My name is Ed Voce, part owner of Voce Cleaning, LLC, located in Quakertown Pennsylvania. My father and I operate a small business with approximately six employees. Our specialty is in fire, smoke and water damage restoration as well as carpet and floor care. Voce Cleaning has been in my family since 1967. Now with the help of Jon-Don and the SFS program I hope to keep the family business around for another forty years!
I’m so grateful to have attended SFS. It was difficult for me as an owner/operator to get away for an entire week but luckily I was able to do so. After the completion of the class I knew I had made the right decision for my business and myself.
I’ve been working for the family business for about twenty years and in that time I have done just about everything out in the field. Then four years ago I was given the opportunity to partner with my father. So now I not only work out in the field but also in the office.
I took the SFS training course at the Jon-Don store in Langhorne, PA from April 12, 2010 through April 16, 2010. I was not sure what to expect going into SFS because I truly believed I knew everything there was to know about business! During the first few hours of SFS I quickly realized that I had a LOT to learn!
Upon completion of SFS I had written down my step by step plans I needed to take to improve on my business. For the first time I felt like I had a strong understanding of where I wanted myself and my company to be.
So I was all set to start implmenting my plans the following week after SFS but all of that had changed when I lost my brother unexpectedly. This tragedy really took the wind out my sails for a period of time. However, today I’m back on track knowing that my brother is “upstairs” ready to help me make this company better than it’s ever been before.
I would love to say that everything I learned in SFS I have used but that would simply not be the truth. I may not have used everything but I have used a good amount and plan to implement more in the future. So for now it is “progress, not perfection”.
One of the biggest things that I have changed is teaching my employees about Value Added Service and how to “look through the customer’s eyes”. For myself and our Company it is not only about the money, (although the money keeps things running!) it’s all about being of service to home owners who need our help.
Additionally, we now have Job Folders not only in the office but also in the shop under our work board. The Folders are color coordinated for the specific services we perform. (Red is for fire, blue is for water, green is general repairs and yellow represents carpet cleaning.) The Job Folder is taken to the job site with worksheets inside stating exactly what needs to be accomplished on that job by the employees. Included in the Folder are time sheets that the in-charge person must fill out to keep track of the number of hours spent by each employee on that specific job. This “job costing” procedure has had a huge effect.
We have also started to give each homeowner a free set of braided hose lines for their washing machines on our water damage claims. It’s amazing to see the response we get. This small gift is definitely one of those positive Moments of Truth SFS speaks about.
In my marketing I have implemented two new techniques I learned at SFS. The first is after each job is finished we now give the homeowner one bottle of FREE Lifetime Spot Out and one bottle of Vet’s Trust. (Both bottles have our Company logo printed on them.) Wow, what a great idea! The second marketing change was joining a local BNI chapter. I wasn’t sure if it was going to work or not but I have build relationships with some really good people and BNI is working great.
Now that I am part-owner of the Voce Cleaning I have been forced to get involved with areas of the business that I never had to worry about or even deal with. For example, the financial side of the business along with the hiring and firing of employees. We have now changed the way we hire and fire our employees by keeping track of everything.
As far as the financial side of things, Strategies for Success couldn’t have come at a better time. I now have gained some of the tools needed to focus on to make sure my business is profitable.
My goal over the next year is to put personnel in place that will help Voce Cleaning excel. I need individuals who I can send to a job and not have to worry about being on-site each day to make sure everything is running efficiently.
This goal of better employees is at the top of my list because beginning January 1, 2012 my father will be retiring and I will be the sole owner. With this change I realize that my roles and responsibilities will change drastically. With the help from the Jon-Don and the SFS team I know that I will be able to reach my goals with the tools that I have been given.
I’d like to thank the entire SFS team for helping me put the pride back in my business and my life. The SFS program has given me the tools I need to run a successful business and for that I am grateful.
Voce Cleaning, LLC