Many times I will park my vehicle and go into a fast food restaurant even if I am doing take out. It may be that it takes the same amount of time but my experience is that oftentimes the drive through food will either be the wrong order, cold or delayed even though it is a regular item on the menu. Dry, stale food, watered down sodas and long delays while breathing the exhaust fumes of the vehicle in front of me compels me to park and go into the restaurant rather than speaking into a clown’s mouth and hoping there is a well-trained, motivated, customer friendly human being on the other end.

My experiences tend to stick and get reinforced on a regular basis. Although I certainly do not expect a gourmet meal at a fast food restaurant, I do expect minimum quality standards to be met. Due to the high turnover in the fast food industry it is refreshing when I get fresh food from a smiling face and the correct order in a timely manner. Sound familiar?

Our customers may “feel” that they are paying for a gourmet meal and getting less than adequate fast food service instead even though they chose the lowest bid. The cleaning industry has a reputation for having a high turnover which not only costs your company in the “revolving door” costs of advertising, interviewing, background checks, hiring, training and then starting the process all over again. Have you analyzed why they left? From the customer’s perspective, they are usually uncomfortable with a new face every other day and the excuse for missing a trash can or rest room is “he/she is new and still learning the route.”

Just as there are many restaurants I drive by on my way to one that has given me good service, there are prospective customers who choose to try someone else. What are your customer’s expectations? Are you meeting them? How much business are you losing?

Your comments and questions are important. I hope to hear from you soon. Until then, keep it clean…

Mickey Crowe has been involved in the industry for over 35 years. He is a trainer, speaker and consultant. You can reach Mickey at 678-314-2171 or