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September 2018

First Impressions: The Importance of a Clean Business

By | Cleaning

You never get a second chance to make a good first impression. There are times when first meeting a potential client that you’ll never get a second chance to make an impression at all; if the first time you meet wasn’t good enough, they simply won’t come back. We make judgements based on just a few moments of interaction; when we shake hands, was eye contact made? Does the person appear nervous or unprepared? The way a person looks, how their voice sounds, even how they smell might affect how we perceive them for a long period of time. For clients entering your offices, your business is a reflection of you; your work ethic, your mannerisms, your personality. That’s why it’s so important to maintain a clean business; you want to make a good first impression.

The importance of first impressions comes from a psychological phenomenon known as thin-slicing, a phenomenon in which we judge an individual based on a “thin slice” of time. There are a few reasons we thin-slice; the first comes from an instinctive need to recognize danger immediately. For any species, it’s important to immediately recognize friend from foe and asset from liability; it’s no wonder, then, that our nervous system and minds seems equipped to judge almost immediately. The second reason stems from stereotypes; if you have known messy people to be disorganized and unreliable, and you step into a messy office, you’ll immediately jump to the conclusion that the business and it’s staff aren’t trustworthy. The third reason is that thin-slicing does away with superfluous information; someone might try to convince you that their office isn’t usually so messy, or that they really are organized, but you’ve already drawn your conclusion from the available data.

The consequence of a bad first impression is compounded by confirmation bias. Let’s say you meet someone, and you decide they’re a bit of a goofball. Having made this decision, perhaps even unconsciously, you’ll take note every time they slack off, make a joke, or take life less-than-seriously. You’ll also ignore the times that they act seriously, work hard and take responsibility, because these instances don’t fit the narrative you have laid out for them. These narratives are formed during the first impression, so if your business is a mess, your clientele will ignore the times you are neat and conscientious and focus instead on when you’re absent-minded and disorganized, even if those times are few and far between.

You don’t want your clients to assume you’re a lazy slob, then fit everything you do in the lazy slob narrative. You probably don’t want to clean your office yourself either; there’s a good chance you don’t have the time, tools or technique to get a perfect clean. Professional office cleaning is the solution to the first impression problem; make sure the impression your office gives is neat, organized, diligent and professional, just like you.

Terminally Clean

By | Cleaning

A clean work environment is appealing for many reasons. First, it can make your staff more productive and happier. The joy of clean has a positive effect on your clients, too; they’ll appreciate a well-organized space and view it as a reflection of your work ethic. There’s safety in cleanliness, too; you’re less likely to slip on a well-maintained floor, and clean environments help people with allergies feel good. Safety is a concern everywhere, but in hospitals, it’s particularly important; healthcare facilities are full of illness, and these illnesses can often spread from patient to patient. For these facilities, a regular cleaning won’t do; you need a terminal clean.

According to a report by Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer in 2013, over 200 000 Canadians contract a healthcare-associated infection (HAI) each year. HAIs are exactly what they sound like: infections you contract while receiving medical treatment in a healthcare facility. Out of the 200 000 of HAIs each year, 8000 are lethal; these infections are a serious problem in any healthcare system. There are a lot of preventive measures that can be taken to reduce the prevalence of these infections; the most important thing is to make sure the hands of all staff and visitors are thoroughly sanitized before interacting with patients. This is a powerful preventive tool, but alone it’s insufficient; the patients themselves are often sick, and bacteria in the environment can infect new patients. Given that hospitalization implies a weakened immune system, any patients within a facility are already susceptible to infection.

A healthcare system that makes its patients sicker is unacceptable; fortunately, there’s terminal cleaning. While terminal cleaning does not drop the rate of HAIs to zero, it can substantially reduce the likeliness of patient infection. Terminal cleaning is, in essence, a group of cleaning techniques that kill bacteria and other infectants; that’s why it’s called terminal. The products used in such a cleaning can also differ substantially from traditional janitorial chemicals, because of the focus on killing infection without using materials that could negatively impact patient health.

The WHO has released a checklist to help janitorial services ensure they’ve cleaned the high priority items in a medical facility. Checklists are only so useful, however, as there can be a variety of medical devices, mobility-assistance tools and other items that the patient or staff may come into frequent contact with. The best way to ensure a medical space is well cleaned is experience; the more often you’ve cleaned similar facilities, the more effective the terminal clean will be.

Anago offers professional cleaning services for your medical facilities; their years of experience will ensure a deep clean that can literally save lives. The staff at Anago are all trained in exterminating bloodborne pathogens and other germs, so you can feel secure. They are available for emergency cleanings as well, so on a hectic night, if something drastic comes up, you can give them a call and feel at ease.

4 Reasons Professional Cleaning Is Better Than Doing It Yourself

By | Cleaning

You might have an office, a retail space, a factory; it doesn’t matter, your space needs to be clean. A clean space means less workplace hazards, better first impressions, happier employees, and more productivity; a messy space means your revenue is going to drop. Knowing you need a clean space, you have two choices: clean it yourself, or hire someone else to do it. Here are a few reasons why it’s best to hire a commercial facilities cleaning service to do it for you.

It’s Safer

A good, deep clean requires specialized equipment, a variety of chemicals, and various cleaning techniques. Objects have to be lifted and moved, heights have to be reached, and heavy machinery has to be used; these all constitute workplace hazards, especially for untrained staff whose primary role involves something other than cleaning. Do you or your staff have WHMIS training? Chemicals, including those used for cleaning, can be extremely hazardous, especially when combined together by someone ignorant of their reactive qualities. Professional cleaning staff have all the necessary certifications to keep themselves, you, and your staff safe.

It’s Faster

Practice makes perfect, and if you and your staff aren’t practiced in commercial cleaning, you’ll be much slower than the professionals. Good janitorial services will develop a plan for the most efficient way of cleaning your facility, and will bring all the necessary tools to ensure the job is done right. Every time you use your own staff to clean, they’re not doing what you hired them to do; you’re losing time twice over, once because they’re slower at cleaning than the pros, and again because they could be working at what they’re good at.

It’s Better

Not only will your staff be slower at cleaning, they’re also not as thorough as a professional cleaning team. That’s no slight against your staff; everyone hires a team to do what they’re best at, and it’s obvious that someone highly trained in sales won’t be as good at cleaning as someone highly trained in janitorial services. You wouldn’t want your janitors working as accountants; that’s not what they want to do, what they’re trained to do, or what they’re good at doing. The reverse is obviously true as well.

It’s Money

At the end of the day, you run your business to make money. When you have your business cleaned by professionals, there’s less safety problems, which means less chances of employees ending up on Workers Compensation and less money spent on getting appropriate safety training. The speed at which the cleaning is done, usually during hours when your facilities are closed, means less resources are jettisoned away from the more profitable activities of your business. The better clean means better first impressions for clients and customers, as well as happier employees. All of this adds up to higher productivity, higher sales and a better workplace environment. Hiring a janitorial service might seem like more red on your budget, but with so many financial benefits, it’s worth the price!

4 Things to Ask When Selecting a Cleaning Service

By | Cleaning

You’ve decided to get a cleaning service to take care of your facilities. You’ve read about all the benefits of outsourcing your cleaning; the more thorough work, the efficiency, the better first impressions and the higher employee satisfaction that a professionally cleaned space brings. You’re on the hunt for a team to take care of your space, but you want to know how to distinguish high quality janitorial services from an average service that won’t get you as much bang for your buck. Every business has different needs, so what you’ll ask about will vary, but here a few key things to ask about when trying to find a cleaning service.

When Do You Clean?

A lower quality service provider may give you the hours in which they’re available to do office cleanings; a high quality provider will answer “Whenever you want us to”. Good janitors know that every business has a different schedule, so they’ll work with you to provide service when you want and as frequently as you want. A great service will also be available in case of emergencies; you want a service with 24/7 availability who will be able to respond quickly if an urgent situation comes up, even at 3 AM on a Sunday.

How Do You Clean?

High quality service providers will explain that their methodology changes depending on the space you need cleaned; they’ll advise you that the “how” is a plan formulated based on your needs and their experience. Great service providers have techniques not just for cleaning, but for monitoring how the cleaning is progressing through the day. Managers will have checklists of everything that needs to be cleaned, and will do checks for thoroughness; they’ll immediately address concerns you might have about the cleanliness of a space. A great service will also strive to use the latest green technologies to keep your employees healthy while helping to create a sustainable ecosystem.

Who is Cleaning?

Cleaning staff are often in your building after hours, without you around to monitor; you don’t want to worry about pilfering from your cleaning service. A great facilities cleaner will have staff who have passed criminal record checks and drug tests; they’ll also make sure staff are bonded and insured. You want your service provider to be experienced, too; a good service will have been in business for a long time, because inferior services get bad word of mouth and cease to exist before they’re around too long.

Why Are You Cleaning?

The answer to this question must be that they’re passionate about the benefits of cleaning, and they want to help your business thrive. A clear, solid mission is key to success in life and in business, so make sure your janitorial service is committed to helping your business. Don’t be afraid to ask for references; a cleaning service with a commitment to success will be proud to provide you with a list of satisfied clientele, and will encourage you to phone them so you can hear first hand how their passion for cleaning helped a business like yours.