Husband and wife team Luper and Brittanie Akough have found success in several businesses, including trucking, insurance, real estate, and fitness. Their latest venture, ownership of a franchise with Anago Cleaning Systems in Omaha, Nebraska, has them excited to share their success with others.
“I think all of our businesses have their challenges; we understand everything will have its ebbs and flows,” said Luper. “With cleaning, we like the fact that if you do a good job your clients will renew, and you’ll have constant income. It’s an industry that won’t go away.”
Brittanie already had experience in the cleaning industry, as her parents owned a commercial cleaning company when she was in middle and high school. “Cleaning wasn’t new to me. It was something my family did together,” she said.
Various clients, various needs
The couple currently has clients in medical, daycare, and school facilities. They take care to meet each client’s specific cleaning requirements.
“All of them have their own standards. For instance, medical buildings may need health care-grade chemicals,” Luper said. “But with daycares you’re dealing with people’s kids, so maybe the standard is all-natural solutions as opposed to commercial-grade chemicals. We do what the customer wants if it’s within our ability.”
The Akoughs said the most challenging part of the job thus far has been understanding the complexities of the various chemicals and the different cleaning techniques—even the work involved to obtain clients. “You have to make sure you’re equating the proper amount of time to all the aspects of the job,” Luper said. “But I like the challenge. I’m a numbers person; I like to find a solution to the problem.”
Reaching new cleaning heights
One solution the Akoughs have been offering their clients is high-surface dusting. They began providing this service when they noticed that many of their new clients had a problem with dusty top shelves and other high surfaces that was not resolved by their previous cleaning company.
“Forgetting to dust the top of shelving can be a reason for losing a contract. I think a lot of the time it’s just out of sight, out of mind,” said Luper. “High-level dusting needs to be part of your cleaning plan. It doesn’t need to be done every time you service a client, but you do need to schedule it regularly.”
Brittanie added that using the right products can help with dust on high levels. For example, microfiber mops and cloths work well to pick up dust on high surfaces and avoid scattering it to lower levels.
Sharing their business
Although the Akoughs have been running their cleaning business by themselves, they hope to hire employees when they gain more clients. “You can only do so much as one person,” Luper said.
Brittanie said she looks forward to this stage of the franchise business. “One thing we like is that we have the ability to hire people who want to get involved in the business, or who already have a business and want to grow.”
“We would love to serve the underserved community: people of color, immigrants, women,” said Luper. “It’s a business where you don’t need a lot of money to get started, and easy to build as well.”