Behind Anago’s Success: Adam Povlitz on Building a Cleaning Powerhouse

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In this in-depth episode of "The Cleaning in Motion Show," join our host Sam Klein, as he sits down with Adam Povlitz, CEO of Anago Cleaning Systems, to explore his unique journey from corporate finance to leading a national commercial cleaning franchise. Adam delves into Anago's origins, sharing how a family venture in Florida blossomed into an industry-leading powerhouse nationwide. Discover the pivotal role of strategic hiring to assemble resilient teams, the art of sales, and the crucial balance between leveraging technology and maintaining personal connections in business. Packed with strategic insights and personal anecdotes, this episode offers invaluable lessons on leadership, growth, and the future of commercial cleaning. Link to the book discussed throughout the episode: https://shorturl.at/uvSX0


INTRO/OUTRO [00:00:02]:
Welcome to the Cleaning in Motion Show, a podcast interviewing successful cleaning business owners to hear what they're doing that works and what they've tried that's failed, all to help you grow your business. And now onto the show.

Samuel Klein [00:00:26]:
Welcome to the Cleaning in Motion Show, the go to podcast for insights into the commercial cleaning and facility management industries. In this episode, we dive deep into the commercial cleaning industry, exploring the path from startup to scaling beyond your wildest dream. Today, we're thrilled to have Adam Povlitz, CEO of Anago Cleaning System a Titan in the franchise world. Adam brings a wealth of knowledge from, transforming a family business into commercial cleaning powerhouse. So get ready for this episode packed with invaluable insights on growth, innovation, and the power of a visionary leader style tailored to the cleaning industry. So welcome, Adam. Happy to have you here. And, yeah, I would love to start by you telling us a little bit the story behind Anago.

Samuel Klein [00:01:19]:
Our audience is very familiar with the the brand that I don't think people are aware of of the backstory. You know? So we'd love to hear it from you. And, yeah, let's get started.

Adam Povlitz [00:01:32]:
Sure. So hey, Samuel. Hi. That was a quick introduction. That was more than enough. So yeah. No. No.

Adam Povlitz [00:01:40]:
Anagao is actually we're it's is a 35 year old company now, founded in 1989 by my father. He originally had worked with, his brothers, my uncles back in. I'm originally from Michigan, so he worked in Michigan. They were in a traditional cleaning business, and, you know, so, you know, self perform, had their own you know, had their a huge staff, hundreds of people, and and we're doing really well. And the short version is, my grandmother moved down to Florida, you know, for the weather improvement from Michigan. We went down to visit, and my dad said, you know, I I the weather here, I mean, in in you know, I'm I'm allowed to to hate on Michigan a little bit. I'm from there. But because there's some the the number of days that, it's a blue sky in Florida versus Michigan, because Michigan is very, you get the lake effect. You have that gray sky thing all the time.

Adam Povlitz [00:02:36]:
Because the number of days of blue skies in Florida just blew my mind, and I was like, I gotta I gotta go. So he moved us. So I was just a kid, moved us to South Florida and, actually worked for, one of what would still be considered a competitor of Anagos for a very brief period. They were in franchising, and he said, listen. You know, I understand cleaning. I understand the sales extremely well. He actually asked to be in charge of, all of their inside sales plan. They declined, and he resigned.

Adam Povlitz [00:03:12]:
And it was kinda the rest is history. Several months later, he founded Anago, and it originally just started as the we didn't have, you know, 3 tier model that we are today, which I'll get into later, but it was just the that the the local South Florida location that was owned by my dad. And he, you know, began selling the clients himself, cleaning them a little bit himself until they they've, first sold their 1st unit franchisee. And that friend the first unit franchisee wasn't even sold until 1991. And then they got into master franchising, a few times and and weren't successful in the mid nineties, but then ultimately in 1999, sold the first master franchise in Tampa, Florida. And since then, now we are we have 48 master franchises across the US and Canada and 1800 unit franchisees. So it is exploded forward, and, but started from I think I think there's a story, and I'll have to ask, I'll have to ask my sister. But I I believe there's a story where my dad there was one time where he couldn't make payroll when he first started, and literally, like, mortgaged his truck to make it happen.

Adam Povlitz [00:04:35]:
I mean, that's that's the type of person he was. And so, you know, the the true entrepreneur, you know, serial entrepreneur are always always coming up with new ideas and and willing to risk it all, you know, very, very cool story.

Samuel Klein [00:04:49]:
No. That's amazing. I think only 35 years to build the this little empire that that it's only growing. It's an insane time. You know? So when did you come into the business? Tell us a little bit about your journey from, operating in certain areas to becoming the CEO.

Adam Povlitz [00:05:11]:
Yeah. So I didn't I didn't come in until 2009. So fast forward 20 years after the the business started, I I was, you know, I was always kind of a go it on your own person. I, you know, I I never wanted to be part of the, you know, the quote, unquote family business. I was I I had my own path and my own at least I thought I did. And then I was, so I was actually in corporate finance. I was at IBM. And during the '008, '009 recession, there was a big wave of layoffs.

Adam Povlitz [00:05:43]:
I wasn't laid off. I was actually on one of the teams who was doing the financial review, of who was gonna be laid off, essentially. I mean, it was And so, you know, think about it's like first major career out of, you know, out of out of school, and you're I don't have names. I have employee numbers, and it's purely like a just cold calculation that, you know, we turn into management and they make the decisions with people's lives. And it man, it it it, like, was like a punch to the chest. You know? I was going like, what? I you know, I eat very easily could have been on the other side of that. You know? And, for me, I decided, okay. Maybe this, you know, the, you know, big Fortune 100 company route isn't for me because I don't I don't wanna be an employee number.

Adam Povlitz [00:06:33]:
And so my dad I happened to be down for the holidays. My dad said, you gotta check this the Anago thing out. I think I'm, you know, I think I'm I think I got the tiger by the tail here. And it was about 6 months later that I ended up coming down. And then and then he said, okay. Congratulations. You've left your, you know, your highfalutin finance job. Then your first job at Anago is you're gonna be a a telemarketer by day and a franchisee's assistant at night cleaning a day care.

Adam Povlitz [00:07:02]:
So that was I mean, literally, I would I would work for my 40 hours during the day. I would be at the office. I'd go in the bathroom, change into jeans and a and an Anago t shirt, and then I go out to the account that I was cleaning. And that was that was how I started. But I but it it was smart of him because I learned I learned every position. So I did that for a while. I moved into customer service, which we call, you know, operations or brand management now. Did that.

Adam Povlitz [00:07:32]:
I did the outside sales. I, sold some, you know, work to did excuse me. Worked with selling some unit franchises. And then ultimately so this was maybe a year, year and a half into it. I moved to the corporate office, and then I started traveling the country. So I you know, here I am. I have financial experience. I have a year of experience, maybe 18 months of experience working in, what, you know, what we would call a master franchise or a regional office doing the the day to day work.

Adam Povlitz [00:08:09]:
I've done the cleaning. And then and then I'm kinda cast into the field, and it's okay. Now go talk to these master franchise owners who have have been with us for 10 years and know what they're doing, and you're the young kid. And so, you know, I had to approach the whole thing very much from a servant leadership, approach of, you know, hey. What can we do that will make it your, you know, your day to day easier as a franchise owner? Because they knew more than me. You know? I mean, admittedly. And so I think that is what has been, you know, my path forward is always taking the approach of okay. So what what else can we do to help our franchisees grow their businesses? Because at the end of the day, that's that's how we make our money.

Adam Povlitz [00:08:54]:
And and it's funny because it was it was 20, you know, worked worked up through the ranks. It was 2015 when, the former president, was retiring, and I was being promoted to, to the president and CEO role. And he got me a business card holder, and it said, p u d s o b I c. And I go, what the hell? Yeah. I'm like, that's not how you spell president. What is this? And he goes and he's a he's a guy from West Virginia by way of Texas. So he he he said that with a real thick, you know, the thick country accent that I'm not even gonna attempt here. But but he says he says he goes it he goes it stands for poor unfortunate dumb SOB in charge.

Samuel Klein [00:09:39]:
There you go. Well, go to a joke. Yeah.

Adam Povlitz [00:09:42]:
Exactly. Like, thank you. Appreciate it.

Samuel Klein [00:09:46]:
No. That that's, an amazing journey. And And and I have to ask, how old are you? Because you do look like, even younger than me. I'm 40 years old.

Adam Povlitz [00:09:57]:
I am 39 still for another couple of months.

Samuel Klein [00:10:02]:
I love that you have, gone through basically every position in the cleaning industry. No? I guess, what what was one of the biggest lessons that you got when you were actually operating the the commercial cleaning company. No? And that will lead me actually to my to my next question that if today, you quit your job and you decide that you're moving again to Michigan and you're you're starting your commercial cleaning business from scratch, you know, walk me a little bit to what would be the steps, including even the first hires, to become a 7 figure company in in a couple of years.

Adam Povlitz [00:10:49]:
They're good questions. So so biggest lessons, particularly when I was was when I was in the operating side is, you know, I would say number 1 is is perception matters more than reality sometimes. When when you're in the cleaning business, you know, some of the you know, some of our some of our best franchisees, and even some of the times that, you know, I was I was cleaning buildings. Half of it is about the relationship you make with the customer and and maybe more. And and and probably less than half of it is about how you actually clean the building. And so there's so much where if you're able to build a good rapport, good relationship with your customer that they're going to allow for for that occasional, you know, missed trash can or or maybe something got you know, something can get wiped up or whatever it may be. But, ultimately, it it it's it's a people business. Not like you're in the people business that happens to do cleaning, not in a cleaning business.

Adam Povlitz [00:11:50]:
You don't get extra points for, you know, arranging the paper clips perfectly or something like that. You get you get extra points for the relationship. So that that would be my probably one of my biggest lessons that, you know, you I you know, you you would think the opposite going in. Like, the pristine buildings are the ones that that, you know, keep the customers the longest, and it's not. It's it's the relationship. Now if I was gonna start a new one going forward, wow. That's if I was gonna start a new cleaning business going forward completely, just on a I mean, my first hire would be like a premier salesperson. At the end of the day, if it's a people business, number 1, it's a sales business, number 2.

Adam Povlitz [00:12:36]:
It really is. Like, frankly, it's it's probably, like, people in relationships, sales, you know, some level, you know, some level of, like, customer service that hasn't been addressed already by the people part and then cleaning, like, in 4th place. It would it's how I would probably characterize the business. And so finding someone who is just an absolute, you know, savage at sales, someone who just is hungry, who wants to get out there every day. There's the there's an old there's the old African proverb where they say, in Africa, every day on the Savannah, the lion has to wake up in the morning and has to outrun the slowest gazelle. And the gazelles wake up in the morning, and they know they have to outrun the fastest lion. But everybody wakes up running. Mhmm.

Adam Povlitz [00:13:26]:
And and I love that quote because I think that, you know, they should have said that about this business. I mean, it is it's a business where drive and and hustle and grit are are rewarded in spades. It it's not a it's not a if you build it, they will come. You know, it's not field of dreams. It's it's get up every morning and be hungry, and and I would that would be my first avenue to to hire. And then in terms of scaling it, you mentioned, to scale, one thing I I wish I had done sooner now I I came in and I had a pretty established team. But, frankly, I was I was I was afraid to hire. I didn't I didn't know.

Adam Povlitz [00:14:09]:
You know, you can come in, you're a young guy on the team, and you go, who who should I hire? Why should I hire them? How do I even interview these people that are supposed to know more than me? And I got a whole I got a whole side story on that I'm sure I could get into at some point, but I'll I'll I'll shut out now. But, basically, I you know, I've I've I'm much more comfortable in the hiring place. I've probably hired just in the last 2 years. I've probably hired personally, like, a dozen people, a whole an entire marketing department, senior level peoples, chief strategy officer, or COO, VP marketing, IT director. I mean, we you know, we've we've been on a little bit of a binge in the in the hiring space to really professionalize everything around here, and I don't know if I would have been able I wish I would have understood what to do and learn how to do that earlier.

Samuel Klein [00:14:59]:
Nice. No. There there is so much to unpack there. I I love, first, about, how you describe this business. No? Because it's definitely and and we have previous guests that they also mentioned and focus on the importance of building relationship with your customers. And not only be obsessed with the cleaning, which, you should be, but even though there are many cases that, someone is obsessed with the cleaning, you do an amazing job, and still you lose the client because there wasn't a connection, there wasn't communication, there there was anything. No? So you're hearing directly from the CEO of Anago that 50% of the business is building that relationship, and they are 50%. It's, you know, making sure that whatever you commit, you you can deliver.

Samuel Klein [00:15:53]:
In in terms of, I I like your path because your path is is something that I believe any unit franchise can relate and any master franchise can relate. No? In the sense that a lot of the unit franchises, they just quit their job or they just go and and venture into these business because they want independence, and you had enough of corporate world. So so you come from, from the side of employment to to to get things into your own hands. That you also walk through all the major positions that this company that any commercial cleaning company should have. No? So you started by mentioning that we should hire first hire should be a a beast, someone in sales. One of the biggest mistakes that I see with with, a lot of our clients is that sales in this position can mean so many things. No. Inside sales, outside sales.

Samuel Klein [00:16:50]:
There are people that even just hire someone to do specials and focus on selling specials. And there is the definition of hiring a hunter versus a farmer, and a lot of commercial cleaning companies, in my opinion, they do the terrible mistake of hiring our army of sales. Most of those people are sitting in the office waiting for appointments. If there is no appointments, they don't do anything. So can you be more specific of what type of sales profile would you look for a hiring in a commercial cleaning company? And, now that you touch also about the importance of hiring, and there's something that even, me as a business owner, and we have a large team, but nobody ever teach you how to hire. No? And hiring the wrong person can be so costly that if you can throw any nuggets or tips on how to find people or how to hire or what you, Adam, looks, you know, besides the skills, what do you look in a person before hiring? So first question is what? Let's define the sales role and what skills they should have. 2nd is, what do you look in these people? How do you hire? How do you find?

Adam Povlitz [00:18:07]:
Yeah. Well, so so you you hit the nail on the head. There are definitely, a lot of people who, let me rephrase that. There's a there definitely are a lot of different sales personalities, And I'm I'm kinda mentally racking my brain because and thinking about it. And if you think about the different sales personalities, there are your what I would call your order taker. Right? So you go to, you know, you go to, I don't know, Burger King, and you say, I'd like a whopper with fries, and they take your order, and you give them money. And, technically, yeah, that made a sale, but that's an order taker salesperson. That's someone who's waiting for you to show up.

Adam Povlitz [00:18:49]:
Then you have your farmer, like you mentioned, over there. Yeah. They're planting some seeds. They're maybe doing a little bit of, you know, I don't know, social media work or dropping off, you know, pamphlets and flyers, but they're not really going out and identifying, like, what is my ideal customer. Another person you have is what I would call a closer, where this person, you know, they know how to talk the talk. They know how to walk the walk, but they don't wanna do their work. And then lastly, you have what I would call a prospector.

Samuel Klein [00:19:22]:
And I think that's the most common one. No? They should talk.

Adam Povlitz [00:19:26]:
You know, and and it's and and the other one is the prospector. Right? And so that's someone who you know, they're gonna do some farming. They're gonna do some hunting. They're gonna be driving down the street and go, I wanna clean that building over there and write down the the address or the name of the company and do some research and and find it out. Because you can use LinkedIn and there's a 1,000,000 different tools, you know, Google, Chrome add ons and stuff where you can get names. There's all the lead lists and and lead companies you can buy where they're gonna dig through it and and are just unafraid to call and drop by, show up with a, you know, a Starbucks or something for somebody and and and just start working through. And I think I think all are valuable at various stages of growth. But I think initially, you're the most important one is gonna be your prospector.

Adam Povlitz [00:20:17]:
Someone who's just who's every everybody, every friend, every building, every interaction is a possible sale in their mind. When when you mature and you're and you're, you know, and you're able to to, you know, expand your business, you need everyone. Right? You need someone who's gonna answer the phone and take an order for supplies or whatever it may be. You need someone who maybe they don't know how to prospect, but when you send them in, they close, you know, 8 out of 10 deals. Okay. Then that's, you know, that's your present your presentation person. But initially, it's It's all about and ultimately, you know, that that's that's the position that you have to have at the beginning, and it's the position you have to have at the end. That's how you fill the fat into the funnel.

Adam Povlitz [00:21:03]:
And if the prospector isn't prospecting, so to speak, then there's nothing to close and no orders to take and no no, you know, no no, you know, client client base to farm if the prospector isn't prospecting. So I think that's the first and probably most valuable position to to look for, a personality type to look for in in sales.

Samuel Klein [00:21:25]:
Amen. Yeah. Couldn't agree more. You have to have your calendar filled with appointments, and, you need someone hungry enough that can build those relationships and and, make the calls, you know, and make it happen. This is one of the I I wouldn't say few industries, but one of the industries where I think, having a an inside sales of telemarketing and cold caller still crucial now for for the success, and and I love, coming from you that you experienced that role. And we preach that every owner or or every person that is considering opening a commercial cleaning business, they should grab the phone and call. Even if you book anything for the 3 months, it doesn't matter. Just to leave the experience, so then you you you have a little bit more knowledge on on how to delegate work and so on.

Samuel Klein [00:22:18]:

Adam Povlitz [00:22:19]:
At Anago at Anago, so my first role when I was a I was a telemarketer when I first started, I was I was terrible at it. I was terrified and terrible, and it took me a whole month to make 10 appointments. And this was, you know, 15 years ago. So, I mean, people people still used to answer their phone versus now when it's all, you know, robocalls or whatever. But, you know, 15, it took me took me a month to make 10 calls. And now literally in my in my call center that we have today, they they call it the Adam rule to this day that Mhmm. We tell one when they're hired. Like, listen, if you can't make at least as many appointments in the 1st 30 days as as our CEO did when he first started, you know, it this this might not be the job for you.

Adam Povlitz [00:23:01]:
You know what I mean? It's just, you know, it's the admirable. You gotta make 10. Most people, you know, most people aren't as bad as I am at it. So, you know, it's it's not the highest bar, but you gotta pick up the phone. And it's crazy because you start talking to someone and your nerves just start firing, and you're like, I don't know this person. I've never met them. I'm never gonna see them probably. You know, 9 out of 9 out of 10 calls end up in a no thank you.

Adam Povlitz [00:23:25]:
And and you're terrified. And it's like, wait a minute. Why why should I be afraid of this person? And and when you start realizing that it's just, you know, your body's natural fight or flight mechanism kicking in, and there's there's not actually anything to be afraid of, you go, okay. Wait a minute. This isn't so bad. But it but it is. You have to do it. You you have to do it so you know what your salespeople are feeling in those moments so that then you can help coach them through it.

Samuel Klein [00:23:52]:
No. That's great. So let's talk about about the second part of that question, which is how do you find them? How do you hire? And and you don't have to get to a specific of of this role, no better overall. I think, you have built an amazing company, and and most likely, you have amazing people in your team, and you're constantly hiring, you know, and looking for talent. So what what is the number thing that you try to see or or break down in a person when you're making the decision to hire as this is one of the most common mistakes that everybody do in the does in this business. You know?

Adam Povlitz [00:24:28]:
So I use and and that kind of segues me back to the the what I was talking about about learning learning how to hire. I read a book called, called Who by Geoff Smart, w h o, not World Health Organization. But but it's called who by Geoff Smart. I read the book. I actually read the book. I was it was recommended to me. Funny story. I was, we we weren't immune a few years ago to, like, the great resignation.

Adam Povlitz [00:24:58]:
We had a few people that were with us for a very long time and say, look. You know, I'm getting a 50% pay raise, and you go, you have to go. Yeah. Yeah. I can't match it, so you have to go, and and we wish you luck, but, you know, it hurt. And and so I reach out. I'm on the I'm on the board at my church, and I reach out to my pastor, and I say, you know, and they're growing. They were, like, the 6th fastest growing church in in the country for a couple year period there.

Adam Povlitz [00:25:24]:
And and I go, you you guys are growing, and the hires you've been making have been home runs. What what are you doing? And I go now full disclosure, full disclaimer. Like, I your mission is a little bit higher than what we do here.

Samuel Klein [00:25:38]:
Just a little bit. No. It's not that much difference.

Adam Povlitz [00:25:43]:
What are you doing? And he tells me he goes, get this book called who? And I and of course and I go, really? And I order the book and I left it in my, you know, in my desk or something for 6 months. And I go, oh, man. I got okay. What am I I'm an idiot. I gotta go read this book. I read the book, and, it was literally right when iPhone came out with, all the phones where you could put you could scan the text of a of a book, and it would transcribe it, and you could, you know, paste it into something. And I'm reading this book, and it's just a basic kind of strategy on here's how you put the job description together. Here's how you put the ad together.

Adam Povlitz [00:26:21]:
Here's the questions you wanna ask. Here is the how you wanna phrase the questions. And I'm going page after page and taking out my phone going, oh, that's great. Flip the page. Oh, man. That's great too. Take a picture. Oh, that's great too.

Adam Povlitz [00:26:35]:
And I literally took it and typed it all up and made, like, a cheat sheet. And so I have my staff, and I do it too as well. We go through the who process of job ad creation, interviewing, and it's it's phenomenal. I mean, the the the idea that I would the one takeaway I would say if it was, like, a quick takeaway, is, references matter. Call the references. If you don't have if and tell them in advance. I absolutely will be calling references in order for you to get this job. So please provide me, you know, 3 people, 4 people, you know, one for each job if you can get it, and call them.

Adam Povlitz [00:27:16]:
And you're gonna find out a lot about a person because you you'd think you'd think that, everyone they would give on the reference sheet is gonna be some glowing review. It's not because they're also humans on the other line, and they would and they kinda feel weird if they you know, you can tell if they're BS ing you or not. But you find out that in the book, it says, faint praise is no praise at all. And I love that because you can you start talking to previous employers or previous managers of someone, and and and you will hear someone go like, man, this guy is a rock star. They're amazing. And then you'll hear other people, you know, and maybe a different candidate. And they're like, yeah. He was good.

Adam Povlitz [00:28:00]:
He he wasn't bad. Yeah. He he did his job. And he go, okay. I I know who the I know how to separate the wheat from the chaff here and its references. It it that that was a huge takeaway for me.

Samuel Klein [00:28:13]:
Nice. I I love it. We'll put the book link in the description. I just bought it. That's the place

Adam Povlitz [00:28:20]:
I don't put any loyalty on that. You know? I wish I got a call, but I know I've been I've been hocking his book for a while for him.

Samuel Klein [00:28:27]:
There you are. You still have time to to give me the affiliate link if you wanna create. No. That's a a a great recommendation, and and it's just building a process and following. You know? And you don't have to improvise when you're hiring, which is what most people do. They just ask random questions. There is no purpose. There is lack of clarity.

Samuel Klein [00:28:49]:
And so I think having a a strong process and, as you said, calling references, it it it's a must. Will will take you long long way. No? So, let let's talk a little bit about, and we can focus this, you you can focus the answer in in, master franchises or unit franchises. I believe the answer won't be that different. But, I wanna know what are the key factors that's twinglish, a successful commercial cleaning business owners where you see the others that that struggle more? No. Is there any specific or personality traits or background that you have noticed that make a person more successful in this business than other. You have, like, amazing exposure to the industry overall. You have 49, I believe, master franchise and and thousands of units.

Samuel Klein [00:29:47]:
So I think you are qualified to answer a question like this. Shine some light with with people that are doubting if this business for me, if this business is not, and for the people that are already 2, 3, 5 years in, that they still doubt themselves if I can make it or not or why. Adam just bought a a a commercial cleaning franchise a year ago. He's already making more than me. Let's let's talk about that.

Adam Povlitz [00:30:17]:
So, I I mean, I think a lot of it goes back to what I was saying earlier about, like, drive and hustle. I mean, that I I can't I can't underestimate the the amount of value that stuff that stuff like that has. There are people who, you know, the the it's it's almost easier to to talk about the, you know, the, you know, kinda talk about it in tandem and say, if you're coming into to any business, whether it's a franchise or you're wanting to start your own and you're you're looking to be the boss versus an you know? And let me let me say that as, like, you're looking to be the boss persona. You know what I mean? Now all I got the president my business cards, they say president. I updated my LinkedIn, and it says I'm the CEO, but you haven't earned your stripes. That's not gonna work. It just you you have to know the business that you're in, and you have to understand that as the as a, you know, as a you know, whether you're a franchise owner or or a start up business, if you're not planning on putting in more hours than all of your employees, don't do it. Be in works work for someone else.

Adam Povlitz [00:31:22]:
Because I I can assure you anyone who's even remotely successful in any business, whether it's cleaning or otherwise, when they started, it was you know, that you you eat, sleep, and breathe your business for a little bit of what a little bit, and and you you have to. You know, if you're looking for a part time thing, you know, I you know, there there's definitely we have avenues for that with the unit franchise opportunity. But for the if you're looking to make your unit franchise something where, I was actually just speaking with, in our Philadelphia market. We have a unit franchise owner. It it's a a husband and wife team. They just reached $1,000,000 a year as a unit franchise. Amazing. And and to start from and now mind you, you can help with this.

Adam Povlitz [00:32:11]:
They started as I believe it was a they they when they originally bought, they bought a program for, which for us is $4,000 a month. So they bought a $48,000 business and now have parlayed that up to a $1,000,000 business. You can't tell me that they don't, you know, every day. I mean, I think I know their whole family is involved. They have they have their kids involved in the business. The business is putting all their kids through school. You you know, you gotta you gotta believe it. So I I think that's that's a huge aspect to it.

Adam Povlitz [00:32:50]:
And then, you know, in in the franchise world, it really is you know, you know, I hate to, you know, kinda sound like a broken record, like all the franchises say, but it really is, like, follow the system. You know, we we have we have 35 years of doing this. We know it works. We know it doesn't. We're not we're not at least. I'm sure there are other brands that, you know, maybe are are different, but we're not you know, we're very open to new ideas and and experimentation and getting creative. But at the same time, like, there's certain things where it's like, okay. We just you know, we we've tried this.

Adam Povlitz [00:33:21]:
We've tried this ten times. We've tried it 10 different ways. It's just not gonna work. Do do it the way we're telling you, because we know it works and we've done it in 50 markets for 30 plus years. So someone who who is is driven, someone who wants to hustle, but also someone who, you know, understands the value of the knowledge that's come before them, whether it be in franchising or, you know, going to, I don't know, going to your local score chapter and getting, you know, advice from the other business folks or or, you know, going to a conference or reading a book. There's there's no there's no, you know, you can't put a price tag on the knowledge that you're gonna take from someone else that can, you know, put you, you know, 6 months, a year, 5 years ahead of where you should be without that knowledge. Yeah.

Samuel Klein [00:34:16]:
So, yeah, I I never understood why someone would buy a franchise and and no not follow the process. No. You're you're buying basically the knowledge. That's what you're buying, the knowledge and the and the brand. But, I think you you haven't said it better. Like, people usually when when we talk about this topic, they're they're expecting, like, because this guy come from finance, and this was a sales, and this was a blah blah blah in this background. But in reality, whoever wins is the one who hustles. Now it's like a knowledge.

Samuel Klein [00:34:52]:
It's something that that will come in in any venture, and and you will acquire it. The teaching, the thrive in the household, it's it's it's almost impossible.

Adam Povlitz [00:35:04]:
It's, you know, it feels like a, you know, like a Kobe Bryant cliche, you know, where it's like what do they say? Like, hustle out, you know, out out win skill 10 times out of 10. You know what I mean? I'll you know, if you're if you're willing to outwork somebody, that that was a story my dad always told me about. He said he goes, you know, like, 7-Eleven, the the the the chain there, they're a franchise also. But he's when they started, all the drug stores opened at 9 and closed at, at 9. And so so the the founder of 711 said, I'm gonna do 7 to 11 instead of 9 to 9. And so I'm gonna wake up I'm gonna wake up 2 hours earlier and work 2 hours later, and I'll outwork my competition by 50%. Uh-huh. I do.

Adam Povlitz [00:35:52]:
And and and now they're you know, everybody knows what 7-Eleven is. And so it's the same thought process if you're starting your own business. You know, if you're if you if you wanna start working on your leads and you're starting up a business, you probably should be starting and, you know, you gotta join them. What do they call it? The 5 AM club now they call it. Right? Get up to 5. You know, get your food, get your exercise, start working at 7. And that's and look. And that's not forever.

Adam Povlitz [00:36:16]:
Right? I mean, I don't I, you know, I I'm I I wake up that early because, yeah, I do all the exercise and all that sort of stuff, but I'm not, you know, I'm not, you know, completely focused on my business anymore like like that where you're just, you know, swallowed by it. Partly because I have 3 kids, 5 and under right now. So I don't have I don't know if I, you know, I have to I had to pick my priorities. But but if you're planning to be a start up, you know, or planning to buy a new franchise, you you just have to mentally go, okay. Year 1 is going to be a time where, like, this is what I'm gonna be dedicating my myself a 110% to, and the hours get a little crazy.

Samuel Klein [00:36:55]:
Yeah. No. It makes sense. And and and, so if you can do it with 3 kids and managing a whole organization, you know, like, I think people can can, definitely take a look at on themselves and and find a way. If you wanna succeed, there is no shortcuts. No? No. I wanna be respectful of your time. I know, we we almost gonna hit the hour, and I have so many more questions.

Samuel Klein [00:37:21]:
So, hopefully, we'll have a second part. I just wanna wrap it up with a a couple of more questions. No? You've been in this industry for a long time, and you have experienced, different recessions, challenges, pandemic. How does the commercial cleaning industry has evolved in the past since you've been involved until now and and what trends people should be aware as a business owner? What where where do you see the industry going in in in the future?

Adam Povlitz [00:37:54]:
So yeah. No. It's it's few recessions on this one. I feel like we always come out stronger. I think that I mean, the trends the trends you're gonna see in this industry are are similar to what you're gonna see globally. I think number 1, there's always gonna be a trend toward consolidation. So the customers, they're looking for for companies that can do multiservice. Commercial cleaning is probably the most common, but if, you know, if you're able to partner with or, or learn how to add additional service lines so you're, you know, become more of a facilities maintenance type company.

Adam Povlitz [00:38:34]:
And, you know, landscaping, pest control, snow removal, whatever it may be, that makes that makes the, you know, your your company that much stickier where now a customer has to lose 5 services if they lose you. So I see a trend toward consolidation. I see, I I see, obviously, the technology is is gonna be massive. You know, AI, any any of that sort of stuff, you have to play in that space because somebody else definitely is if you're not. I don't know if if the AI is going to is gonna really change anything in terms of having someone physically go in and clean. I know people talk about, like, you know, the robots that do the floors and everything like that. But, there, you know, there's not going in my humble opinion, at least, there's not gonna be, you know, Rosie the robot from the Jetsons that comes in and just handle and and then, you know, we're we're, we're we're way far off from anything like that ever happening. But using what we've done is we've said that we need to use technology and AI and leverage that where we can, which is on the customer service side of the business.

Adam Povlitz [00:39:48]:
Right? There we can all get a hold of the same vacuums and ride alongs and microfibers and whatever else. But if you can automate use AI to automate your customer service, speed up, you know, time to resolution. That's the some some of the stuff that we're focused on because at the end of the day, because this business requires that human element no matter what, and humans make mistakes, you know, just periodically because we're only human, Time to resolve that and and automate that and and getting in for out in front of your customers as fast as possible and leveraging technology to do it seems to me to be the path forward.

Samuel Klein [00:40:30]:
No. Hey. I I I agree. And, overall, we talk about, a lot about, AI and and I AI bit freaks people out. No. AI doesn't have to be the machine cleaning. It's just a start using chat GTP. Start using basic stuff that will make you so much better.

Samuel Klein [00:40:47]:
And most of the industry is not using. So just by spending even 10 minutes a day, it will it will make a huge impact in the in the business. So, it's curious that you talk about consolidation and how mostly people should, think on on how to be more create that stickiness with with the client now so they don't have to go to multiple places. Is that something that Anago is considering as a company, like adding other avenues besides cleaning?

Adam Povlitz [00:41:17]:
So we're we're, yeah, we're partnering with other other companies nationally and locally. We we you know, I mean, at the end of the day, you know, I I I don't wanna say that you that someone should get out of what they are, their their area of expertise. If you can expand your area of expertise, you know, bravo to you, it's a lot harder, a lot harder to do than it is to say it. And so a lot of times, it means creating, you know, you know, strategic partnerships and alliances. Because, I mean, we're still we're still, you know, we you know, my my my dad used to say, he goes, he goes, I'm I'm Coronel Sanders. I just do chicken. You know, that I I'm not trying to do burgers. I'm not trying to do tacos.

Adam Povlitz [00:41:58]:
And so and so as much as, you know, our specialty is chicken. Our specialty is commercial cleaning. Acknowledging that, you know, this is what the ultimate customer is looking for is is, you know, a one stop shop. You know, if you're able to position yourself to to be that one stop shop through, you know, various partnerships, I think there's a lot of value to that.

Samuel Klein [00:42:22]:
Yeah. A 100%. Before we wrap up, Adam, any final, words of wisdom? And, feel free to invite people to that are considering, venturing into this world now to explore the Anago way, where people can find you online.

Adam Povlitz [00:42:46]:
Yeah. No. My my advice to people looking to get into commercial cleaning would be run. No. I'm kidding.

Samuel Klein [00:42:57]:
Not forward. No. Not backward.

Adam Povlitz [00:43:01]:
But, no. The no. My my advice would be, you know, you know, think think about think about a lot think about a lot of things if you wanna get into any business. Think about your time. Think about, your family. Think about what your goals are. And in my opinion, you know, if you're able to map that out and, you know, put pen to paper or, you know, fingers to type or, you know, key you know, keyboard and type up, you know, something in Excel and put a plan together. I think it's important to to put a plan together and and and work toward that plan versus just sort of taking it as it may.

Adam Povlitz [00:43:40]:
If you work toward a plan, I think you're gonna be I think they say, like, if you people who actually write down their goal and are, you know, 80% more likely to actually achieve it than people who just kind of live every day as a day. And I know that's hard in a startup phase, and so it means you're gonna have to go back to, you know, your your plan every week maybe and go, okay. Well, we missed this and gonna adjust that. But but keep keep at it. Keep tinkering with it. Because eventually, you know, you get to a place where, you know, now making a 3 year plan is not unheard of, but actually something you look forward to. You're, oh, man. We're gonna be we're gonna be in one heck of an amazing place 3 years from now if we can just, you know, focus on these things.

Adam Povlitz [00:44:23]:
So I would say, make a plan and and keep changing it until you could stick to it. And then for us, we're you could find we're everywhere online. We have we're at anagocleaning.com. That's anagocleaning.com. And then all our social media, we do we do all of it. Everything is is @anagocleaning. So Facebook @anagocleaning, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, x. I think it's x now.

Adam Povlitz [00:44:52]:
Sorry. X sorry, Elon. YouTube. You know, we're we're everywhere.

Samuel Klein [00:44:59]:
No. Perfect. Appreciate you, man. Thanks so much for sharing, 1 hour with us for for the knowledge, and we look forward to having you back, in the near future.

INTRO/OUTRO [00:45:10]:
Come on.

INTRO/OUTRO [00:45:11]:
Thank you for listening to the Cleaning in Motion Show. Make sure you subscribe so you don't miss any future episodes. In the meantime, find more resources, including more sales and marketing tactics online at cleaninginmotion.com. That's cleaninginmotion.com. Until next time.

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