This week’s featured Tips N Chat Throwback post is a short article written by Ed York in his column titled 'The Pied Piper'. This ran in the Fourth Quarter 1975 issue of Tips N Chat, the “magazine published for the benefit and enjoyment of on-location carpet cleaners”. Remember to check back every Thursday for a new throwback post!
During the past seven years my main function has been to teach those interested to be better carpet cleaners. I have traveled by boat, car, horseback, and airplane to deliver improved carpet cleaning techniques to anyone who would listen. Whether you call it preaching, teaching, or plain old shouting, the message has always been clear; we must become better "Carpet Cleaners". While I knew I was right, I also felt something was wrong. Some of my best students (or copiers) were having a hard time trying to earn a good living. Some of those who listened enjoyed a nice growth in volume and profit, but others remained where they were. I was convinced it wasn't the area. All territories have more dirty carpets than the total carpet cleaning profession could possibly clean.
Recently, while chatting with an Illinois Dry Cleaner who was diversifying into Carpet Cleaning, my "student" made a comment that unlocked the doors for me. He answered the question of what was wrong with our industry. He revealed to me the reason 86% of all homes in the U.S. have dirty carpets. The answer is simple. My friend said, "I'm not trying to teach my workers to be carpet cleaners, but PEOPLE PLEASERS."
What does it matter, business-wise, if you do the best carpet cleaning job ever done on Mrs. X's carpets, if she isn't really PLEASED. It would be better for her and the carpet cleaner, if she had received a slightly less-than-perfect carpet cleaning job and had been REALLY pleased. While PRIDE may arouse some quarrel with this observation, I will assure the doubters that a PLEASED customer will have her carpets re-cleaned much sooner than the one who only has clean carpets. She will also tell others about this fantastic PEOPLE PLEASING firm.
Guess I'm too old to change my ego, pride, or devotion to the carpet cleaning industry and stop trying to share whatever knowledge I obtain with others on how to do a better job, but from now on my message is going to be slanted. We not only need better "carpet cleaners", we also need better PEOPLE PLEASERS.
~ Ed York (1975)