Image One Facility Solutions is a franchise janitorial company that is very different than its competitors. Image One prides itself on training the franchisee in all aspects of the business to help them reach their desired level of success.
While Image One currently has around 80 franchisees in the Midwest, they just announced a new franchise affiliate model that will provide franchisees additional room for growth. We recently spoke with company co-founder Conn, who also serves as the director of operations and franchise development, about the new model as well as what he looks for in potential franchisees and where he sees the franchises headed in five years. Also, one important piece of advice he gives is this… no, that’d be cheating. You’re going to have to read on to find out what it is!
It brings a whole new concept to the janitorial arena. We’re going to train franchisees that buy an affiliate franchise in a manner that is not the norm in our industry. They are going to understand about sales and operations so they can keep their accounts long-term. They are going to get a much more comprehensive program than any other players in the janitorial program.
How does Image One compare to its competition?
If you do a Google search for some of the big janitorial companies, there’s no secret to what’s not working with their franchises. We’re bringing it up to the next level. Some franchise companies may give and then take accounts away. With our franchise affiliate program, once they have the account it is theirs for the duration of the contract. They are in full control of their own destiny; they can grow the franchise as big as they want to.
What do you look for in a potential franchisee?
Probably the number one thing we look for is passion. They need to be a go-getter, an outgoing person. We can teach them the business and about our industry, but they need the ability to get out there and sell. There are a lot of companies where you don’t need to search for customers. In our industry, you need to go out and find the customers. You need the kind of outgoing personality that is going to help you connect with prospects and customers alike.
Where do you see the franchise in five years?
We’re looking to be a $50 million company in 10 years. Our aim is to build upon our current system and have 100 franchise affiliates in a decade, in addition to the franchisees we already have in our system.
Can you describe a typical day in the life of an Image One franchisee?
Every day is so different. To me that’s what’s fun and exciting. There are certain things that are the same — if you’re servicing accounts that becomes routine. I’ll give you an example: Someone called and said they need a construction site cleaned the next day. It was completely unexpected and surprised. But, it was a quick job for the franchise owner. Our sales team fielded the call about 3 p.m. or 4 p.m. on a Tuesday afternoon and the franchisee was on-site Wednesday at 7 a.m.
What’s your background?
I started my business when I was 14 cleaning a building my parents owned. I continued to grow and operate the business throughout college. It’s been a little over 30 years and this is really the only thing I have ever done. I’m still so passionate about being a business owner.
What motivates you to keep going?
It’s the fun and the excitement. I could keep our business at the level it’s at. But, I love the excitement and fun of growing a business. I love working with our franchisees to help them attain their dreams. That’s my driving force.
If you were to start again, what would you do differently?
I’m not sure if there’s anything I’d do differently. Even making mistakes has helped lead me to some of the business successes I’ve had. It makes the company what it is.
Please tell us your secret to success…
The most important thing is maintaining a positive attitude. If you have a negative attitude going into things, you’ll generate negative results. It doesn’t matter who I’m with or where I’m at, I try to see the good in people and in situations. Success with my family and business is all related to a positive attitude.
What is the worst job you have ever had and what did you learn from it?
I’ve never had a “worst job” but there are things I don’t really love doing as a business owner. I’m not a big numbers guy — fortunately, my business partners are passionate about other parts of the business I’m not as focused on. Here’s my advice: Figure out what you do well and you focus on that; hire or partner with people to do those other things.
What are your three favorite online tools or resources and what do you love about them?
My favorite online tool is our proprietary software! We developed it a little over two years ago and it’s been functioning for about 18 months.
Do you (or did you ever) have a mentor?
Coming from an entrepreneurial family, my parents were a source of inspiration for me. There has never really been an outside influence other than family. I’ve been a part of a strategic coaching program for five years; I firmly believe that coaching is an integral part of a business.
Any final words for aspiring entrepreneurs?
If there is something you really want to go out and do, just do it. If you wait until you’re ready, you’ll never do it. Find what you love and love what you do. If you have an entrepreneurial idea, go for it. Jump right in.
Where can people get more information on Image One franchise opportunities?
Visit the website here.
Where can people find Image One on social media?
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