As a new company, you may be tempted to take every single job that comes along, but there are a lot of good reasons to choose the “right” customers rather than just saying yes to everyone who comes along.

As a new company, you may be tempted to take every single job that comes along – most new companies do.  The primary driving force is to get MORE customers.   But there are a lot of reasons to choose the “right” customers rather than just saying yes to everyone who comes along. 


Trying to work for the wrong customers can leave both parties frustrated, angry, and even vindictive!  Working in this environment can sap not only your desire to clean, but your enthusiasm for being an entrepreneur as well.  Better to choose who you want to work for and possibly clean less rather than be miserable.  Isn’t enjoying your life at least part of the reason you decided to start a cleaning company anyway?


[EasyDNNnewsToken:Left Justify Embed 300 x 250]But who are the right customers?  That’s the tricky part.  The right customers for one company won’t be right for another and vice versa.  Consider the following when deciding who is right for you. 


Picky Customers

If you enjoy really Wowing someone who is not easily satisfied, then this may be the right customer for you.  But make sure you truly enjoy getting feedback that is negative and can see it as an opportunity to hone your skills as well as receiving personal satisfaction. 


This type of customer is the hardest to hand off to employees, but you may be able to get more than you would normally charge for your service.  Think: a high-end boutique that is geared toward very individualized service.


Cheap Skates

If you are looking to grow your customer base quickly in an area and want to get the word out about your service, this is a legitimate way to do it.  You will most likely need to cut corners on your cleaning to be able to make a profit. 


This may cause you to have a reputation of being cheap, but not very good if you do it for very long.  You will need to clean many more houses and will need many more employees to fulfill this model.  Think:  Wal-Mart – they have been able to make this model work successfully.


Demanding Customers

If you are very good at responding to other’s needs and do not get offended easily as well as being comfortable being flexible, then this may be the right customer for you.  If you have ever felt demeaned as a housekeeper, then you would want to steer clear of this type of customer. 


Your employees will need to be relaxed and have good self-esteem.  Think: Nordstrom’s – they are willing to give money back to a customer without a receipt, even if they know the item was not purchased at their location.


Busy Customers

If you are really good at doing the basics, have a strong desire to do things according to a list, and can be just a little bit flexible, look for this type of customer.  If you have strong desires to do high quality cleaning, then this is not necessarily the right customer as they will be too busy to notice your extra touches. 


Employees are easy to train for this type of customer but may become lazy over time.  Think: Applebee’s – everything is pretty average – prices, quality, and service.


These are the basics.  Of course, there are blends of all 4 types and others as well, but as you begin to know who you are you will be able to determine who is best for you – good luck!!

Liz Trotter is founder of American Maid Cleaning as well as an entrepreneur and leadership trainer based in Olympia, Washington. She is also a former ARCSI board member, creator of the HiPEP leadership development system and the DEV daily employee training series as well as a charter member of Cleaning For A Reason.