I'll never forget the first 3-day vacation we took after many years of never getting to take vacations after starting our cleaning business. I didn't yet have an office assistant, so I asked a friend if she could run our telephone timekeeping system every day while we were gone.
Wouldn't you know it, as soon as we checked into our hotel, one of our supervisors called in a panic - the Timekeeper wasn't working! No one could clock in!
In a panic, I called my friend and discovered that after she ran the daily reports, she had forgotten to turn on the answering function. Luckily she was able to go back and get it taken care of, but our supervisors were not happy about it since everyone was freaking out.
After an hour or so of panic during the whole situation, and complaining that "it figures, we can't even leave for one day without some catastrophe happening," I decided to chalk it up to Murphy's Law. It seems that no matter what we do, there's always at least one thing that happens or one person that seems bound and determined to ruin our vacation. It never fails, right? Such is the life of a busines owner.
So I decided to put together a list - Murphy's Law for Cleaning Companies, that just might resonate with those of you who have owned your business for any length of time.
Murphy's Law (Was Murphy a Cleaning Business Owner?)
- The day before you go on vacation is the day your best employee and/or your best supervisor will quit (or the day the timekeeping system goes down).
- Every solution to a problem breeds a new problem.
- The number of cleaners who call in sick is directly proportionate to the number of complaints received the next day.
- You're short-handed on your busiest day, and conversely, you're over-staffed on your slowest day.
- No cleaning business runs as smoothly as it may look.
- Your clients will never run out of things to be stolen.
- Supply costs only go up when business increases, thus reducing an increase in profits.
- You've been providing service to a client for the last 6 months, and find out your bookkeeper hasn't been invoicing the client.
- The number of microfiber cloths provided will always be less than what's needed.
- In a cleaning account, the simplest complaint will cause the most problems.
- The amount of equipment broken is proportional to the age of the cleaning technicians.
- On the busiest day of the week, the computer system will fail, the only vacuum in a building will break down, and your best cleaning technician or supervisor will get sick.
- You get a call from a client that their office wasn't cleaned the night before. You find out your cleaning technician showed up at the wrong location and cleaned that instead.
- The week you have your biggest payroll is the week your biggest check is late.
- The day you finally have extra cleaning technicians trained and ready to start work is the day you lose your biggest account.
- The more pictures you use to train your employees, the more those pictures will convince your employees to do it a different way.
- Allowing employees to mix cleaning chemicals is a disaster waiting to happen.
- The worst cleaning technicians always end up servicing the most picky clients.
- The day you get the flu is the same day one of your company trucks gets in an accident.
- You get to the construction cleaning job only to find no lights, no heat (or air conditioning), and no water.
- You just arrived at your second floor job of the night, only to realize you left your extension cords at the last location.
- The state is coming to audit your sales tax records and you don't have any sales tax records (you mean I was supposed to charge sales tax?)
Do you have additional Murphy's Laws? Please share by clicking on the Comments link below.