Category Archives: Training

CMI Trainer Spotlight questions

What do you most enjoy about being a cleaning trainer?

Other than the personal satisfaction that I get from helping others learn and improve, I’d have to say that I enjoy researching and learning new things every day that I can use and pass on to others. A bonus is that I get paid to travel the world conducting classes and assessments, attending trade shows and working with individuals and companies who want to know more about cleaning and in the process I learn as well.

What operational improvements can managers expect due to training?

That’s pretty much open ended. Training has the ability to impact every aspect of a business or an individual’s life. There isn’t much else you can do. Training that has the ability and potential to improve people and the way a business operates. You can only pay so much, and discipline is primarily a last resort that often has negative consequences. It may be true that training can solve all your problems, but I can’t think of anything that can’t be improved by training.

You attend a number of industry and training events each year. What new trends are you seeing in the training realm?


First, the use, importance and value of training is gaining recognition in the cleaning industry. If a company wants to improve its operation, profit and people, it has to focus on training. Managers and owners are beginning to recognize this reality as fact. There is still a long way to go, but over the years this has and is continuing to change.

Second, training methods are evolving, our work force, customers and responsibilities are changing and technology offer new and exciting choices in the ways we communicate with and deliver training to everyone involved in the process.

Third, opportunities for learning and training are everywhere. A simple search on “Google” will turn up almost unlimited sources of information, classes, forums, and blogs on basically any cleaning or maintenance related subject you can think of. All you have to do is search and then use and share what you find.

Fourth, There is a trend towards the use of third party audits, assessments and certifications being recognized by customers as a means of identifying quality service contractors and in house operations. This will continue to increase as insurance companies, financial institutions and government agencies come to recognize these processes as valid ways to reduce risk and costs and help assure quality service.

The Future

One area where there is a long way to go relates to those doing the work realizing that they need training and also need to accept responsibility for continuing to improve their skill and knowledge base regarding work and their personal lives.

Our industry has done a terrible job of promoting the upward mobility opportunities available in the cleaning and maintenance fields. The reality is that almost nobody really wants to clean toilets, floor or desks for a living. Most of us came to the cleaning industry because we had nowhere else to go.

We need to help people understand that the cleaning industry is a good starting place as well as a great place to build life time career. When hiring people we need to talk less about the job openings we have available and focus more on the opportunities for upward mobility that our industry offers. We also need to put in place coaching, counseling and training programs that help employees understand how they can achieve their dreams and goals by doing the best possible job they can for their customer and employer each day.

We have at our disposal valid and proven methods to turn the challenges our industry faces into opportunities for future growth and prosperity for everyone involved with and impacted by cleaning. We need to change the way we view and deal with the human assets with in our organizations that we have for so long taken for granted.

We cannot stop progress or technology. Over the next 30 years engineering, science and robotics will replace the human as the primary provider of cleaning services. How we deal with that transition will depend on how we begin preparing for the inevitable today. Training can provide us with a smoother ride on an otherwise bumpy road into the future.

The Carpet Dying Process, A spot on tutorial.

Carpet restoration is big business, from residential to commercial grade carpet dying you can save your customers big bucks and restore carpets to their original appearance. My production department thought it would be a good idea to capture the process and create a How-To tutorial out of it. Tell us how you would use this video and we will send you a free downloadable copy… Tell them The Cleaning Experts Blog sent you..Wink Wink

Check it out here and respond to this post with your answer for a free copy. TheCleaningOrg


Restroom Cleaning Dilemma

I recently worked with a customer who complained that their restrooms were always smelly, yet the customer claimed the custodial staff cleaned them at least twice a day. When I observed the cleaning procedure, I noticed that the custodians mixed a neutral floor cleaner in the mop bucket (no disinfectant), and further, the restroom floors were a grout/tile combination, so the (somehwat dirty) mop was not providing the necessary agitation on the grout lines. In addition, the custodian only used a Johnny mop to apply non-acid bowl cleaner on the toilets/urinals, and again, did not use a toilet brush, white pad, or other tool to loosen/remove the soil. This is a classic example of improper cleaning procedures, poor training, and lack of understanding of effective cleaning. (These situations certainly keep me in business.)

The High Cost of High Praise

I’m sure a lot of folks have seen the recent headlines on the unwillingness of some universities to spend extra money on getting the LEED certification for new buildings even though they built them according to the specifications and recommendations of the LEED-NC program. The reason, of course, is that the extra cash is not an inconsiderable amount when you are looking at a multi-million dollar project nor is the paperwork minor.

This appears to be the concern with many, if not most, certification programs. The cost of formal recognition for the accomplishment is too costly and therefore the program may be avoided by those most in need of its help. When this applies to technical or business training it can be serious, making the progeram and its concepts less used than is good for the industry.

CIMS is a case in point. The value of the program is undeniable, but the cost is a deterent to widespread use and application. Small outfits-and there are many- cannot afford several thousands of dollars every few years to get and remain certified. The result is that most will remain aloof and never benefit from the guidelines for running a competent cleaning business.

Is a make-it-available-without-certification initiative the answer? In my belief, yes. Call it an awareness program or maybe something else that shows the participants are CIMS cooperative. The result will be low cost recognition and the value to the industry will be far greater.