From Military Discipline to Business Excellence

Veteran leverages military skills and values into entrepreneurial success

From Military Discipline to Business Excellence Soldier and businessman shaking hands against flag of USA, closeup

Ian Tenido’s journey from a disciplined military background to a successful commercial cleaning franchise owner is a story of dedication and hard work. A former U.S. Army member who served
in Afghanistan as a military truck driver and vehicle mechanic in 2014, Tenido honed skills and character traits that would prove invaluable in his business endeavors.

A drive to succeed

Tenido emigrated from the Philippines to the United States with his parents when he was a child and now resides in Barrington, New Jersey. His interest in the military and a desire for growth
and development led him to complete his basic training in 2012 as he concurrently earned a bachelor’s degree in environmental science.

Tenido learned the importance of cleaning while in the military. “I actually have a cleaning background. While serving in the military, we had to clean up the barracks. And I also had prior
experience in building floor management—back when I was a teenager,” he recalled.

After his military service, Tenido pursued further education, earning dual master’s degrees in business administration and natural resources in 2020. His transition into the commercial
cleaning industry began modestly, working at a local nursing home while studying. This experience paved the way for his venture into franchise ownership with OpenWorks.

An eye for detail and practicality

Tenido’s military background seamlessly translated into his business philosophy. “Leadership and integrity are very important in this career,” he asserted. His commitment to excellence is evident, ensuring high standards of cleanliness and customer satisfaction. “Cleaning is something I’m comfortable doing because I have prior experience, and I’m also OSHA- [U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration] certified because I have an environmental studies background,” he said.

Meticulous in his thoroughness, Tenido stressed the importance of proper chemical use and cleaning technique. “[I] make sure that I use the right chemical for the right facility, because
I am servicing clinics and data centers, and they have different needs,” Tenido explained. “[I] make sure everything is disinfected. Like every corner. That’s very important to me. And that all the
mirrors are clear. Every single day.”

He enjoys the practical aspects of his work, particularly using modern tools that make the job easier. “I like vacuuming. I use a cordless vacuum that is easy to work with. And the floor scrubbers
are cordless, too.”

Career satisfaction with a growth plan

Tenido is hands-on in every aspect of his business. “I do payroll, I do taxes, I do everything,” he said.

Looking ahead, he sees a bright future but remains grounded in his current success. “I think I’ll be doing this for a while. But if I get more accounts and I get more businesses to work with, I
might need to hire someone,” he said.

Tenido’s story is not just about transitioning from military life to civilian success; it’s about finding passion and pride in his work. “I really like doing this,” he shared. “I prefer it over working for
somebody else.”

Timothy Johnson

Editor and Writer

Timothy Johnson is an editor, writer, proofreader, content manager, and SEO specialist. He has served as an editor and executive editor for national professional associations, and he has more than 35 years of editorial and publishing experience. He can be reached at [email protected].

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