Detroit Janitorial & Cleaning Services Blog

Why Should You Care About Your Cleaning Company’s Culture?

Posted by Chris Stathakis on Fri, May 25, 2018 @ 12:08 PM

stathakis, stathakis culture, company culture, ubuntu

Does Culture REALLY Matter?

As a Facility Manager, should you really care about your janitorial services company culture? While you may not want or even need the finer details regarding what your cleaning company is doing to create a productive, supportive, happy culture, it DOES matter that they have one. But what is culture anyhow? And how how does a company’s culture ultimately affect you the customer?


What Is Culture?

Culture is those values, beliefs and behaviors that contribute to the distinctive environment of an organization. It is based on shared attitudes, beliefs, expectations, customs and those written and unwritten rules that drive an organization. Culture is one of the most difficult things to actively create because it cannot be a “do as I say not as I do” thing. It cannot be faked or put on paperbut not in practice. Culture is what you actually have not just what you want to have.


Isn't Work Just Work, Why Does Culture Matter?

Listen, work is still work, it isn’t a ballgame with a friend or toes in the sand on some tropical island. It is called WORK after all. But work can still be social, fun, rewarding, challenging, connecting and all of the things we as humans thrive on. And even though creating a positive culture requires a great deal of intention and effort, what it DOESN’T require is big dollars. Company culture is not an espresso bar, chair massages, office yoga and the like. It is about recruiting and retaining good people who are well suited for the work. It’s about training those people so that they have the tools to succeed at work and feel good about their contribution. It is having managers and a structure that supports and sees the contributions, small and large, of every single individual that makes up an organization and contributes to its goals and missions. It is a company committed to pulling through losses and celebrating wins in ways that promote learning, accountability, growth and excellence. It is offering your people competitive wages and benefits so they have the extrinsic and intrinsic motivation to get up every morning and do it all over again.


Does a Cleaning Company's Culture Affect the Customer?

So culture is important but how does it affect you the customer? The reality is that a dysfunctional company culture is going to bleed into your experience as a customer regardless of the talent and capabilities of any one employee and really, great employees leave bad companies all the time so in time, companies with culture problems end up with pretty significant people problems. So what are the major benefits of working with a commercial cleaning company or building services company with a really great company culture?

First, happy cultures create happy customers. Employees that are appreciated, valued and satisfied are far more likely to deliver very good service, very often. When employees are consistently treated like just another number, chances are this same culture will translate to how you are treated as a customer. 

Second, inclusive cultures include EVERYONE, including you the customer. On the other hand, ultra competitive company cultures encourage the kind of “I’m number one!” mentality that puts the customer squarely at number two at best.  Companies that encourage their teams to work together, support each other, gently uncover areas for each other to grow and even catch each other’s mistakes often end up creating yet another level of quality assurance that ultimately results in improved and elevated service for you the customer. While friendly competition can push people, in those companies whose culture is TOO focused on competition, rankings become so critical, the idea of who is above you and below you becomes the focus and all too often real teamwork is extinguished.

Third, reliability is created through accountability. There is an old adage that what gets measures gets done, and it’s true. The most effective janitorial companies create service reliability through creating a culture of accountability. A culture of accountability, especially when the focus is positive and growth centered, creates employees that know that the little things DO matter. These teams know instinctively that their efforts to go the extra mile don’t go unnoticed. They are being supported in a culture that rewards effort and achievement and give the employees the positive feedback that makes their extra efforts pay off both internally and externally. These companies have figured out that when employee successes are mapped, measures, praised and rewarded, they get more of them.

Finally, in the best janitorial services companies, employees are empowered to solve problems. When organizations create a culture where their people are encouraged to stretch and grow and are supported to take some risks and get creative, they are less fearful of trying something new. When they don’t have to constantly cover their backs and explain and defend every decision and even misstep, they are far more likely to own up to their mistakes, take ownership of their errors and focus on solving the problem over placing and shifting blame. This focus on “what do we do?” instead of “who did it?” benefits you the customer because the problems are identified and solved faster.


How Important is Culture & What Else Should I Look For?

Of course, a number of things really matter when you are choosing your next commercial cleaning service. Are they CIMS certified? Does a prospective janitorial services company follow industry best practices? Is your office cleaning company committed to recruiting, screening, training and managing the very best people for the job? Is your medical cleaning company aware of the specific regulatory issues in your industry? But the company culture of a prospective commercial office cleaning company DOES play a role in predicting exceptional customer service.

You want office cleaners that have been given the tools they need to do their very best in your facility. You want cleaners who care about their work because their company cares about them. You want teams that work hard to shine because they know they are seen, rewarded and promoted for it. Company culture is not just about the warm fuzzies, though those are nice too. An inclusive culture that values individuals and their contributions to an organization ultimately makes people happy, engaged in their work and positively impacts quality of service and the bottom line.


At Stathakis, our company culture centers around the ideas of Ubuntu. For more information on Ubuntu, Stathakis and what we offer the community and businesses southeastern Michigan, click here or call us at 1-800-278-1884.


Tags: Culture, Learn Everyday, Leadership, Ubuntu

A Special Ubuntu Holiday Greeting from Stathakis

Posted by Chris Stathakis on Tue, Dec 24, 2013 @ 09:33 AM

Ubuntu Christmas Stathakis resized 600Christmas and the overall holiday season can be a wonderful time where so many of us are in the same state of mind around the same time. This ‘holiday spirit’ whether spiritual or secular can elicit feelings of connectedness and compassion for the people we know and even the people we do not. At Stathakis, we appreciate the holiday season in part because it gives us another opportunity to really tune in and appreciate the multitude of gifts around us. We appreciate the gift of the individuals that have made our business possible.  That appreciation extends to our customers, who through their patronage and loyalty, have helped to make Stathakis successful and helped employee hundreds of people here in Michigan. So we want to say thank you, to our valued employees and our esteemed customers. 

This feeling of gratitude, good cheer and goodwill toward our fellow man, this holiday spirit is one of the best things about this time of year. When I think about what exactly this holiday spirit is and where it comes from, I can see how wonderfully it is summed up in Ubuntu, the African philosophy that says, “I am because we are.” The feelings we share, the connection and our shared humanity are particularly prevalent during the holiday season. It seems easier during this time of year to recognize the incredible connection we share with our fellow humans. Our compassion and empathy seem somehow easier to access. We watch each other bustling along getting ready for what can feel like a collective pause in our day-to-day lives and we seem to more fully appreciate the interdependence of humanity. The holiday season is quite possibly the closest that many Americans get to experiencing the essence of Ubuntu.

So what might happen if the holiday spirit, that wonderful alchemy of compassion and care, was at the forefront all year long? What if the small kindness and caring gestures were not reserved for a few days at the end of December?  Can we access these feelings to inspire us throughout the year? Our seemingly small turns of kindness can affect the world in a far more significant way than we might imagine. At Stathakis we celebrate the holidays and happily ring in the New Year along with everyone else, and yet, we really try to extend these same warm feelings and appreciation year round. We wish you and yours a wealth of health and happiness and a New Year filled with so many good things.

Tags: Customer Focus, Culture, Ubuntu

Stathakis Shares Holiday Cheer With Employees

Posted by Chris Stathakis on Fri, Dec 20, 2013 @ 01:29 PM

Ubuntu Christmas 2013 resized 600At Stathakis, as a commercial cleaning company, we are really in the people business first and the cleaning business second. Everything we do flows from the people that make up our organization. So we were very excited that December 19th marks the 21st consecutive year that Stathakis has provided Dearborn Sausage Hams to every one of it's employees. With so many great people, and so many years in operation, that is quite a bit of ham!  

Even through the leanest years of the Michigan economy, we have continued this very personal of traditions. With the more difficult of economic times, our employees appreciate the hams even more. This year, Stathakis provided approximately 400 hams to employees working throughout Southeastern Michigan. This simple gesture is a gift of thanks to the people that work so hard individually to create this thing we all belong to. 

As they say in Ubuntu, “I am what I am because of who we all are.” This gift to our people helps us embrace our Ubuntu culture here at Stathakis. Our people are integral to our success, and even beyond that, we really like the people we work beside. It shows in how we work day to day and the things we do all year long to make sure our employees feel valued and bring that positive spirit with them when they care for your facilities. This is just one more example of what sets Stathakis apart from all the thousands of other Commercial Cleaning Service companies. 

janitorial pricing

Tags: Culture, Ubuntu, Made In Michigan

Giving Thanks

Posted by Chris Stathakis on Thu, Nov 28, 2013 @ 11:17 AM

Give Thanks resized 600Oh Thanksgiving with its roasted turkey, dressing, sweet potato pies, mashed potatoes, pumpkin pies and more. I get full just thinking about it. But beyond the food, Thanksgiving is a day of gratitude and a time of reflection. It can be a time where we take stock of where we are and where we want to go. Where New Year’s is a time of individual, personal resolutions, Thanksgiving is a time of family and community resolutions. Thanksgiving can be just the right time to reflect on the connections we all share and how we can come together for the benefit of all.

On Thursday, many of us will join our families and our friends to share a meal, enjoy one another and give thanks for the good in our lives. It is a distinctively American tradition that symbolizes the early American settlers sharing a feast of gratitude with the native Wampanoag Indians after periods of tremendous adversity and hardship for both peoples.

Right here in our own community, many of our people have endured adversity and hardships of their own. Some have been economic hardships leaving people worried about their jobs or making ends meet. Some people had their families impacted by adversity of all kinds. Some of our friends and neighbors had health issues, lost loved ones or suffered unthinkable losses. This year when we gather to enjoy the day’s bounty, let us give pause to remember the difficult times, savor the best, happiest times and hope for a winter that gives bloom to a spring that harkens in a bounty of great things for all of us.

Here at Stathakis, we have embraced Ubuntu as a philosophy and tool to bring us all together. Much like the tradition of Thanksgiving, Ubuntu celebrates our humanity, embraces our mutual interdependence and challenges us to think of ourselves as one united people. American culture celebrates our individuality, but Ubuntu reminds us that we do not exist apart from each other. As you sit down with the people you care most for, give thanks for all the year’s blessings, give pause to remember all that we still have to accomplish and open your heart to the humanity of everyone you meet.

Happy Thanksgiving from all of us at Stathakis.

Tags: Culture, Ubuntu

Cleaning Services Michigan Company - Stathakis "Cares About Kids"

Posted by Chris Stathakis on Thu, May 09, 2013 @ 09:23 AM

Domestic abuse continues to be an often unnoticed problem here in Michigan and around the world. Families are torn apart and lives are ravaged in the wake of family violence. When women with abusive partners decide to leave, it is often the most dangerous and chaotic time for every one involved, especially children. Imagine, these women and kids, in the interest of safety and a quick retreat, leave with little or no notice. If they have time to take anything, it may be just a few things stuffed into a garbage bag on the way out. Imagine how it feels to be a child in this traumatic family upheaval. You have left your home, other family members, your things, maybe even a pet behind with little more than the clothes on your back.

Stathakis, in cooperation with OrphanCare has come together to give these kids some comfort and hope by providing them with their own nice duffel bag filed with things to make life just a bit easier.  From essentials like a blanket and pillow, to personal care items like a toothbrush and toothpaste, to small comforts like a book to read and stuffed animal, the gift of these items can help offset some of the shame and fright that affects children when violence tears through their families.


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Tammy Churchill, Tricia Onesian, Brian Mamo, & Don Simon packing OrphanCare Bags

The Stathakis team put together duffel bags for some of these kids in need. As part of our Ubuntu theme, Stathakis is committed to work within our local community to help those in need.  As is usually the case, we benefitted as much as the kids who will receive the OrphanCare bags. We had fun and felt good collecting all of the items and thinking about how the kids might feel receiving the things we put together for them. It meant a great deal to us to reach out and offer some comfort to these kids and families going through such a tough transition. The Stathakis team is so proud to help give these kids the unspoken message that they are valued and cared for. A big thanks to our entire administrative and Supervisor Teams for all their time and effort in making this happen.


Tags: Ubuntu

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