people who complete those tasks there would be no show to air. Such is the case in businesses. Take the janitorial business for example. There are producers, directors, actors, best boys and clappers but they go by different titles:
It is the expectation that the actors perform well in one take. When the office cleaning crew arrives to perform their duties they must perform on cue and in one take because it’s show time. There is no time or excuse for second takes. The client might be forgiving once or twice but they have their limits. When a client places his or her trust in a janitorial company they are doing more than issuing keys, pass codes and access cards- they are expecting a grand performance each and every time. The client has a reputation and image to maintain. They expect, and rightly so, Hollywood magic!
Just as in theatre, television or cinema the entire cast must be thoroughly prepared. Every night is opening night, debut or premiere. It’s a live performance! Everybody must know their role and that requires a lot of training. When a teacher calls in sick a substitute is called. If an actor can’t perform an understudy is sent in. Many businesses rely on temp agencies to send in people to staff offices and factories. Although careful screening is often conducted, sometimes an epic fail occurs. Such chances cannot take place in the janitorial world. While most anyone has the ability to clean it doesn’t necessarily mean they are professional cleaners. Before a professional cleaner is sent to a site some formalities should take place:
Joe A. Isenberg II
Recently I read an interesting online article from thejanitorialstore.com. The article is titled, "Are Your Cleaning Customers Motivated by Quality or Price?" Its author, Steve Hanson, is a LinkedIn member and coach.
When I read anything my purpose is either to learn or be entertained. Being my business is less than five years old and most of my life has been spent teaching adolescents in a classroom, I find the occasional need to brush up on things and to learn as much as possible because the business side of things, in any industry, is quite a bit different from the subordinate's role. Experience working in a business is one thing but actually owning one is quite different. Hanson's article could not have appeared at a better time because as I read it I was able to confirm, from experience, the things he pointed out.
There are clients who are more concerned about cost than quality and they will haggle over pricing. They usually are not concerned about how beautiful their office is and are often easier to please if a scheduling problem arises.
The majority of my clients are quality-minded and pay a great deal more than the budget-minded. Their standards are more closely matchhed to mine and their offices are often used in my videos.